Letters to the editor - 06-09-2013

June 9, 2013 

TRANSIT CENTER

Time to make progress

Over the last several years I have attended no less than three public open houses to comment on various proposals for a multimodal transit center in downtown Boise. A transit center that will move our city toward the future of public transportation.

I have worked Downtown for the last eight years, and I am a regular bus rider. It's economical, easy, and environmentally responsible. In eight years, not once have I been accosted by a panhandler or threatened by a homeless person. This perceived situation is not reality.

Exactly who would be frequenting a transit hub? Me. A professional. And whom do I ride the bus with? I see BSU students going to school, Boise high school students - our children, city employees sitting next to lawyers sitting next to teachers sitting next to janitors. We are not "undesirables," we are good citizens and we represent the majority of people hanging around at bus stops. This city needs a transit hub and it belongs Downtown. Stop making lame excuses and start making progress.

TRACY BAKER, Eagle

Stereotypes outdated

Really? The political elite don't want to have homeless people too close to the Capitol?

It would do some of our representatives good to see how the economy and budget cuts affect real people. Secondly, the assumption itself that only poor people ride buses is out of touch.

Lots of people ride buses because they want to do their part for the environment. Or they don't want to have a car for everyone in the family or pay high insurance prices. Or they want to avoid traffic and parking problems. It seems to me that a lot of people with vison for the future have been working on this project - and a terrible shame to have it shot down because of outdated stereotypes.

KARI FILSON, Boise

RAUL LABRADOR

Actions not appreciated

On Memorial Day, the Veterans Memorial Service was held at the Idaho Veterans Cemetery. Several public officials attended to commemorate those who have given their lives for this country, including Idaho 1st District Congressman Raul Labrador.

Labrador, surrounded by dress uniforms, left his necktie at home, slouched in his chair, and spent considerable time on his Blackberry during the proceedings, much like a teenager sitting through a lengthy church service. It's certainly nice to see one of only 535 elected officials in Congress, a body that has the power to declare war, treat an event honoring someone like Maj. Ed "Too Tall" Freeman - a Medal of Honor recipient who flew helicopters in Vietnam - with indifference. Don't worry about tying that tie, this event will be over in an hour anyways.

Sorry we bothered you to speak. It's fine you didn't prepare a speech. Off-the-cuff remarks will really show the loved ones of those who have died in war that you value their sacrifice. Some (everyone) would think that preparing a speech in advance would be respectful. Don't worry about it. We really should be thankful you didn't just tweet your support. Thank you, congressman, for getting out of your pajamas.

ERIC WILSON, Boise

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