Letters for June 4, 2015
Re “People try to put us down” (Letters to the Editor, April 30):
I saw Mike Arp’s letter complaining about my generation electing a guy named Hussein president within the same decade as the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers. Wow. Did he know the last name Arp is German? I’m part German, but did he know we were at war with Germany not too long ago? I guess America didn’t hold that against our families. It’s just a name, after all. Arp is derived from the Middle Low German meaning “dark brown.” He’s probably not happy about that either. Germans in WWII certainly wouldn’t have been happy with that last name. They, like him, were overly concerned with a person’s genealogical history as well as things like the color of someone’s skin or whether their name implied a possible connection to a religion. But I suppose that’s not entirely true. Many Germans were just bullied by their over-nationalistic countrymen into acting violently against their own beliefs and against their own fellow citizens and the world at large. It certainly must be nice to know that at least his generation has overcome such blatant racism, religious persecution, war mongering and lowbrow nationalistic hatred of anyone who doesn’t look or sound like him. I’m pretty sure most of us still know and talk about AIDS since it’s still a global pandemic, but I’ll leave my opinions on Reagan out of this letter in order to keep things civil.
Keep telling your story
Re “Life after Meth” (Feature story, April 16):
I used to live in Reno and now work in a residential rehab facility for men attempting to transition out of drug addiction and criminality in Portland, Oregon. Methamphetamine is hard enough to get away from once it’s got its hooks in, and then there’s all the wreckage that comes along with it: criminality, damaged and destroyed relationships, ruined health, mental health issues—and the list goes on and on. Recovery is not easy, it is not a simple process (especially in the beginning), and I loved reading this story of survival and redemption. Keep telling your story, Echo Lee Menges! It will give a lot of lost people who want to be well some hope, and sometimes that’s enough to keep trudging forward into a prosocial way of living.
Water, water everywhere
I know of a local, highly rated apartment complex which is abusing its rights to the ridiculously understated need for water. Their watering days are set up for the “uneven address” days of the month, yet the lawn—and I use the term “lawn” loosely here—is watered every day, up to three times a day. It really burns my bushes to see this happening. It has gone on every year in the six years I have lived in this area, and every year they get called out on it. But no one really seems to care.
Re “Return of billboards?” (News, May 7):
You drive down the Truckee River canyon from the west toward Reno, hit that straight stretch near Gold Ranch, there’s this beautiful valley … and a huge set of garish, out-of-place and inappropriate billboards scattered along the highway, ruining an otherwise compellingly beautiful and inviting view. Same with the Robb Drive hill. Here’s the last rise of the eastern slope of the Sierra before dropping into Reno, and the whole hillside and view are ruined by a phalanx of billboards marching up and over the hill. Yes, somebody’s making money. But, is the overall impact on business in Reno, and the overall experience of people living in and visiting Reno positive? I think decidedly not. These billboards, at least, keep Reno screaming “cheap” and “tacky.” Is that what we want? Looking forward, I think not.
Re “Mean to elderly women” (Letters to the Editor, May 14):
I have to agree with Don Manning of Reno. Just because a woman or man is over the age of 70 doesn’t qualify them for the funny farm. I know many, many people who are way past the age of 70 who are active and productive citizens. I am approaching 70 at breakneck speed, and I don’t consider myself an “old lady,” and I’m nowhere near the vicinity of “Dementia Boulevard!”
Man of the people
Re “Life in Congress” (15 Minutes, May 28):
Regarding the Representative Amodei article: A few of the items Rep. Amodei has voted for this year cut food stamps, Medicare and Social Security disability funding. Cut funding to Amtrak, the day after eight people died. Voted for HR1735, a $611.8 billion dollar increase for the military budget. I can hardly wait to see the next great legislative bill Rep. Amodei is going to support.
Woman of the people
Re “She’s the mayor” (Feature story, May 28):
I just read Mayor Hillary Schieve’s interview with the Reno News & Review and noticed the mention of city staff suggesting that something should be done to spend the $10 million surplus. What part of spending the taxpayers’ money on necessities only don’t they understand? Just because there’s a surplus doesn’t mean it needs to be spent. A rainy day fund should be the first consideration. After that fund is satisfied, a tax reduction should be considered. As a businesswoman, I would think that the following would be obvious. Lower taxes always result in greater growth and a subsequent increase in the tax base for an increased tax revenue flow. So far, Schieve’s election has certainly been a refreshing change, and I wish her well in her future at the helm of our city. I sincerely hope that she will continue keeping the taxpayer in mind as she develops her plans for the future of Reno.
Censor disagreeable speech
Re “The problem is systemic white authority” (Let Freedom Ring, May 21):
When your columnist Brendan Trainor writes that there is some truth in Republican hero Cliven Bundy’s statement that black people might have been better off in slavery, it is time for Trainor to be sent to Bundy’s ranch or a White Supremacist camp to do their newsletters. Or the Reno News & Review should be renamed the Confederacy Star!
Would Trainor make the case that those Jews with skills, who got “jobs” in concentration camps, were better off because during WWII, Jews in Germany could not get jobs? Or that the girls who were kidnapped in Nigeria by Boko Haram were better off because they have a “husband” now, raping them everyday, as was the case for black women in slavery who were raped regularly by the “white authority”?
It is absolutely amazing that in the year 2015, a newspaper has columnists implying that Southern plantation owners were doing a favor for people kidnapped in Africa, chained in the hulls of ships, raped on the voyage, then “sold” in chains to cotton growers!