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Opinion

Mailbag: Bikeway use is no excuse to ignore safety

Let me set the scene. It a quarter to 5 p.m. Sunday afternoon, Aug. 29, I’m walking westbound on the north side of Chandler between Parish Place and Lamer Street. Just up ahead a father in his early 30s and two children, a boy and a girl, about 5 or 6 years old, all riding bicycles south on Lamer come to a stop upon reaching Chandler.

Dad looks both ways for automobile traffic and then the three carefully pedal across the street and stop at the curb in preparation to make use of the Chandler Bikeway.

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While Dad is stuck with the unenviable task of lifting all three bikes over the curb, across the grass and onto the bike path, the little girl stays close by but the boy absentmindedly backs out onto the busy bikeway.

Suddenly a voice is heard screaming: “Get out of the way! Get out of the way!” And a 40-something woman riding a bicycle about as fast as a 40-something woman could possibly pedal a bicycle comes speeding eastbound down the path toward the confused child.

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Dad screams “Slow down,” as the woman zooms by, inches from the boy and she retorts “I’m on the bike path, idiot!”

No attempt was made to slow down, no screeching brakes or last second brilliant maneuvering was observed — by sheer dumb luck the child was not struck by the bicyclist.

I’m quite sure I’m not up to speed concerning all the details of the laws and ordinances governing our city, and perhaps the city attorney might want to weigh in on this, but somehow I don’t think that a bicyclist riding on the Chandler Bikeway has a license to kill or maim any beast that wanders across his or her right-of-way, but maybe I’m wrong…

Richard J. Tafilaw

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Burbank

Gatto shows goodwill to community

I was pleased to see Mike Gatto at my favorite local Saturday morning spot, the Burbank Farmer’s Market, but I was not surprised.

Reaching out to speak directly with members of the community, to hear their concerns and work to solve their issues, is exactly the kind of hands-on effort that I knew we would see from Mike. He arranged for several major state agencies to be there to help with questions and issues (“Gatto hopes to reap what he sows,” Sept. 1).

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I greatly appreciated this kind gesture for the convenience and goodwill it offered to the community.

Heike C. Strand

Burbank

Gun World could have kept doors open

Regarding the Aug. 28 story, “Gun World closes its doors,” I find myself in an awkward position, as an advocate of 2nd Amendment rights I can’t say anything in defense of the establishment’s owner.

The story here is that the owner is retiring and his employees are incompetent. What in the world is so difficult with checking the forms to make sure that all the boxes are checked and questions are filled in? There are only about 28 questions; four of them require one to be able to write their name, age, address, place of birth and race, with the rest just requiring one to check the appropriate boxes. I find it almost incomprehensible that Gun World could have as many as 3,000 omissions and failure to log in 47 firearms.

Believe it or not, in this day and age of identity theft, finger printing is a good idea; it establishes proof and traceable identification of the person taking possession of the firearm after the 10-day waiting period. If someone steals my car with my paperwork and picks up my firearm and uses it to commit a crime, at least I won’t need an attorney to establish my innocence.

After reading about Gun World, I must admit that I need to reevaluate my opinion of the DMV employee — if you don’t properly complete their forms, you don’t get your license.

Eric Dresser

Burbank


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