MAILBAG: Protesters were far from civil

Never has it been said by the “left” that it is un-American to dissent. As I recall, those who opposed the policies of President George W. Bush did so in a more peaceful manner, by expressing their views and opinions through the media and with organized demonstrations without guns, than those recently have at the town hall meetings from the “right.”

Yes, thousands on the “right” are attending these town hall meetings, but people’s heads are in the sand if they think their demonstrations are not orchestrated. All demonstrations are.

These protesters went to these meetings prepared to disrupt a democratic process. These meetings are held to inform the public on the “Health Care Reform Bill” and open to the public to engage in a civil question-and-answer discussion. Instead they constantly interrupted the speakers by shouting angry words and not giving them a chance to explain the bill.

I also recall the few town hall meetings that President Bush held were screened and closed to opposing views. NOW Now that is un-American.

Nina Trotta-Sutton

Simi Valley

New Democrat backs single-payer

In reply to the “two influential Democrats” who can’t afford a universal health-care system, I wonder if they are right now enjoying the benefits and cost savings of our current government-sponsored Medicare health insurance for seniors. I certainly am benefiting from Medicare. I can choose my own doctors, hospital, tests, etc., and Medicare reduces the amount the suppliers charge.

As a former Republican (for more than 60 years) this new Democrat strongly supports a universal, single-payer health-care program. Twenty percent of our population is suffering from no medical coverage, and all of us are paying right now for their limited emergency care.

We can’t afford to “above all, do nothing.”

GEORGANNE THOMSEN

Glendale

Extend both the 710 and 2 freeways

The old controversy about the 710 Freeway extension to the 210 is lately in full swing, polluting the media. It is nauseating to read or listen to all those politicians, activists, NIMBYs and other “social engineers” (to avoid a more disparaging epithet), pandering to their respective clientele. All these inhibitors should be stopped in their destructive endeavors

Instead, we should honestly confront the problem at hand. Our sprawling urban areas were evolving in tandem with the use of the automobile, a part of our way of life. Years ago, congestion became a problem, and we are now at the saturation point. The right answer is to strategically plan and expeditiously complete the freeway system. The preponderance of common good should be the guiding light in resolving the overwhelming freeway problems.

If this is hazy to some, let me evoke one issue of “democracy at work” on our own turf. That is the Glendale (2) Freeway, which, for many years now, has been fizzling Echo Park.

Just imagine, if all the funds that all these years have been spent on a multitude of futile, failed projects had instead been spent on extending the 2 Freeway from its dead end at Glendale Boulevard across the Hollywood and Santa Monica Freeways, then southwest connecting to the San Diego and Marina freeways, with the extension creating a loop around L.A. International Airport and connecting to the 105 Freeway. Then the commuting from the eastern part of the San Fernando Valley and the western part of the San Gabriel Valley to LAX would be much shorter. This would also relieve a considerable inflow that now chokes the downtown freeways, creating a parking lot in slow motion.

From the same, basic reasons: the common good and logic, the extension of the 710 to the 210 Freeway is critically necessary. It should be completed at the shortest surface route.

When the decision makers mature and apply their positive influence to complete both discussed freeways fast, it will save time, shorten travel distances and lower gas consumption. Applied this way, the billions of dollars the government spent just to buy the clunkers would better serve the purpose.

YUL B. DRASKOVIC

Glendale


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