Letters to the Editor, March 12
I love living in Ashland, but it seems like no matter what happens or what is proposed here, there are a few who feel compelled to express their outrage. The Bryan DeBoer family's plan to build a residence on Winburn Way is no exception. Recent letters to the editor in both the Daily Tidings and Mail Tribune found much to criticize.
A Feb. 29 letter from B. Keen spared no hyperbole in saying the proposed residence is a "pompous, pretentious use of 'park land.' " The property, which now has a closed unattractive snack shop on it, is not park land and is zoned residential.
In her Feb. 29 letter, Char Hersh wants the DeBoers to "sign a contract not to call authorities when it gets noisy." Does she want the rest of us also to sign such a contract?
Craig Smith, in his Feb. 29 letter, ups the ante on hyperbole. He asserts that a private residence would be built "across from the very heart and soul of Lithia Park.” He is concerned about “privately owned opulence staring right at us.” There are many, many houses in Ashland that are larger than the 2,900 square feet the DeBoer home will occupy. Smith's own home is almost as large at just under 2,500 square feet.
Smith wrote a different letter on the topic to the Mail Tribune March 4 that was just a series of questions, most of them full of innuendo, especially his last question: “How much of this plan has to do with big money and political influence, and nothing to do with what’s actually best for all of us?" That question is an insult to the DeBoers as well as to the members of the Planning Commission and the City Council. I don’t know anybody in Ashland who has had to grease the palms of city officials to get a single-family residence built on a lot zoned residential.
I don't know the DeBoers, but I’m sorry they are the target of such undeserved scorn. Their beautiful and decidedly not showy home will be a great improvement to the property.
Shame on us
We're close to losing it: Civility, politeness, self-control, basic manners. In its place is brashness and rudeness, as well as disrespectful, boorish and uncouth behavior.
The rules of considerate conduct do not apply in today's society. We only have to watch the debates to observe our all-too-common behavioral norm. Bullying, threatening, intimidating, arguing, ranting and raving have become our models of what is acceptable. There they are, in living color, the presidential candidates acting like the proverbial schoolboys.
Then too, for many of us, social media has given us the freedom to blast away at our non-friends or enemies and remain anonymous and distanced. TV adds to the cultural decline, with raw depictions of human contact and a plethora of hearing the F-word, so much so that it has become standard usage.
Being concerned about this decline does not mean one is religious or a moral authority. "I don't care what you think or what you say" is indicative of a society that could become cold and uncaring. It's swiftly heading in that direction.
What we need is some restraint and some class.
I am so tired of hearing all the bad things about our police officers. I know Officer Graham and he is a very good officer. I suppose if Caruthers was coming at Mr. Sanford with a knife he's supposed to just step back and let himself be stabbed. He seems to think our officers are robots. They are human beings that have a target on their backs, because of people who criticize them.
I would also like to comment on Hugh Hendrickson's letter on March 5. He is so right on. I really liked his letter.
Send in the clowns
Not the New York Times best-seller, the "Pig Book" is a collection of government pork-barrel spending.
The billions of fraudulent spending include “removal of tattoos.” Reading the list of insane spending one can laugh and wonder who inserted these in the budget. The answer is hundreds of our representatives in Congress.
Considering our national debt is around $19 trillion, the Pig Book is saying, “We, your elected servants, could care less about debt and everyone around Washington D.C. is doing very well.“ When I suggest this problem to our senators I receive a note related to the environment. I'm listening to the song, "Send in the Clowns."