Readers comments 6-21-19
Claremont needs housing
Though not surprised, I was disappointed to read the comments of those who call for a park at the old La Puerta site. At the same time, I was somewhat amused to read in one letter that “we need advocates and leadership in the community and in the city administration.”
Actually, we already have such advocates and leadership, and they have considered the well-documented need for more housing in Claremont.
I would hope those whose actual goal appears to be to create a buffer between themselves and others will reflect upon the need for more housing in Claremont.
Commons plan doesn’t work
The plan for The Commons, a proposed mixed-use development northwest of the intersection between Monte Vista and Foothill, does not include solar panels. This is extremely short-sighted.
It’s no secret that our consumption of electricity centrally generated by fossil-fueled power plants needs to be reduced drastically. Locally-generated naturally-renewable power needs to be part of every new development.
The developers do plan to include hook-ups for solar panels, if the residents want to add them, but that’s a very poor strategy.
Equipping the entire development all at once would obtain significant volume-price reductions from manufacturers and installers. In addition, many of the units will be for rent, not for sale, and renters won’t want to pay for equipment they may not be able to take with them when they move.
The overall result will be higher costs to purchase and install solar, fewer panels, more electricity consumed from the grid and higher utility costs over the long term.
Furthermore, the orientation of the buildings is wrong for solar energy. If they were planned parallel to Foothill, panels in line with the edges of the roofs could face south. Instead, most of the buildings are lined up from northeast to southwest.
To install the maximum number of panels, they will have to line up with the roof edges and will not face the best sunlight. To face them toward the sun, they will have to be at an angle to the roof edge, and fewer panels will be possible.
The main reason for lining up the buildings at the proposed angle is to have a long, wide avenue through the middle of the development, where an airplane which has trouble while taking off from Cable Airport can make a crash landing without hitting a building. Good luck with that!
This wide avenue is partially a road and partially a park where residents should enjoy the outdoors. Really? With noisy planes flying low overhead at full throttle, even when they don’t crash? Would you want to play there or want your children to? Would you even want to live indoors right under the take-off flight path? Right in the likely crash zone?
Maybe this isn’t the right place for a residential development. The current property owner tried it in 1985, and voters rejected 5-to-1 for a zone change to allow that. Unfortunately for the owner, all of his efforts to attract a commercial or industrial tenant during the last 30 years have failed. Maybe he just made a bonehead property purchase.
On the other hand, our state and our region badly need more housing. We should do our part. There’s not much vacant land in Claremont on which to build. If there’s a way to build safe and sustainable housing on that land, it should be found. The current plan doesn’t seem to be it.
A matter of opinion
To whom is Martin Sheen’s alliance “incongruous?” Those of us who oppose abortion find nothing incongruous in Martin Sheen’s aligning with anti-abortion causes. It is totally consistent with his compassion for helpless individuals who do not have influence in the world.
When someone has cruelly and violently destroyed the life of a puppy or parakeet they are rightfully condemned. Yet a person at their most vulnerable stage of life can be barbarically destroyed at will.
The overwhelming majority of conceptions occur as a result of consensual acts, which everyone knows have the potential to result in new life. In life and death matters where someone creates a situation in which they become the only possible source of vital aid for another, it is usually the legal responsibility of the first person to render such aid.
While recognizing the difficulty and sacrifices required, compassion and fairness require that this concept be applied to someone carrying an unborn child. New life should be allowed the chance to experience what we value so much.
That the reporter would find this “incongruous” with liberal causes reveals his prejudice toward the hugely diverse group of people who are anti-abortion. That his personal opinion would be included in the article reveals at best an error in the COURIER’s journalistic standards or, worse yet, bias.
Congress can be entertaining
When something occurs in Congress that does not drive us crazy or put us to sleep, it’s worth mentioning.
On Wednesday, June 12, Representative Norma Torres (35th District, which includes parts of the Inland Empire) caused a stir when she made the following comment: “Mr. Speaker, it is tiring to hear from so many sex-starved males on this floor talk about a woman’s right to choose.”
I had never heard of Representative Torres but her rather harsh assessment was refreshing.
I have repeatedly wondered, as a male, why so many men, especially ones with an “R” after their name and who are often older and white, feel they should be the arbiters of a woman’s reproductive rights. (I can only wonder how they would feel if, for example, women were in charge of rationing Viagra.)
So when she was called out for her statement by a congressman from Georgia, she poured a bit more gasoline on the fire: “Mr. Speaker, if it pleases my colleague on the other side, I will withdraw my statement about sex-starved males on the floor.”
All of the draconian reproductive rights restrictions that are bubbling up, especially in the South, come just as the third season of The Handmaid’s Tale is starting to stream on Hulu. Talk about life imitating art.