Letters to the editor: May 3, 2019

Trump and the environment, pickleball, rapid transit buses and bikes on Caltrain

A clear and present danger

The foundation for economic growth is abundant natural resources. A clean, non-polluted environment is critical to supporting and spurring long-term economic growth. Most Environmental Protection Agency programs support the president's goal of improving economic growth including the removal, remedial, UST and Brownsfield cleanup programs, which convert unusable properties to productive uses.

Short-term, shortsighted policies, such as the elimination of important environmental cleanup programs (i.e. CERLA or Superfund), regulatory programs (i.e. Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act) designed to prevent degradation or loss of natural resources, science-based research and development and reduction in carbon emissions and other greenhouse gases will have a significant long-term consequence and work against the president's goal of improved and sustainable economic growth.

Environmental protection and economic growth are inextricably intertwined to one another. Economic growth and public health are dependent on a clean environment and abundant natural resources. Environmental regulations are not an impediment to economic growth as the president would want you to believe. The majority of industrial giants know this fact and have embraced the logic and economic fundamentals and support environmental protection policies, good environmental practices and the use of sustainable sources of energy that will allow them to survive.

Worsening contamination of our land, water and air will greatly affect people's health and increase medical costs. The costs of cleanup to again achieve minimum standards for clean air, water and land will be high and a waste. These environmental, cleanup and medical costs will be a significant drain on our economic resources and increase our national debt. I fully support the grassroots effort and leadership necessary to defeat this president and his administration, which is a clear and present danger to our national environment, health, economy and security.

Dan Shane, retired Environmental Protection Agency on-scene coordinator

Cypress Point Drive

Rapid transit buses

Instead of extending light rail and BART, consider instead rapid transit buses, hybrids and 100% electric. We have an excellent and already paid for network of freeways and expressways.

Instead of adding FasTrack lanes, which may give those who pay faster commutes, dedicate one lane for buses only, with right of way vis-a-vis cars and other traffic.

Let private companies invest in and run the buses in competition with other companies and maybe VTA buses as well. This is how public transit works in "socialistic" Scandinavia and other European countries as well.

One Los Angeles rapid transit bus can carry up to 90 passengers, according to this ThoughtCo. article: Don't try to invent the wheel -- this article has all the answers needed. The rapid transit system, taking away only one lane for dedicated buses, would solve all problems immediately. No public investment needed, except for possible subsidies to keep the fares lower or even free. Businesses would pay the fares for their employees, which is happening now with the Google buses. But the rapid transit buses would be available for all.

Kaj Rekola

Laura Lane

Indoor pickleball for seniors

I coordinate indoor senior pickleball for Los Altos; I live in Mountain View. The court we are playing on will soon be demolished and the future is clouded. Mountain View may have available indoor space for one pickleball court; 40 feet by 60 feet is needed. There are advantages with an indoor court, such as no wind or rain problems, consistent surface properties for good footing, and a softer landing for falls.

Weeks ago, one of our women players took a nasty fall. She went into and over the net and tripped on the bar below the net. She continued to play and was back the next week, in no pain and eager to play. I am amazed by the enthusiasm these players show. A recurring comment is: "My legs just can't take the beating on the tennis court like they used to."

The indoor court has consistent lighting with a better background, making it easier to see the ball.

Many of the senior players, like myself, have problems with sun exposure; the indoor court removes that concern. Finally, there is a closer bond between the observers (players) and those contesting due to fewer distractions. We use masking tape for the court lines, and when we are finished, we remove the tape and leave the court exactly as it was before we played.

Stan Peters

Sladky Avenue

Cyclists are people too

In the recent rider survey, a question was posed that clearly shows the bias of Caltrain as an organization that pits walk-on passengers against passengers who bring their bikes on board. It is unfortunate that Caltrain does not treat its passengers equally and that bike passengers are treated as second-class riders. Getting "bumped" from a train is an experience that no walk-on passenger would tolerate and yet it is okay for bikers to have to endure. Caltrain continues to treat bikers as problem passengers rather than a dedicated, lively, active core group of passengers who will not give up on Caltrain -- something many walk-on passengers will do during delays and timing issues.

All passengers deserve respect and Caltrain needs to be an agent of positive change rather than a stoker of irrational fear and negativity. The future of Caltrain depends on doing service to all of its riders and Caltrain would be failing in that goal if they reduced bike capacity on future train designs. Biker passengers are people too!

Yoichi Shiga

San Francisco

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2 people like this
Posted by mv dweller
a resident of Shoreline West
on May 16, 2019 at 1:58 am

mv dweller is a registered user.

I'll ask for everyone else... Wth is pickleball?

5 people like this
Posted by Andrea Gemmet
Mountain View Voice Editor
on May 16, 2019 at 10:32 am

Andrea Gemmet is a registered user.

@mv dweller: Mark Noack wrote an explainer about pickleball, complete with photos, a few years ago. You can read it here: Web Link

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