Thursday, September 28, 2006

Our Readers Respond...

Dear Editor:

Global Warming is a crisis that can unite us all.

Last may I received another Vanity Fair magazine in the mail. It was the special Green Issue. Julia Roberts, George Clooney, Robert Kennedy, Jr. and Al Gore were on the cover. They were tinted green and they were looking straight at me. I put the magazine on my “get to later, maybe” table. I still couldn’t figure out why I was getting Vanity Fair. I hadn’t subscribed to it.

On the newsstand when I looked at it, it seemed too glossy and too full of ads, but I discovered it had some super interesting articles. As for Global Warming, I told myself I was doing my part. I’d been riding a bike for transportation since the gas lines of the early seventies, if my ride was an hour or less. I didn’t eat heart attack-causing, rain forest-destroying hamburgers.

I taught at-risk students. Global warming was too upsetting to read about. Then at work I saw a copy of Time Magazine with polar bears, looking perplexed, trapped on an ice flow. I thought, “Coward, read that Vanity Fair.”

If you look at the 21 hottest years measured, 20 of the 21 have occurred within the last 25 years. The hottest year recorded during this entire period was 2005, and I’m sure 2006 will be hotter. I remember listening to Noam Bramson, the mayor of New Rochelle during that horrible, sticky, oppressive heat wave this summer, on WVOX, telling people to stay indoors because the air was unhealthy to breath.

Do we really want to live like this? The science is conclusive that we humans are causing global warming by spewing polluting greenhouse gases into our precious atmosphere. Wouldn’t it be better to become the world
leader in renewable energy like wind, solar and tidal energy? We would create good paying jobs, and save polar bears and ourselves in the process.

I found out that a good friend of mine had sent me a subscription to Vanity Fair. Thanks for creating The Westchester Guardian, a real grassroots paper that isn’t afraid to tell the truth.

Jon A. Nardelli
Mount Vernon

To the Editor:

In the struggle to find an acceptable solution to the decaying Tappan Zee Bridge, many have suggested that the easiest, and some say the best solution, would be to just build a second Tappan Zee Bridge.

The Tappan Zee Bridge was something of an experimental design, built right after World War II and built on the cheap with untreated lumber on the causeway, now being chewed up by borers. Other bridges of like design
have been, or are being, replaced. To put it bluntly, the TZB is in dreadful shape and a money pit for the Thruway to maintain in any kind of safe condition. To duplicate the first disaster is unthinkable and to build one of
a different design is even less desirable. Talk about visual pollution, one can only imagine the outrage from the river communities.

From a traffic management standpoint a second bridge is impractical given the fact that the bridge must have no more traffic lanes than the roadways on either side of the bridge or the result would be massive gridlock as
vehicles attempt to merge into the existing lanes on the land. What is needed is a replacement bridge with the capability of carrying a commuter rail that could link up five existing north/south rails, two in Rockland and three in Westchester. Such a connecting rail would connect three states, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and even come close to a fourth, Pennsylvania, just across the Delaware River at the end of the Port Jervis Line. Our region is blessed with a wonderful rail system but it is disconnected, assuming everyone wants to go to NYC.

With commuters going in all directions today a linked rail system is vital for our future economic viability.

Maureen Morgan

The writer is a transit advocate for the East/West Project. She is on the Board of the Federated Conservationists of Westchester County.

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