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Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017 12:18 am

Letters to the Editor 2/2/17

Senate Bill 009, the Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Tax Act, introduced by Sen. Toi Hutchinson, pledges to increase the sales tax on sugar-flavored beverages such as juices, tea, coffee and soda drinks, at a rate of one cent per ounce.


While the recent Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Tax Act story (“Lawmakers propose tax on sugary beverages,” by Alex Camp, Jan. 19) didn’t mention it, a complaint that has been made before when such taxes were proposed is that it is regressive because people who can least afford to pay this tax will be paying a disproportionate share of it. I disagree.

It’s common knowledge that these drinks, whether diet or not, are “empty calories.” Thus, people who cannot afford to pay the tax also cannot afford to pay for the soft drinks in the first place, being wise enough to know that what little money they have needs to go to necessities, such as healthy groceries that are not “empty calories.”

Dick McLane

Just what Springfield needs – more open space downtown! It already looks like a gaping mouth with missing teeth. What we need is fill-in brick and mortar.

How will a park generate revenue and spawn economic development downtown, the stated intent of projects like Flaherty and Collins’ proposed residential and commercial complex for the YWCA block?

The city’s desire to downsize the project doomed it, despite the fact that cities smaller than ours supported the larger project of 200 apartments.

Will Springfield now be known as a “downsize city” or one that thinks big, worthy of being the capital of Illinois?

Mike Shepherd
New Berlin

My friends and I joined thousands of other like-minded beautiful women for a rally in Chicago to support women’s rights. The news reported we were 250,000 strong and counting. The news also reported that no one was arrested. The power of worldwide feminine protest was amazing. The sound of cheering would start at one end of the march and make its way down the street like a long crowd wave at a Cubs game. I’ll never forget that rhythmic flow as long as I live.

As would happen at any gathering where thousands of women were in attendance, there were not enough restrooms. My friends and I chose a McDonald’s to wait in line because they usually have multiple stalls. The line was about 20 people deep when we entered the building. Men mixed in the line with their female partners. The group had already agreed that equal bathroom rights prevailed for this event and everyone patiently took turns for their sigh of relief while alternating both restrooms in quiet solidarity. People were holding signs and adjusting coats and told their personal stories of why they were attending the event.

About five minutes into standing there, what appeared to be two dads and their young sons peacefully said, “Excuse us,” to try to cut through the line to use the men’s restroom. A few moments later one of the dads led his group away from the line. He shrugged his shoulders and said, “Hey, who knew the rules had changed?” Like the great Traveling Wilburys song states, “They went to they end of the line.” I took a deep breath and smiled because that small moment described equal rights better than any speech, comments or other actions I saw or heard the rest of the day. Peaceful equal bathroom rights prevailed – one small miracle at a time.

Kathryn Dauksza


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