Letters to the Editor 3/28/19
HOTEL VETTING LACKING
Thanks to Bruce Rushton and IT for checking out the credentials of the backers of the proposed new downtown Springfield hotel (“Welcome to Hotel Springfield,” March 21). Rushton’s research shows a serious lack of experience or know-how in US hotel development, construction or management by the individuals or companies that convinced nine city council members to OK $7.6 million in TIF money towards the project. Shouldn’t the backers first have been vetted by the administration and the council and the results widely publicized before giving the city’s approval to this project, now questionable in light of Rushton’s revelations?
CHANGING OUR HABITS
There are many of us who share Carey Smith’s deep concern for the future of our Earth (“We need something better than blue bins,” March 14). Discovering and implementing solutions to waste management and resource utilization issues that have been “coming apart at the seams” for decades, if not centuries, does require a clear-eyed assessment of the human needs and economic forces that have brought us to our present predicament.
My daughter recently sent me a copy of Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer, a very hopeful book by a plant scientist who also happens to be Native American. It was interesting reading and offered many positive suggestions regarding how we might learn from plant life and from the ancient wisdom of indigenous peoples.
Unfortunately, so long as our lifestyle is based on rabid and conspicuous consumption of plasticky nonessential products brought to market by a worldwide manufacturing megalith generously fed by those daily million-barrel doses of cheap oil, nothing much will change as far as slowing or reversing damage to the environment and poisoning of the air, land and sea. Breaking old habits doesn’t come easy. As creatures we are complex, complicated and frequently contradictory. We want it all.... the pristine natural world, the SUVs and jetliners that can transport us to exotic places and the mountains of useless junk, too.
Our survival may hinge on admitting to this “inconvenient truth” (to borrow the famous Al Gore expression) and then beginning to work toward reducing our individual and collective carbon footprints. We can do this by controlling our appetites and ambitions and coming up with ideas that might make a difference for the sake of our children and grandchildren. As Ms. Smith has proposed, let’s all get real and get to work.
MAKE NO LITTLE PLANS
Now that ground has been broken for the new YMCA and demolition of the old one is pending, it’s time to make ambitious plans for a Frank Lloyd Wright museum adjacent to the Dana-Thomas House.