Letters to the Editor – Dallas pavements, crypto mining, short term rentals

Dangers of Broken Sidewalks

Re: “Bad sidewalks trip up the city – Dallas can implement simple, inexpensive solutions to deal with the hazards”, by Rod Scales, Sunday Opinion.

I just wanted to thank you for posting this column about why Dallas sidewalks are in such bad shape. I am a fit young lady, who likes to walk two small dogs. I was knocked down last summer by an uneven sidewalk that damaged the joints of one foot so badly that I’m only comfortable in sneakers.

I know this may sound trivial, but I’ve been in pain for almost a year, so I’m going to my first podiatrist appointment! For a 37-year-old man, in perfect health, who likes to exercise every day, this accident hurt a lot. Emotionally and physically. It was my fault I fell, but in the dark it can be hard to see the path ahead of you, especially when your eyes are on your little puppies.

I hope this uneven sidewalk will be fixed. I can only imagine how frustrating the sidewalk problem is for others who are walking or biking.

The joys of neighborhood life, learning to ride a bike and playing outside are definitely not suitable for children. It’s not how many of us have grown. I wonder if parents feel that children are deprived of this exciting time in life.

Brooke Nelson, Dallas/Knox-Henderson

Inflation cost

I read about high gas prices and inflation and did something about gas prices. What about the prices of bread and the prices of milk, staples of many families? A pint of Blue Bell ice cream now costs $2.79. I imagine some families would like to find a loaf of bread at this low price. Does anyone out there have any answers?

Barbara WiskowDallas

Ban crypto mining

Two recent articles in your newspaper caught my attention. The first is the Biden administration’s requirement that vehicles average 40 miles per gallon by 2026. The second is the Electric Reliability Council of Texas setting rules for crypto miners generating digital currency . The first aims to limit carbon dioxide emissions. The second indirectly sanctions the increase of the same pollutant.

When it comes to meeting ERCOT’s electricity needs, wind and solar generation are prioritized because they are cheaper in part due to government subsidies. Fossil fuel generation, which usually costs more to produce, then fills in the rest. Recently added crypto mining uses fossil fuels and dramatically increases carbon dioxide emissions.

Digital currency is not a necessity. We have done without it for centuries, it has no intrinsic value and it is not backed by any tangible asset. It is created out of thin air and its value is determined by the supply and demand created by speculators and risk takers. It has no cash value. Texas and the country should ban crypto mining due to the carbon dioxide it adds to the atmosphere.

Charles E. Jackson, Richardson

Regulate short-term rentals

As short-term rentals become more popular, note that two-thirds of homes rented out as motels are owned and operated by corporations, trust funds, partnerships, and other groups, not owner-occupied. In many cities in Texas, these businesses are unregulated, do not require permits or licenses, and do not pay hotel or motel taxes.

Some cities – Colleyville, Arlington, DeSoto, Lancaster, Grand Prairie and a few others – specifically regulate short-term rentals, including taxation. It should be the duty of all our local and state governments to regulate these businesses and not just leave it to homeowners associations, some of which are voluntary.

Local cities must regulate noise, number of guests allowed, garbage disposal, parking, etc., during these short-term rentals and charge permit fees. The payment of taxes on motels should make it possible to lighten the burden of resident taxpayers who must bear these inconveniences. If your city doesn’t specifically regulate short-term rentals, contact your council members.

Judith Watkins, Cedar Hill

The “innocent” ballots rejected

All of the letters detailing how legitimate ballots were discarded by the confusing new election rules reminded me of a quote from Benjamin Franklin: “It is better for 100 guilty to escape than for an innocent to suffer.” But when it comes to Texas, the opposite is true. “It is better to reject 100 innocent ballots than to allow one fraudulent ballot.”

Thomas Urech, Plano

What will it take?

The dire warnings about climate change follow a disaster plan devised by the COVID-19 crisis. “It’s my right to choose not to vaccinate or not to wear a mask.” “COVID-19 is a hoax.” Substitute “It’s my right to pollute to do what I want.” “Climate change is a hoax.”

If there was a device that accurately measured carbon footprint, would people give up their oversized cars? Would we stop the Indy 500 or the multi-million dollar pro football games? What will it take for us as individuals, as businesses and as a nation to prioritize planetary survival over profit? Will it be the day when children can no longer breathe the air or expose themselves to the sun for fear of getting burned?

Cynthia Stock, garland

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