Pledged to Death
The sub-headline in Maureen Turner’s piece, “A Report Finds the Warren/Brown ‘People’s Pledge’ Worked,” (May 14) was incomplete. It should have continued, “…for Elizabeth Warren.” I’ll bet Turner was almost as happy as Warren watching Scott Brown commit political suicide by taking that pledge.
If the goal is to have Senate races more contained within each state maybe we should be talking about repealing the 17th Amendment.
John P. Saccavino
Bring Back the Benches, Noho
I am from Wendell, and make the commute to Northampton regularly for a change of scenery and to shop. I’m writing because I am dismayed at the removal of benches that has recently taken place. Places to sit down are crucial for a nice downtown that I would want to visit. I have never had any problem with the homeless that sometimes share them as well. They are a part of our reality and should not be shunned. I would avoid visiting or shopping in a town which treats its citizens with such disdain as to not offer the common courtesy of a place to sit down.
Soy and Nuts, Not Meat
A review of 12,000 papers on climate change, in the May 15th issue of “Environmental Research Letters,” found that 97 percent of scientists attribute climate change to human activities. Although we’re unlikely to reverse climate change, we can mitigate its effects by reducing our driving, energy use, and meat consumption. Yes, meat consumption. A 2006 U.N. report estimated that meat consumption accounts for 18 percent of man made greenhouse gases. A 2009 article in the respected World Watch magazine suggested that it may be closer to 50 percent. Carbon dioxide, the principal greenhouse gas, is generated by burning forests to create animal pastures and by combustion of fossil fuels to confine, feed, transport, and slaughter animals. The much more damaging methane and nitrous oxide are discharged from digestive tracts of cattle and from animal waste cesspools, respectively. Each of us has the power to reduce the devastating effects of climate change every time we eat. Our local supermarket offers a rich variety of soy-based lunch meats, hotdogs, veggie burgers and soy and nut-based dairy products, as well as an ample selection of vegetables, fruits, grains, and nuts.
Jewell Lame on Fracking
New Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has proposed rules that fail to protect America’s natural heritage from the rolling environmental disaster of fracking. As the oil and gas industry seeks to do its dirty drilling in or around great natural treasures such as Glacier National Park, Secretary Jewell should heed the conclusion of the Obama administration’s own advisory panel by keeping public lands off-limits to fracking. Her proposed rules do little to protect these amazing places. As fracking becomes more and more prominent, it will not be long before it reaches the rural and beautiful lands of New England. We need President Obama to protect our national treasures from dirty drilling before it’s too late.