Peace Bridge offers ?plenty of alternatives

As a lifelong resident of Western New York and a retiree of the New York State Department of Transportation, I feel obligated to comment regarding the ongoing Peace Bridge controversy.

First of all, nothing can be agreed on because everyone involved thus far realized nothing proposed until now is worthy of consideration. Finally, I feel compelled to offer the following proposals:

We have the mighty Niagara. It is hard to find anyone who doesn't think we have not capitalized on this feature. So here are some of my ideas on the Peace Bridge issues:

First of all, it seems peculiar that a family in a family car filled with children has to wait to cross a bridge while they are sandwiched between semi-trailers on all sides while they are supposed to be enjoying a vacation. Truckers also seem annoyed with having recreational traffic slowing them down. And so I offer this suggestion:

Develop and continue to maintain the existing Peace Bridge, but as a commercial bridge intended for truck traffic while making any plaza improvements necessary.

Build a new ornate signature bridge further south of the existing bridge for cars and recreational vehicles. Style would not be as important as the center pier should support a rotating restaurant with a spectacular view of the Buffalo/Niagara area.

The United States end of the bridge would terminate much closer to the mainstream downtown area. In the foundation of this bridge would be turbine-powered generators that would not only power the rotation of the restaurant but also the electricity used to cook the food served. At the reception desk would be brochures with cards tourists could send to friends and family boasting they had dinner cooked directly by the mighty Niagara. Ultimately, all this could generate tourist activity that would help invigorate this area's economy while relieving traffic issues described above.

Everything proposed thus far has no gravitas. Most proposals I have seen would be just another way to cross a river. You have an opportunity. Go for it!

Joe Palmer



Justice system is no?reflection of right

@Body copy rag:I have removed the term "justice system" from my vocabulary. Given the news stories here in the last few months, it is crystal clear it's the "legal system" and it has little or nothing to do with justice.

Valerie Monahan



Too many people?act like hypocrites

What is this world coming to? I recently read a news article about people "hoarding" money in this economy. I had to laugh. It used to be called "saving" money for a rainy day, retirement, college, etc. Apparently now if you don't drop your paycheck at the mall you are hoarding money and you are bad.

Then I turned on the news and watched a story about a young man who took police on a very dangerous high-speed chase that could have hurt or killed someone. The officer, who was doing his job protecting us from irresponsible miscreants like this, shot and paralyzed this person. His family got on TV and said that the officer should have thought about his actions before shooting because now their relative is paralyzed. This man is paying the consequences of his actions. Period.

Then I watched a Fox news program that said 49 percent of people in this country don't pay taxes. Well, I guess that explains Obama getting elected. I personally feel that if you aren't paying taxes, you should not be allowed to vote on how those taxes are spent. And of course, these are the same people screaming that millionaires should pay "their fair share." Fair share? Really? How about these people contribute their fair share first?

Robin F. Blersch



Romney support?is inconceivable

In the last few months we have found out that Mitt Romney has millions in the Cayman Islands and in Switzerland. While I do not doubt that the Swiss people and those living in the Cayman Islands benefit from these accounts, I have some difficulties understanding how a mill worker in Ohio, a construction worker in Michigan or a teacher in Wisconsin would benefit from these activities which, while legal, are not remotely designed to produce jobs in the United States.

This is why it's so hard to understand why the next presidential election should be as close as it appears to be. How many among us have Swiss Bank accounts, or have parked moneys in offshore banks? If he is such a patriot, why does he not keep his money in the United States where it may contribute to lowering the unemployment rate by spurring investments in manufacturing?

While we are told by the Romney campaign that Bain helped export jobs to India, it did so while Romney was in charge of the Olympics. We also know that he was still benefitting financially from the job exporting activities of the company he was a major founder of. I have no qualms with the very rich for supporting Romney.

Nobody should blame the rich for having done well. Tax-wise they are investing their monies wisely with their contributions to the Republican super PACs. Together with these contributions, however, they should be assessed a fair tax, because the one they pay now is the lowest in 50 years.

On the other hand, what is more difficult to understand is why so many middle class and poor individuals are in favor of this man becoming president.

Andrew Toth



Treat drivers at any age?the same as older ones

I suppose you would consider me one of those elderly drivers that needs to be retested. I take a safety course once every three years for insurance purposes, never use my cell phone, always watch my surroundings (front and rear) for a safe place to steer if I need to avoid any accidents, drive the speed limit, never tailgate and stop at all lights and stop signs.

When I am going down the road at 55 mph, most of my fellow motorists tailgate me so close you would be lucky to fit a spare tire between us until they can get past me and take off at 65 or 70 mph. When I stop at a light, there are usually three or four cars in the lane beside me that go through the light.

My 16-year-old neighbor evidently just got his license a short time ago. Every time he leaves, you can hear the tires squeal as he tries to go from zero to 60 in two seconds. I was out front weeding my garden last week and watched him go through the stop sign across the road without even slowing down, and then turn into his driveway so fast that two of his truck tires actually came off the pavement. I was afraid the truck was going to roll over.

I'm sure that young man and I would both pass a retest, but who would you rather have on the road behind you?

If we need a retest, why not be like California and retest every driver that has had an at-fault accident or ticket since the last license renewal?

Jeanette Andrews