Let's set aside ideology
and listen to each other
Years ago, during George W. Bush's presidency, I made a proposal to a liberal acquaintance of mine. I proposed that he set aside his liberal ideology, and I would set aside my conservative ideology, and then we would listen honestly to what each had to say.
He thought it might be a good idea but would work only if the social atmosphere in which we live had not been too badly poisoned by previous and current political rhetoric and hard-core differences. Unfortunately, we never followed through on the proposal.
Today, I wonder if such a proposal is still doable. Not just between my liberal acquaintance and me, but among elected and appointed officials and lawmakers from both sides of the political aisle at each level of government. Is today's political discourse and atmosphere so poisonous that such a proposal would never work?
I wonder what other readers would think about such a proposal. Would it help put the issues facing all of us on a more human level rather than a political-ideology level?
I try to be an avid promoter of Atlantic City, and I was very disappointed recently when a dear friend and I decided to go into the city for dinner on Friday night. My friend is a small-business owner in Ventnor, and I'm a sales manager.
It was cold and snowing, the streets in Atlantic City were empty, but we had to pay $10 to park at a casino hotel, and the casino was empty.
The restaurant we wanted to go to was closed for a private event. The other restaurants we looked at were overpriced - and empty. Finally, we settled on a house restaurant only to find that it closed at 8 p.m. on a Friday night. So what did we pay our $10 for?
While searching and walking throughout, we noticed many employees arriving for work with shirttails out and shirts not pressed. Not one looked up, made eye contact or smiled.
We regretted our decision to choose the city for dining. We couldn't get our $10 back. We couldn't find an affordable, sit-down place to eat, and we realized that, yet again, the city disappointed us.
Atlantic City has to learn, and we have to change - quickly.
New Jersey needs
a management change
Regarding the Jan. 24 article, "Revel needs new owners to succeed, Sweeney says":
What state Senate President Steve Sweeney, D-Salem, Gloucester, Cumberland, said is exactly why the majority of voters in the state elected a Republican governor. We felt we need a management change.
Politicians such as Sweeney imposed every tax possible to make us one of the most heavily taxed states in the country. But New Jersey still has more than $70 billion in debt and is near bankruptcy, because salaries, benefits and other perks were granted to public-sector workers and politicians that far exceed the ability of taxpayers to fund.
When we decide to get rid of the Democrats in the Legislature and give full control to Gov. Chris Christie, we may see some changes that may create more jobs in the private sector.
The state has to balance its budget and control pay and benefits to government workers without putting any more of a burden on the taxpayers. Sweeney and his followers will never understand this, because their base is made up of public workers.
Little Egg Harbor Township
New flood maps
The flood maps adopted by Gov. Chris Christie will affect a lot of residents in South Jersey. These maps are saying that properties on lagoons are subject to the same type of waves that beachfront properties are subject to. However, many properties in beach towns are still in A zones and will not have to deal with the higher elevations, stricter regulations and higher insurance premiums of lagoon properties that are now in V zones, meaning they have the potential of being hit by a 3-foot wave. Longport, which floods consistently, has areas still in A zones, and Little Egg Harbor Township had one flood incident and is now in a V zone.
It affects our ability to rebuild our homes, affects us financially, and it is not logical.
Little Egg Harbor Township
Bulb article omitted
CFL mercury dangers
I read the Jan. 27 article, "What's it take to change a light bulb? A federal law: Production of incandescents coming to an end," with disappointment. While I understand the concern regarding the quality of the lighting from compact fluorescent lights, or CFLs, interviewing lighting, decorating and sales professionals doesn't touch on much more important dangers of these bulbs.
CFLs contain mercury, which complicates their disposal. Not only is there danger of mercury poisoning in our natural environment when the bulbs are disposed of, but there is a very great danger if one is broken. The article could have been a needed warning of the mercury danger of CFLs.
J. BRUCE NICHOLS
Major news media
ignored pro-life march
On Jan. 25, I participated in the Pro Life March in Washington to protest the Supreme Court decision of Roe vs. Wade 40 years ago. Never before have I seen so many people united in one place for a single cause. There must have been at least 500,000 participants all marching in the freezing cold.
Strangely, though, there was no media coverage. No CBS, NBC, ABC or CNN. Nothing at all on the evening news. This is especially peculiar when you consider the coverage given to the anti-gun march the following day, which had only thousands participating. All the networks made it a point to show sign-carrying protesters marching against guns.
It's fairly obvious not only who controls the media but also that they feel the public will take what they air on their networks and not question what they fail to cover.