Here is a roundup of Insider Voices reflecting recent news developments.
An alternative homeless alternative
On a recent trip downtown I was appalled by the congregation of homeless people under the interstate on Jefferson Street. What an unsightly mess for both locals and visitors to our city to see. Even more appalling is the fact that people are freezing and dying in a city that professes compassion for all. We have homeless shelters that do a good job but many of the homeless do not like the restrictions shelters place on them.
One alternative is a storefront that allows people to find shelter regardless of their current condition or personal habits. Drug/alcohol use would not be forbidden. Provide heat/ac, mattresses, restrooms and showers. Staff with security only and periodically make available alcohol/drug counselors IF an individual wants help. Encourage local churches to assist in daily operations.
This is only one alternative but does allow some level of protection and personal choice in a safer environment. Dennis Boyd
About those bike lanes downtown
In response to last week’s Insider Voices letter, “Downtown Doesn’t Need Bike Lanes,” I am writing to vocalize my support of the previous author and to speak truth to horsepower. Our once-magnificent city has been afflicted by a scourge of newfangled “motor-carriages.” Downtown is and always has been a place exclusively for horse-drawn buggies, and that is how it should remain.
In recent years, miles of our precious roadways have been perverted. Drivers have lost tens — if not dozens — of inches to accommodate these doggone scooters and tricyclists. To those feral hipsters who claim bike lanes and busses and sidewalks are “valuable developmental assets” or “essential transportation components” for any modern city — I say hogwash! If we are not cautious, we will all soon be relegated to the smogbin of history, whilst they ride into the future on their Birds and Snapchats and LouVelos.
It is time we stop squandering tens of hundreds of tax dollars to stripe our roadways with bike lanes, and instead spend millions on wider streets, bigger parking garages, and more traffic lights. Waterfront Park? Blasphemy! It should be Waterfront Parking Lot.
Why would anyone choose the health and convenience of walking, biking, or public transit, when instead they could experience the natural splendor of a 45-minute interstate traffic jam? My right to commute shall not be infringed!
The continual talk about Broadway — a major thoroughfare — could jeopardize my ability to drive 65 mph through the heart of downtown. So I ask, what’s next after these bike lanes? Will they demand that drivers “yield to pedestrians” in crosswalks? Will they provide robust public transit? Sure, the Fake News Media will cite “facts” and “statistics.” They’ll present an evidence-based design for safer, greener streets. But what do those traffic and safety experts know anyway?
Come on folks — nobody is going to walk to a local coffee shop, or bike to their easily accessible workplace. Make America Drive Again! Michael Gastineau
Competition will improve education
The best way to improve education is to provide school choice through education vouchers, charter schools, and even allowing families to choose which public school within the state their children will attend.
When consumers have choices, there is much more accountability. If one school is not meeting their needs, families should be able to take their business to another school that does a better job. (Voting with their feet.) This would encourage all schools to improve. No excuses. Just compete to meet your customer’s needs or go out of business. Competition and the free market work for all other services; why should we prevent such benefits in education? Theresa Camoriano
The broken public school system in Kentucky has failed so many disadvantaged children over so many decades, that something must change in a drastic way. I am for trying anything, but not for more status quo minor tweaks.
If something is broken, you fix it by trying something different. Prioritizing desegregation over education started the problem back in the 1970s, and the progressive philosophy that created that travesty has dominated our education ever since. Let’s forget politics and remember that our low-income poverty-stricken state can only be improved through better education. Try charter schools. Bill Frey
Make life easier for Kentucky dialysis patients
End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) impacts thousands of Kentuckians and their families. In addition to managing their condition, dialysis patients must adhere to a complex schedule of appointments and treatments. This can be overwhelming, time-consuming and physically draining.
I believe small innovations in our health care system can have big impacts for dialysis patients. Modernizing treatment processes can go a long way in improving quality of life and reducing care costs.
The bipartisan Dialysis Patients Demonstration Act would give patients the ability to utilize integrated care systems that could significantly improve their lives. Instead of having to go from place-to-place just to get the treatments and medications they need to survive, this legislation would make dialysis centers a one-stop-shop for ESRD patient care. If passed, this small step would dramatically enhance the quality of life for countless dialysis patients in our state.
Our health care system is filled with complex issues that require complex solutions. Thankfully, this isn’t one of them. I encourage our legislators to support this common sense bill and improve the lives of individuals suffering from ESRD. Kyle Keeney, executive director, Kentucky Life Science Council
LouCity soccer stadium is a great idea
The building of the new LouCity FC stadium in Butchertown is welcome news for this once blighted part of the community. Not only will the stadium provide new jobs and economic development via foot traffic and the related support businesses — restaurants, bars, gift shops — but the planned hotel and other businesses that are part of the project will turn a new page for one of the city’s oldest, most historic and unique neighborhoods.
I would suggest the closing and relocation of the Swift food processing facility be of utmost importance now to keep the momentum going. The stench and nuisance generated by the plant is unpleasant at best and overwhelming at worst. The land the facility is located on could be cleaned up and used for residential or nonindustrial commercial purposes. I hope the metro government works on making Swift an offer they can’t refuse to do this and help usher in a new chapter in Butchertown’s storied history. Matt DeCamillis