Whose land? Our land!
Thank you for printing the article on the need for local control of frac sand mining ("The Fight Over Frac Sand Mining," 3/21/2014). When I moved to Wisconsin, I never could have imagined that the state would allow such destructive practices on its land. It is clear that both local and state efforts are needed to protect us from this serious threat to our land, environment and health. Let's recall the wise words of Woody Guthrie when he sang "This land is made for you and me."
Thanks for the frac sand mining story and pointing out how the Republicans attempted to take away health protections again ("The Fight Over Frac Sand Mining," 3/21/2014). The seven-hour hearing on the GOP "strip mine giveaway" bill pointed out how these companies are destroying the local roads with the seemingly exponential growth of new mines in western Wisconsin.
That is why I proposed the "Responsible Frac Sand Mining Act" (AB 868), to compensate towns that are bearing the brunt of the strip mining.
My bill requires all frac sand mining companies to pay $1/ton of sand removed. A portion of the money will pay towns to repair crumbling roads and bridges directly caused by the mining. Another portion will fill 10 Department of Natural Resources positions that oversee the frac sand mining.
Finally, during the hearing I questioned Sen. Thomas Tiffany's statements that there have been no health issues in Wisconsin related to frac sand mining. My research showed that Minnesota and California have put in place protections for the mineworkers and the citizens in their states.
I hosted a briefing with University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Associate Professor Crispin Pierce showing that frac sand pollution can cause cancer, heart attacks and other health problems. That's why we need to pass my Responsible Mining Act.
Brett Hulsey, State Representative, 78th Assembly District
Applause for Lyft app
I am a disabled person who regularly rides Union Cab. The Lyft app is simply better, smarter and more usable for me, delivering drivers in less time than Union does.
It isn't about wanting the cheapest fare, as one of your letters recently alleged (Letters, 3/28/2014; "Showdown Likely Over New App-Based Ride Services," 3/21/2014). It's about wanting a more usable experience. Union Cab boasts about its IT department; why doesn't it commit to having an actual phone app on most major platforms by the end of the calendar year? Furthermore, the mayor should come to an amicable resolution with Lyft and Uber. These issues are resolvable.
"How Can We Move Toward Racial Equity?" (3/28/2014) included a point that I find to be absolutely key to understanding all matters of "privilege." I wholeheartedly agree with Lisa Peyton-Caire that becoming students of history is incredibly important to this situation.
Where did the Enlightenment and the concept of "equality" originate? How did different groups compare in development? Who were the creators of the modern wonders that we now view as essential today? Until history is understood, these matters can never be discerned clearly.