More opinions on the waterfront connector | Letters

Jun 05, 2019

We are not all one nation yet

Shelli Critchlow (“We are all Americans, period,” May 23) says what all of us, I hope, would like to see. But we’re not there yet.

When speaking of LGBT visitors, she says, “ … we do not spend our lives trying to label everyone into separate groups.” Would it were so!

But it is not:

  • This administration is steadily rolling back Obama-era nondiscrimination policies across the entire federal government – including health care, housing and the military.
  • A proposed HUD rule would strip transgender protections at homeless shelters.
  • An estimated 40% of homeless youth in the greater Seattle area are LBGT kids who have left because of intolerance, or been kicked out of home.
  • In 28 states, there are no explicit statewide laws protecting people from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity in employment, housing, and public accommodations.
  • Data pooled from 35 studies show that sexual minority youth are more than three times as likely to attempt suicide as heterosexual peers, researchers report in JAMA Pediatrics. I remember sitting on my bed looking at a gun when I was about 20. I thought there was no future acceptance, no hope of a happy or fulfilled life.
  • Transgender youth were at highest risk, nearly six times as likely to attempt suicide as heterosexual peers, researchers reported.

As long as these things are true, we are not all one nation.

Until they are fixed, we have great need of explicit efforts to welcome LGBT people to our community. As long as LGBT people are treated as second-class citizens (at best!), we have need of the work of the Edmonds Diversity Commission and its work.

But I hope we can all build toward the ideals that Critchlow so well expresses in her letter.

Nathaniel Brown
Edmonds

 

Build it, and they will come

One look at the (Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector) triggers a vision of 100 homeless and squatter tents under the “sanctuary” of the overpass.

Edmonds, you are moving closer to “dying Seattle.”

Art Kennedy
Edmonds

 

Experience says connector is a bad idea

As a newbie to Edmonds, perhaps I should defer my views to longtime residents, but at my age postponing anything is unwise.

Still, as I previously wrote to the Beacon, nearly 40 years in Seattle qualify me to understand the regret of a poor decision (I.e. the viaduct, now finally being undone).

So, on my way to check out the “No Sunset Connector “ cookies at Edmonds Bakery, I had a sudden flash and thought we should give it a more fitting appellation – “The Waterfront Obstructer.”

I’m not a fan of single-issue voting, but I believe we should at least give weight to this polarizing issue in assessing upcoming candidates for mayor and city council.

Kevin M. O’Keeffe
Edmonds

 

Dollars for connector is money better spent elsewhere

I think the planned Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector for emergency vehicle access is nothing short of appalling.

The City of Edmonds website has a depiction of it. We have an almost $18 million school funding shortage and roads in need of traffic resolution, yet there is a plan to spend over $27 million for an eyesore on our waterfront.

As of yet, few actual emergencies and no deaths have occurred due to lack of emergency vehicle access. However, the city is willing to spend millions, deface our waterfront, and compromise the environment and marine life that we are so fortunate in Edmonds to enjoy.

It generally takes several accidents and fatalities before money is approved for a traffic light. Why is the city so willing to do this? I noticed that the bulk of members on this connector advisory committee are from BNSF, Sound Transit, Washington State Ferries, Community Transit, and Washington State DOT.

They have a vested interest in this concrete overpass that doesn't include preserving our town's charm or the marine environment. Isn't an environmental impact statement required before funding this?

In addition, although this project is cloaked to be a solution in case of emergency, the ferry system will surely recruit it for their use. It will be 16-feet wide and conveniently located for ferry off-loading and, after all, it will already be built.

One of the purposes described in the project overview: “Provide a solution for emergency ferry off-loading during extended railroad track shutdowns when ferries cannot be rerouted.” I am skeptical about the "emergency" and "extended track shutdowns" wording in that statement.

Over time, the use of this overpass will evolve and increase. It would be a shame to not make more use of it since all that money was spent. The quiet Sunset street and town that residents and tourists love to visit will have been chipped away by the building of this concrete monstrosity.

There must be a much less expensive, less obtrusive solution for people west of the tracks to have access to emergency medical care (if that’s really what this is all about.)

Why not provide an incentive to a medical group to place an urgent care facility on the west side of the tracks?

Robyn Ingham
Edmonds

 

 

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