Stryker and hard to see bicyclists: the Last Word, Sept. 26

The Virginia Gazette

No Stryker fan

I find it interesting that if you wish to build a building even near the restored areas of Williamsburg, that building has to be in concert with our colonial architecture of the period. However, now that our new municipal building is near completion, we see that it is a throwback to the old 50s architecture and in no way compliments our compliance with colonial architecture. Obviously, the City Council excused themselves from this requirement, and at the same time they created a brand new eyesore right in the middle of our 18th century community. Way to go, Council! We'll remember this when election time comes.

Hard-to-see bicyclists

Yes, I travel around the college down on Jamestown Road and Richmond Road. I've noticed that at night there are a lot of college students who ride bikes and they don't have any lights on them, they don't have any light clothes, they don't have reflective clothing on. I think this is extremely dangerous, and we're going to lose a student or two. So maybe if the college provided them with these neon vests or whatever where they may be seen and let them pick them up where they register their cars. It may help a whole lot. And then down next to the College Delly, they need to put one of those crossing lights in that flash like they did down near the business center. It's hard to see these kids crossing in their dark clothing, and it's going to get worse in the winter. Thank you, and let's take care of the college students.

Bergdahl case

Remember Bergdahl who President Obama said we had to get Bergdahl out of prison? We traded him for top-level terrorists, five of them, and we had to get him out of jail because he was in such poor health he was dying. My mother was a Navy nurse. Our son is in Med Corps. I saw him walking to that helicopter and thought, "Baloney, baloney. He is not in poor health." Well, it turned out, he wasn't. He was supposed to be the great person who was a great benefit to the United States of America that we were willing to trade terrorists for. This deserter. Well, guess what? He's facing court martial for desertion. And there are plenty of men that are going to come against him and testify against him for desertion.

Free bed

Free to anyone who needs an electric bed, twin size. Call 504-6104. You must pick up.

Do better along roads

Wednesday afternoon returning to Williamsburg on 143, I took the exit ramp for 199. As usual, the exit/on ramp was horribly loaded with litter of all kinds and very offensive to the eye. Then once I got on 199 approaching the Kingsmill entrance, I saw a dead deer on the median. This was the same dead deer I had seen the day before on the road but this time someone had helped themselves to his antlers but left the body. Further along, near Rt. 5 intersection, there was another dead deer. Isn't the litter problem bad enough? Do we now have to put up with dead animals along the road? Certainly the county and VDOT can do better.

Unsafe driving

While I was driving on Monticello Avenue past College Woods toward Richmond Road on a recent Wednesday morning, the car in front of me drifted into oncoming traffic nearly causing a head-on collision. Only the emergency stop of the alert oncoming driver prevented a very serious accident. My wife called 911 as we followed the drifting car along Monticello as it bounced off the right curb across from Rita's Ice and continued on. Thank you to the Williamsburg Police Department for their quick response. Their officer followed the car along Mt. Vernon Avenue, where it hit another curb and was then pulled over. In addition to thanking the Williamsburg police, congratulations to the defensive driver who was alert to oncoming traffic and helped avoid a deadly encounter.

Shred it!

To the person who is looking for a shred-a-thon before December: The James City County Police Department is having one on October 10th at the Williamsburg/James City County Courthouse, and the proceeds go to the "Shop with a Cop" program, which is a very good program that helps needy children at Christmas. Thank you.

Old-fashioned dentist

I am over 50, I don't want braces, I don't want Hollywood white teeth. I want a plain old dentist who cleans and helps you take care of the teeth I have ( all of my originals) I don't want a dentist that has three or four offices all over the place with a staff of 40 that presents you with thousands of dollars of needed work. Does anyone know of a good, old fashioned dentist?

Note on motherhood

In cleaning out a drawer, I found a note that my mother had sent prior to school starting for my children. I don't know if it's original or not, but here's what it said: "Motherhood is hard. It is hard in the ways that matter and in the ways that's don't. It can make you feel as powerful as the sea or as useless as a fleck of mud, sometimes in the same moment. To be a mother is to be called to a higher purpose. It is no longer about you." That is wise and good. As parents ourselves, we see how meaningless our former preoccupations were. The vigilance is without end. Motherhood often means blindsided by grief and grace, sometimes both at once. You want them to see the world as a wondrous place, bursting with opportunity and magic. You want them to believe and have faith to overcome the seemingly impossible. To be a mother is to be given gifts beyond imagining.

Cause and effect

For Kiersten Boyce to say William and Mary didn't change its Title IX practices and policies due to being investigated by the Feds is like saying the legal defense team of the President, Vice Provost, and EEO Director (all attorneys) are actually campus administrators.

Buying dinosaurs

I am a retired WJCC teacher. Textbooks have not been used by teachers for 20 or more years. Why is WJCC wasting tax-payers' money on "dinosaurs"? Maybe people on the board should visit the schools more often and see what is going on before they make poor decisions.

Withholding support

If you feel strongly enough about the Confederate flag controversy at William and Mary, do what I am planning to do: Withhold any and all money from going to the college. That includes all sporting events, Phi Beta Kappa events and all museums. The college will never, ever see another dime of my money. Let the liberal "come here's" support them.

Muslim is a religion

People need to understand Muslim is NOT a country, it is a religion just as Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Jewish, etc. are religions. It is extremists professing Muslim faith and non-religious zealots in other countries inflicting terror on the world. I know many people born in America who converted to Muslim for the same reason I chose my denomination -- it gives my spirit what I want. Likewise, I know Muslims born in other countries living in the USA, some a short time and many for a long time who, like myself, deplore the terrorism happening in the name of their religion. If President Obama were a Muslim, that would be his religion and his choice. The Constitution gives us freedom of religion!!

Teacher involvement

The post about teacher involvement was on point. The Superintendent and Central Office take credit for the Williamsburg / James City County School System achieving accreditation. However, that can't be farther from the truth. The success of the division lies with the teachers who feel alienated by top leadership. Central Office faculty is neither approachable or directly involved with the schools.

Issue or crime?

A recent headline clearly explains why U.S. laws are being blurred by a different set of rules for college students. The College of William and Mary, per the article, is grappling with a "difficult and sensitive problem." At issue is not a "problem" but sexual violence and harassment on campus which in any other environment would be addressed as a potential crime. It is time to be fair across all locales and consider sexual violence and harassment as potential crimes to be reported to the local police and dealt with as potential criminal matters. It should not make a difference where an incident occurs as to how it is handled. Actually, the streets of Williamsburg are public streets, even those on which the College has been built. There should not be a different set of "laws" for activity occurring at any College.

Rip tide of change

A Last Word caller suggests that Americans should speak English, and goes on to assert that she's a first-generation American. This country has a long history of change, and not all of it voluntary or kind. Though English-only speakers like me are concerned about becoming irrelevant, it's not right to claim that America is a country only for English speakers, or for any one religion or race. If we pursue that line of reasoning, it won't be long before our official language is Spanish and there will be a channel called AngloVision so that the Old Timers can better understand their slide into the dungeons of history. We need to honor and protect our past, while cooperatively seeking the future. Fighting the rip tide of change won't end well.

Cheers

I received an e-mail from SiriusXM that said they heard from subscribers and listened, and Escape Channel 69 is back on. This is good news for those who were missing it!

Our president

Almost every day I read items here critical of our president. Yep, he hasn't done everything right, but which one did (even Reagan)? Invariably the commenter accuses him of not supporting the Constitution, and even being against it. But, no specifics on that one. All supporters of the Constitution should realize that it is what provides the basis for our majority-rule government. Obama got the votes of a majority of Americans twice, and so he is our country's (not just Williamsburg's) elected leader. If we really want to get this country moving again, we need to support our elected leaders (Obama and the next ones) and help them succeed in achieving what the majority of Americans elected them to do, rather than trying to thwart their efforts.

No-child taxes

No-child tax is not as ridiculous as you wish. First, very few gays are raising children. Second, life is unfair to everyone, just in a different ways. Today's children are tomorrow's society. Your childless sister (sorry) don't mind to take what society has to offer including Social Security, marriage benefits and so on.... A tax is nothing compared to raising children. And please, raising dogs, giving your old stuff to a Goodwill and serving turkey during holidays don't count. Save it for your "Wine and cheese party" Somebody has to be offended or society will not exist.

Lost and found

LOST: Magnetic brown leather money clip with faded turquoise design and under $40 in clip at Farmers Market on Sept. 12th. Money not important. Money clip is. Call Bill, 869-6922.

Place of birth

The "Birthers" who still claim Obama was born in Kenya even though he submitted a birth certificate stating he was born in Hawaii better take a look at Republicans in the same boat. George Romney, who ran for President in 1968, was born in Mexico, and John McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone. In 2008, then Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, sponsored a resolution clearly stating that McCain was a citizen of the United States because his mother was born in the USA. It was approved by the Senate. Now we have Rafael Edward (Ted) Cruz running for President who was born in Canada; however, his mother was born in the USA. His father was Cuban and became a citizen in 2005. Obama, whose mother was also born in the USA, was and still is challenged that he is not a citizen, even though as mentioned above, he has a birth certificate as further proof. If Cruz gets too close to the nomination, look out for Donald Trump to start challenging Rafael Cruz on his citizenship.

Holiday ornaments

The Executive Mansion in Richmond requested one holiday tree ornament from each of Virginia's 95 counties, 38 cities and 191 towns; due in October 2015. Will James City County/Williamsburg proper solicit from the Art World of this region? Or from its citizens?

Recommended

I have done business with Printwell Printing in Norge for many years, but I am still amazed at the stunningly quick turn around they consistently provide. Very nice people. I highly recommend them.

I highly recommend April Showers, (757) 875-0105, for irrigation system work. Their service is excellent and work is done professionally and with correct long-term workmanship in mind. I recently had a water emergency related to a pipe bursting (system was installed by another firm years ago), and water service had to be cut off to my house on a Friday night. I called and asked for help from April Showers the next day if possible. The owner, Jim, came on a Saturday morning and worked into the afternoon to reach the pipe which was tangled up in a maze of pipes and a cable conduit above them, and Jim installed a fix for me so that I could have water service restores, and the repair to connect the irrigation pipe could be done in regular business hours the next week. I highly recommend April Showers.

Facing east

Did y'all look at a map and realize that the Statue of Liberty is pointed in the general direction of the entrance to the harbor, so people could see it as they sailed into the harbor? And no matter where the people came from originally, they came to a place that is on the east coast and that they'd have had to end up in the Atlantic to make it to the harbor?

Australia's guns

For the person speaking about Australia and gun control: Firearms are not illegal in Australia. Australia does have restrictive firearms laws, rifles and shotguns (both of which include semi-automatics), as well as handguns, are all legal within a narrow set of criteria. Other facts: Australia is the 52nd most populous country in the world although its size is about the size of the United States. Its population is concentrated mainly in urban areas and in 2010 was 36 million. The United States is the third most populous country in the world with a current population of 321,729,000. Australia's population is approximately 11% of the population of the United States. But if you really believe those who wish to get a weapon will not, you are very naive. The Australian government has never given their citizens the right of gun ownership. The "buy back program" you find so appealing, was not voluntary but a mandatory government confiscation and it was directed against automatic weapons and not handguns. Further, after the mandatory confiscation program, there has been very little reduction in criminal acted shootings and no reduction in violent crimes significantly different from the experiences of other free countries during the same period. Our Constitution has given American's very special rights, like no other country on this earth and each and everyone of our rights should be protected and cherished and not ever infringed upon by government otherwise; the process of government over reach will begin.

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