Letters to the Editor

War zone in east Fort Worth?; low-tech voting in Denton County; tough times for retired teachers; Don’t fear the red lights; FW, Arlington needed in the SB 4 fight

Protesters takes part in a rally to oppose a new Texas "sanctuary cities" bill that aligns with the president's tougher stance on illegal immigration in San Antonio.
Protesters takes part in a rally to oppose a new Texas "sanctuary cities" bill that aligns with the president's tougher stance on illegal immigration in San Antonio. AP

War zone in east Fort Worth?

I live in east Fort Worth, where we already feel marginalized and neglected in many ways.

But on July 4 I felt like I was living in a war zone.

There are always some people shooting illegal fireworks, but this year was unbelievable. I was afraid to leave my house and my dogs were terrorized. It went on for hours, too.

This morning when I called to complain to the police I was told that it was normal because it was the Fourth of July and that there was nothing they could do. The officer also said it was that way all over the city, which I find very hard to believe.

Fireworks are illegal in Fort Worth, so I suggest that TV news, the newspaper and social media need to start at least a week before the Fourth and also New Year’s Eve broadcasting that fact.

People who break the law should go to jail.

Linda Gibson, Fort Worth

Low-tech voting in Denton County

Y’all seem to think going backwards is just fine (“Paper ballots the future in Denton County elections,” July 6 editorial).

This is not to mention the $9.9 million it will cost us Denton voters to cast a ballot.

Where might the money come from for this abuse of power and dollars? My pocket, of course.

The only thing wrong with the existing electronic voting machines were the people who set them up. Yes, humans: old humans, retired ones with time on their hands to do the watching and administering of vote privileges.

Promoting this is ridiculous. It’s backward thinking and resource-wasteful.

Wayne Casalino, Denton

Retired teachers could take a hit

I have seen nothing about the tremendous increase in medical payments for retired teachers passed in the Legislature.

Medicare spouses’ premiums will go up three times, and both will be hit with a deductible of $500 — up from $150. There are additional increases if you go into hospital even for one day. And we still have to pay Part B Medicare!

This is going to force spouses to look elsewhere and possibly leave the TRS plan — thus putting more pressure on the system with fewer participants.

Additionally, TRS has eliminated the tiered system that benefits the longer-staying retiree with less premiums. The 20-year retiree now pays the same as a 30-year retiree.

Shame on TRS! The bottom line will be that Texas teachers, who are paid 27th in the nation, will no longer find the retirement package to their liking. It will be very hard to find good teachers for our children in the future.

Jay Gosdin, Bedford

Don’t fear the red lights

What’s wrong with red-light cameras? Nothing at all. They serve a purpose. The rules are simple. If the light is green as you approach an intersection, proceed. If the light turns yellow as you approach, you must quickly decide whether to continue on or to stop.

If the light turns red before you even get to the intersection and you continue across, you deserve a citation, whether it’s from a camera or an observant traffic officer.

As a driver, if you opt to break any traffic law, you deserve a citation.

Obey the traffic laws. Not only will you be safer and not so likely to have an accident, everyone else will be safer, too.

Larry McGuire, Crowley

Arlington, FW should join SB 4 battle

To remain on the sidelines is to give the appearance of covert consent to the divisive Senate Bill 4. ( “Senate bill is wrong, but should cities sue?” June 22) and (“Tarrant cities should not sit out SB 4 fight,” Richard J. Gonzales op-ed, July 1).

Houston, Dallas, El Paso, San Antonio and Austin, which have filed lawsuits against the state in their unified effort to declare Senate Bill 4 unconstitutional, all have large Hispanic/Latino populations. Arlington and Fort Worth are no exception.

SB 4, scheduled to become law on Sept. 1, will permit police to ask people they stop for their citizenship status.

Though proponents argue that the targets of SB 4 are “illegal immigrants,” the likelihood of Americans of Hispanic descent being caught up in the mix is not a fictitious storyline.

And it is for this discriminatory reason alone, if anything, that Arlington and Fort Worth should join the legal fight against SB 4.

Luis C. Castillo, Arlington