Letters to the Editor

'Damaged signs, email gossip and untruths' in an Arlington campaign, and more letters

Challenger Melody Fowler, left, ousted Trustee Kristen Hudson from the Arlington school board.
Challenger Melody Fowler, left, ousted Trustee Kristen Hudson from the Arlington school board. Courtesy photo, Star-Telegram archives

Republicans' 'us-vs.-them' campaign for Fowler

Arlington’s recent school board race between incumbent and United Educators Association-endorsed Kristen Hudson and the Arlington establishment-endorsed Melody Fowler was a real eye-opener.

Having recently retired as a teacher and campaigning for Hudson, I knew politics could be dirty, but the level was disturbing.

Damaged signs, email gossip and untruths, the use of district employees' email and the last-minute partisan flyer about Democrats "working around the clock to take over cities and school boards … It is critical that you vote [Republican]" — all were beyond the pale.

This “us-vs.-them” mentality is counterproductive in a local school board race. It should be about kids and who will stand up for all of Arlington and not who has the right friends to sway the vote.

Kristen Hudson, on the other hand, will leave with her head held high!

—Robyn Gregory,


Put teachers first in Arlington decisions

I recently ran for the Arlington school board and I want to extend my congratulations to the winners.

In my campaign, I heard from countless teachers in the district who said that they felt that they were not included enough in classroom decisions in how our students are taught.

Our teachers have been trained and certified to teach, and the board needs to assure that they are fully involved in these decisions to ensure success.

I also heard ongoing complaints from teachers that the human relations department was not treating them fairly when issues came up in regards to their employment.

Morale is very important, whether in a company or a school district. and to me the teacher morale should be of utmost importance.

I challenge all of the board members, especially the recent winners, to put these issues at the top of their priority list.

—Roger DeFrang,


For Garcia: Peace Justice Pct. 6

I would like to recommend that those of you who live in Justice of the Peace Precinct 6 go to the polls and cast your vote for the conservative candidate, Chris Garcia, in the Republican runoff.

I have known Chris for several years, and know that he has been deeply committed and involved in the community, as well as the Republican Party, since his youth.

A past President of the Tarrant County Republican Assembly, Chris has successfully owned and operated his own business for the past 31 years.

He serves on the City of Fort Worth Ethics Commission, on Code Blue Citizens Patrol, volunteers in veterans' support events, and serves on the advisory board for Cristo Rey Catholic High School.

Chris has the skills, knowledge, and experience to make the office of Justice of the Peace Precinct 6 both successful and accountable.

—Mona Bailey,

North Richland Hills

For Charbonnet: Peace Justice Pct. 6

As we choose who will become the next justice of the peace, the difference between the two candidates is clear.

Jason Charbonnet’s qualifications stand out. He’s a 17-year highly respected law enforcement officer who is faced daily with decisions that affect the public.

His opponent is a used car salesman.

Jason Charbonnet is a true family man. His campaign literature shows photos of his wife and children. His opponent's community activities involve connections through his wife as a former school superintendent or his ex-wife as an elected county official.

The choice is clear: Jason Charbonnet will best serve the people in Precinct 6.

—Carol Guarnieri,

Fort Worth

Ban Airbnb, vacation rentals in Arlington

Three or more homes in our neighborhood are being used in this new venture that allows ghost owners to turn them into mini-hotels for visitors tothe Entertainment District.

It is somewhat like having a Holiday Inn as your neighbor. ("As thousands arrive for NFL draft, can Arlington find a way to regulate AirBnB, VRBO?"

As I understand, these mini-hotel homes aren't restricted like commercial hotels even though they have begun advertising these rentals on travel websites such as Expedia.

Not only do you have total strangers infiltrating your neighborhood, but the exterior landscaping of these homes, such as the once-perfect lawns, becomes neglected and blighted.

Many cities have already banned this practice. I urge you to contact your representatives to do the same.

—Ron Hiett, Arlington

Do more now to save trees in Fort Worth

The primary reason for excessive loss of our trees is the city's insufficient staff and other resources to ensure that developers do not violate their permits. ("Don't lose sight of the forest for the trees," May 1)

Currently there are only two urban forestry professionals and too few inspectors.

Many of the trees lost by overcutting at the Randol Mill Road site were special trees — blackjack oaks, post oaks, and other hardwood species. Some were at least 100 years old and others even older.

Tree loss also disrupts the health and in some cases near total destruction of the ecosystem, which supports many different species of life.

As a botanist, it is especially painful for me to see this unnecessary but largely preventable loss of such a precious resource.

—Joe F. Hennen,

Fort Worth