Letters to the Editor

Oil trains, Daiquiri Factory and paving for bike safety

Follow the Oil Money

After reading the article on oil trains (“Booming Business,” 2/6/14), I do feel that you need to expand the narrative. I am from a small town in Montana and have watched these trains grow in numbers. More people need to look into the direct relationship between Warren Buffett (52 percent owner of BNSF and a heavy donor to Obama’s campaign) and tie it to the shutdown of the Keystone pipeline. I hope your readers wake up and start seeing beyond the half-truths printed in the media today.

Daniel Butkay
Spokane, Wash.

Complete Ban Needed

“When playing Russian roulette, the fact that the first shot got off safely is little comfort for the next.” So wrote Richard Feynman in the Challenger shuttle disaster report.

In the case of trains, not only do we know that derailment is always a possibility, but we also know that the tanker cars currently used to transport highly toxic and flammable crude oil are known to be susceptible to rupture in the event of a crash. And yet the oil continues to move, posing a hazard to communities along the way and the aquifer below. What sort of madness is this?

The solution is simple and obvious — an immediate cessation of oil transportation by rail in Washington state. Non-binding resolutions by the Spokane City Council are very nice but totally ineffective. If we are serious about moving to renewable energy sources and giving our grandchildren clean water to drink, the least we can do is to shut down this dangerous traffic.

In the words of Feynman again: “Reality must take precedence… for nature cannot be fooled.”

Ray Woods
Spokane, Wash.

Callous and Hateful

I have been a part of the protest of Daiquiri Factory’s drink, Date Grape Kool-Aid, since they first released their menu. I remember seeing it pop up in my news feed and immediately the triggers started happening. I felt violated all over again.

As a rape survivor, this bar has offended me to my very core. Due to my active involvement in the protest and on Facebook, I have been called a whore. I have been told that I should be raped again because I didn’t learn my lesson the first time. I have been told to just get over it. 

What most people don’t understand is that rape changes you. It changes your whole life. I am a very different person because of what happened to me. It took me a year to even admit that I had been raped. It’s taken me even longer to begin to heal. To have a business be so callous and hateful towards my simple plea as a hurting woman to change the name has wounded me deeply.

The national attention the bar has been getting has reflected so poorly on Spokane, and we hope to change that through our efforts. We want the country to see that Spokane does, indeed, have a soul. We don’t want to be known as the city that promotes rape.

Bethany Rux
Spokane, Wash.

Just a Little More Blacktop

As a part of the biking community in Spokane and Cheney, it has come to my attention that the trail that leads from Fish Lake to the trail on Scribner is unpaved. I commute on a road bike, and the gravel causes less traction and can lead to spin-outs. Paving this road would make it much safer for cyclists who are commuting because there are a large number who have resorted to making the shoulder of the Cheney-Spokane Road their biking lane, which is unsafe given the speed cars are traveling at. The problem could be solved by paving the few miles between Fish Lake and Scribner to provide a safer route for bikers.

Destiny L. Brito
Cheney, Wash.

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