To the Editor
July 10, 2012
Ban punishes businesses
Thank heaven for the initiative to place the plastic bag ban on the ballot. It’s sad that the liberal City Council thinks the residents are too dumb to make their own choices in such matters as plastic versus paper bags, and cardboard or pressed paper carry-out containers (which leak). The ones who will really bear the burden of this misguided law are the businesses of Issaquah.
When the City Council makes it too difficult or too annoying to do business in Issaquah, there are plenty of other cities around that will gladly take that business. I don’t believe in punishing the businesses for the council’s stupidity, but the stores and restaurants owe it to their customers to teach do-gooder politicians that you don’t make life difficult for customers and expect them to stay loyal. There’s too much competition out there that will gladly take their business.
Regarding “out-of-town” folks having a say in this: there aren’t enough people in Issaquah city limits to keep all of Issaquah’s shops and restaurants in business. It’s all the thousands of surrounding shoppers who spend their money in Issaquah that will be punished and inconvenienced by this bad law.
The council is on a roll folks. It now has two bad laws under its belt, with more sure to come. Some cities are proposing limiting toilet paper use to two squares. Is that what’s next for Issaquah?
Keep business in Issaquah. Sign the initiative to get this bag ban on the ballot, and then in November, vote to repeal it.
Change starts somewhere
Most of us believe that laws are necessary; when are they too far-reaching?
Violence, drunken driving and methamphetamine production are illegal. Dumping a truckload of toxic waste into Issaquah Creek is also illegal, so clearly we care about the environment. We have fines for littering, jaywalking, not wearing a seatbelt, fishing out of season, trespassing and illegal dumping. I have never seen someone outside a post office or grocery store soliciting to repeal any of those laws.
Laws start somewhere — with one town, city or state, here or abroad — setting a rule based on good information and the concern of its citizens; if it makes sense the law generally becomes widely adopted. Why should the plastic bag ban be any different?
The arguments I hear from opponents of the new plastic bag ban is that our local government is overreaching and that shoppers will shop elsewhere. “Mercy! What will they ban next?” Humans lived for thousands of years without plastic bags and we have only been addicted to them since the late 1980s.
The absence of plastic bags won’t squash local business; it won’t kill more trees. It does damage wildlife and habitat. Bags fill landfills. Mexico City, major cities in India, Rangoon (Burma), China, Bangladesh, Rwanda, Sydney, cities in the U.S. and many others have adopted bans or restrictions on bags. Italy, Belgium, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany and Holland discourage their use by highly taxing plastic bags — it’s been very effective. Why?
It is easy to find pictures and stats on where the more than 500 billion plastic bags we use every year wind up. It’s not pretty. Positive change starts somewhere; as a community we ought to be the example rather than the fools that can’t see the trees in the forest. Not all laws are too far-reaching.
We just might find that for every person who drives away from Issaquah so their goods can be dropped into plastic bags there will be three new shoppers who come in from neighboring towns because we’re doing the right thing. Business leaders, you choose and create the spin.
There goes my vote for you
Today I sent this message to Attorney General Rob McKenna:
I am very happy about the Supreme Court decision re: The Affordable Care Act. My husband and I have recently had to go to the emergency room at our nearest hospital, Swedish, due to falls. Neither of us was admitted.
The cost of each visit to the emergency room was more than $5,000. As you know, the uninsured use the emergency room as their health care provider, and we all pay for that! With the Supreme Court decision, now everyone will have healthcare insurance, which will save millions.
I appreciate your answers to my inquiries in the past. Please tell me how much it cost our state to be party to the lawsuit against The Affordable Care Act. I feel that was money wasted.
Though I usually vote Democratic, I was considering voting for you, but because of this lawsuit, I cannot.
Mary C. Ziegler
Some are wrong, some are right
What’s wrong with the cartoon?
I agree with Steven Tochko that running the cartoon diploma/toilet paper was in poor taste for all the reasons he mentioned. Thanks for writing in! I was going to. We all make mistakes, and that is just what this was.
However, being a teacher of some 43 years, I thank the editor for her wonderful judgment running the June 27 political cartoon.
Why do we do things like pay more for inmates’ care than teachers’ work? Also, why don’t we pay attention and provide services when even in kindergarten a teacher knows a child may be headed for “trouble?”
Values that make sense are what many of us are asking for when we vote this next election. We are not looking for a quick tax break.