To the Editor

April 2, 2013

By Contributor

Parks survey

Results are vague, don’t represent public desire

The parks bond survey results are going to be discussed soon by the City Council. I’ve had a chance to review the results and they tell more about the survey designers than anything.

The top four funding priorities are based on vague, leading questions that are hard to say no to. “Protecting wildlife habitat” is a top funding priority. What if the survey included questions like “protecting children’s recreational opportunities” or “preserving Issaquah’s natural heritage?”

Most of the questions involve no tradeoffs or costs, and aren’t specific enough to provide a sound basis for spending decisions. Worse, the vague questions are likely to be co-opted to mean more than they do. Someone could use the “protecting wildlife habitat” as justification for spending money on adding another wilderness park.

I’m not the first to point out the failings of such surveys. Surveys are hardly needed when all you have to do is look at what is popular in other similar areas. It’s hard to get good data on something when people don’t have experience with it. All surveys probably have some bias. This one is egregious.

Many Issaquah Highlands parents wish we had more recreational facilities, especially in the rainy season, and for older kids and more “active” adults. The soccer fields were a great addition and see a lot of use. I heard that Pro Sports Club was looking to expand on the Eastside if membership levels remained steady this spring.

Lobby them to consider Issaquah, especially the highlands. If they located here, it would be ironic because this parks survey suggests they would fail. “Construction of more athletic fields” came in last and yet, Issaquah just got a new indoor soccer field from the converted indoor tennis courts off Interstate 90.

Someone is getting it wrong.

David Baty

Issaquah Highlands

 

Background checks

Ban prescription psychiatric drugs, not guns

In the letters to the editor on March 27, you published a letter advocating background checks for everyone, and registering every gun. The reason given was to protect our children.

I submit that neither background checks or gun registration will prevent criminal attacks. That is why we call evildoers criminals.

If we really want to protect our children, which I strongly believe we should, then let us solve the real problem by banning the prescription of psychiatric drugs that are the root cause of the homicidal and suicidal acts of kids and adults alike, as evidenced by the fact that prior to the creation and mass distribution of these killer psychiatric drugs, we were a nation of unrestricted gun ownership and had zero school and mall shootings.

Concerning Australia’s new laws, check out this website for some interesting numbers www.ecclesia.org/truth/australia.html.

Don Hindman

Issaquah

 

Equal pay

Let’s finally pay men and women the same

Happy 50th birthday — April 9 is designated as Equal Pay Day.

On June 10, 1963, President J.F.K. signed the Equal Pay Act  (introduced in Congress in 1945) with three AAUW members present. President Obama has said, “You have to make it happen; make us do it. For the People, By the People, Of  the People.”

And I guess he is right, because AAUW began in 1894, collaborating with the MA Bureau of Statistics of Labor to analyze the pay of college-educated women. At that time, a woman office worker made $6 a day, but her male counterpart, called a professional bookkeeper, was paid $15 a day for the same job.

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 extended the statute of limitations to contest pay equality. The Paycheck Fair Act reintroduced in 2013 would close some of the loopholes that kept the l963 Act from full protection and equality. But, it will still not be the end of the road.

So, my grandson, ready to enter college this fall, can expect to pay off college loans sooner than someone’s granddaughter, because he would be earning a beginning salary of $42,918 to her $35,296. He could also be earning a half-million more in a lifetime; some even say a million more. Young women are aware of this; a young woman asked about it during the presidential debate.

So, we the people still have work to do!

Patricia Martin, policy chairwoman

Issaquah Branch AAUW

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