BART should replace strikers

BART directors need to stand up to the union.

Some $71,000 a year to be a "station agent" who does not sell tickets and does not handle any money? How much training do you need for this? Why do you deserve more money?

I am an angry BART rider. I'm sure I am not that much different from many other riders. I have not had a raise in more than 10 years. I do not have a pension. I pay my own medical.

I have a college degree and make less than a train operator or a station agent -- and I am grateful to have a job. BART employees do not deserve a 15 or 20 percent pay increase.

The BART unions' demands are absurd. It is inexcusable to hold the public hostage to unreasonable demands. This is a great example of a public employees union out of reality.

BART should be hiring and training replacement workers as quickly as possible and lawmakers should be supporting the public they supposedly serve, not the deep-pocket labor union campaign contributors.

Robert Mason

Walnut Creek

Plastic does not decay, but stays

Plastic stays plastic forever. The molecular structure is indestructible.

The "recycling" process -- imposed on maybe one one-thousandth of trashed plastic (think plastic wrappers on plastic containers, most products on store shelves) -- does not recycle into earth. A tree can never eat it.


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Plastic recycling is putting that small percent of plastic into machinery that grinds it, adding unregulated chemicals -- regulation reduces profit -- to make it malleable, then constructing it into couches, textiles, shoes, and more.

Plastic lasts longer than nuclear waste. It will bury us. Please understand we are lied to by our "owners" so they can make profit off us. We're constantly in the position of finding how best to accommodate the lives we're forced to lead, constrained by "their" profit, instead of enrichment of our lives.

Please stop beating up our neighbors for bringing or not bringing their own bags when shopping.

Norma J.F. Harrison

Berkeley

Pipeline much safer than rail

A Times July 8 article describes a horrible accident in which a train of 73 oil tanker cars derailed and exploded, killing at latest count 37 people and destroying most of the town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec.

Let's hope the Keystone XL pipeline gets administration approval before the Canadians decide to ship some of that oil -- that we need -- by rail.

Andrew Murphy

Concord

Happy with postponement

My heartfelt thanks to the team that decided the safety of the Bay Bridge requires more time.

Since opening day has apparently been postponed, we can dispense with the ridiculous expenses of festivity and spend the money, instead, on the needy.

The Bay Area is still the most beautiful place in the world.

Joan Bartulovich

El Cerrito

Concerns about voters' rights

While I really couldn't care less who marries whom, to simply throw out Proposition 8, which went through the legal initiative process, is troubling.

Another matter of great concern is that our elected officials (governor, attorney general, etc.) showed great disdain for the voters over that proposition. When the majority votes for something, that should be taken very seriously. Throwing out DOMA is another concern.

It is not the job of the U.S. Supreme Court to make or discard laws. Their job is to interpret existing laws.

Dawn Magnussen

Brentwood

Martin was the one who was on trial

The George Zimmerman "trial" was a complete sham.

Zimmerman was never really on trial: Trayvon Martin was.

Clyde E. Albert

Hayward