Letters to the Editor

We can build it, but little good will come

The line in one of my favorite old movies is: "If you build it, they will come." Gwinnett has long had the first part of that concept perfected beyond question, but apparently we're still not at all clear regarding the critical "who will come" half of the deal.

The new high-rise brainstorm continues to ignore the basic "which comes first, more development or the necessary infrastructure to support it" issue. For example, the news has carried recent stories that the sewer systems in my 20-plus-year-old neighborhood already need replacement. The area schools are obviously overcrowded, not to mention the unbearable traffic, yet we're already looking for additional residents to add further strain to the system. Something is desperately wrong with this picture. Incidentally, has anyone noticed that high-rises are only being considered in "certain" neighborhoods?

I am surprised at the "Hey, there's nothing we can do, this is just inevitable" attitude of so many citizens. Growth can be a wonderful thing, but not when it's as purely speculative and poorly thought out as this appears to be. It has been clearly implied that the building of great high-rise structures will magically attract the upscale young urban professionals that have in recent years actively shunned Gwinnett in droves, but the mere addition of more and bigger buildings will surely provide no instant alteration of our demographics. The most realistic expectation would be more of the same, namely greater numbers of illegals packed into even smaller boxes.

OK, so maybe the movie line should have instead been: "Build it and they will cram."

- Paul Allen


Remembering why we honor veterans

I was driving down McClure Bridge Road in Duluth last week and saw the wooden crosses going up along the side of the road in honor of Veterans Day. There was a bit of traffic and the going was slow so I began to read a few names and saw that most of them were from World War II.

Tearfully I thought of our soldiers today and said a silent prayer for them. I especially thought of a fallen soldier from Duluth and wondered how to get his name on a cross. Immediately I saw it: Charles Warren and written underneath, Iraq. It was already there to remind us of his sacrifice and to honor him for his bravery.

For the 11 years I've lived in Duluth, I have always thought that the tradition of lining the streets with flag topped crosses bearing the names of our brave soldiers was honorable and thought provoking. I especially think so today and am proud to be an American living in Duluth. Thank you Charles Warren and thank you Duluth reminding us of what we are commemorating on Nov. 11.

- Emily Berend