More Needed Than Just Revamping
(re: Cityscape, May 16-22)
I read and appreciate your take on the Tulsa Parks ongoing fiasco as it relates to North Tulsa Parks B.C. Franklin, Ben Hill and Springdale. To be honest, as a child and young adult, I was a gym rat and rode my bike to any park I got to play basketball in. While they had their local participants, with the exception of Ben Hill, I don't think any of these parks had an overwhelming number of users. At this point, it really doesn't matter, because the issue is now symbolic and very heated.
You bring up some excellent points about the overall poor health of our citizens. Go to any elementary school, and you will see it is true. Go to any country outside of the U.S., and you will immediately notice we are bigger than our international peers at all age levels. Are the kids closer to the existing parks any more fit than the rest (of the) kids in the city? How about having programs that get kids doing something physical?
I have some knowledge of the people who are involved in the parks controversy. They are as committed to getting these parks back to the way they used to be as anyone I have ever seen committed to anything. My thought would be to downsize the parks to something maintainable, and provide transportation to "Super Parks." The powers that be are dead set on putting water in the river. They dream about this every day. What if we had a Super Aquatic Center at the river, and free transportation from all parts of the city? They might finally be able to get the citizens to vote for river development.
If (as looks like might happen) the parks get rebuilt as-is, will they have adequate staffing? Will kids get to use them when they want? Will there be a maintenance program to keep them from falling into disrepair? Will the city council provide funding for operation, insurance, programming, staffing, etc.? Will the citizens of Tulsa vote to fund these parks? Time will tell. I think the proverbial can has been kicked down the road long enough. Whatever happens, the dilapidated, crumbling eyesores will need to be demolished (or repaired) sooner, rather than later.
-- Derek Gates
ALL CAPS Means "I'm Serious"
(re: The Insider, May 16-22)
Terry Simonson in his article represents the manipulating establishment that runs this city/ county/state.
He whines and moans about jail capacity (whine) and cost (sniffle) and how much this and that is costing (oh, boo hoo), then has the gonads to blame the voters for not picking up the tab. (Whaaaa!) All symptoms, but not addressing the cause. The cause is glossed over in his line, "Citizens like the idea of not having to think about the people in the jail. They are there, after all, because they did something that deserves confinement." Oh, god, this makes me want to puke. This is NOT AmeriKa.
Hey, Terry! You! Yes, you and your "The Establishment" cohorts have convinced the voters to make everything a confineable violation. Plus, you make what used to be just inappropriate behavior a felony. If it had not been for me, in Gordon v. City of Tulsa in 1989, YOU people would still be locking people up for simple speeding. Jaywalking third offence is confinement. And what really pisses me off is that marijuana possession is even a violation at all. But, oh yes, people, 20% of the confined inmate population is non-violent (drum roll), "EVIL DRUG OFFENDERS." And for crying out loud, public urination is NOT prima fascia evidence of a sex crime! Is that person stupid? Drunk? Probably. We used to have stockades for that kind of behavior. "Oh, so you got drunk and had to urinate? Ok, well, if you want to pee in public, try this: spend the next 24 hours in the stockades at the corner of This Street and That Street." Guaranteed, that person will never want to be there again. A great deterrent that will cut through the fog of an alcoholic bender.
The police chiefs had to get after the establishment for the so-called sex offender rules -- rules passed without any thought to unintended consequences. That any offender had to be 2000 feet from this or that to live was unenforceable. For the whiners out there, REAL pedophiles and REAL rapists should never get a chance to commit a second offence. They should not be confined, they should be exterminated.
Jails are for REAL criminals, not some make-believe scheme to make the citizens feel good about how their "leaders are doing something about crime." Only put REAL criminals in the David Moss facility and you will have empty beds. What the citizens are not being told: constructing and filling jails is a multibillion-dollar PRIVATE business that taxpayers are bankrolling. This is well-documented. Citizens need to pull their heads out of the sand and look around.
-- Havah Gordon
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