Letters to the Editorby Tucson Citizen on Jul. 15, 2006, under Opinion
Skrappy’s scraping by
Re: the Tuesday article (“Lost grant may scrap Skrappy’s“):
I’d like to reassure your readers that Our Family has no plans to close Skrappy’s, our downtown youth center, in spite of losing the $25,000 in community block grant funding we have been using for rent and utilities.
We are making every effort to raise that money elsewhere and remain committed to keeping Skrappy’s open for the thousands of young people in Tucson who call it their home away from home.
I also want to thank the community for its ongoing support, which helps Skrappy’s to help so many young people embrace who they are and become the adults they want to be.
Our Family Services
Grannies rage again
A year ago, five Raging Grannies were arrested at a military recruiting center in Tucson, trying to enlist in the Army to protest the U.S. occupation of Iraq.
On this anniversary, 14 black-shrouded Grannies rallied on the plaza of the DeConcini Federal Courthouse. They sang their angst and sent a delegation with demands to Sen. John McCain.
Former City Councilwoman Molly McKasson gave an impassioned talk, expressing the despair of Iraqi refugees she interviewed in her recent trip to Iraq.
A statement by Rep. Raúl Grijalva, given in Congress on June 16, conveyed his strong support for early return of U.S. troops and his consternation over profiteering by corporate interests for the illegal foreign adventurism.
The statement and demands delivered to McCain’s office noted that the public majority now opposes further military actions in Iraq and supports an early withdrawal of troops, and that Bush’s “war on terror” and foreign policy of domination only increases terrorism.
About 40 supporters cheered. Signs and banners conveyed the theme of mourning symbolized by the caskets and mourners of U.S. and Iraqi casualties.
A veteran amputee, muzzled Statue of Liberty and black-shrouded victim of Abu Ghraib torture further illustrated the wide range of repercussions resulting from the senseless occupation of Iraq.
The Grannies vow to continue to rage against the occupation and demand that our elected officials conduct policy reflective of constituent needs and wishes.
Good money after bad
Rio Nuevo was a pig in a poke sold to citizens of Tucson. I always knew there was no plan, and now Councilman José Ibarra has confirmed it.
A couple of years ago, I e-mailed the city about the St. Louis Arch. It was planned for years before construction ever started. A contest was held for architects, and the final selection is what you see.
This attraction draws million of visitors a year to the “Gateway to the West” as the starting point for the Lewis and Clark expedition.
Obviously, no one in Tucson City Hall had the foresight to look out one of the west-facing windows and see a freeway and a river, or to the north and view the railroad tracks.
These are walls of deterrent, and neither underpasses nor a Rainbow Bridge will make them go away.
The Convention Center and La Placita were supposed to “revitalize” downtown. La Placita was a flop, and more money was poured into it.
Then the city built a baseball stadium on Ajo Way, far from downtown, while other cities, including St. Louis, have theirs downtown.
Now the city has 12 more years of money to blow. Before any more money is dumped in this New River, the city needs to take a hard, realistic look at what it is doing.