Newcastle Herald Letters to the Editor: Wednesday, October 18, 2017

NOT THE PLACE: People from outside of the East End need to stop criticising residents who are upset at the Supercars race, argues one contributor. Picture: Marina Neil
NOT THE PLACE: People from outside of the East End need to stop criticising residents who are upset at the Supercars race, argues one contributor. Picture: Marina Neil

I AM not a racing car fan, but I accept others enjoy the sport. I have held off writing so far because many have already done so eloquently, but the last straw was reading that Dick Johnson understands ‘some people being a little bit put out’ (‘Legend says race will change critics’ minds’, Herald, 17/10). Reading the comments of the mayor of Bathurst recently was nearly as bad: Mt Panorama is outside Bathurst itself (‘Bathurst offers race advice’, Herald, 6/10).

Listen to the people who live in the East End. Too many people who live nowhere near the disruption caused by Supercars are dismissing the feelings of their fellow residents and ratepayers and insulting them as though they have no right to be ‘put out’.

We have family living in Scott Street. They and their neighbours have been under significant stress for many months, and the difficulties are increasing as November approaches. They and their pets are indeed being ‘put out’ of their homes, after preparing them for attack as if in a war zone and not knowing what they will find on returning, with no compensation for any of the effects to their health or the monetary and emotional distress they are suffering. 

Readers, imagine if you were suddenly told such an event were coming to Redhead, Merewether, Wallsend or Warners Bay, running two metres in front of your house. If you wish to stay, you and your children need to wear earmuffs and stay at the back of the house because the noise is so loud, and you doubt these measures will make much difference anyway because no one will tell you the results of the noise survey. 

How would you feel? Should the desire to ‘showcase Newcastle’ be at the expense of people just like you who bought a home in a residential area, never imagining that area would be re-zoned to be a race track?

In my opinion, racing should be run on properly-constructed tracks for the health, safety and convenience of drivers and spectators, without disrupting the lives of other people. 

Wendy Webb, Belmont 

Wishing students well

I WOULD like to wish all of the students who started their HSC exams on Monday the best of luck. I would also like to wish all the parents supporting your kids, all the very best!

I hope that all the students who are completing the HSC have learned the importance of a good education and will use the many skills learnt over the past 13 years to their advantage in life.

The HSC can be a stressful time for some and it is important to remember that while your exams are an important measure of academic achievement, the HSC is not the be all and end all.

Students should keep in mind healthy eating, getting enough sleep, and continuing to engage in regular exercise and other activities to help reduce stress.

For those that may be planning to go and study at university, I wish you every success in your future studies and career.

Not all students will choose to go to university and many instead will choose to pursue further training through institutions such as TAFE or go into full-time employment. For those who do, well done and good luck. Again best of luck, I know you will do Newcastle proud.

Tim Crakanthorp, State Member for Newcastle

Calling for communism

AS a young man I was always taught that communism was one of the greatest threats to not only Australia but the entire free world and capitalism coupled with democracy is the only true way.

So, like many I came to despise communism however as I grew older and watched the country I love seem to turn its back on pensioners and those of the middle and lower class yet allow chief executives of companies such as Australia Post, Commonwealth Bank, private health insurers and a multitude of others, in particular those owned by overseas interests, to rake in incomes well above the norm I began to take a long hard look at the difference between the two.

I watched Simon Reeve’s documentary on the Yangtze River, often called the life blood of China. I finally understand the difference between communism and capitalism. Communism is where a one party rule allows the working class to have a better life, where they can travel the world, and capitalism within a democracy is where political parties can't agree on anything, nothing gets done and the only ones who benefit are the wealthy, overseas investors and politicians who always accept pay rises while cutting the penalty rates of the less fortunate. 

There you have it in a nutshell, the difference between communism and capitalism. So maybe we should remove those currently in power and invite the Chinese leader to sort out the mess we are currently in, surely it couldn't be any worse.

Alan Metcalf, Stockton

Dreams of shutting shop

IN his opinion piece on Saturday in support of the new Anglican Dean of Newcastle, Jeff Corbett concluded that "children would be safer sooner if the Anglican and Catholic dioceses in the Hunter closed up shop" (‘Big business of change’, Herald, 14/10).

I closed my eyes and imagined that I was back in the square at the Vatican City. Pope Francis appeared on the balcony at midday. He raised his hands towards heaven and proclaimed to the thousands of us, that the Catholic Church was now beyond redemption and so would similarly close up shop on Friday.

And mirroring the words of Rupert Murdoch when he closed the News of the World newspaper, the Pope bade us all "Goodbye and good luck".

And pigs might fly.

David Gorringe, Lemon Tree Passage

Splendid start to season

THE Newcastle City Choir are to be congratulated along with conductor/musical director Greg Archer and accompanist Anita Zielonka for a varied and spirited concert held on Sunday afternoon, in the Adamstown Uniting Church.

The program was a splendid collection of classical, light and modern songs. The Chopin Nocturne was a feature item played by the conductor and Mozkowski’s Bolero, four hands, by the conductor and the accompanist. The soloists were a delight to listen to Ruth Gay, Shiela Keane and Valerie Tamblyn-Mills. It was a pleasant surprise to see the small grand piano on the short stick to balance the choir of about 30 members. This splendid start to the season should attract new members.

John McLennan, Charlestown