Letters 8.3.14

13. 10LETTERSAn antithesis
IT has always seemed the antithesis of a university that any institution calling itself such should look to censure any view which is legally expressed (Herald, March 1, 2014).
It is surely the function of all universities, even those religiously aligned, to allow the free expression of all such views and their deliberation in civilised circumstances.
It is therefore disppointing to again read that Notre Dame University has sought to censure the views of one of the student organisations it legitimates on the grounds such views contradict Roman Catholic teaching.
Let Roman Catholic teaching debate these views and let the contrary position be heard, only then will a university’s mission be accomplished.
David Hawks
Emeritus Professor
Curtin University
Bellevue Tce, Fremantle

Defib for Freo
RICHARD WILKES (Herald, March 1, 2014) would like no progress in Fremantle at all.
Arthur Head belongs to all Western Australians, not just a select few. If Mr Wilkes is looking for a solution that suits everyone on this issue is money to be part of “the solution?” .
I have seen numerous indigenous elderly people consuming alcohol in the area Mr Wilkes is so opposed to development.
There are also certain other parts of Fremantle where Aboriginal people spend their entire days sitting under trees in full few of everyone consuming alcohol. Why no objection to this, Mr Wilkes?
Progress, acceptance, vision, flexibility and looking forward rather than living in the past also are important if Fremantle and WA are to stop becoming dull and boring. Fremantle has long been a dead city and it’s about time life was breathed back in it.
The time is now.
M Nardi
Joshua Cl, Bibra Lake

Come together
I HAVE no stake either way in the proposed venue at Arthur Head, but I am surprised by the apparent lack of common sense prevailing, unless I’m missing something.
On the one hand, how does reducing the patrons to 400 in any way meet objections that it is sacred indigenous land, heritage precinct, and many cogent claims by West End residents that it will diminish the ambience and amenity they chose to live in?
On the other hand, what entertainment industry with a proper business plan would accept that 400 will make this a viable venue to make profits? It’s about the number held by a small church hall. Who imagines that Missy Higgins and Sinead O’Connor would be tempted to play there, as has been mooted?
Make it bigger and put it somewhere else.
My suggestion would be the large industrial estate wasteland around Amherst and Wood Streets—an ideal and exciting entertainment precinct area, with the golf course, ovals, and Booyeembara Park already there, and no residents to be disturbed.
But the main thing—think outside the box, exercise some common sense and find some alternative solution that makes everybody happy, instead of everybody unhappy!
Bob White
Hampton Rd, Fremantle

Never forget
I WONDER if Steve Portelli (Herald letters, March 1, 2014) came across the ACCC report on Cockburn council,while he was looking for the Robson report on Kwinana
Sam Hilliard
Button St, Munster

Intimidating oldies
I ATTENDED my first ever Fremantle council meeting Wednesday night regarding the J-Shed proposal. Although younger than most of those in the room, I wanted to show my support for a vibrant new development in Fremantle.
But wow, it really was an intimidating, hostile crowd that catcalled and jeered those who showed any support for the development. The “grey brigade” spoke of democracy and due process but in reality showed none of those traits.
Little wonder Gen Y and X don’t get involved in community issues because the grey brigade acts like a bunch of kids hyped up on red cordial when they don’t get their own way.
Beach St, Fremantle

Keep it tidy
I JUST wanted to say how wonderful it was to call into the IGA on Winterfold Street in Hilton on Friday, February 28 and find, for the first time in the two years I’ve lived in the area, a completely litter-free perimeter which on further inspection extended to the footpath and car parks in front of all of the shops in that precinct.
It truly lifted my spirits as it is usually completely depressing going there and seeing so much rubbish around. I really hope this is not a once-off and that the area will now remain largely rubbish-free. Significant evidence shows that when an area is kept clean it is more likely to stay that way whereas when there’s rubbish already there those inclined to litter think its ok as others are doing it. A big thumbs Up from me! Keep Australia Beautiful! Respect.
Alison Dorn
Halstead St, Hamilton Hill

A Pettitty ditty
I AM one of many residents stunned by the Fremantle council decision to award a 21-year lease to Sunset Events for a tavern and concert venue at Arthur Head.
My residence is about 100 metres from the proposed development and I am very worried about the impact on our enjoyment of the West End.
I have condensed my concerns into a little song which you might consider publishing.
We thought that we had Arthur Head
For ever and a day
But Captain Pettitt and his pirates
Have given it away
They sing: “Yo Ho Ho!
And a tavern full of rum
And all you Freo residents
Can stick it up your bum.”
Captain Pettitt and his pirates
Are the bravest of buccaneers
They are giving a lease for Arthur Head
For twenty-one buckin’ years
They sing: “Yo Ho Ho!
And a tavern full of rum
Compared to our friends the developers
You residents are only scum.”
Local Aborigines
Have long valued Arthur head
So Sunset are creating a sacred site
It’s the tavern in the old J Shed!
They sing: “Yo Ho Ho!
And a tavern full of rum
Why heed the Aborigines
When the dollars beat the drum?”
Brad Pettitt might not feel so brave
When re-election nears
But there might be a job with Sunset
Serving shots and pulling beers.
It may be: “Yo Ho Ho!
And a tavern full of rum”
But we’ll be looking for a brand new mayor
When council elections come!
Charles Watson AM
Little High St, Fremantle

City of cycling?
IT has been reported recently the City of Vincent has committed to spending $2.5 million over the next two years on cycling infrastructure and well done to Vincent for making this commitment.
Vincent’s per capita spend is estimated to be $40—compare this to Fremantle’s per capita spend of approximately $17 annually over the past four years.
Whilst above the national benchmark, it is not in the league of Vincent. If the City of Fremantle wants to be considered the “city of bicycles” I would suggest we need to seriously re-think our spend on cycling infrastructure.
Without doubt the council is doing great things, but maybe there is room for improvement. For example the Fremantle Bicycle User Group (Freo Bug) is working to put together a desperately need bicycle network plan, providing a great opportunity for the council to significantly enhance cycling participation.
I encourage the council to work proactively with the Bug and cyclists to implement a world standard bicycle network. The more we ride, the less congestion, the greater the benefit to all members of the Fremantle community.
Andrew Priest
Fothergill St, Fremantle

Attitudes an outsider outrage
I HAVE never been to Port Coogee Beach but there is every chance that I may do so in the future, provided it is not gated to keep the riff-raff out.
Any visit would make me one of Sam Cutzo’s “outsiders” (Herald letters, February 15, 2014). I would not smoke nor drink while at “his beach” and would leave no mess, but as I can’t afford a property by the water I will be, in Sam’s eyes, an undesirable, an “outsider” not fit to invade his space.
How sad that Sam could write such a letter (even tongue in cheek) and how naive of him to think that none of the “toffs” who share his patch would ever smoke, drink or pollute his private domain. It’s attitudes such as Sam’s that have protesters clambering to make sure our beaches are there for everyone.
John Cooper
Counsel Rd, Coolbellup

Dynamism a dream?
IN 1976 I was president of Maylands’ Peninsula Association.
The City of Stirling was determined to demolish the magnificent Peninsula Hotel building opposite the train station. Our little group—against huge odds—was determined to save it.
The then-mayor of Stirling, who displayed a peculiar hatred for the building, told me that spending money on old buildings had caused the City of Fremantle to raise its rates.
I contacted then-Fremantle mayor Bill McKenzie who told the press his city’s financial trouble had nothing to do with its devotion to historic buildings.
I contacted the Fremantle Society whose chairman stated, “on the contrary, the old buildings were contributing to a new dynamism in the town” (Daily News October 28, 1976).
Today I am spokesman for Wake Up Fremantle (wakeupfremantle.com), a small group of locals dedicated to restoring Fremantle as WA’s second city.
The chairman of the Fremantle Society back in 1976? Les Lauder. I wonder, Les, whatever happened to Fremantle’s “new dynamism”?
“Dullsville”—Cr Andrew Sullivan’s epithet (Herald, March 1, 2014), is a more accurate description.
Wake up, Fremantle.
Paul Roberts
Lefroy Rd, Beaconsfield

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