LETTERS 22.7.17

Parks are for everyone
I SUPPORT folks’ right to have a pet pooch.
However I would ask them, when out and about with Rex, to respect the rights of those of us who choose not to keep a pet.
This includes observing rules about where Rover is and is not allowed, and where it is and is not required to be on a lead.
Spot is allowed in almost all public places, if on a leash (many owners flout this rule).
Few are the recreational areas that we can enjoy without Molly sniffing around.
Yet dog owners still feel entitled to walk Lucky in these areas, again, often not restrained by a leash.
I am not alone in finding this highly offensive.
I object to being approached and sniffed by free-range dogs; I object to having to watch where I tread in supposedly dog-free areas; I object to sharing my picnic areas with dogs.
I have seen a young mother repeatedly shoo a dog away from her toddler in a dog-free zone; I have even seen a dog attack a toddler in Fremantle town centre. Yet if you politely point out the error you are met with indignance, and often rudeness.
Intolerance by non-owners is not the issue; it is the inconsiderate behaviour of many owners.
I understand that you are proud of Pluto, but please understand that we do not share your love of your furry little family member and respect our Bruno-free spaces.
This is a general comment but in local terms pertains to South Beach in particular.
Andrew Heard
Tuckfield Street, Fremantle

Bravo, council
AS a resident living close to Hampton Road, I would like to make a comment about the recent traffic calming measures undertaken in Ord Street.
It has resulted in a significant reduction in movements of containers to/from the port along Hampton Rd and has bought welcome relief to local residents from the trucks that were using this road as a rat race to bypass the Main Road designated freight route along Stock road to areas South of Fremantle.
It will significantly improve local safety, reduce particulate pollution to the many adjoining schools, and considerably extend the life of the road surface, all a huge bonus to the residents and ratepayers of the City of Fremantle.
The council is to be commended for these works, well done!
Keith O’Brian
Bellevue Terrace, Fremantle

Roe 8 perspective
BERNIE KAAKS touches on an important point (‘Debunking Roe 8’, Thinking Allowed, Herald, July 15, 2017).
While we continue to grow our population like there is no tomorrow, conflicts regarding where to put these people and associated wanted infrastructure, will just escalate.
But I think it is unfair to target the likes of Piers Verstegen and say, ‘Where were you when….blah, blah, blah?’  (insert whatever thing you think should have received more attention than your pet topic).
People that care, can only do so much, they can’t be everywhere and do everything.
Also most people would agree, generally the more scarce something is or becomes, the more valuable or precious it is.
This is true whether it is the last milk in the fridge, that one and only rare photograph, the last breeding age black cockatoos, or yes, one of the last remaining wetlands (Perth has lost at least 70 per cent of it’s original wetlands).
Claudia Mueller
Amur Place, Bateman

Roe 8 agenda
IN his Thinking Allowed piece (‘Debunking Roe 8’, Herald, July 15, 2017) Bernie Kaaks describes himself as ‘apolitical’ and yet after 25 years in the transport industry writes to publish an article against those who want to protect the remnants of wetlands that would be affected by the construction of Roe 8—is there not a clear political bias there?
In criticising Piers Verstegen’s choice of words in his earlier Thinking Allowed (‘Reflections on Roe 8’, Herald, July 1, 2017), Kaaks actually provides the argument to support the environmental case which has been about protecting the remnant wetlands—remnant because of the amount of ’the same unique tuarts, banksias, balgas and paperbarks’ previously clear felled for residential and commercial development.
In answer to Kaaks’ question, ‘Why was there no outcry…while this wanton destruction was going on?’
An answer is that there was not such an awareness at the time, and community groups lacked the understanding of the power of their own voice.
He points out that there is a push for ‘greater use of rail…out of the port’ and argues an ‘ignorance of the effect this has on both transit times and costs’.
Whilst decrying Verstegen’s article as, ‘disappointingly short on fact’ he provides none himself.
Both road and rail are subsidised and the rail lines already exist.
Further, it is inevitable that the outer harbour will have to be built and the use of road and rail from Latitude 32 will make the idea of Roe 8 redundant.
There are better answers than Roe 8, albeit each has its own environmental and economic costs and advantages.
People who never make a mistake never do anything
Jim Meckelburg
Davies Street, Beaconsfield

Freo flatlining
IT comes as no surprise to me that there are ‘pockets of disadvantage’ in Fremantle (‘Checking Freo’s pulse’, Herald, July 15, 2017).
Anyone who actually ventures beyond the area encompassing the Mall, the High Street and South terrace would  know that, as it is patently obvious.
Within the city there appears to be no shortage of upmarket accommodation and any low-cost accommodation has long since disappeared so that those who have lived in the area for years, the human flotsam of the Port’s glory days those who have fallen through the cracks in the social system are reliant on the limited resources of St Pat’s or left to fend for themselves.
The Street Doctor is constantly under threat of closure due to lack of funding, the Emergency Department that was conveniently available in the city-centre has disappeared.
No doubt the many newcomers to the city, living in upmarket apartments carry on heedlessly eating and drinking at the numerous cafe’s and eateries built to cater for them, in the meantime services are cut and belt-tightening continues that impacts on the poor a whole lot more than the wealthy, very little changes in our self-absorbed society.
Geoff Dunstone
Carrington St, Palmyra

Bumping up pollution
HAS Fremantle council inadvertently put measures in place that will ensure you drink more pollutants with your coffee?
Just think…as you sip away in your favourite street-side café down through South Terrace you are now getting an extra spoonful of something else.
I’m sure patrons of businesses like Manna Wholefoods would be mortified to learn that the new speed hump outside their esteemed “Health Café” will cause cars to emit 98 per cent more nitrogen dioxide and 64 per cent more carbon dioxide than if they simply drove past.
These findings published by Imperial College London have resulted in the city of London considering an immediate ban on speed humps.
Additionally there is a possibility of a total ban throughout the entire UK road network.
After a call to the Fremantle Council, they conceded that other measures would be preferred, but the cost of those prevented alternatives.
I asked to see a copy of their pollution study regarding the installation of speed humps but was told none had been done.
For me…I think I’ll take my coffee with less poison and go elsewhere until the problem is fixed.
John Locke
Tolley Court, Hamilton Hill

Belter, Bernie
I commend Bernie Kaaks for his article ‘Debunking Roe 8’ (Thinking Allowed, Herald, July 15, 2017).
It is never easy to speak out against popular public opinion, even armed with factual rationale.
Bernie’s presentation was objective and true.
Roe 8, of course was to be a vital component of Perth’s ring highway(s).
Stock Road is the designated T junction between North (Fremantle Port) and South (Kwinana Outer Harbour).
When there is a shortage of essential items brought to WA via freight containers, maybe then there will be a broad outcry to construct Roe 8.
Tony Stokes
Philmore Cresent, Kardinya

2 responses to “LETTERS 22.7.17

  1. I am fully in agreement with Andrew Heard – it is high time dog owners were called to order and made to realise that for many of us dogs are simply a nuisance that we are expected to tolerate.

    I wonder now that Coles and Woolworths have made a sound environmental decision to stop issuing plastic bags what councils (who provide bags to permit dog owners to handle the fouling that their pets dump) will do – or are dog owners exempt from the responsibility of the needs of the environment?

    As a suggestion to make the situation more equitable, “How about dog owners pick up their dog’s excreta and take it home with them and bury it in their own garden” and then they will get to deal with the offensive mess rather than some poor council worker who has to empty whole bins of dog excreta – which I might add truly stink on a hot summers day!

  2. As if to underline the point, as I was out walking yesterday I was accosted by two large free-range dogs. One, in Arundel Street, Fremantle, jumped with its paws on my waist. The owner, when asked “Where’s its leash?”, laughed it off. Perhaps next time I’ll walk up and start pawing the owner (if male). The other hound, in Boyeembara, which is a very nice spot for dogs to exercise (and I agree that a happy dog running energetically is a joyful sight), ignored its owner’s commands and bounded up to have a good sniff at my crotch. Most unseemly.

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