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Re: Women's rights; the Legislature; Chatham Park 

Re: Women's rights

Finally, a real, factual, brilliant column by Crystal Hayes ["I am not your mama!" July 3] comes along when everywhere women are being torn apart, brutalized, harassed and maligned from every sector of the United States by state governments and the feds.

That column meant so much to me as I see more and more the fight to deprive women of their freedom, their safety and their lives in this country. There isn't any street in this country where a woman can actually walk down and feel 100 percent safe. Thank you for publishing these kinds of articles.

Barbara Beye Lorie

Re: The Legislature

When I started working part-time on citizen lobbying, it was part "do good by democracy" experiment and part newbie activist optimism.

I was present at the Capitol to deliver more than 16,000 signatures bringing attention to the deep cuts to public education. After seeing the photo of our governor catching a baseball [while the signatures were being delivered], we were taken aback. Instead of acknowledging those voices, he made light of them. The request for a private or public meeting with him directly after the petition delivery with public school teachers and parents has gone unanswered by his office, even with follow-up.

By attending a few constituent meetings and office drop-bys around the General Assembly since March, I scheduled a meeting with a group of various constituents to meet personally with House Speaker Thom Tillis. This meeting was scheduled back in May for Tuesday, July 9, and come Monday morning, his scheduler called to cancel because "there are some legislative measures the speaker needs to address before meeting with constituents." Like many of his General Assembly counterparts, this man who wants to run for U.S. Senate has shown no desire to meet and learn from others' perspectives on the legislation being put forth.

Our governor is on the defensive and not the offensive to listen or help by paying attention to a large number of his constituency. These representatives do not just represent those who voted for them. This seems to be the problem we have at the core of our state politics right now.

Jennifer Ferrell

Re: Chatham Park

Would Gov. Pat McCrory, Sen. Bob Rucho and other sponsors of fracking want to sabotage a 7,000-acre "live, work and play" community that would bring hundreds of businesses and thousands of new workers and homeowners to Chatham County? If fracking comes to Chatham, the visionary plans of Chatham Park would face all but certain demise.

So why would Rucho sponsor the fracking legislation (SB 820)? Charlotte is the state's banking capital, but Rucho and others from Mecklenburg would like nothing more than to build its own RTP—Charlotte Park, its own version of Chatham Park. First it would be important to remove any obstacles to this development, and nothing would succeed like fracking all over Chatham, Lee and Moore counties. Conspiratorial? Yes, but certainly not beyond the capabilities and vested interests of certain legislators.

David Streifford

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