Letters to the Editor
You Have a Say With the VTA
Several recent letters point out the obvious flaws on Santa Clara County's public transit system. This is the responsibility of the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA). The VTA is the county's bus and rail operator, transit planner, and road builder.
Many people I've talked to didn't know that all decisions at VTA are made by a Board of Directors. The VTA Board of Directors meets every first Thursday of the month at 5:30pm at the County Supervisors' chambers at 70 W. Hedding St. in San Jose. These board meetings are open to everyone to attend and speak out on VTA policies and how your tax dollars are spent on transportation in the valley.
Yet the VTA never tells the public about these meetings. Another example of our VTA not telling you everything: VTA is holding several meetings throughout the county to get your input on its 25-year transit and highway spending plan. The plan, known as VTP 2035, is only advertised on VTA's website. No advertising about this plan and the meetings is on any VTA bus or train.
Our group will demand that VTA enact sunshine laws similar to those proposed for the city of San Jose. The goal is to make VTA something it has never been in its history: transparent and accountable to you.
Founder, Santa Clara VTA Riders Union
Gone But Not Glue
I picked up the latest Metro last week with my mom as it instantly attracted me with the headline of "End of an Era" with the photo of the jockey on its cover.
I read the subtitle of "A unique piece of area history is headed for the 'glue factory' as Bay Meadows prepares to close its gates."
I was appalled by the disrespect the writer had on this story assuming the horses are going to the glue factory. Is that what the writer thinks or was he given this information? I couldn't imagine someone would allow these 700 top breed horses who cost their owners several thousands of dollars to be doomed to this unfortunate destiny because the stables won't be there. I would only think they would be taken to another race track or sent to the properties of caretakers. Just because a racetrack is closing doesn't mean the horses are going to be committed to the same fate. If that were the case, the article would have mentioned it. The article doesn't mention anything about where the horses are going for that matter.
I found the writer to have complete disregard for the horses and their future of horse racing. It seems the writer knows some history of the sport of horse racing although they didn't capture the thrill of the sport. Back in the '30s and '40s people went to horse races like we go to movies. It was what people talked about. That was entertainment.
I was born into a family of horse trainers and jockeys. My great-great-grandmother Josie Anderson was the first horse trainer in California and she was married to a jockey. She drove her horses up and down the state to race her horses. Her life was racing horses and taking care of them. The closing of a racetrack didn't force her horses go to a glue factory.
One highlight in this article are the photographs. I loved the photographs. The writing of this story doesn't give the photographs enough justice that they're due. The photographs were simply beautiful. They captured the spirit of horse racing from an insider's viewpoint.
Unfortunately those who read this article are going to assume all those horses held in Bay Meadows stables are going to a glue factory. That's not a good take away from this article. There was so much more that could have been highlighted on the cover but was totally missed.
Nowhere on the cover or in the story is there an implication that the horses are going to the glue factory, because of course they are not. Metaphor: Now more than ever!—Editor
In your Metro issue "Scene Unseen" (Cover Story, Nov. 14), thank you for acknowledging "The Kingpins"—which are Kevin Dright, lead singer and guitar; Mike Belardes, sax; Gary Suydam, piano; Rob Mellberg, stand-up bass; and Craig Ramsey, drums— as the winners of Star Search.
I find it strange that the Kingpins were not acknowledged at the recent Hall of Fame ceremonies since they were all from San Jose and had won Star Search.
The other bands from San Jose that I did not see acknowledged were the Syndicate of Sound and the Chocolate Watchband.
The Hall of Fame ceremony was not well advertised since all my friends and myself would have liked to attend but did not read about it until the last day.
Hopefully next year it will be advertised more and these San Jose bands will finally be acknowledged.
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