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Everybody's Column / Letters from Our Readers

>Authority should build span that complements Peace Bridge

The author of a Dec. 9 letter said he "cringed" when he saw the proposed cable-stayed bridge in The News, adding that it did not complement the existing Peace Bridge. I couldn't agree more. Architects have criticized Buffalo for failing to respect the existing architectural structures when designing new buildings.

When I recall what is good about Buffalo architecture, I think of Louis Sullivan (Guaranty Building,) Frank Lloyd Wright and the arts and crafts movement started by Elbert Hubert and the Roycrofters. Their design combined a functionality that was solid, clean and void of fussiness.

Prior to the Peace Bridge being built in 1927, another designer from this arts and crafts period was designing and rebuilding bridges. His name was Leffert Buck, and he pioneered the use of the steel arch bridge that is the design of our Peace Bridge. The steel he used to make his bridges was indigenous to our area and, therefore, is not only a part of our architectural history, but our industrial history as well.

As members of this community, we have to begin to value and respect architectural structures not only for their aesthetic value, but for their intrinsic value, which should be steeped not only in architectural glory, but in a history rich in industry, craftsmanship and functionality.

Catherine Breen

West Seneca

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>Incorporate past landmarks in waterfront development

The Landmark Society of the Niagara Frontier believes this is an exciting time for Buffalo. Our mission is simply to enhance appreciation of the built and natural landmarks in the Niagara region.

Now that development is coming to the waterfront, the opportunity exists to highlight some of these treasures with creative planning. Within two city blocks of the DL&W railroad terminal are two National Register of Historic Places sites, along with the entrance to the Erie Canal, the 1833 lighthouse, as well as a great collection of eclectic grain elevators.

Some people see these as a sign of Buffalo's past, but others see sculpture and unique possibilities for creative new designs that will exemplify our future. Development that incorporates these uniquely Buffalo shapes can become attractions themselves if done well.

We believe Buffalo is a landmark city of good neighbors and neighborhoods. Good neighbors try to make good neighborhoods not because they have to, but because they want to. We hope all developers involved with Buffalo will want to make our past landmarks a future attraction as they develop their new landmarks for the benefit of our total community.

Dennis Galucki

Executive Director, Landmark

Society of the Niagara Frontier

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>Christmas represents hope for the future

I'm sorry folks, but the only person I'm concerned about "offending" during this Christmas season is the Lord himself. We are trying to shut the door in God's face, and telling him there is still "no room at the inn." We are returning his gift for a refund, like ungrateful children.

What have we become? We've allowed the baby Jesus to be kicked out of his lowly manger, and those offended by Christmas are still not happy. They believe their elite ways of thinking are above all of ours. However, they forget that the wisdom of man is foolishness to God. So Christmas will live on, if not at the inn, then in a lowly manger.

Christmas represents hope in the face of a world gone mad. If we're not celebrating Christmas for the hope it gives with the birth of our savior, there is no hope!

Ken Giangreco

Town of Tonawanda

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>Most welcome good news amid world's pain, misery

If good news Christmas newsletters are a turnoff to My View author Tim Hirschbeck, may I suggest he devote his free time to watching CNN or Fox News and reading the front page of the daily newspaper all year round. Then he can take delight in the pain and misery of local and world news. "Merry Christmas, Mr. Scrooge."

Larry Staszak

West Seneca

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>Kindel's remark reveals racism is alive and well

"In this country, we have rules!" So stated Amherst Council Member William Kindel as he addressed incoming Town Supervisor Satish Mohan. That statement says much more than clarifying that the United States of America has "rules." Here are a few that come to mind.

People with different accents, skin color and minority status are viewed by the majority culture as ignorant, simple and "foreigners," regardless of economic status or educational achievement.

Racism is alive and well in the United States, whether or not people want to admit it. We just don't hang people from trees and make them use a separate bathroom and water fountain anymore. Racism today is more insidious in that it can't always be detected. But its intention is still the same, to subjugate people of color.

Racism is not just a problem in Buffalo, it is rampant in the suburbs. It is often a quandary for white suburbanites when "those people" start to move into their neighborhoods.

Mark Schnitzer

West Seneca

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>It's frightening to learn U.S. is spying on private citizens

It has been reported by William Arkin, a former U.S. Army intelligence analyst, that the Army has been spying on private citizens who are opposed to the war in Iraq and are against nuclear weapons.

Anyone who has the illusion that we live in a free country should pay particular attention to this travesty.

If you do not fit into the Fox News mold, you may be subject to FBI phone taps, credit checks, having your reading tastes reviewed and other intrusions into your private life. In fact, I have no doubt that if this is published, I will be on some government agency's "watch list." Doesn't this scare anyone? Wake up, America.

Spencer Lingenfelter

Buffalo

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>Demolish AM&A's building and convert site to parkland

It seems to me that it is the city's responsibility to raze the old, rat-infested AM&A's building. The best use for the site is a park, with benches and grass and trees, a great place to eat lunch in the summer. Make that the Robert B. Adam Memorial Park, in memory of a great Buffalo citizen, and a businessman beloved by his employees. The park would be a statement and a challenge that we need more citizens like Adam.

Gregory Vogelsang

Buffalo

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>It seems well-connected live by a different set of rules

Could someone please tell me where I may obtain the "get out of jail free" card that Buffalo School Board Member Ralph Hernandez's son obtained?

Louis Hernandez, a felony drug suspect, was let out of jail on a judge's order. Erie County District Attorney Frank Clark stated in the Dec. 17 News that this is a "routine" procedure. My question is whether this "routine" procedure is available to everyone or just the well-connected?

Floyd Jones

Hamburg

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