Letters to the editor, April 25, 2013

These are the letters and comments from the print edition

Star brights
I miss being able to go out in my backyard to do some gazing ("Turn the lights down low," Voice of the City by Dave Chapman, April 18). Since my neighbourhood became overrun with car dealerships and their bright lights on all night, I'm greatly reduced as to what constellations I can see.

It'd be nice if there could be some designated areas in the city where lights are turned low for those who'd like to look up at the sky at night.—posted by TDF at thecoast.ca

Stargazing on the boardwalk? I can't think of a more moronic place to go stargazing than downtown. Maybe you should go outside the city to observe the constellations. There's tons of dark skies in this province.As well, efforts are already being made to remedy this problem through the use of LED streetlamps. —posted by Jeff Button

The point of stargazing on the boardwalk is that it is a public outreach activity and that you have to go where the people are. Bright objects like the moon and planets can still be seen quite nicely even with the light pollution downtown.

It is so much fun to listen to the gasps that people, young and old, make when they first see Saturn through a telescope and realize that it's a real place, and not just a picture in a book. Or watch the peaks of the taller mountains catch the sunlight as the sun rises on that part of the moon. —posted by Patrick Kelly

Take out littering
I totally agree with the comments made in the "Voice of the City" editorial by Neil Bailey ("I've seen so much litter that even the worst dump sites don't surprise me," April 11). There is FAR too much waste and littering happening.

One of the things that drives me totally crazy is the huge amount of litter resulting from takeout purchases. I'm always bewildered by the fact that some folks will carry a container filled with something (a drink, chips, chocolate, whatever) for a certain distance but then once the container is empty and therefore lighter, they will immediately dump it rather than carry it to the next garbage can. Insane!

Also, I can't help but wonder why more folks don't use a travel mug when purchasing coffee. These folks would receive a discount if they did so and there would be a lot less waste and litter going into our environment. —Carolyn Pineau, Cole Harbour

Butt-free city
I'll start by commending the shout-out to CNS's Clean Across Nova Scotia event (On Patrol, April 18). It's great that they're rallying communities to demonstrate love and respect for our outdoor environments.

I was, however, disappointed generally. Usually this important segment makes note to call to arms those who are paid to keep things in ship-shape.

I was looking forward to your questions about the validity and enforcement of the Provincial Smoke Free Places Act, an act which mysteriously vanished at the new Dartmouth Bridge Terminal. Metro Transit communicated to me that it was too expensive to enforce, but I'd love to see a cost comparison of how my taxes would be divvied between enforcement vs. cancer treatments across the province.

Scarce is a place for the non-smoker to enjoy a long-awaited nice day while waiting for a bus. And what about pointing out that throwing your butts on the ground is LITTERING to begin with, also illegal province-wide. Somehow these bits of foam that will last forever are exempt from that label.

Kudos to the CANS and the Get Down On Barrington Street participants, but I look forward to those responsible to stop littering to begin with. Smoker, stand down-wind, and get your butts into the trash where they belong. City and provincial enforcement: demonstrate that this issue matters, because our cities will be more beautiful and more inviting if we make them butt-free. —Brynn Horley, via email

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