Letters to the Editor
In a recent commentary (“Keep the ‘American Dream’ Alive,” Jan. 9) Jeffrey R. Smith laments the lassitude of some math students in a subject they fail to appreciate. These students don’t realize that brilliant innovators in any field are brilliant because they practice habits of thinking which carry them step by step to works of genius.
I wanted to make readers aware of an interesting free online course which might be helpful to all of us. It is entitled “Effective Thinking Through Mathematics” and is taught by the entertaining Michael Starbird of the University of Texas, Austin.
He proposes to teach us “how habits of effective thinking and creativity can be taught and learned through mathematics.” The course is offered free through edX and begins Feb. 18.
Visit: https://www.edx.org/course/utaustinx/utaustinx-ut -9-01x-effective-thinking-1178.
The current City Council is claiming the need to appease the State of California by taking the land at Crown Point and rezoning it residential. This land was promised as parks on a ballot measure passed by the voters. The council claims rezoning is necessary to comply with state law.
Measure A, which restricted development and saved our city for so long, has been swept under the table. But the physical limitations Alameda faces have not changed since the Army Corps of Engineers severed the isthmus that once connected Alameda to Oakland in the 1900s. Alameda is an island. Every egress/ingress to and from our city passes through Oakland, or over the San Francisco Bay. Even with global warming, this will not change!
Our elected officials at the state level have done little to help Alameda maintain the quality of life which brings us to, and keeps us living in Alameda. Instead they have chosen to focus on self-aggrandizing issues and help their developer friends line their pockets with gold. Alameda is different from every other city in California. It should be exempt from development requirements that ignore lack of freeway access to and from Alameda.
Plans for freeway hookup directly to the Island have been disapproved by the same state officials that repeatedly insist Alameda accommodate more traffic. The only elected official who seems to appreciate Alameda voters is Attorney General Kamala Harris. She alone, has tried to hold the City of Alameda accountable to the voters.
Instead of giving in without a fight, our elected officials, (yes, this includes developer-funded Bonta) need to stand up and demand, and win, legislation based on our unique physical limitations. No more rezoning every possible piece of land for developers who will profit from, but be exempted from the traffic problems they create.
The island of Catalina had very effective officials who got special legislation passed to protect that island. Too bad we are stuck with our losers.
As a resident of Bay Farm Island since 1979 and a neighborhood watch captain for Alameda Police Department, I know the feelings of my many friends and neighbors.
We don’t want 80 homes, two-story or otherwise replacing Harbor Bay Club and creating a traffic nightmare. We don’t want a hotel and conference center there either, right in a residential community and adjacent to Earhart Elementary School.
Instead, we’d like to see the existing club finally fixed up.
If they must, they can build whatever Cowan wants out at the business park. Another club, homes, a hotel and convention center, whatever; as long as it’s “out there” and not negatively impacting 94502 Bay Farm Island homeowners.