Congress, President Trump must step in an save aviation jobs

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American Airlines said in July that it plans to layoff or furlough nearly 1,500 employees in Mecklenburg, 739 in Wake County and 370 in Forsyth County starting Oct. 1 unless federal protections for the aviation industry are extended. The protections expire Sept. 30.

DTFOSTER@CHARLOTTEOBSERVER.COM

Congress, help the aviation industry

I am an American Airlines flight attendant based in Charlotte. COVID-19 is the worst crisis to hit the industry in the history of commercial aviation.

Congress passed the Payroll Support Program to save aviation jobs and stabilize our industry. However, thousands of jobs will disappear on Oct. 1 if Congress does not extend PSP.

Aviation is essential to a strong economy, including Charlotte’s local economy. Extending PSP can only happen if Congress and the White House negotiate and pass a stimulus bill.

Washington: Do your job so I can do mine. Americans will be ready to travel again, but for this to happen aviation workers must be ready, too.

Laura Wilkerson, Charlotte

Disillusioned with the political process

Regarding “Joe Biden, Jesse Helms and an unlikely friendship that’s hard to imagine today,” (Sept. 15):

This article about current presidential candidate Joe Biden and racist Jesse Helms is supposed to be a requiem for a time when politicians could put their differences aside to “get things done.” Never mind that what was done between the two politicians was a kind of transaction-based politics that resulted in anti-busing amendments and legislation.

This article reflects why people have become so disillusioned with the political process. It’s not the fighting or lack of civility. It’s because places like the U.S. Senate and House have become a country club.

Tom Pontecorvo, Charlotte

Turn down the global temperature

A Sept. 13 Observer article said smoke from California wildfires, which have burnt more than 3.1 million acres of forest, has turned into a giant cyclone over the Pacific Ocean.

Meanwhile, in North Carolina, a gas pipeline spill has released 272,580 gallons (and counting) that threatens to contaminate well water in northern Mecklenburg County.

All this comes a few weeks after the federal government made it easier for oil and gas companies to avoid detecting and repairing methane leaks.

It’s way past time to turn the global temperature down and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. We need to lower the amount of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and we need to promote the development of clean energy technology.

John Brennan, Charlotte

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John Brennan

Trump magnified the COVID misery

Republican or Democrat, business owner or consumer, front-line worker or at-home parent… it doesn’t matter. We are all victims of a president who knowingly denied reality and politicized a public health crisis for his own gains.

The result? A country that is the COVID-19 capital of the world — families shattered, businesses ruined, a stressed health system, and education for our children in turmoil.

The president could not have prevented coronavirus from reaching our shores, but he didn’t need to magnify the misery.

Deborah Langsam, Charlotte

Here’s a way to limit deadly wildfires

During World War II, U.S. Navy submarines made fresh water by desalinating seawater. Since 1948 Israel has made the deserts bloom and produces world famous fruits and vegetables; the salt by-products are sold everywhere.

For more than 20 years I’ve been advocating and writing about desalinization plants on both coasts to create fresh water for farms and fight fires.

The west coast — now more than ever — could create fresh water from the world’s largest ocean and pipeline it everywhere to all the states. Forests would be green all year long and houses would be safe. Is anyone listening?

Jon Schuller, Charlotte

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Jon Schuller

Disturbed by what I saw on I-485

I have been anticipating the timely completion of the I-485 expansion. While the project continues at a glacial WPA project pace, the condition of the existing highway is a disgrace.

It reminds me of rural highways in developing countries such as India and Thailand, as the trash blows incessantly across the roads.

Last week, a scofflaw contractor spewed a huge amount of shredded polyethylene film along the highway at Johnston Road. Did NCDOT clean this mess up? No! They took the path of least resistance Monday and took a brush hog to it, creating a morass of small particles blown to the four winds that’ll be sucked into the Catawba River basin forthwith.

This not only incompetence, but gross malfeasance on the part of NCDOT.

David Lowe, Charlotte

Thanks for the heads up on bonds

Regarding Jennifer Roberts “Voters need to hear more about bonds on the ballot,” (Sept. 13 Opinion):

I’d like to thank Jennifer Roberts for her heads-up about the bonds that are on the upcoming ballot for Charlotte voters. Like her, I hadn’t heard about them; and I certainly won’t vote in favor without having any idea what they’re for.

Gautam Bose, Charlotte

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