Here’s what community members had to say in recent letters to the editor we received. Submit your own thoughts here.
No one is taking away religious freedom
I would like to respond to Deborah A. O’Malley’s Jan. 14 column, “RFRA is not enough. Indiana needs more religious freedom.”
Her claims that Indiana has weak protections for religious liberty and that religious freedom should be championed by all Indiana lawmakers seems to be written to stir up the public and make everyone worried that someone is taking away their religious freedom. However, she writes, “Medical practitioners and healthcare payers have the right to refuse participation in practices and procedures that conflict with their religious, moral or ethical beliefs.”
I tend to think that her real goal is to encourage everyone to think that lawmakers have the wisdom and skills to make laws about medical care especially for care pertaining to family planning and pregnancy. Both of those cases are very personal and should be under full control of the woman involved, her doctor and her family if she wants them involved.
Audrey E. Corne
Mike Braun’s answers are weak
Senator Mike Braun’s Q&A with Brittany Carloni in the Sunday Star was notable in that he never really answered the questions.
When asked about his first priority as governor, he responded that he would work with people to find out what needed to be done. He wants to be governor and can’t prioritize a single issue?
When asked about the right of citizens to collect signatures to put questions on the ballot, he responded that he is “gonna listen and learn.” Again, we don’t have an answer. Do we or do we not have the right to participate in government if that government is not responsive to our needs?
The most glaring non-answer concerned his position or view on Donald Trump. Sen. Braun used 123 words to not answer the question. He went on about how over half the country was fed up with government, that there are federal, state, and local governments, and that people look to him (Trump) as something different. I wonder why he would not directly answer this question.
Do we really want a Trump proxy in the highest office in our state? Does that person really reflect our values as citizens of Indiana?
Why dedicated lanes matter for the Blue Line
There has been a great deal of discussion about the need for dedicated traffic lanes on IndyGo’s Blue Line, and there seems to be a lack of understanding about why this is important.
Traditional bus service is notoriously slow. IndyGo’s Route 8, which the Blue Line would replace, runs on Washington Street from the airport to the Meijer store in Cumberland.
It is common for visitors in many cities to travel from the airport to downtown via public transit. So, using IndyGo’s own trip planner, I mapped out a trip to do just that.
Arrive at the airport at 7:50 a.m.
Walk 1.9 miles for 41 minutes to the bus stop at Perimeter Road and North Service Road
Arrive at 8:31 a.m.
Ride IndyGo Route 8 for 31 minutes downtown
Arrive at 9:10 a.m.
Walk 413 feet for 1 minute to the Julia Carson Transit Center
Arrive at 9:11 a.m.
How can the Blue Line improve this? With dedicated lanes that avoid traffic jams, stoplight control that guarantees a green light throughout the route, level boarding, and a properly located station at the airport, that trip that currently takes 1 hour and 21 minutes might end up taking only 25 minutes.
Having a convenient route to and from the airport to downtown is an incredibly visible way to welcome visitors and show them that Indianapolis is a modern city. That impression matters to people visiting and considering moving to this city.
This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: Religious freedom, Mike Braun’s non-answers and Blue Line lanes