I WRITE to find out what the councillors of Newcastle plan to do with the windfall from the sale of Wrightson Reserve at Waratah ('Moves to sell off park', Newcastle Herald 25/11/16).
The Herald wrote about this contentious sale of public space back in 2016, and it is my understanding that the funds were to be solely spent by the council on upgrading the terribly embarrassing state of Braye Park and its road and access, as well as its lack of creative use and useful facilities for the residents and in particular children of the area.
Surely we could have this money spent to create something to be proud of, like the residents of Speers Point have in their children's park. The works in the inner city are fantastic, but the forgotten residential fringes of Newcastle need urgent attention.
I and many other residents eagerly await the update as to what is happening regarding this past sale of public recreation space.
Chad Dunn, Waratah
AIRPORTS, NOT SEA PORTS
I RESPOND to Howard Hutchins (Letters 2/9) who it seems like Peter Dutton has a terror of all the people who seek to come to Australia for a better life.
Let me correct that, not all the people, just the ones that arrive by boat. The numbers coming by plane are more by many times than the numbers that ever arrived by boat. But it seems Mr Dutton, the Prime Minister and Mr Hutchins haven't noticed them ('Morrison and Dutton defend against boat arrival backlash', Herald 3/9).
Mr Dutton and his ministerial mates might try on the old drownings at sea story, but in my opinion that doesn't wash, because he has shown he has no compassion for these people, unless at the request of some of his friends that need au pairs.
If the current government is serious about stopping asylum seekers, they should start looking to the airports.
Fred McInerney, Karuah
SILENCE UNTIL IT HELPS
PROVING a negative is a very difficult argument to sustain, particularly when access to supportive evidence is denied.
This is a situation Australians have experienced since the election of the Abbott government in 2013 with respect to the actual situation of boat borne asylum seekers onto our shores.
Who can forget Scott Morrison at the head of Australia's Border Force, standing in front of TV cameras refusing to discuss "on-water matters" on the basis that to do so would endanger our sovereignty?
Actually, in my opinion it was a ruse successfully used to frustrate attempts to establish what was being done in our name by the Abbott regime.
Peter Dutton, reacting to the growing public support for the Tamil couple and their Australian-born children this week, added another dimension. He claims public support for the Tamil family has resulted in an increase in boatloads of Tamils being detected in our waters (SBS, 1/9).
I think most reasonable Aussies would say pull the other one. Mr Dutton used similar xenophobic commentary when opposing the medevac legislation (2GB, 27/8).
We should be increasingly concerned Peter Dutton's utterances might be seen as representative of Australia's position on asylum seekers.
Barry Swan, Balgownie
OUR RULINGS ARE FINAL
HOW is it that we seem to have lost faith in our judicial system?
George Pell has been found guilty and yet there are people who still insist on his innocence. How many times do you have to be found guilty for it to be the case? It used to be once.
If he had been found innocent twice, would there be people pushing for another trial? I don't think so. We put our faith in the people whose qualifications mean that they know what they're doing.
Similarly the Sri Lankan family presently on Christmas Island knew when they married and decided to have children that they didn't have permanent residency and were unlikely to gain it due to the government's stance on illegal boat arrivals.
They have been repeatedly found not to be genuine asylum seekers. What's the point of having rules and court systems if you are going to ignore their findings? Such things will surely lead to the breakdown of the social fabric of our democracy.
Ruth Burrell, Merewether
MORE IN COMMON AGAIN
AT first Neil Meyers (Short Takes, 26/8) finds the cases of Cardinal Pell and Lindy Chamberlain "totally different" but now (Short Takes, 3/9) they "tend to mirror each other" with one similarity, an unhelpful and I suggest premature comparison of Cardinal Pell to a predatory dingo.
Other similarities are inconvenient truths, perhaps. Mr Meyers says either Cardinal Pell or his alleged victim is lying.
Justice Weinberg, a former commonwealth director of public prosecutions and the most experienced of the three judges in criminal law, could not exclude as a reasonable possibility that some of what the complainant said was concocted ('Calls for Vatican to defrock Pell', Herald 22/8).
Archbishop Comensoli has suggested another possibility, that the Cardinal as a victim of mistaken identity.
Mr Meyers says most Australians believe the guilty verdict against George Pell was correct, as did two of the three judges.
Most Australians also came to believe the guilty verdict against Lindy Chamberlain to be correct, and her appeals to the Federal Court and the High Court were dismissed before her conviction was eventually overturned.
Peter Dolan, Lambton
BOATS ARE BLOCKED OR NOT
I HAVE been appalled by what I consider the lies Scott Morrison and the other professional Christians around him have been telling about boat people.
In his latest justification for deporting the Tamil family which the town of Biloela wants to keep, Scott Morrison says that Australia cannot afford to send the wrong signal to people smugglers ('PM won't intervene for Tamil family', Herald 3/9).
Let one family stay and the boats will start coming back, he says. But now we're also told that a boat has recently been intercepted, and it's the sixth from Sri Lanka since May ('Morrison and Dutton defend against boat arrival backlash', Herald 3/9).
How is this possible? Tony Abbott said that he stopped the boats, and every Liberal government since his has led us to believe that this has continued to be true. The Liberals even made it practically impossible for anyone to say otherwise.
Yet now it's true no longer, and apparently hasn't been for some time. They've been lying to us by omission.
One can only hope that whoever leaked this embarrassing information is not going to be raided by the federal police.
Grant Agnew, Coopers Plain
ANOTHER woman murdered in an horrific way ('Famous birth to shocking death', Newcastle Herald 3/9). I don't really think it was necessary to include the details of her life that may cause some to judge her. She cannot speak up for herself. My heart goes out to Danielle Easey in life and in death.
Julie Robinson, Cardiff
FOR the first 10 minutes it looked very, very bleak for the not so great Knights ('Too little, too l8', Herald 2/9). Remember, they played the nobodies of the round and the Ponga missed tackles and knock-ons, it looked like it was going to be last week revisited.
With the backbone players Pearce, Klemmer, Barnett, Lino, and our new and very impressive centre Bradman Best, it appears we will at least end our season with some dignity.
Certainly they are not finals material but in my opinion if they go out and buy a fullback with safer hands, put Ponga up in the back line, sign those who are still trying and put a total binge ban on all players then just maybe, with some maturity, we might have a team worth supporting in the not too distant future.
I don't think for one moment the weather was the cause of the poor crowd, it was the response to the previous lack of performance from the team.
Dennis Crampton, Redhead
AH Lexie Busby (Short Takes, Herald 3/9), really? No, it's not okay to abuse women alone or in company, but maybe if you obeyed the law this would not have occurred.
Life is all about choices.
If you chose to speed and break the law, maybe you weren't in danger, but did you stop to think about other people on the road before driving dangerously? Probably not, I'd say, going on your self righteous response.
Matt Ophir, Charlestown
GOOD on you, Mr Morrison ('PM won't intervene for Tamil family', Herald 3/9). Australia isn't the world's dumping ground for illegal asylum seekers or anything else.
Garry Hull, Raymond Terrace
THE recent actions of the federal government, in refusing to allow the Sri Lankan family from Biloela to stay in our country ('PM won't intervene for Tamil family', Herald 3/9) confirm my view that people of religion are often the most uncaring, inhumane and morally repugnant residents of this or any country.
Scott Morrison, has said that this family does not fit the refugee criteria because they are economic refugees.
What does it matter if some people who reach our shores want a better life for themselves and their family? Does everyone who flees here have to be in imminent fear for their lives before we might (I emphasise the word "might") hear their plea for help?
I had hoped that Australia and Australians were better than this.
I fear that we aren't.
Janet Pollock, Waratah
WILL Australia make a small contribution to rebuild Notre Dame cathedral? ScoMo says no.
Will Australia make a commitment to reduce carbon emissions to help Pacific islands? ScoMo says no.
Will Australia send help to extinguish fires in Amazon forests? ScoMo says no.
Will Australia allow Tamil family to stay? ScoMo says no.
One question: how good is Australia, ScoMo?