THE resignation of Professor Jennifer Martin from the University of Newcastle council has been reported as a brave act. There has even been reported student support for her action, ("Students show their support for professor", Herald, 9/6), apparently, though the number of supporters was not disclosed. The University Student Association, the source of this "support", has been known to be a very left-leaning activist group for over 50 years. But perhaps this resignation by the good professor was not that brave. The outrage of Mark Vaile, chairman of a coal company, being appointed as the next chancellor of the university gave Ms Martin no option but to resign. Really? The chancellor is an almost honorary position with no direct management of day-to-day operation of the institution. That is carried out by the vice chancellor and executive. It shouldn't matter what legitimate business association the chancellor had. That would be none of Ms Martin's business. The resignation may have sounded like she was leaving her job, but she wasn't. Ms Martin would still receive her full professorial salary. I would think that it would be more responsible for Professor Martin to promote the wellbeing of her students rather than her own very public anti-coal activism.
Peter Devey, Merewether
Variety of views important
INTERESTING to see the lefties complaining, jumping ship and protesting because someone from a conservative background has been appointed chancellor at the University Of Newcastle. For too long these people have believed that they hold a mortgage on the place. They don't want anyone else but themselves to have a voice. Anyone who shows conservative views is considered wrong without any discussion. The universities are supposed to be a place for learning and sensible and balanced discussion but this has been eroded over the years by one-sided left views.
Sandy Buchanan, Largs
Teaching should be priority
RE: Tuesday front page, Professor Martin resigns from university council. She appears to have an attitude that if you are not a climate believer or you are involved in coal you are not a person that is suitable to be on the university council. So in other words, any student who has a negative attitude towards climate change should be put in that same basket. I always thought that universities were a place for learning, not a place to be indoctrinated into the same thinking as the professor. Let's worry about teaching first and foremost.
Allen Small, East Maitland
Transformation will be a winner
TERRY O'Donoghue, (Short Takes, 5/6), yes, it would be lovely to see some trees planted on the headland. It looks rather barren as it stands. The site's existing zoning allows for a restaurant, cafe and kiosk. Eventually when this happens, and I am confident it will, this will provide many jobs, particularly for young people and business for suppliers, cleaners and the list goes on. As reported in this paper on March 11, a member of Friends of King Edward Park astonishingly made a bomb threat to Newcastle council. It is astounding the depth of fury and desperation that FOKEP have towards preventing anything progressing now that all avenues to do so have been scrutinised and finalised. And finally it was summed up succinctly by Terry, the fear that someone might make a dollar. I wish Awabakal well.
Mary Stronach, Newcastle
Music venue must be retained
TOTALLY agree Adz Carter, ("Music scene can't afford to lose Cambridge", Letters, 8/6), the elite, entitled, privileged people that move into their ivory towers, knowing full well that if they complain long and hard enough about music venues being close by, that eventually they will win out. I have a standing joke with a mate who lives in the east end. If he is venturing out to the great unwashed areas of the suburbs to see some live music, he needs a passport to get through the golden gates of the East End.
Tony Morley, Waratah
True measure of 'vibrancy'
THE trial of the lifting of the lockout laws is to be assessed as to its impact on employment, patronage, business turnover, violence, hospital admissions, licence compliance, noise complaints and residential amenity ("You're invited", Herald, 9/6). Many people are supporting the trial because it's expected to help the live music industry. Will the impact on the hours of live entertainment on offer in Newcastle also be measured? Otherwise the "vibrancy" of the city will be gauged merely by the increase in alcohol consumption.
Christine Everingham, Newcastle East
Get two birds with one stone
WITH the police targeting burnouts, I am sure there will be people saying to "give them somewhere to do it then". That may be true, but constantly churning up and ploughing the grass verge on Stockton foreshore is not the place. For years it has been ruined by cars doing donuts on it almost every weekend with impunity. I know police cannot be everywhere, but between Kooragang burnouts and Stockton "donuts" is about 1km as the crow flies - they could easily get two birds with one raid and allow residents to get some sleep and enjoy the grass without it looking like a ploughed field.
Gordon Laffan, Stockton
Poor reflection on our country
FROM what planet does the Morrison government come from? Compassion and mercy not in their DNA with the announcement that options are being explored for the Tamil family to be resettled in US or New Zealand. No matter that the two children were born in Australia and are therefore Australian citizens. No matter that their former community wants them back. No matter that they have been detained since 2019. A sentence of two years for wanting to live in Australia, because we were such a welcoming country to refugees. I wish. I understand $6 million has been spent by the Morrison government in depriving them of their liberty. How many more hundreds of millions have been expended offshore in Naru and New Guinea? Is this the Australia we can all look forward to? Selfish in what we have and not allowing others to share our good fortune.
Pamela Clark, Newcastle
Bring sorry saga to an end
THE continuing detention of the Biloela family is appalling. The Australian government is deliberately and needlessly causing physical and psychological harm to the two children and their parents. Minister Andrews should do the right thing - release them from detention, allow them to return to their community in Biloela and grant them permanent residency to bring this sorry saga to an end.
Kevin Sweeney, Hamilton East
MORE LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
BELMONT Bunnings is great for the vaccine hub ... then why not convert to the new basketball stadium for Lake Macquarie. Plenty of parking and lots of space for courts. Traffic lights are already there. Perfect.
Paul Nicod, Hamilton South
SO, Belmont Bunnings for your jab. I hope they're putting on a snag.
Bill Slicer, Tighes Hill
RE: Doug Hoepper, ("Speedsters: Ignore the signs, pay the fines", Letters, 9/6). Revenue raising is what I see and definitely not saving lives. At least the warning of speed camera alerted drivers to look at their speed.
Karen Mitchell, Lakelands
ON a recent overnight stay in Newcastle we travelled in a few taxis and ride share cars. On each occasion I asked the driver how things are on the streets at night, all gave the same reply "I finish about 11pm, that's when all the trouble starts". Maybe Victor Dominello should take a ground level ride on a Saturday night.
Neil Coutts, Martins Creek
JEFF, I have always looked forward to your columns and shall miss them greatly. Always witty, sharp and intelligent, sometimes challenging and confronting, but above all, entertaining. We thank you as you go.
Steve Watson, Lochinvar
TO indefinitely detain a family, with two young children, born in Australia, on Christmas Island, I believe is unjust, inhumane, immoral, and an act of racism at the upper end of the scale, justified to stop the boats. Australia has no right to be critical of any other country's human rights when what is happening in this country is just as bad.
Steven Busch, Rathmines
SANDRA Iceton, (Short Takes, 9/6), the PM and Opposition Leader in a joint effort to engender confidence in the vaccines were both vaccinated on February 23 when there was only Pfizer available. I think it was a wonderful non-political gesture by both.
Doug Hoepper, Garden Suburb
I TOTALLY agree with Wal Remington in regard to the rude comment from Dennis Crampton (Short Takes, 8/6). I will join the queue awaiting an apology. What an insult to those hard-working players.
Fran Chapman, West Wallsend
NO surprise to read Adelaide is now ranked the third most liveable city in the world. Sydney didn't even make the top 10. Radelaide is exactly what it is; full of rad cats chilled and comfortable with their lot, polite and welcoming compared to Botox-ville full of itself and self importance. I'm only speaking from my perspective having spent 20 years serving these prima donnas during the holiday season in the Bay. January is road rage month in the Bay, no surprise there.