Make the holiday roads safe and merry.
When I was 16, in April of 1992, I was hit head-on by a drunken driver. I was in a coma, had paralysis with multiple broken and dislocated bones, and was a patient in two hospitals for seven months. Therapy in San Jose and Tracy followed for 17 more months.
I can talk and walk, but I cannot drive and have hearing difficulties and a speech impediment that affects me daily.
I have been a proud partner with the California Highway Patrol for more than a decade, educating others to stay sober when driving. Our goal is to keep drunken drivers off the road.
Drunken driving is not a problem just for victims. It is a problem for all.
If hosting a party, regularly check the drinking guests. If one shows signs of intoxication, take action. Take the keys away from that person and call a cab company for them. Asking a sober friend or family member to give a ride is another option.
Starting the New Year with your friend receiving a ticket, getting into a crash or worse after leaving your party would give you the worst feeling. Not the way to start a prosperous 2014.
Don’t let the host do all the work. Check others to make sure they are sober like you if driving. Eat and drink slowly. Only time can sober up a person.
Don’t let a DUI become your holiday memory. Stay sober when driving or a depressing future will follow.
Lori Martin, Tracy
Bicyclists must take responsibility
This letter will probably rankle a few feathers, but I feel it needs to be said.
The bicycle riders in this town — especially the adults — seem to feel that they are car-proof, that they don’t have to abide by the rules of the road, such as stopping at stop signs, riding on the wrong side of the street and numerous other infractions.
Eventually, sadly, someone is going to get killed because of their carelessness, and some motorist is going to have to live with that fact for the rest of their lives, even though it wasn’t their fault.
The worst of it is that our police department sees this happening on a daily basis and does nothing about it.
What kind of an example does this set for the kids? They see the adults doing this and figure it must be OK.
Earl Jess, Tracy
Bookstore is big loss
When Barnes & Noble moves out of the West Valley Mall and Sports Authority moves in, Tracy will quickly start to see the negative effects. After all, let’s look at our past. For years now, Barnes and Noble has done a lot more for Tracy than sell us books, or give teens a place to study. It has also built our community. From 2009 to 2012, the bookstore contributed books and toys to Brighter Christmas, helping our less fortunate residents enjoy the holidays. Earlier this year, B&N held a book drive for the Deuel Vocational Institution’s library, helping educate and entertain prison inmates trying to restart their lives. And in March, on what would’ve been her 12th birthday, B&N partnered with the nonprofit Tracy Celebrates Children to help our city recover from the tragic death of Sandra Cantu, organizing a story and snack time for Tracy’s kids. Events like these happen several times each year, but frequently, Barnes & Noble also holds Teacher Appreciation Weeks (which help our hardworking teachers get supplies for their students) and story times (which instill a love of reading in young children). If our beloved bookstore moves out, all of this community participation will cease. There won’t be any more books for impoverished Tracy residents for the holidays, there won’t be any more discounted school supplies for our teachers, and there won’t be any more story times for our kids. Do you know when was the last time Sports Authority was so powerfully involved in California’s communities? It was a decade ago, with a corporate sponsorship of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America; it was nothing more than a thinly veiled marketing scheme to sell Nikes. However, Tracy doesn’t need any more shoes! It needs school supplies, story times and book drives.
Nathan Tran, Tracy