Thank you so much for capturing the Mothers Against Cancer story so beautifully [Tribune, Oct. 17]! We’re thrilled to be on the front page of The Tribune! On behalf of the board and our committee members, thank you for your support!
Ginger Bertrand - Executive Director
CHIMICHURRI’S IS BACK!
It is so good to visit the Kingwood restaurants that have finally opened since Harvey. This past Friday night, my friends and I ate at the now-opened Chimichurri’s in Kings Harbor. There were eight of us, hungry and noisy. The food was top notch, the wait staff – our server was Steve – were literally on their toes all night, and very attentive. The menu is exciting, the food delicious, and the place was humming. It was a joy to be back there, and the owners and staff deserve much praise for reopening after the terrible disaster of Harvey. Well done, Chimichurri’s!
Cecily M. Ryan - Kingwood
IT WASN’T A TRIAL
In response to the letter titled “Guilty, even if innocent,” I don’t know why we have to keep correcting Kavanaugh supporters that his hearing was not a criminal trial and the innocent until proven guilty standard does not apply. This was a job interview to determine if Kavanaugh was qualified to be given a lifetime appointment to the highest court in this country. If there were credible accusations of sexual assault by a credible witness, as well as instances of perjury that are demonstrable and numerous, maybe a thorough investigation would be in order. The Republicans would allow only a very circumscribed phony investigation that obscured the facts rather than determined the facts. The writer then interjects race into this story when he says that the “white women” who defended Kavanaugh were criticized by the news media. They were criticized as being irrelevant because they only proved that there were some women who weren’t assaulted by Kavanaugh. Everyone in this situation was “white,” so why bring it up. The whole hearing was a sham and phony investigation by Republicans who were determined to push this nomination regardless of Kavanaugh’s moral qualifications. Shame on us.
Michael Eheman - Kingwood
BURGESS FOR CLERK
Harris County District Clerk – What does that person do? The district clerk is the record keeper for the county courts, handles funds related to cases, coordinates the jury panel selection process, and so much more behind the scenes for our judicial system.
The right person for the job is Marilyn Burgess. She has strong management, financial and organizational skills. I have known her for about four years and have admired her strong work ethic and her moral compass. As a CPA, she brings financial expertise, integrity and honesty. As an involved citizen, she has volunteered with the PTA at a local level and eventually became executive director of the Texas PTA.
Harris County is the largest county by population in Texas and the third largest county in the entire United States. It is bigger than half of the states in the U.S. by population and finances. This requires a leader with the skills of Marilyn Burgess. She’s got my vote. Please give her yours.
Josie Salmon Robinson - Kingwood
OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS, NOT
NBC TV’s 10-19-2018 evening news had a segment on a real-estate company called Door. Its website describes Door as “the next-generation real estate platform that includes non-commissioned and specialized employee agents with integrated technology and a focus on service over sales. Buying or selling a home with Door is a no-nonsense experience with professional licensed agents who are 100 percent aligned with your interests” (door.com/about-door).
Let’s analyze that claim.
Door says, “When selling your home, Door charges a flat fee of $5,000 paid at close.” My comment: Door wants the home to sell fast, for the more homes Door sells, the more flat fees it receives, so it will want the seller’s asking price to be low, which does not hurt Door, for its fee is fixed at $5,000 regardless of the home’s sales price. A low sales price is not in the seller’s best interests, but it’s in Door’s best interests.
Door says, “When purchasing a home with Door, we will rebate back to you, at close, 50 percent of the commission we receive.” My comment: A buyer wants a low purchase price. Door wants a high price, for the higher the price, the higher is Door’s commission [which usually is a fixed percentage (often 3 percent) of the purchase price], 50 percent of which Door keeps. The buyer’s interests are not aligned with Door’s interests.
Conclusion: It doesn’t look to me like Door’s or its agents’ interests are “100 percent aligned with your [i.e., its client’s] interests.” Paying a home seller’s real-estate agent a commission that is a fixed percentage of the sales price aligns the agent’s interests with the seller’s interests, for agent and seller want a high sales price. A subsequent letter of mine will address the alignment of a buyer’s interests with his agent’s interests.
Bill Bailey - Kingwood
Happy fall! This time of year usually brings fall festivals, jack-o-lanterns – and mid-term elections. As the Nov. 6 election approaches, I encourage everyone to beat the crowds and take advantage of early voting from Oct. 22-Nov. 2. Find your voting location and sample ballot with a list of candidates, including your federal members of Congress, your state representatives, plus local and county officials, at HarrisVotes.com.
I also proudly announce that we continue to improve and expand our disaster response team and rescue fleet. More than a year ago, Hurricane Harvey demonstrated the importance of our first responders, from police officers and firefighters to dedicated county employees who normally maintain your parks and roads. As floodwaters continued to rise, Precinct 4 Road and Bridge crews rescued flood victims side-by-side with law enforcement. In preparation for future disasters, our crews received training and new equipment to improve their ability to respond to disasters. Best of all, Precinct 4 purchased four flat-bottom rescue boats with a single donation from Houston Northwest Church. Thank you, Houston Northwest Church, for helping us make the precinct a safer place to work and live!
Jack Cagle. Commissioner
Harris County Precinct 4
CRENSHAW FOR CONGRESS
This election, the voters in the 2nd Congressional District of Texas have a great choice for their next congressman, Daniel Crenshaw. I initially supported Rick Walker – and today proudly call him a friend – but I am very happy that Dan has become the Republican contender. He is an extraordinary individual who has served his country and paid dearly for it. Now, he wants to continue serving. As a former naval officer, I believe we need more combat-experienced veterans in Congress to help guide decisions made about where we send our troops and what weapons we purchase. So, sending Dan to Washington is really a tremendous opportunity, not just for those of us who live in the district but Texas and the whole country as well. Our government will be better informed when decisions are influenced by people who have been under fire in the field. Dan believes in true federalism, where the national government’s role is limited to things it does well and that which can best be done at the local level is done at the local level. When Dan speaks his views on any topic, he speaks from his head as well as his heart. He is not a cookie-cutter conservative reading red-meat bullet points. Further, he is focused on taking his great ideas to younger voters as he compassionately explains why many of our current practices, particularly deficit spending and illegal immigration, are simply not sustainable. If elected, he will be one the youngest people ever elected to Congress, but we can all agree there is no one quite with his particular background experience. I have had the opportunity to hear him speak many times, and I am confident in and impressed by him. We will be well served with Daniel Crenshaw representing us in Congress.
Paul Campbell - Kingwood
DISCRIMINATION AT HARVARD
Discrimination is fine if one discriminates against the right people for the right reasons. This is Harvard University’s blunt defense of its admissions policies against an ongoing lawsuit filed by Asian-American students challenging its discriminatory admissions process. As part of the recruitment process, Harvard sends encouraging letters to students who score well on the SAT. Students who receive these letters are twice as likely to be admitted as students who don’t. William Fitzsimmons, the university’s dean of admissions, recently testified the Ivy League school applies different SAT score standards to prospective students based on many factors, one being race, but insisted the practice is, somehow, not discriminatory. African-American, Hispanic and Native American need the lowest scores, [while] students of European ancestry need higher scores and Asian-American students need the highest of all. Further, Asian-American students mysteriously rate badly on a personal score Harvard assigns to applicants based on personality traits such as likability, courage and kindness. Clearly, race works against Asian-American students applying to Harvard. The percentage of the Asian-American population at Harvard will undoubtedly go up should its racially discriminatory admissions practices end, but they are the wrong minority, so some won’t be happy. The apparent justification for Harvard’s admissions policy is to correct historical discrimination, completely ignoring [that] current Asian-American students are in no way responsible for past racist practices. “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race,” wrote Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts in 2007, “is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.” It is well-past time for these wise words to guide college admissions at Harvard and elsewhere.
Andrew Gayre - Kingwood