Letters to the Editor

Tuesday, Nov 27 2012 11:00 PM

It's their job to question HSR

By The Bakersfield Californian

In its Nov. 25 editorial, "Rail is coming, with us or without us," The Californian seemed to be wagging its finger at county supervisors, City Council members and citizens that have been trying to glean withheld information from the High-Speed Rail Authority and its current mammoth environmental impact report.

Until all details are exposed, it is impossible to determine the true impacts to our community. It is their job to use critical thinking skills -- to question and to demand answers -- before, as the editorial states, they "hang some hope" that employment and business growth will somehow cancel out the adverse impacts.

What will happen to workers after the projected five years of temporary jobs? High-speed rail has been marketed as some panacea to cure unemployment. If it is built as currently planned, we will have elevated rails running from Rosedale to east Bakersfield, cutting through county assets, businesses and neighborhoods. Noise, air and visual pollution is a given.

I suggest that The Californian do some real investigating to shed light on the nightmare it will be simply during the construction process itself. Our representatives should care that thousands of people in Bakersfield living within a half-mile of the track will lose their quality of life if this project is built.

If anything, local representatives should be more cautious as the project moves forward. They should be questioning further and demanding a seat at the table to determine better routing so we can still say that Bakersfield is "as it should be."

Carol Bender

Bakersfield

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