Reader letters July 2

Jul 01, 2014

Consider these facts on fracking

To the editor:

Since the know nothings have been sniping this week I plan to state as follows:

There has been a hullabaloo in the media lately plus a distorted false TV scare tactic about fracking.

This geological undertaking has been ongoing in Texas, Wyoming, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and New York, the latter three states in the famous Marcellus Shale field.

This area has enough natural gas reserves to operate all gas burning devices in the US for 20 years.

Is fracking potentially dangerous? Yes, if not properly organized, supervised, and engineered. Pennsylania had one case in the past six years affecting 16 families; it was a failure to secure the gas in the ground and not a fracking issue.

In Pavillion, Wyoming, the EPA is reviewing the possible seeping of fracking fluid. Not a great many complaints considering the dangers of nuclear energy, underwater oil, drilling, etc.

The estimated supply of natural gas in the US is 2552 trillion cubic feet, 110 years of cheaper, cleaner power.

There is a loss of water from the process, no more than factories and Texas is the only state to show adverse affects from water diminution.

The few alarmists that misspeak the risks are holdovers from the auto protesters of the early 1900s. And the political jokes on TV reveal more money than brains.

KG Watson

Maggie Valley


Halfway house/shelter will meet a community need

To the editor,

My name is Shawn Owens. I am 33 years old and am currently an inmate in Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution. I am writing in regard to the article on the old prison project.

I have lived in Haywood County all my life and I have seen some homeless people throughout the years. In many cases people were homeless by choice, choosing to drink or do drugs instead of facing family, sobering up, and going home.

But in most recent years I have seen our county slowly being destroyed by meth and pills.

That is why I think a halfway house/emergency shelter and soup kitchen is a great idea. I think the widespread drug use of all ages of people in our county forces a lot of younger kids to be homeless, hungry and/or abandoned.

We all know that all across the world that a lot of grandparents are having to raise grandkids because of unemployment rates, loss of jobs and a poor economy.

A lot of the reason for this in small western counties is the impact that drugs have on families.

I think that a faith-based halfway house/emergency shelter and soup kitchen is a good place for any person suffering from a lack of a good nights sleep, or a good meal to find help, get something to eat, get some sleep, hear an encouraging word, and just maybe hear some awareness of the effects that drugs are having on us or someone we love or care about.

By being in prison I have a front row seat to see people who get released from here with no place to go and inevitably go back to what put them in prison to start with.

Haywood County is one of many small towns who do not have a halfway house or shelter to offer assistance to someone being released from prison. So while we have a chance for this amazing opportunity to become real I think it is very important for anyone who can and will vote for this to be approved to do so. It’s easy to think that homelessness or hunger will never come our way, or to see someone being released from prison to Haywood County without one option.

I know I am blessed with a good place to go home and a good support system of family, but until I read this article I guess you could say I took it for granted.

If Haywood County gets this approved than at least we all will know that this hungry person or homeless person will have somewhere to get a nights sleep and a hot meal, and some prayers. I think that we are lucky to still have citizens in our community who care and pray for the better of our county.

Shawn Owens

Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution


Prison project is impressive; will aid in recovery

To the editor:

I recently had the privilege of reading your May 26 article concerning the on going efforts to turn the old Hazelwood prison unit into a transitional center for newly released inmates.

As an inmate in the NC Prison system, I was impressed by the fact that both local citizens and community leaders are supportive of this initiative, and willing to address the needs of individuals who are sincerely ready to turn their lives around.

My personal encounters with the justice system have come about as the result of a chronic dependency on prescription pain medications, and it seems to me that Waynesville would offer a healthier, more “recovery-oriented” environment than where I was previously residing near downtown Asheville.

Additionally, when I was growing up in Atlanta, my family was closely affiliated with the local Methodist church and we spent a lot of time over the years at various functions and retreats held at Lake Junaluska.

I do not believe that there is a more beautiful place on the planet than Haywood County.

I am presently housed at Pamlico Correction Center in Bayboro, 20 miles east of New Bern, and can personally attest that this is quite possibly the hottest location in the state.

I will never again take for granted the cool mountain climate. I will be eligible for promotion to minimum custody and relocating to WNC later this year.

I’m very much looking forward to working out in the community, establishing contacts there and learning more about Haywood County.

Thank you for your article and the encouragement it has given me toward a productive successful return to society.

Alan Hall

Pamlico Correction Center

Bayboro, NC