Reader’s Forum Oct. 18


The gift we need to keep giving

Practically every day I find recyclable materials (soda cans, water bottles, etc.) in garbage bins where they don’t belong. Often there’s a recycling bin for that particular material only a few feet away. I attribute this wasteful behavior to one of two causes: Lack of understanding of or an appreciation for BYU’s recycling program or laziness.

If you fall into either category, please listen to the measures our university has taken regarding recycling. BYU has dispersed hundreds of blue recycling bins in strategic locations throughout campus (near vending machines for example) in order to reduce waste. And their efforts have paid off. According to BYU’s Sustainability webpage, “BYU recycles approximately 1,700 tons of material,” every year! This makes the annual cardboard castle or labyrinth activities possible.

BYU is also able to save “tens of thousands of dollars in disposal costs while also generating revenue from the sale of recycled commodities.” So by making the extra effort to recycle our chocolate milk bottles and copies of this very newspaper, we are helping our own college save money for other noble causes.

On a spiritual note, we should remember that God the Father gave all His children stewardship over this planet and its resources. They exist for our benefit and enjoyment, yes, but that also holds true for our descendants. So please, evaluate your recycling habits, or lack thereof. For posterity’s sake, make this world and its resources a gift that keeps on giving.

-Jackson Beutler
Arlington, Massachusetts

Affordable bus passes for BYU students

Have you noticed how hard it is to park on the BYU campus? Or how expensive it is to buy and maintain a car? Or how bad the air quality is in Provo, especially in the winter? I have. These are some reasons why I think BYU should offer subsidized bus passes.

A bus pass for a BYU student costs $148 a month or $574 a semester. Not a good deal compared with UVU, where students only pay $90 for their annual UTA pass, or the U of U, where full-time students pay $33.40 per semester. And did you know that Church Office Building employees get a bus pass discount, too? They have $13.50 deducted from each biweekly paycheck.

If more people rode the bus, we could decrease pollution. A bus that 30 people are riding takes 30 cars off the road. The average car emits 8,887g of CO2 per gallon of gas burned. My Honda Civic gets an average of 34 miles per gallon. So that’s almost 9,000g of CO2 in just one round trip from Lehi to Provo. And that’s with a car that is decently fuel-efficient. I will let you do the math for all the SUVs or trucks out there.

We live in a state that has poor air quality, especially in the winter, and every little effort can help improve it. It is time for BYU to really subsidize bus passes.

-Karina Madden

Lehi, Utah

Will humanity survive without families?

As November 8 approaches, the future of our illustrious country is at the forefront of our mind. What really made America great? What factors from our history can we point to? The steady yet powerful influence that strong families have had throughout the centuries must be acknowledged. Parents committed to their children’s future at any cost, children willing to work hard and contribute, communities of strong families pulling together to improve not only America, but the world.

Over the last 20 years I have studied family locally and abroad. This past March, at the United Nations’ CSW, I had a conversation with Jonas Himmelstrand, a published Swedish parental rights advocate. His inquiry focused my research: Will humanity survive without families? There are numberless government programs throughout the world, led and executed by people that often mean well and want to improve the future.

The question becomes, where is the tipping point when too much of the stewardship of parents is taken away and given to government? There is danger in opening the doors of our homes too widely to outside institutions. They might be well intended, but do not have an emotional attachment to our children, or a personal moral obligation to their lifelong success.

We humans are not wired to survive alone. Nothing can substitute familial love.

-Debora Ruano Fletcher

Highland, Utah

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