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Denebola » Article » Letter to the Editor: Fielding the truth
Editorials and Opinions

Letter to the Editor: Fielding the truth

By Denebola
Published: September 2007

Dear students,

Last month, many of you came to Newton City Hall and spoke in support of the synthetic turf playfields at your school.

As much as writing these lines pains me, I must tell you that you’ve been deceived. If the Board of Aldermen approves the Newturf proposal, you will not get beautiful new fields but a hot plastic spread sprinkled with rubber crumbs. Go to Newton Corner and see the new soccer field and track installed by New Balance at West Suburban YMCA.  

Read the rules on a fence that prohibit food, drinks, chairs, metal cleats, javelin, and anything that can penetrate the artificial surface. This prohibition defeats the very purpose of athletic competition and recreation.

Talk to players who have to wash the rubber crumbs out of their socks, shoes, and skin. Smell the chemical odor emanating from the field; try to walk barefoot on the surface. Even during these cool days you will feel the temperature that exceeds asphalted parking lots.

We all want you to have decent athletic facilities and we pay taxes to fund them. We support the proper drainage of the existing fields and the natural grass on top of them.

But we don’t want to pay for the environmental disaster and health hazard proposed by Mayor Cohen and developer Ted Tye.

This mayor who delayed the construction of your school for three years, who neglected the maintenance of all Newton schools during his nine years in office, now caters to the corporations that don’t know how to get rid of discarded car tires.

There are better ways to reuse the tires than shredding and spreading their crumbs over so many acres of athletic fields and letting players wallow in them.

This mayor, who received an environmental award and talks about the dangers of global warming, now wants to create large heat islands in his own city!

This mayor, who declares his care for students, is pushing a health hazard for the students! He tells you that the federal Environmental Protection Agency endorsed the synthetic turf.

We don’t trust this agency under control of President Bush. We trust independent scientists who warned us of the turf’s hazardous nature.

You can read their testimonies at www.synturf.com. Don’t get fooled!

Anatol Zukerman

Candidate

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