City stifles creativity behind graffiti cleanup 

The Wednesday Examiner’s “Brushing off graffiti vandals” reports a perfect example of what does not work in city government. Instead of the bureaucrats figuring out a way to work with Aaron Perry-Zucker’s innovative idea about covering graffiti with bright colors, they are stifling the efforts of a creative resident who just wants to improve his neighborhood.

But I have a message for Mr. Perry-Zucker: If your district doesn’t want you to clean up the graffiti, please come over to my block. We’ll welcome you with open arms.

Sherrie Matza, San Francisco

Utilize the good will

Aaron Perry-Zucker best speaks for the purpose of our public parks in saying he wants to change “what was a utility before and make it a little more magical, a little more fun.” Fun is the key word. Rather than taking such a dim view of Perry-Zucker’s colorful bench repainting in the Excelsior, would it not be better to foster neighborhood persons to take up the mantle, willingly without cost to The City, of addressing the graffiti problem in the parks?

The Recreation and Park Department could use a little help from their friends, in each neighborhood. It could actually be a sense of pride and joy. Parks are meant for fun and recreation for all, within reasonable restrictions.

William J. Coburn, San Francisco

Fine zones have no impact

Claims about double-fine zones on 19th Avenue eliminating fatalities are specious. Drivers do not think about fines when driving.

So how to explain the change? “Other factors” account for both drivers’ and pedestrians’ improved behavior. The single most significant change was the addition of countdown timers at intersections that are visible to all users of the avenue. They provide vital information telling them how long they have to clear the intersection before the light changes.

Whether on foot, bicycle or behind the wheel, users with that knowledge make much more intelligent and safer decisions about either stopping or proceeding. Finally, I would challenge anyone to document that the possibility of increased fines deterred any motorists from driving at an unsafe speed on 19th Avenue.

Ted Loewenberg, San Francisco

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