Race is meaningless 

Race is meaningless

I enjoyed and was somewhat amused by Mara Leveritt's article “From Octoroon to Other.” She hit the nail on the head when she said the term “race” when applied to humans is meaningless. For example, one would think I am just a plain old WAS (that's WASP without the P), but the term Anglo-Saxon itself implies a mixture of Angle and Saxon genes not to mention Celt, Pict, Scot, Briton, Gaelic and who knows what else.

My first wife was of Malaysian, Indonesian and Spanish heritage and while our first son remains single our second married a woman whose family hails from Mexico. She identifies herself as Hispanic, but then again that is also an ambiguous term. Some who identify themselves as Hispanic don't even speak Spanish. Hispanics can be light-skinned and blue-eyed with straight blond hair, dark skinned and black-eyed with curly black hair, or anything in between. Oddly enough, my grandson has blond hair, blue eyes and will sunburn after 20 minutes outside on a summery day.

I am now married to a woman who is from Native American (Kuna tribe) and Spanish ancestry. Our daughter is married to a man whose mother hails from Guadalajara, Mexico, and whose father is a black American. My wife has two other sons, one of whom is married to a woman from the Philippines. They have a daughter. Her son is married to a woman who is of Hispanic/Caucasian ancestry. They have five children.

See where this is leading? I used to get a headache just trying to keep all of this straight in my head but then one day it dawned on me that it is all irrelevant. The relationships I have with people have nothing to do with the color of their skin, color of eyes, height, color and texture of their hair or their sexual preferences. It has to do with the type of person they are.

Oliver T. Driver

Hot Springs

Light pollution

Regretfully, the Arkansas Times did not contact the City of Conway's Planning and Development Department when writing [“Light at Night,” Dec. 18, on light pollution]. Had the author contacted us, he would have been informed that under our Development Review standards (passed in 2007), we have codified some of the most stringent outdoor lighting restrictions in the state of Arkansas. For example, our review standards require that all outdoor fixtures must be “fully cut-off and/or fully shielded in design so that no light is visible above the lowest part of the fixture.” Further, “light levels at the property line shall not exceed 0.5 footcandles when adjacent to other non-residential areas, and 0.1 footcandles when adjacent to any residential area, as measured 5 feet above the ground.” We review each development to insure that these requirements — as well as all those outlined in our 76-page Pattern Book — are followed. Conway's mayor, City Council, and administrative departments take the safety and welfare of our citizens and passersby quite seriously. We are working diligently to make our city a better place to live, work, and play. I hope other cities in Central Arkansas will follow our lead.

Donald Anthony

Planner, Conway 


It is time for everyone to become aware of all of the adverse effects of light pollution. Learn more at www.britelitesout.com, then do your part to make changes. 

Jina Saccacio

From the Internet

Act 1

On Nov. 4, the children of Arkansas suffered a tremendous blow with the passage of Act 1. At any given time, there are 450 to 500 Arkansas children who need adoptive homes. Act 1 will only reduce the number of homes available. A “suitable” home should never be defined by the marital status of foster parents. We can still rally and resist the harmful effects of Act 1. Let your legislators know about your opposition to this measure.



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