Silence is deadly

I can't believe enlightened, cosmopolitan Charlottes-villains would consider silencing train whistles at grade crossings ["Do not disturb: City wins silence of the trams," August 11, 2005].

Here I am, a hick over in Staunton, and I read the New York Times. How did everyone in Mr. Jefferson's fair city miss the fine investigative series "Death on the Tracks," run late in 2004?

Lack of warning at grade crossings has contributed to hundreds of motorist deaths nationwide, and judges have all but thrown up their hands in frustration trying to get engineers to adequately warn people that several hundred tons of fast-moving death is bearing down on their fancy-ass BMWs.

Being a poor old hick, I'm not paying for access to the Times archives for you, but check out the relevant articles for yourself and consider whether the peace and quiet of people– who did, after all, buy or rent homes overlooking railroad tracks– is worth the price of a life.

Arlynda Lee Boyer