Precious forests – Bangkok Post

Re: “NEB backs EIA on river diversion” (BP, Sept 16).
The credibility of the entire Environmental Impact Assessment of the Yuam River Water Diversion proposal has to be seriously questioned when one of the main guidelines of the assessment calls for “planting trees to offset lost forest land”.
While tree planting is often a very laudable endeavour, no credible forest ecologist would ever claim that rows of planted trees can substitute for the diversity of species, valuable wildlife habitat, and ecological functions provided by rich natural forests. If this suggestion is what passes as “environmental protection”, at the National Environment Board (NEB), it would appear the board is not doing its job properly.
Re: “Protests follow a predictable path”, (BP, Sept 20).
In his latest opinion piece, Veera Prateepchaikul makes several odd statements. First he demeans the Thalugas protesters by saying that “since they are not good speakers, their only way they could express themselves was to fight with the police and resort to violence”. But has Veera and the Bangkok Post ever thought to invite them or other protesters to articulate their case? Meanwhile, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha continues to use the violence of unjust law to imprison many merely for articulately expressing opinions that he does not want well spoken. And that, whatever else it might be, is neither democratic nor right.
Veera then goes on to proclaim that “hopefully the mutual distrust or hatred should not make them blind as to what is right or wrong”, apparently oblivious to the fact that a coup committed against the popular, democratic government of the people is certainly and indefensibly wrong. There has never been any excuse that could make such a slap in the face of the electorate, the Thai nation, anything but wrong.
It seems that Kuldeep Nagi left school many years ago and has forgotten all the advantages offered by the school campus. Schools offer much more than just academic subjects. Students make new friends, enjoy sport and clubs. They have access to laboratories. studios, gyms and participation in bands and orchestras.
Then there’s the close relationship with teachers who can offer immediate personalised help.
Studying at home has none of the above advantages. Naturally the school setting will have to be more expensive.
Re: ”Publish and perish”, (PostBag, Sept 20).
Oh really! Is the Bangkok Post so short of PostBag correspondents that it feels a need to repeatedly allow personal attacks on a contributor? Are they supposed to be funny, provocative or what? I am certainly not a fan of Eric Bahrt and I don’t agree with everything he writes. However, mostly I find his views interesting, sometimes challenging, and often worthy of debate.
I’m not talking about letter writers who engage in a helpful exchange of views, although even those often can’t resist a stab at the owner of the view they disagree with.
The problem we have is that many people seem to find it very difficult to accept that there are alternative views to their own. So, instead of engaging with the person (which might result in their having to change their mind, perish the thought) it is easier to dismiss the proposer of the view as someone smug and/or self opinionated.
I can’t be the only regular reader who is tired of these childish and immature comments which add nothing to our knowledge or understanding and they really should be beneath the tolerance of a quality newspaper like the Bangkok Post.
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