Bendigo Advertiser letters to the editor

Web behind retail decline

With people’s shopping habits the whole world over changing so rapidly, I fail to understand how our city council can, or is even expected, to fix Bendigo's retail problems.

I shop how, when and where I choose, and I would expect most people to be of the same opinion.

Perhaps to gain an understanding of the shopping habits of those living in the Bendigo area, a survey of people employed by some of our larger businesses such as the Bendigo Bank staff, Bendigo Health and the Greater City of Bendigo, staff would give our council a broad overview and a better understanding of why not only Bendigo, but many other cities and towns, are faced with the same retail problem.

It is my guess that the survey, if carried out, will show that online shopping, along with ease in which we can travel to major cities, plays a huge part in the demise of country retailing.

Amazon is about to open its doors in Melbourne with a promise of ‘buy today have your item delivered today’. This type of service will impact heavily on our already troubled retail sector.

Bendigo is a beautiful city with many wonderful attractions, let our council concentrate on these areas. The retail sector will given time take care of itself.

Lorna Wight, Bendigo

Terrorism threat is real

I found your editorial (“Numbers don’t add up for terrorism threat”, August 3) to be mischievous and misleading.  

To begin with, you state that "just three people have died as victims of terrorist attacks in Australia". You then go on to list the number of deaths attributed to such things as police shootings, domestic violence and "falling off vehicles", amongst many others.   

I ask: is this some kind of warped statistical contest? Exactly how many Australian citizens have to die at the hands of Islamic extremists before the threat of terrorism in this country is given recognition?   

Incidentally, you failed to mention the innocent Chinese cleaner who was murdered in cold blood at the Brighton apartments in early June of this year by Islamic extremist Yacqub Khayre, a man earlier acquitted of planning to storm the Holsworthy Army Barracks in Sydney with automatic weapons and kill as many people as possible.   

His three compatriots were sentenced to lengthy terms of imprisonment, the sentencing judge noting that they were "unrepentant radical Muslims who would remain a threat to the public".  

Is it my imagination, or were a number of men arrested in Sydney just recently on suspicion of plotting to blow up an aircraft? And, in fact, it appears that we have now learned that prior to their arrest these individuals came perilously close to actually getting an improvised explosive device on board a plane but failed in that attempt.   

Let us not forget Numan Haider, who attempted to murder two police officers outside the Endeavour Hills Police Station. And two men and two teenagers have just pleaded guilty to conspiring to blow up government buildings in 2014.

As Shaun Carney, columnist and associate professor of politics, has stated: "Here in Australia, it is only good intelligence gathering and probably a little bit of luck that have helped us avoid (so far) a full blown mass casualty terrorist event similar to those in the UK and Europe."   

Many experts have stated that such an horrific event occurring in Australia is not a matter of "if" but "when".  

I found it offensive that your editorial seemed to go to great lengths to trivialise the growing threat of terrorism in our society; even going so far as to describe this belief as a "sham" and that interest in it by the general populace is due only  to the fact that it is a more "exciting" subject than "road accidents or people drinking too much".

I believe that you have insulted the intelligence of your readers in this regard. The threat of terrorism in Australia is real.

Eric Lakey, Bendigo