Illegally parked cars are the bane of Mawaqif

Letters discuss Mawaqif, flying etiquette, the good and bad of newspapers, protecting the Arabian Leopard and social responsibility.

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In reference to Mawaqif will tow illegally parked cars (June 1), I welcome the move. I park legally with a permit and am often blocked in in the morning. However, Mawaqif is nowhere to be seen. I've seen several cars parked in the middle, and maybe one or two will be ticketed while others are ignored.

The reality is that parking is a big problem. We pay for parking permits when parking isn't guaranteed and often not available. We have to drive around in circles until someone leaves.

I don't move my car on Fridays as parking is free for all, so no one moves as they know they will not get a spot until the next morning. What sense does that make? Where's the rationality in it?

By the way, instead of making such a big issue about something like this, how about towing cars on Airport Road going towards the Corniche where cars are parked on the street, taking up a complete lane on a busy highway?

Chris Murray, Abu Dhabi

It's about time. The only question I ask is why wasn't this implemented sooner? I have to go through the painful procedure of calling the police almost every morning because there is a car double-parked behind me and I can't get out. This is what a Dh800 parking permit bought me.

Brian Kaner, Abu Dhabi

A plea for more precious leg room

I read with much interest your editorial on flying etiquette Pardon me, I have knees (June 2) about a punch-up on an intercontinental flight. I blame the airlines. They pack us like sardines and expect us to behave like humans? As it is, flying is now more of a nightmare than a luxury, with many preflight security checks and what not.

Isn't it time the airlines gave us something back? Start with an extra two inches of leg space.

Anwar Ali Khan, Dubai

List of disasters in a daily newspaper

Every once in a while, you read a city newspaper and you get a really good idea of what life is like there. Unfortunately, the picture you paint is disturbing. Connect the dots among the disparate stories and one would walk away from the breakfast table wondering about what kind of place he's living.

We have evidence of trade in exotic animals (the latest in a series of such awful stories), the arrest of a rape victim, the reluctance of rescue professionals to enter a burning building to save lives, the continued detention of illegal labourers (but no arrest of the contractor who employed them), the illegal exportation of cars and a high-speed chase on a heavily trafficked road.

I don't wish anyone to think that I, by virtue of being a western expatriate, am imposing my values here in highlighting stories that diverge from accepted moral behaviour. In the West, we have stories like this, too: people do behave immorally and badly in the West.

Marcel Petit, Abu Dhabi

Dubai stars in social media

The article Dubai debates: the word is out there (June 2) reported that town-hall-style debates are being transmitted on YouTube. Today social media is playing a vital roll in connecting people and countries. In recent days Dubai has been in high focus by Facebook and Twitter. Every day new innovations are happening in Dubai. Through these two media platforms, Arab culture and hospitality are now more visible.

K Ragavan, India

Protect the Arabian Leopard

The opinion article by Justin Thomas Is the catwalk the last ecosystem of the Arabian Leopard? (May 9) was very interesting. Arabs use animal names to name their children such as Fahad or Nimr, which mean leopard. I asked myself why do they name their children with animals' names? Is it because animals like the lion or leopard have good characteristics such as strength and bravery?

Currently, leopard-spotted bags, clothes or even furniture are so popular in the market, but the real leopard has become endangered. The Arabian Leopard is a beautiful animal. We have to increase people's awareness about endangered animals by arranging campaigns everywhere, especially in schools and universities, using the media to spread awareness among people, and implement laws which protect wildlife in our country.

Rose F, Abu Dhabi

Criteria for social responsibility

I refer to Socially responsible investments yield dividends (May 19). It's heartening to see that such firms are finally being established in the region. I hope that they will establish sound criteria and a due diligence process to differentiate the ventures that create meaningful social impact on a sustainable basis from others that are fads.

Vineet Chhatwal, Dubai