As reported via several media outlets, including here, New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) fired Derek Fenton following his participation in a protest on the ninth anniversary of Sept. 11 outside Park51, — the controversial mosque slated to be built near Ground Zero — during which he burned pages of the Koran.
NJ Transit terminated Fenton, who had been with the agency for 11 years, because his "public actions violated New Jersey Transit's code of ethics" when photographs of him ripping pages from the Muslim holy book and setting them on fire appeared in newspapers.
Fenton said he was influenced by Pastor Terry Jones, a Florida clergyman who had planned a large-scale, public burning of the Koran that same day but was cancelled, but not before grabbing the attention of people around the world, including President Barack Obama who said that if Pastor Jones carried through with his plan it would be "a recruitment bonanza for Al Qaeda."
Although it is not acceptable to persecute anybody for their religious beliefs, especially when there are more than 1.4 billion followers around the world who weren't involved with 9/11, do you think that NJ Transit may have violated Fenton's First Amendment rights?
It drives me nuts when people litter. One of my biggest pet peeves is when people throw trash out of their car windows while they’re driving. I’m always tempted to honk my horn when I see drivers slyly ditching cigarette butts through their open window. Listen up, people. We see you!
Agencies that use Twitter to respond to users’ complaints or answer questions get more positive Twitter reaction and more civil discourse online, according to Lisa Schweitzer the author of a recent study analyzing tweets of public transit agencies. “It’s about the marketing potential of social media — a lot of public transit agencies are simply tweeting their problems to the world by blasting out late service announcements. That’s not a good use of Twitter,” she says. “Transit agencies can influence the tone of the discussion by interacting with patrons online,” Schweitzer explains. “It gives people something to respond to, and it reminds people that somebody is listening.”
Usually by early January, I will hopefully have taken down the last of our holiday decorations and eaten or given away the remaining sweets that have become a part of my regular diet during the month of December. Then, of course like most people, I’ll think about ways I want to improve myself for the coming year. Whether it be exercising more (walking from the parking lot to my office doesn’t count), eating less ice cream or managing my email better. The latter practice alone would help improve my efficiency at work immensely. I’m sure you probably feel the same way.
A new National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) study solidifies what the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) Transit Savings Report has been telling us for years now: riding public transportation can save users money.
June 20 will mark the 8th annual National Dump the Pump Day sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association, in partnership with the Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council.