YOUR correspondent Alex Leggatt (Letters, Apr 27) raises some interesting points but before I comment further on this, I would challenge the assertion by the spokesman for the Green Party that too much of our country has been designed for cars. In fact, apart from motorways and major roads, the majority of our road network dates from a period before there were cars! Many of our roads are not even suitable for use by cars, far less bicycles.

In his letter, Alex Leggatt refers to bikes and buses but makes no reference to pedestrians. He also lists a three-part action plan beginning with “define the problem". I would respectfully suggest that the first action is to decide what it is that you wish to achieve. There may be problems in achieving it, but defining a strategy should not be a problem.

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I have just returned from a visit to see my daughter in Houston, Texas. Houston is a city built around the car – but the pedestrian infrastructure in the suburb where she lives is absolutely exemplary with beautifully maintained, wide footway surfaces and outstanding soft landscaping (again, well maintained). It was a pleasure to take her dog out for a walk round the neighbourhood. Houston drivers also seemed to be very respectful of pedestrians – perhaps because there always seemed to be police around at critical times to enforce the rules and especially speed limits – woe betide anyone exceeding the 20mph speed limits near schools!

So let us see a strategy that puts pedestrians first, then cyclists; a strategy that prioritises the journeys that matter the most (probably local to shops and schools); a strategy that distinguishes between daily needs and leisure activities, between short and long distance (because the needs and the likely users are different).

When it comes to options, do we really want to walk or cycle close to heavy traffic? Cycle lanes created merely by taking away a lane of a main road are not nice to use. Alex Leggatt instances the use of old railway lines, which are often ideal and relatively flat!

Many years ago I visited Vasteras in Sweden. There they had developed a fully segregated network of footways and cycleways linking residential areas to schools and shops and business areas. In winter, it became a segregated network of cross-country ski routes – but that is probably a step too far in this country with our less certain weather patterns!

Ian Lawson

I WAS very interested, as usual, by Joanna Cherry’s article in Friday’s National (I’m ashamed that my old university failed to make sure this film was shown, Apr 28).

I watched the film she was writing about, Adult Human Female, in December after the cancellation of a previous screening. It is available on YouTube. I would encourage people to watch it. I defy anyone to spot any hateful or bigoted comment from any of the contributors.

On the previous page there is a photograph of a trans activist holding a banner saying “I’m not an academic debate”. Actually, in a way, that’s exactly what the person is. The trans activist movement, and in fact the whole “social justice” movement, depends heavily on the postmodernist way of thinking, which holds that there is no objective truth, only different truths for different people.

READ MORE: Adult Human Female screening cancelled for second time as activists block entrance

It also holds that logic and reason are unreal, just ways to maintain the privilege of those in power. They do not believe in reasoned debate, for this reason. We’ve heard the mantra “no debate”. Reality, for them, is created by what we say. This leads to trying to change the meaning of words, because if we keep saying “trans women are women”, it will make it be so. All this in its current form came out of American academia, and has nothing to do with the real world.

Because saying anything contrary to their beliefs actually undermines their reality, they hold it to be violence against them. In “real” reality, the only violence I am aware of is committed by trans activists against those who disagree with them.

Witness the Let Women Speak event in Auckland a few weeks ago, when a group of women gathered to speak to one another about their experience, and were attacked by a hostile mob, leaving one woman in her 70s with a fractured eye socket after being repeatedly punched in the face by a man, and others injured, and a crush around the organiser which could have led to loss of life.

Witness the American former college swimmer Riley Gaines, who had the misfortune to have to compete against the trans woman Lia Thomas, and went on to speak out for fair competition in women’s sport. In a California university she was pursued through the building by a hostile mob. She had to barricade herself in a room for three hours.

“Be kind” only seems to apply in one direction!

I would point out that democracy negotiates between opposing views by way of reasoned argument based on accepted evidence. If there is no logic, and no facts, there is only harassment, intimidation, and in the end violence. If our politicians want to present themselves as democrats, they need to be careful who they align themselves with.

Robert Moffat