Letters to the editor: Feb. 2

February 2, 2013 

Great leaders knew U.S. suffers if divided

Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr., two of America's all-time greatest people, were martyrs who now belong to the ages. Both men saw injustices and gave every ounce of their being to righting wrongs.

Separated in time by four or five generations, liberators Lincoln and King lived in critical times when America was seriously divided along racial and socioeconomic lines. They each knew our country could not long endure as a house divided.

Now, 45 years after King's assassination, America is deeply divided politically, economically and racially. Even the progress we showed by electing Barack Obama to two consecutive presidential terms is being negated somewhat by our elected representatives' unwillingness to work for the common good. Our divisions are generating increased degrees of hate, further dividing us.

If alive today, I believe King would still be trying to bring us together by way of God's unifying, transforming love — turn an enemy into a friend.

He would also keep calling for God's will to be done on Earth via compassionate community rooted in justice. King knew our lives are intertwined; we need each other.

That's the way God intended it to be.

Paul L. Whiteley Sr.

Louisville


No substance on climate

Regarding Eugene Robinson's column of Jan. 15 ("Climate change won't be denied, like it or not"), his hyperbole is without substance. His first assertion that we "suffered" the warmest temperatures is both absurd and false.

To begin with, those in areas that had warmer than average winter temperatures probably did not feel they were suffering. Next, there simply is no validity to the charge.

And as for "second craziest weather," well either the man has lived his life locked indoors or has zero respect for those he thinks will read his work.

Do we have climate change? Yes, it's been going on for roughly 4 billion years and will continue for the foreseeable future. Is it man-caused? There is simply no scientific evidence to support it that isn't countermanded by other scientific evidence showing it's all natural.

And there are two disturbing things I've noticed about the "scientific" community that so rabidly promotes Robinson's cause.

Almost without exception they share a political agenda beyond their field of study, and they spend nearly as much time and effort on quashing opposing views and using intimidation to suppress countermanding research as they do on their own work.

Not a very "scientific" stance, wouldn't one say?

Mike Rose

Jackson


Being blue in red state

I'm just a racially and "orientationally" ambiguous atheist liberal living in the very red Kentucky, so what could I know?

I know your guns harm more than they protect. You need only pick up a newspaper or turn on your television to know that.

Your intolerance of differences results in prejudice, ignorance and injustice. It is easy to become misguided by rhetoric, mass media, poor parenting, pastor, preacher, pope or peer pressure — becoming molded by a narrow view of the world, based on one's own experiences thus far, but it takes courage to see beyond it, to question, to empathize, to reason.

This country's own evolution from its hypocritical roots is evidence that with time comes progress, for the land of the free and home of the brave was once also home to the slaves.

If the root of all evil is money, why then should United States currency be inscribed with the words "In God We Trust?" With liberty and justice for all does not and should not exclude the LGBTQ (non-heterosexual) community or immigrants, nor should it be gender specific.

You have a right to believe what you want, but don't impose those beliefs on others with fanatical and illegal laws such as the Defense of Marriage Act.

I am very proud of our president and feel ashamed of his critics — not for being critical, but for being petty, partisan and obstructionist.

Proud: The Wildcats aren't the only reason I bleed blue.

Jason O'Neil Morris

Lexington


GOP, jihadi so similar

Have you noticed the similarities between Republicans and jihadi extremists?

• They don't believe in the separation of religion from state.

• They love guns — lots of them.

• They don't like government — none is best of all.

• They don't like women making decisions for themselves.

• They like to take the American people hostage for ransom whenever possible.

Kieran O'Hara

Lexington


Waste of money, indeed

I agree with the commentary by Ernie Lewis of Jan. 6, "Spending too much to lock people up."

There are worthless programs in correctional facilities, and the people, the state and the federal government, fund them.

The doctors and caseworkers who run those programs only care about the money they bring in. They degrade the inmates and put them down.

They go out of their way to put inmates in these programs only to throw them out once they get their money. That causes inmates to lose their good time, which means they pull all their time and the prisons get the money for the full sentence.

It doesn't matter if you've been an ideal prisoner, or even innocent.

Think about these programs. If the inmates really wanted to be rehabilitated, which half of them don't, they wouldn't end up back in prison.

The system is a money enterprise. Their commissary items are so high they are making 100 percent profit.

The sick are neglected most of the time. Inmates have to stand outside, in warm, cold, rain or snowy weather, to go to their meals or even get some medicine.

That is where cuts have to be made — jails and prisons. They need to let the ones out who have good behavior and are not a threat to society. We could save millions.

We are getting tired of paying for those unnecessary and useless things.

Susan Teague

Williamsburg


Abortion and guns

Many conservatives are claiming there is a move on to outlaw guns. This National Rifle Association propaganda is not true.

Besides being unconstitutional, only a few really want that, and most of us know it wouldn't work.

A black-market industry would result, keeping criminals and extremists well armed and dangerous. The best we can do is pass sensible and reasonable gun laws that protect both our rights and our public safety, to the extent possible.

These same conservatives are the loudest ones clambering to outlaw abortion. This requires a very odd change of thinking for them, because, just like outlawing guns, most of us realize outlawing abortion wouldn't work, either.

The black-market abortion industry that once existed would rise again and we would enter another dreadful era of losing both mothers and fetuses.

The best we can do is provide appropriate medical care and counseling to at-risk young pregnant women to save as many as possible from acts of self-destruction. The better we do that, the more fetuses we will save, too.

In both cases, our laws are not going to be perfect. We just do the best we can. We are not responsible for the problems others create for themselves, but we are responsible for how we behave when they do have problems.

Joseph P. Fox

Lexington

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