Letters to editor: July 18

July 18, 2013 

McConnell must own debt he helped create

It should take a substantial amount of gumption, or perhaps disassociation with reality, for a 30-year congressman to claim that "Washington is spending too much" and out of control.

Where has Sen. Mitch McConnell been these last three decades?

Where he has been is, hypocritically, in the middle of what he purports to dislike.

Did he vote for the totally baseless Iraq conflict without any method of financing it? He did, with the overall cost eventually reaching $3 trillion, not to mention the human cost in American and Iraqi lives still being paid.

Did he vote for Medicare Part D and the TARP program? I believe he is guilty again.

Thirty years on the government dole while being opposed to federal government seems rather disingenuous. Especially when McConnell's interests seem more focused on raising campaign funds for himself and income for his supporters.

With a record like McConnell's — combined with his rhetoric — I feel our senior senator needs nose-reduction surgery.

Michael D. Veirs

Stamping Ground


Krugman's bias

I found Paul Krugman's July 3 article on cutting unemployment benefits to be particularly one-sided, presumptive and lacking in objectivity and fact.

His premise is that conservatives are intent on cutting the feet out from under the unemployed. Nowhere is there mention of the funding for this unprecedented level of government subsidy.

Now, 52 percent of Americans are on some form of federal subsidy. Ninety-nine weeks of unemployment? Why bother looking for work?

No, the average benefit of $299 a week in North Carolina is not life on a hammock, but that's not the point. The objective of unemployment was to keep the lights on while you look for work, not to give you reason to stop working.

My father was unemployed a number of times when I was a child. We made adjustments and did without. We never asked or expected the government to pay for our misfortune. Both my parents grew up in poverty when there was no government subsidy. Through our hard work and sacrifice I now live comfortably.

You say I should be angry about this "war" on the unemployed. Where is the money coming from? With $16 trillion-plus of federal debt, I should be angry about the government making cutbacks?

Any economist will tell you that the reason for our stagnant economic growth is, in large part, the drag from servicing the national debt. Slow job growth, high unemployment. Set your liberal bias aside for a minute and consider the true reason for this unemployment problem.

Richard Bendure

Richmond


Willful ignorance

After reading the Family Foundation's Martin Cothran's horribly ignorant misrepresentation of state science standards, I felt the need to comment.

First of all, he is attacking the concepts of climate change and evolution. He just disingenuously refuses to acknowledge it. However what I can say is that it is amazing that science can split the atom, cure disease, put a man on the moon, but apparently get it so wrong on climate change and evolution.

Josh Buckman

Lexington


Work of compassion

In reading the book Happiness by Mattieu Ricard I came across this sentence: "An ethic built exclusively on intellectual ideas and that is not buttressed at every point by virtue, genuine wisdom, and compassion has no solid foundation."

Many conservative principles appear to not be based on compassion or empathy but rather on intellectual ideas.

For example, I can't remember ever hearing a conservative argue against gay marriage from a standpoint of concern for the welfare of our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters. They argue from intellectual ideas like the sanctity of marriage or "God's will" and never seem to acknowledge the very human need that many LGBT people share with the rest of us for a committed and loving marriage relationship.

Likewise, I don't ever remember hearing a conservative discuss the issue of immigration from a standpoint of loving concern for immigrant families. They argue from intellectual positions such as border security and U.S. jobs lost but express no concern for immigrants who are making great sacrifices to improve the lot of their families.

I realize these are complex issues. It just seems to me that the discussions ought to acknowledge that those most affected by these laws are not abstract principles but real human beings with basic human needs.

Perhaps liberals and conservatives can agree on one basic principle: It's easier to feel love and compassion for those who are most like us. For those who are different from us, we have to maybe try a little harder.

Jack McDowell

Richmond


Fight puppy mills

Dogs are supposed to be man's best friend, right? If that's true then I don't want know how man treats his enemies.

I am referring to the heinous puppy mill practice that's somehow still legal. I don't understand why people aren't up in arms over the treatment of these poor animals. These puppies are kept in deplorable conditions.

Surely, if people knew what was happening in these inhumane breeding facilities they would want to help. That is why I was so excited to see your June 26 article.

Many people don't realize that they are supporting puppy mills when they buy a puppy from a pet store. Many people have purchased a sick puppy from a pet store only to find out that it actually came from a puppy mill. There are plenty of ways for people to ensure they aren't purchasing a puppy mill puppy.

First, stop supporting puppy mills by adopting from a local shelter or buying from a reputable breeder instead of a pet store; find one at www.petfinder.org.

If purchasing a puppy from a breeder, visit the premises in person to see how and where your puppy and the mother are living; find a good breeder checklist at www.humanesociety.org/puppy.

Readers can also help by writing letters to legislators asking them to support anti-puppy mill legislation. Speak up for man's best friends!

Julia Nash

Richmond


Well done

I was involved in a five-car fender-bender on the afternoon of July 8 on Red Mile Road in Lexington. Thankfully, nobody was hurt seriously.

I would just like to thank the many emergency medical service workers, firemen and police officers called to the site. Everyone that I encountered was patient and kind and seemed to be only concerned for our welfare.

Many times, the men and women who wear these uniforms get a lot of criticism, but I have to commend these officers. They turned what could have been a very ugly situation, especially with the heat, into something bearable. Thank you.

Lori Nation

Versailles

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