Lexington honor flight POW exchange triple crown

Letters to the editor: June 15

June 15, 2014 


Paula Bayer of Lexington kissed the hand of veteran Kenneth Witt of Nicholasville in a receiving line at Blue Grass Airport. Witt was on an Honor Flight of World War II and Korean veterans on June 6.


Obama's king-like actions

There is little distinguishable difference between the shameless desertion of a military post and the shameless, self-promotional play that President Barack Obama staged in the Rose Garden, using distraught parents.

Guilty or innocent of desertion, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl and his parents can thank their lucky stars that Obama's hunger for such photographic opportunities is stronger than his sworn oath that obligated him to serve America well and good.

How much stronger? Swapping five for one is a rough approximation.

Amazingly, politicians in Congress — Republicans and Democrats alike — were surprised by the five-for-one swap. Their surprise inadvertently revealed the major reason America is on a downward spiral.

How could they have possibly been surprised by Obama? He has repeatedly demonstrated his king-like tendencies. Accordingly, he was not going to share the glory that he had anticipated his victory lap in the Rose Garden would garner him.

Moreover, the arrogance of Obama and his circle of advisors obviously insulate them from common sense and our Constitution.

They apparently do not even have enough store-bought intelligence to foresee that those whose income tax dollars finance their would-be kingdom, will eventually catch on to their machinations and have the final say, thanks to our founding fathers.

Shafter Bailey


Let Fox newsies serve next

Cable Fox News has now circumvented the Military Code of Justice.

It has found our released POW guilty.

It has found the parents of the POW guilty.

It found the city that the POW and parents live in guilty.

I just hope that for the next Republican "shock and awe" war, all the people at Fox News will have to serve like the rest of us.

What I think I will hear when they go running from their post is: "I don't want to be here. I don't want to die,"

James Rodgers

Retired, Air Force


Prisoner release true fiasco

I don't know if anyone else has noticed, but the Taliban prisoners released from Guantanamo Bay Prison in exchange for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl looked mighty healthy and happy.

They don't look like guys who have been tortured or mistreated. The video of them on TV shows wide smiles and full beards.

Maybe they have been abused, maybe not. I would like to smack them a few times myself. This whole episode is a true fiasco for our country.

Sharon Woodworth


Markets, jobs, debt all improved under Obama

It is about time that we gave President Barack Obama some credit for a job well done.

Last week we officially gained back the 8 million jobs that were lost under the last Republican president. We have had more than five straight years of growth without a single negative month.

No Republican president has produced five straight years of job growth in the last 50 years.

The stock market is now at a record high and it has grown a stunning 125 percent under Obama. The last two Republican presidents created a shrinking market, negative growth and three recessions.

Obama has also ended the mess in Iraq that Bush left him with and he is ending the mess in Afghanistan. And to top it all off, he killed Osama bin Laden.

The deficit is dropping at the fastest rate in the last 60 years.So, it is time for the Republican crybabies to stop whining and obstructing the president.

Obama has a strong record of economic growth and he has kept us safe from terrorist attacks.

It is time to give him the credit he deserves. History will judge Obama to be a great president and I predict that his picture will be on our money someday.

John Sabot


Commoners left out

A Jan. 8 article was headlined, "Money trail a muddied path; Analysis: contributor list for Kentucky's Senate candidates illustrates the untidy reality of politics, experts say."

Well, what do you expect? Doctors, lawyers and business people are the only ones allowed to run for such offices and they create laws that benefit themselves. This is why we commoners never will get a bigger piece of the pie.

We are everyday working people who need to say, "to hell with them," elect someone off of the street and bypass all of these super PACs.

Victor Privette


Need immigration reform

I am prompted to write this after reading on the Drudge Report about the recent immigration of children to our border.

The article mentioned the kindness and generosity of the American people although the responses on this right-wing site, and on talk radio, have been neither kind nor generous.

The influx has nothing to do with lax border security under our current president. The border is tighter than it ever has been. That is a simple fact that can be checked.

Many of these children are fleeing from Honduras which has the highest murder rate in the world. They are literally fleeing for their lives.

This violence is stemming from drug cartels, fueled by our own drug use, poverty, social inequality, gangs and many of whom grew up in this country and were deported.

These are social dislocations going back to the 1980s when we supported and equipped right-wing regimes and death squads that committed genocides resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent people.

Most Americans remain ignorant of what has occurred in Central America and what our involvement has been.

While false reporting in those countries may have encouraged some to believe they could qualify for legal status, that is not true and again has nothing to do with the policies of the president.

It has more to do with the failure of Congress to address the issue through comprehensive immigration reform, and our political divide which prevents us from solving problems.

Loren Drzal


Take care of neighbors

I send my thanks to the Herald-Leader and columnist Tom Eblen for his thoughtful and honest analysis of the Environmental Protection Agency proposal for Kentucky to reduce its consumption of coal for electrical power.

His June 9 column is based on actual — if not comfortable — facts regarding the effects of how we in Kentucky produce electricity. I would only add to his arguments the call that some Kentuckians hear for neighbors to care for one another. Such care includes our nurture of a healthy environment for all life.

John Bolin


Triple Crown

Owner right, racing wrong

Steve Coburn, co-owner of Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner California Chrome, makes all kinds of sense to me: It's a Triple Crown, not a Single Crown.

I'm not a horse person, but I am about fair competition. If you are presenting a claim that a horse who wins all three legs of the Triple Crown is the top horse, then you better be accurate with what you state. However, unlike the rest of sports, horse racing says it's perfectly fine to not have to compete in all three stages of its No. 1 triathlon — because that's the way it's always been.

Sorry, but where's the logic in that? A competitor is one who is performing the same tasks, not just some.

Last I checked, players don't make it to the NCAA Final Four unless they play the entire tournament.

In horse racing, you get excused for missing the early games just so you can upset those who played all the games.

What a letdown it is to have a Triple Crown contender get beaten by a non-contender.

Bravo for maverick Coburn for pointing out the elephant in the room, which he talked about a week before the Belmont, getting zilch coverage.

The top two finishers in the Belmont didn't run in the first two races and the third-place horse skipped the Preakness. Maybe it's time the horse industry fixes its broken crown and uses it to get more interest in racing.

Kerry Boytzun


Really, dude, no better message?

The co-owner of California Chrome, Steve Coburn, has apologized to everyone who has ever seen his horse for his portrayal of a horse's ass after the colt's fourth-place finish in the Belmont.

I have followed the colt since he hit the track. I bet Chrome across and nothing else.

Yet, I was aghast when I heard Coburn proclaim, during the Preakness trophy presentation, "Churchill should take a lesson from these people on how to treat owners and horses."

Really, dude? A giant platform to talk about anything his heart desires, like family or other people thinking about getting into racing, he takes this time to slam Churchill Downs.

Now, we've seen his true colors, calling other owners "cowards" for not running their horses in all Triple Crown races. All this during a time when the tracks are trying to cater to a new generation of fans. People, we are spoiled. We have Keeneland.

Other fans and owners are not so lucky.

I also take issue with the NBC coverage, specifically Bob Costas. Standing at the trophy presentation he decides to take the glory of these winners and say, "Steve Coburn called you a coward." That was extremely rude, uncalled for and unprofessional. Costas should apologize.

Lynn Embaugh


Lexington Honor Flight

Treated like a hero, grateful for liberty

From my drop-off at Blue Grass Airport early on June 6, I was treated like a hero. About 80 Louisville/Lexington war veterans from World War II and on were flown charter to Baltimore, plus a guardian for each veteran, Congressman Andy Barr and Honor Flight personnel. Fire departments saluted the plane with water after landing, going and coming. Honor guards greeted us at every turn. A two-star general welcomed us. Police escorted our four-bus motorcade as we drove to Washington, D.C.

Teens asked to have pictures taken with us. The letters from school children are precious, Our return to the airport was stupendous: bagpipe escort, brass band and hundreds of people. It was overwhelming. I was deeply moved passing through the Memorials for World War II, Korea and Vietnam, and the Marine Memorial. But especially humbled at the World War II Memorial. This was the 70th anniversary of the Normandy Invasion. Then, and in following months, a great many were killed and wounded.

God chose to spare me. I am a beneficiary of all that they fought and died for. Through military service, I became an aerospace engineer. My payback: contributing to NASA's Apollo and Skylab, and many terrestrial projects. I bow humbly, thankful for the brave men and women, and their families, who paid so dearly that my family and I might enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Donald G. McPherson


Honoring the Greatest Generation

I would like to thank the Lexington community for its awesome support of the returning veterans from the June 6 Honor Flight.

The World War II and Korean veterans went to Washington D.C. to view the memorials, at no cost, thanks to the Blue Grass Chapter of the Honor Flight organization.

I went with my father as a guardian, and we were greatly surprised with the water cannon from the fire department, the group that played the bagpipes and all of the people lined up on each side of the terminal as the veterans walked through.

The line continued on the sidewalk and back into another entrance. Boy scouts, elementary age school children, motorcycle riders and many others reached out to the veterans, shook their hands, and said, "Thank you for your service."

Thanks to the management at Blue Grass Airport to help make this a great experience.

Thanks also to Stan Adler and Brian Kelly for organizing this trip. Many others served as guardians, bus captains, helped get veterans registered, made sure wheelchairs were available and worked to make this a safe and wonderful day. Thanks to the corporate sponsors as well.

Thank you., Lexington, for the awesome ending of a fantastic day for members of our Greatest Generation.

Larry Robinson

Bellevue, Neb.

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