Letters to the Editor: July 10

July 10, 2014 

Time is now to restore history

The two most beautiful buildings in downtown Lexington are Old Morrison at Transylvania University, completed in 1834, and the old courthouse on Main Street, built in 1898.

Both of these buildings have been a large part of my life. I agree with Foster Ockerman Jr. that the old courthouse must be saved, restored and returned to use.

When Old Morrison burned in 1969, I was a vice president at Transylvania with an office in the building. I had a huge part in this restoration, which required the efforts of many for it to reopen in 1971.

My father became chief of police for Fayette County around 1933. His office was in the old courthouse. As a kid, I spent many hours in the courthouse waiting for my ride home. The building was repurposed as our history museum and closed after environmental testing found dangerous levels of lead paint dust.

The Cats can still play basketball in Rupp Arena as it is now, but the old courthouse stands empty.

The time is now to restore this beautiful and historic building. This is the slam dunk Lexington needs right now.

John W. McCord


Calling out Huck Finn

The new designs for the outsides of the parking garages and service buildings in Lexington are lovely.

My concern is for the inside. I feel very uncomfortable entering these dark cement structures and groping my way to my car.

Maybe you could get Huck Finn and his group to whitewash the inside or add it to the cement of the new buildings.

Alice Brady


Help traffic, lower costs

This is a suggestion on building new roads in Eastern Kentucky to replace older ones.

If they could build passing lanes on some of the old roads, it would help to move traffic faster and cost a lot less.

Eugene Moore


Politics are not facts

A June 28 letter writer objected to a prior letter calling the Founding Fathers liberals, claiming instead they were not liberals, but liberators.

That writer used their political orientations to formulate opinions about historical facts. Liberalism of the Founding Fathers began in the late 17th century with the Age of Enlightenment and John Locke, father of classical liberalism.

Locke argued that a civil society is a social contract between government and the governed, guaranteeing every individual the rights to life, liberty and property. For government to exist it requires the consent of the governed, existing for their benefit.

Thomas Jefferson embraced Locke's idea as the foundation for the Declaration of Independence. James Madison incorporated the idea for religious tolerance as the basis for the First Amendment.

The liberalism of the Founding Fathers had nothing to do with the size of government, but opposition to the view of government being derived from the divine right of kings.

The writer undermines his argument by calling them liberators because to become liberators they first had to be liberals.

Accepting the liberal idea requiring consent of the governed motivated the Founding Fathers to reject absolute government and overthrow monarchy in favor of representative democracy.

James F. Wisniewski


Two-faced McConnell

Sen. Mitch McConnell has positioned himself in a place of power. Unfortunately, he has abused it for political benefit.

According to former President George W. Bush's book, Decision Points, McConnell privately asked Bush in September 2006 to withdraw some troops from Iraq because his fellow Republicans needed help in the upcoming elections because the war was so unpopular.

Bush did not accept McConnell's suggestion. However, when Democrats asked for a withdrawal to stop the loss of American lives during the same month of 2006, McConnell publicly blistered Democrats, saying a withdrawal would endanger American lives.

Besides his hypocritical political posturing, it is quite disturbing to see that the reason he wanted a withdrawal was not to save American lives but to save his party's officeholders.

McConnell's abuse of the public good for political favor demonstrates it is time that we elect Secretary of State Alison Grimes as our next senator.

Mark Etherton


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