Mental health first links those who have been there
Some missed a mental health first for Kentucky on May 21 with the opening of the National Alliance on Mental Illness' peer-to-peer counseling center in Lexington, also called Participation Station.
Our mission is to provide a program-based environment that educates, empowers and enhances the lives of individuals moving toward recovery and mental wellness. Individuals recovering from mental health issues and those at a higher level of recovery come to assist others still struggling with similar mental health issues.
Another first is a "warm line," a dedicated telephone line for those who are not in crisis, but need someone to talk to during stressful times.
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NAMI Lexington would like to publicly extend our thank-you to those who assisted in making this celebration a memorable occasion, including our speakers, staff and volunteers.
If you or someone you know needs the services of NAMI Lexington, Participation Station or the warm line please call NAMI at (859) 272-7891.
Remember, Participation Station, a place where everyone is welcome, everyone is accepted and everybody is somebody.
Pitch in on spill
April 20, 2010. Disaster strikes. The BP oil spill. I used to think, "Hey, a little oil leaked in the ocean, but they'll clean it up." Now, my opinion is completely opposite. Oil spills are true disasters, harming not only wildlife, but people, too. If you are concerned enough that you watch or read about the spill, you should also try to help.
I am in fourth grade. If I spill my water at school, all the other kids don't just sit there and watch me clean it up. They help. Maybe we could raise money to buy new protective suits, so that more people can help clean up the spill. Maybe if you know someone in Louisiana, you can convince them to help clean off the birds or clean up the oil.
We have been watching live footage of the oil spill underwater, and it's scary. I saw something that looked like krill or plankton swimming through it, and a little bit later it came out looking weak. This is hurting animals everywhere near Louisiana. So please, try to help them, and help BP.
Do your part
I am in fourth grade and learned about how harsh the BP spill is. I believe we can all help.
If you are mad and want to help, you could stop complaining about BP and take part in saving the animals.
Maybe if you go to the coast of Florida, Mississippi or Alabama, you will find a sick animal that you could help.
Just by doing little things you can make the world a better place. Just think about making the world better.
If you don't know how serious this is, please look at the cbsnews.com Web site, which has a live webcast of what is happening right now in the ocean.
We can make a difference with the little things we do, so please change the world for the animals.
Caytlyn Grace Merriam
Disengage from Israel
I do not understand how newspaper editors and publishers and members of the U.S. Congress can call themselves Americans when addressing the topic of terrorism.
Terrorism in the United States can be traced to our country's association with the illegal Jewish settlers in Palestine, now called Israel. Osama bin Laden told our government and Americans this in 1998, but no one listened.
More recently, a naturalized American from Pakistan placed an automobile with explosive devices in New York City. His goal was to enlighten the American people about terrorism.
Israel has been an international terrorist since 1948. The United States keeps losing lives, money and international respect by its continued association with Israel.
The United States is a constitutional republic, not a theocracy.
Billy Ray Wilson
Make way for VAT
"Hope and change" without a price? Just read the news. Considering the impossible task of paying for all our government wants to "give" us, new taxes loom.
Are there implications for your next Louisville Slugger baseball bat? More on that later.
Remember that promise not to raise taxes for the 98 percent of us earning less than $250,000? Be prepared for the value-added tax. It would nick, pick and stick you with new fees, co-pays, service charges and more.
The European-style VAT is a tariff in the form of costly charges at each step in the production of goods and services.
In Europe, essentially everyone on that socially-conscious continent has been paying VAT taxes for decades. Those countries have no other way to finance prodigious government giveaways.
In America, there would be added costs anytime we splurge on our wants — perhaps, as in Europe, even on our daily needs.
You cannot add millions of people to our insured population without cost. Therefore, Americans must in some way, shape or form incur new mandatory charges.
Let's end with that VAT bat: our Louisville Slugger.
Sell the tree — add a fee.
Mill the lumber — you're encumbered.
Lathe the "blank" — bucks in the fed bank.
Wood-burned logo, fat of the bat — perhaps incur just that last VAT.
Oops — there may be just one more tax — the profit made by your sporting-goods store.
Happy VAT day.
Tom V. Ellis
Power of words
Using the word "holocaust" to characterize the legal right of women to terminate their pregnancies or the word "genocide" to describe Israel's attempts to get the people of Gaza to substitute serious negotiations for random rocket fire does no service to either the anti-abortion or the pro-Palestinian cause, to a remembrance of the real Holocaust or to the English language.
Unfortunately, the style these days is to trot out the most loaded words you can think of and throw them, willy-nilly, against your opponents.
Free speech is one of our most cherished rights, and the Constitution does not prohibit anyone from saying stupid things, but making progress toward the solution of really pressing problems is retarded by the misuse of language.
As George Orwell observed, people who don't use words correctly probably can't think too clearly either, leaving themselves at the mercy of double-talking charlatans in Congress, in state legislatures, on talk radio shows and even in pulpits.
In My Fair Lady, phonetist Henry Higgins complains that his adversary (Zoltan Karpathy) "uses the science of speech more to blackmail than teach."
Of all the problems facing us today, and there are many, I think that the most serious is our increasing inability to think and speak in a rational manner.