Keep Arboretum a refuge, not a playground
For several years I have had the pleasure of walking almost daily in the Arboretum in Lexington.
I have watched spring move into the maturity of summer and seen fall wrap up nature for the long winter's sleep.
During all of these seasons, I have enjoyed not only the beauty of the area, but the quiet solitude which has offered an opportunity for my observations, contemplations and prayers.
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Lately, the park has taken on a different personality. Its quietness has been punctured by hammers banging, backhoes grinding and the clanging of heavy equipment.
A children's playground is being built. I think that soon the construction noises will be replaced with the shouts and shrieks of children.
With a park in nearly every neighborhood in Lexington and several family parks, it seems a pity that adults can't have their own serene park like the Arboretum has been for years.
I know there are adults who don't respect others enough to stop talking loudly on cell phones or who try to talk over each other as they walk in groups, but they pass and are soon gone. Children's shouts will be heard all over the Arboretum.
Some will say I am just an old lady who is intolerant of children, but I just want a place for adults to enjoy the beauty of this wonderful city without interruption from unnecessary noise.
Let the children play in their neighborhood parks. That is the reason those playgrounds were created.
Susan Graves Tebbs
Illogical city expense
The city recently assigned a street sweeper to my neighborhood which, at first, seemed like an excellent idea since all the dead petals from the flowering trees were all over the roads and in the gutters.
Then I realized that it was not such a great idea on Friday, garbage collection day in my neighborhood.
I watched as the sweeper had to weave in and out between the various collection containers, leaving at least half the petals on the street edges and in the gutter.
The city is running on a very tight budget, yet it spends the money to send out a street sweeper which can do only half, if not less, of the job it is supposed to be doing. And the dead flower petals are now being washed into the sewers.
Where's the logic when the city does such a thing?
Lillian A. Schulman
Pope should resign
I am disgusted with the cover-up, the denial and the ultimate shuffle and relocation strategy used to conceal the crime.
I am a survivor of sexual abuse by a priest in New Orleans who has never been prosecuted through the judicial system nor chastised by the Catholic Church.
In fact, he is living out his retirement years in a monastery in the mountains of Montana, in lieu of a jail cell.
Allowing this man to move from parish to parish perpetuated the atrocious offense through two generations. I have no legal training, but I feel safe to say that the Catholic Church is guilty of aiding and abetting a criminal.
The recent revelation of the papal response doesn't surprise me; rather it's just more unaccountability on a global scale. I have made several attempts at re-entry into the church; but with each new publication regarding these issues, I move further and further away.
The damage that survivors carry with them is irreparable and most of us have suffered deeply as a result. I call for the resignation of the pope; maybe, just maybe, it might be the beginning of real healing.
Regulate, shrink banks
Two changes in mind-set must occur to get real reform of our financial system.
We, the real people, do not have to be financial experts in order to tell our officials what they must do, and we must reclaim the integrity of earning money for goods and services as opposed to financial paper.
Deregulators had their chance; it failed the general welfare of the country. I'm no financial expert, but I've done enough study to learn that asking if Goldman Sachs broke the law is asking the wrong question.
The question is: Is the law adequate? The answer is no. Several steps must be taken now that a bill has gotten to the Senate floor.
The process, as convoluted as health care taught us it is, must result in the following: a strong, independent consumer-protection element, not part of the Federal Reserve, not subject to the veto power of other agencies.
Banks must be shrunk; Glass-Steagall, the set of regulations repealed in recent decades, must be reinstated. Banks must be banks only, not trading houses. Each type of financial institution must be defined and limited with regulations to protect the economy.
Salaries of executives must be brought under control. Bonuses must be taxed to remove any incentive to take short-term risks that imperil the economy. A financial speculation tax should control derivative trading and there must be transparency in all trading.
The Federal Reserve must be subject to audit. There must be no further deregulation of global trading and investment.
E. Joy Arnold
As an American who loves Israel, I pray that we do all we can do to support and defend the nation of Israel, our ally and only true friend in the Middle East.
This nation was founded on Judeo-Christian heritage. There are many avenues we can take to support Israel. I pray that we support this beacon of democracy and its freedom-loving people.
Please stop Iran from attaining these weapons of mass destruction.
Save horse farms
Have you horse-farm fans read the Time magazine article about Kentucky losing its place as the horse capital of the world? Perhaps you should.
Many of you who love what the Bluegrass region represents seem to forget that all those beautiful horse farms are paid for by racing purses. The tracks need new sources of revenue. Give them diminishing returns, and those horse farms will become more acres of houses, shopping centers and warehouses.
They take cash to operate and are not just hobbies and scenic places for tourists to view. To those who feel it is important to save the farms, but who don't want expanded gambling: Good luck with that.
Breeding and training operations will continue to move to where the action is: Florida, Pennsylvania and Louisiana, among others. They are supporting the tracks and increasing their purses.
To the politicians who are fighting expanded gambling, perhaps you live in the wrong state. Kentucky is known for breeding, training and racing thoroughbred horses — all supported by the gambler at the track.
Accept these facts and protect this heritage or you will soon be another has-been region, formerly known for beauty and greatness.
Kentucky needs a new breed of horsemen, enlightened politicians and a legislature that supports the many changes needed to save the Bluegrass horse industry and heritage.
I am a former Lexington resident and recently had a wonderful day at Keeneland. But I wonder how long that and other Kentucky race tracks and horse farms will survive.