Tattoos, piercings not signs of one's skills, work ethic
Tattoos and other forms of body modification have become increasingly popular in the last two decades. Professional stances on such behavior have remained for the most part intolerant and deemed inappropriate in the workplace.
Personally, I disagree with this and really have become quite frustrated and disappointed with societal standards.
Why should your outward appearance affect your ability to obtain a job? Judging someone by their appearance because they have tattoos or other body modification is the same as judging someone because they are African-American or Hispanic. So why is that such a big determining factor when searching for a job?
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I know from personal experience that people look at you differently for having tattoos and piercings. Every time I go somewhere I get weird looks because of my stretched lobes and tattoos. I've even been denied employment at a call center for that reason alone.
Why would having tattoos or piercings affect how I answer or talk on the phone? It doesn't in the slightest.
That just shows you how judgmental people are. I just wish everyone knew that outward appearances do not affect personality nor work ethic.
We've lost compassion
I am an American, a veteran and a patriot. However, when I read that my country, the richest and most powerful nation on Earth, would take food out of our children's mouths, it fills me with a profound sadness and a very healthy anger.
Have we grown so apathetic that we are content to ignore the working poor? Pretend they don't exist? Maybe if you just turn your head and close your eyes, they will go away.
Where is the determination we saw in America in our illegal wars? Where is the passion and indignation on display during the long, hard-fought battle for civil rights, a fight that still exists today?
We have grown old and complacent, comfortable in our apathy. The GOP is letting American families go hungry. I bet my life their children will never want for anything, other than perhaps learning the concept of compassion.
If every working man and woman would give one dollar a week from their pay, there would be no more homeless people in this nation. There would be no more hungry men, women or children. Let's go back to the streets and make our voices powerful and let them ring out over Washington.
It is our obligation and our duty to help our brothers and sisters who are not as fortunate as the wealthy people in this country. We must come together to give all Americans their opportunity to obtain happiness and restore their God-given right to live their lives with dignity.
Russia — 1
U.S.A. — 1 (Cuba)
We are eyeball to eyeball; and we blinked. (Apologies to Dean Rusk and John F. Kennedy.)
Echoes of a bad past
We have seen today's Tea Party and right-wing Republican movement in our history before. The faces and message of today's Tea Party represent the same faces that terrorized African-Americans in the 1960s and for decades have demonized the least among us for political gain.
Their contribution to the political public debate are: an anarchist public policy ideology; traditional conservative minority prejudices, including impediments to voting; statements with racial overtones meant to demean and de-legitimize an African-American president; distrust and maligning of government; reduction of taxes as a panacea; and the use of words associated with the Civil War, secession and nullification.
Their goal since 2008 has been to sabotage the economic recovery regardless of the pain experienced by the American people.
The slow recovery is self inflicted by Tea Party and Republican obstruction and unrealistic budget cut demands resulting in insufficient fiscal economic assistance from the Congress.
They have held the debt limit hostage, resulting in a downgrade of the nation's credit rating. This is a continuing strategy while the American people suffer.
There are 50 to 85 Tea Party U.S. House members whose government views are so extreme they have shut down the business of Congress.
There is this narrative that President Barack Obama is not liked and they will stop at nothing to deny him success.
Given historical Republican use of cultural issues for political gain, including race, there is every reason to believe this is true.
I've heard enough from the Williams Company about the number of miles of pipeline that it operates, the jobs and revenue a proposed natural gas liquids pipeline will bring to our state, the money they're willing to spend for the privilege of crossing our land and that safety is a priority.
I'd like to know some of the not-so-pretty information about this pipeline to transport a highly explosive, hazardous and toxic product through our beautiful state.
I want the company to provide factual answers to these questions:
■ How small a leak does its monitoring detect?
■ What is the time frame for its response to a leak? How much time passes before a leak is stopped?
■ What is the plan when a leak is detected? Who is notified, in what order, and how is that notification made?
■ Since the vapor cloud from a leak in an NGL pipeline is odorless and colorless, how will its location, size and movement be determined?
■ How will residents who may have to evacuate their homes be informed so that we can do so safely?
■ How will it be determined if and when it is safe to return to their homes?
■ How will the Williams deal with the NGL remaining in the pipeline between the shut-off valves where the leak occurs?
The residents of Kentucky are entitled to know the answers to these questions, especially since we have been repeatedly told by the company representatives that "safety is a priority."
University of Kentucky football Coach Mark Stoops and his staff are being urged to choose between quarterbacks: Max Smith (passer) and Jalen Whitlow (runner).
As the urging grows stronger, coaches say it's too early to choose one over the other.
I offer a solution: Use both at once. Call it the double-barreled shotgun formation.
Let both quarterbacks line up in shotgun depth, side by side about two feet apart. Center could snap the ball to either, whether the play calls for a run or a pass. The variations on this formation are endless.
The double-barreled shotgun should confuse defenses and give UK football an innovative look which might win some games, at least be more competitive.
Stoops and his staff are welcome to this suggestion with no strings attached.