Fund education Rupp, not highway to Ark Park
When the General Assembly returns to Frankfort on April 14, they will be voting on a road plan for the coming two years. The current plan includes a whopping $10.25 million in taxpayer funding for roadwork to the proposed Ark Park in Grant County.
That's $10.25 million when school districts are having to use 10-year old textbooks, when we are cutting back on state social workers and mental health services, when we are unable to fund the Teachers' Retirement System, when we are cutting money yet again from our colleges and universities, when we can't pay for preschool services for high poverty kids who need a decent chance to succeed.
That's $10.25 million which might make a nice start on Rupp Arena renovations.
It's your tax money they're planning to spend on this religious theme park (which is looking like it will never get built anyhow). What a shame.
The March 21 article by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting was lacking in several areas. Ecology is more complicated than cutting down trees or burning them. The article calls cutting a swath of forest an environmental issue, which it may be politically but not ecologically. Different species of animals inhabit young, intermediate and old forests. Right now the most endangered bird species are those inhabiting young forests, precisely because environmentalists opposed cutting down forest and regenerating them.
The article does not identify environmentalists, possibly because their only real expertise is in raising donations. The questions asked of ecologists were not stated, but must have been only about carbon dioxide release. What if the question had been: "How does the carbon dioxide output of this plant compare to more than 200 square miles of forest lost to western wildfires in 2013?"
The answer is what environmentalists can't admit -— forests will be regenerated by natural forces or by management. Management can do it with much more sensitivity, given overview by an informed public. One agenda of environmentalists may be to depopulate the Appalachians.
One final fact: spill wood and you pick it up and use it; spill oil and you pick up dead fish and wildlife.
Building the first biomass-fueled plant may be the best way to find out the true costs and benefits, which would be more useful than opinions about many of the unknowns identified in the article.
Press limiting speech
It is getting to the point where free speech is lost. Anyone who speaks out against a liberal point of view is cast as an idiot, a racist, homophobe, or an attempt is made to destroy them. The ones who are doing it are the very ones who live and die by the right to free speech, namely the press.
We now have groups that do nothing more than try to catch anyone saying anything, regardless of where or when it was said, so that their credibility can be destroyed.
A majority of people won't speak out, for fear of retaliation. We need people of principle who are willing to stand up and speak the truth, not partial truth or truth slanted toward an agenda, but the truth and to do what is right for the country. There are not many elected officials who are willing.
They want to play it safe so they can get re-elected and keep power. In a recent study of freedom of speech, 180 countries around the world were ranked. The U.S. ranked 47th. That should be unacceptable in a country that has freedom of speech as the First Amendment.
We need to start paying attention to what is going on and find out what the truth is. Our forefathers were not afraid to stand on principles and speak the truth, and neither should we.
Harry Van Epps
Bevin, not McConnell
How dumb does a politician from Kentucky have to be to run an ad that appeared to boast that his favorite team is Duke? But then we have watched Mitch McConnell boast of helping the rich, hurting the poor, standing in the way of anything that would help America.
Boasting of programs he endorsed that were failures, that he did not even know what they entailed. He has shamed Kentucky enough. Let's change his useless and lying boasting to boosting him out of office. A vote for Matt Bevin would finally make Kentucky proud. Keep in mind McConnell would be stomped by Alison Lundergan Grimes, who picked Wichita State in the NCAA. We are lucky to have Bevin, a candidate who truly believes in Kentucky.
No more harrassment
The Herald-Leader recently published a letter from some heavy-duty intellectual out in the bustling metropolis of Fisty, Kentucky. I had a little trouble finding Fisty on the map, but for any of you who want to go there for the film festival and the canoe races it's located between Emmalena and Dwarf.
Anyway, this Fisty visionary stated definitively in his letter that gay people are simply folks behaving badly and society needs to marginalize and punish them for it. He apparently is unaware that that's exactly the treatment LGBT citizens have been getting in America throughout our history.
He also may not be aware that the medical, psychological, psychiatric and sociological professions, after endless study, have concluded that being gay is simply one more variation among many in human behavior, and one that is basically benign.
The majority of American citizens have come to the same conclusion and have decided to admit LGBTs to full citizenship and quit harassing them and penalizing them.
It's possible that one lone dude out in Fisty is smarter than all the rest of us, but it seems unlikely.