Ohio River polluted by toxic mercury
The Ohio River is a drinking water source for more than 5 million Americans. It's also a huge recreational, commercial and sustenance fishery. Millions of dollars of fish are harvested from the Ohio each year.
Many folks who live along the river depend on the fish for daily meals — it feeds their families. Others simply like to fish for recreation or use the river for boating.
But the great river is being threatened by mercury, a known toxic pollutant. Mercury is dangerous, especially for fetuses, infants and children. It can cause major neurological damage and harm thinking, memory, attention, language and motor and visual skills.
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We're mainly exposed to mercury through fish. Small fish ingest mercury discharged by industry. As you go up the food chain, the mercury concentration multiplies in each predator.
This means humans, at the top of the food chain, are at greatest risk of mercury poisoning.
Mercury is at a tipping point in the river, and river communities and citizens need to speak up. May 14 is the deadline for commenting on a proposal to allow more mercury. Go to KWAlliance.org and tell officials no more mercury in the Ohio River environment.Tim Joice
Kentucky Water Alliance
Vote Larson to end job
The verdict is in. The position of Kentucky's state treasurer is unnecessary and should be constitutionally eliminated.
In the 1990s, a Democrat ran for its abolition, in 2007 a Republican and in 2011 a Libertarian.
But the clincher is that our Senate then researched the idea and found that elimination would save taxpayers at least $1.4 million a year, without any significant loss of functions.
Sen. Chris McDaniel, chair of the Appropriations and Revenue Committee, sponsored Senate Bill 58, which was passed by a constitutionally mandated majority, last year. Gridlock killed the issue then.
Fortunately, today is a new day. Our lame-duck treasurer is termed out. There is one candidate pledging to work for abolition. Vote Jon Larson for treasurer on May 19.
John P. Martin
The policy related to the age at which a student may withdraw from high school implements major changes in our school systems. Due to its newness, many people are unaware of its implications.
The new policy changes the age a student may drop out from 16 to 18.
Until the end of the 2015-16 school year, the old policy guidelines apply. While the new policy will force students to stay in school, it is worthless without a system that can make them aware of alternatives to traditional high schools.
The motivation of a student who has consistently failed grade levels is low compared to the average student. These students have the potential to succeed but likely have given up hope.
The future of our society depends on us, as citizens, encouraging these children to explore every opportunity available to them.
We must step up and let them know that we have faith in their ability to succeed.Helen Caudill
Young fights for integrity of primary election
With the Herald-Leader's endorsement of Jack Conway in the May 19 Democratic primary, the collapse of his campaign for governor will be all the more surprising and dramatic. "The bigger they come, the harder they fall."
According to a lawsuit I have filed, Conway — along with Gov. Steve Beshear, Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes and Democratic Party officials Patrick Hughes and Dan Logsdon — conspired to control the primary election.
On Feb. 9, they held a "Unity Press Conference" at the Kentucky Democratic Party headquarters in Frankfort. I asked to speak for the same number of minutes as Conway, but KDP chairman Hughes refused. The bylaws prohibit the party from endorsing one Democrat over another before the primary. Case closed.
I sued the five in Franklin Circuit Court on March 2. Two months later, Judge Thomas Win gate granted the defendants' motions to dismiss. I appealed immediately to the Kentucky Court of Appeals.
I initiated another lawsuit in Jefferson County to have Conway's name removed from the ballot. I believe FBI agents could arrest the five for blatant election fraud, if new U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch so chooses.
Conway, Beshear and the three others should be convicted and sentenced to about six months in federal prison, where they could repent and read some books on ethics.
The battle for control of the KDP will rage on until they lose.
One honest politician, Geoff Young, is fighting hard against them.
Geoffrey M. Young
Democratic candidate for governor