Inside the Ark Encounter
Keep it real
About the May 25 Herald-Leader article about the “life-size replica” of Noah’s Ark in Northern Kentucky: Shouldn’t have that said “fable-size”? The world was never entirely covered by a flood, and humans and dinosaurs never co-existed.
Andy Mead, Lexington
Persecution claim ‘disturbing’
Rev. John J. Lombardi’s claim that the media ignore Christian persecution is disturbing (May 25, Herald-Leader op-ed). First, it’s not true. Mainstream publications including The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, and The Guardian have reported on the exodus of Christians from the Middle East and Africa due to war and discrimination.
Second, Lombardi implies that Christians are persecuted in the United States. They aren’t. The report he cites finds persecution in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. But the Maryland priest’s examples of persecution lists the boycott of Chic-fil-A (because it funds anti-gay groups) side-by-side with beheadings, and the lawsuit against the Denver baker who refused to bake for a gay couple next to terrorist bombings in the Philippines. Equating such things shows a lack of good faith. The Christian right has, for some time, been laying the groundwork for a religious right to discriminate.
Third, false narratives about persecution historically are used to justify evil deeds. Adolf Hitler and the Nazis claimed Germans were persecuted by Jews. The Christian right and Muslim extremists share an apocalyptic vision in which they fight the devil and win. Our time would be better spent trying not to kill each other and destroy the planet.
Mike Wilson, Lexington
Keep voting, Dems
On Tuesday, May 21, Kentucky polls received 134,636 more Democrats than Republicans. This is powerful. Our Democratic votes can be used in November to elect a governor who is a native Kentuckian and who cares about all of Kentucky’s citizens, including teachers, people who need healthcare, women and those less advantaged, not just the wealthy. Thank you, Kentucky Democrats. You showed that every vote counts.
Wini Yunker, Nicholasville
More on religion/politics
The Herald-Leader’s May 19 Living section left me unsure about church and lunch out. Contributing columnist Paul Prather wrote about Christians being all over the place in views on politics, doctrine and everything else except Kentucky basketball. Prather says he used to be a religion reporter for the Herald-Leader. It’s good that he’s still writing, though the gist of his words most weeks seems to be “everything comes up roses if you just wish it to be so.” The Herald-Leader also should encourage commentaries from a broad spectrum of church leadership. The virtual silence on the intersection of religion and politics from all but hard-right evangelicals is both mysterious and inexcusable.
Adjoining this in was a lengthy report on restaurants on probation for various health and safety issues. While this is disturbing enough, we might well couple it with “Christianity, any flavor you like” and conclude that we are in a culture of what philosopher Jose Ortega y Gasset called “slovenliness”: a general loosening of standards, sloppiness in manners, decorum and veracity and sacrifice of moral integrity for illusory material comfort. Call me starchy, but I have little appetite for tainted food, lukewarm sermons and slippery ethics.
Ernest Henninger, Harrodsburg
The second episode of CNN’s “The Redemption Project with Van Jones” about a young girl and her family whose lives were shattered by a drunk driver made a powerful argument against driving while drunk or — for that matter — against the use of alcohol at all. But the pitiful irony of that devastating tale was the show was sponsored by Dos Equis lager and Crown Royal liquor. Every few minutes the gut-wrenching narrative came to a halt to allow the advertisers time to show us how happy we might be at a boisterous beer-laden wedding or simply walking down a sunny street in our neighborhood and sharing an afternoon drink of whiskey with our smiling mother, who apparently would be overjoyed her son was so thoughtful to bring home some expensive booze. Then, it was back to the shattered girl in the wheelchair, saliva dripping off her chin as she attempted to talk, and a trip to the toilet, something she has been unable to manage by herself in 10 years.
Kenn Johnson, Mount Sterling
Buy recycled paper products
It was a shock to learn paper can no longer be recycled by some area governments because of a glut on the market. The Lexington recycler can’t be blamed because no one, including China, will buy it. I have been conscientious about increasing the supply of recycled paper, but have been doing nothing about increasing demand for products that contain recycled paper. Recently I took my first step to consuming products with post-consumer recycled paper content. At Kroger, I found two brands of toilet tissue made from 100 percent recycled paper, including greater than 50 percent post-consumer recycled paper. Both are made in the United States. The price was about the same as the brand I had been using.
Readers should take similar actions when buying facial tissue, paper towels, napkins, printer paper, and more. Businesses and government should also review what type of paper they are buying and switch to those with post-consumer recycled paper content. If dozens, then hundreds, then thousands of people and businesses start using these types of products, then we will be able to recycle paper again and not dump it in the landfill. Do what’s right for our planet; take action.
Richard Rosen, Frankfort
A May 23 Herald-Leader letter writer contends that the … “intense hatred for President Donald Trump can mean only … that he is doing a great job . . . ”. By this profound logic, it must follow that Mussolini, Hitler, Genghis Khan, Attila the Hun, Robert Mugabe, Charles Manson and the like all did a great job. Further, the letter writer confirms that the “extreme hatred” of Hillary “lock her up” Clinton proves that she was a pretty darn good secretary of state and first lady, not to mention the greatness of the countless targets of Trump’s venom. Note also how much of the praise for “the great job” Trump is doing fails to offer any examples.
And, by the way, whatever happened to the Golden Rule.
Jan Rafert, Harrodsburg
Cruse firing disappointing
I am very disappointed that WLEX 18 fired Lee Cruse. First, like all of us, he is not perfect. He blundered and wasn’t thinking when commenting on the fired disc jockey. He should have kept quiet. However, he apologized with deep regret and accepted responsibility for his irresponsibility. I’m also disappointed in Rev. L Clark Williams for his Herald-Leader op-ed. He is in the business of forgiveness and instead of leading by example chose to fuel the fire of racial division.
Cruse has worked for WLEX 18 for over 20 years without incident. His co-anchor Hayley Harmon has worked with him for five years and proclaims in all that time she has never seen Cruse act racist or express any opinion that would suggest otherwise. Cruse is a talented comedian. I have witnessed his comedy and it is devoid of racism and very clean, in contrast to many comedians. I wish WLEX 18 had stood up and supported its long-term employee. Instead, they chose political expediency and to get rid of the controversy as soon as possible by firing an excellent person in our community.
David Martin, Lexington
Put the phone down
Every day I see more and more workers at various restaurants either staring at or talking on the phone. Others have told me they have observed the same behavior. I wonder where the managers are. As an example, I’m in Taco Bell at Hamburg Pavilion at 8:28 pm and workers are on the phone as I type this.
William R. Elam, Lexington
Education or TV?
Gov. Matt Bevin was quite critical of teachers who missed work to fight for the future of public education in Kentucky.
I wonder if he had anything to say about the workers who were expected to take sick leave to miss work because of the late television showing of the “Game of Thrones” finale. Kentuckians, which was a more important reason to miss a day of work?
Margie Lewis, Eubank
Derby, you’ve changed
I have been watching the Kentucky Derby for 50 years and one thing is clear – I have seen Derbies that make this year’s look like a trail ride.
It’s the end of the Derby as we know it.
Duke Martin, Lexington