Letters to the Editor

4/21/09 Letters

McConnell: I'm proud of my work on environment

Readers of the Herald-Leader's April 17 editorial, "Will GOP return to its green roots?" would never know that in my tenure as Kentucky's senator, I've directed over $1 billion to our state to preserve and protect our environment.

I'm proud of my record in using these funds to expand our cities' parks, clean up the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant, create a conservation program on the Green River, protect families from chemical weapons stored at the Blue Grass Army Depot and establish Kentucky's first ever federal wildlife refuge.

Also important for your readers to know is that I've supported higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks that were structured in a way to protect the thousands of auto industry jobs in Kentucky.

I'm proud of these and many other accomplishments that show my commitment to conservation. In fact, one leading newspaper in the commonwealth — one not typically friendly to conservative Republicans — even called me a "Godfather of Green" for my efforts on behalf of the environment.

Through my travels across the Bluegrass State, I know how important our natural environment is to Kentuckians, and I intend to keep championing conservation efforts in the future. It's important that we safeguard Kentucky's natural beauty for many generations to come.

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell

Washington, D.C.

Chance for immigrants

To help some promising, deserving children, please consider supporting the Dream Act (SB 729 and HR 1751).

This legislation is a critical step in making it possible for some of Kentucky's brightest to make important contributions to the state's economy and to improve their lives and the lives of others.

If it passes, this legislation would legalize getting a college education for some undocumented students and allow them to work legally after graduation. These bright kids came to this country years ago and are hampered by their legal status.

Kentucky needs these young contributors. Making a higher education possible and ensuring a better life for some deserving youngsters is a "win-win" situation.

And, it's the right thing to do.

Please contact your representatives to let them know you support the Dream Act.

Russ Lay


Condoms no answer

Regarding the pope's statement in his recent African tour that condoms increase HIV: The use of condoms alone as a tool against HIV has a downside that for too long has been ignored.

Inherent in the use of condoms (and especially for young people) is the fact that physically there are defects in structure, use, convenience and the compulsion to not use them altogether. The blanket false security that condoms seem to provide will certainly increase frequency of sexual intercourse.

An analogy with alcohol abuse can be drawn. Supposing a parent allows his child to drink watered-down beer or wine. What's to stop the child from eventually trying full-strength drinks? Likewise, the pope has the obligation to teach what he believes to be the truth to his flock.

His message is simple: abstinence before marriage to confront HIV. The statistics support his claim. Uganda is the only African country winning the fight against HIV due to implementation of abstinence-based programs.

Hugh Thomas Findlay


OSM know-it-alls

A recent Herald-Leader editorial strongly urges the president not to appoint any knowledgeable person to head the U.S. Office of Surface Mining. Would you have us believe that a plumber or candy-bar maker would be the ideal choice, so long as they are a lawyer?

While the plumber or candy-bar maker might be necessary people in their field, they are not surface-mining experts. The lawyer would be a different choice, because they already know all that there is to know about all there is to know.

Stephen Stinson


For the people

Our new president has been in office a short time and some of the Fox News people are convinced he's trying to destroy our capitalistic way of life.

Well, I did a study and found that in a capitalistic government system, if you owned two cows you could sell one and buy a bull. That would give you the opportunity to grow your herd and become rich.

Under communism, you would have to give both cows to the government. The government in return would give you some milk if it wanted to do so.

Under fascism, if you had two cows, you would have to give all of the milk to the government and the government would sell it.

Under the Nazi form of government, the government would shoot you and take both cows. Under anarchism, if you had two cows, you would probably keep both cows, shoot the government agent and steal another cow.

Finally, I came to the form of government the Fox News boys think President Barack Obama is trying to lead us into: socialism. Under this system, if you have two cows, give one to your neighbor. What's wrong with that?

We live in a very wealthy country. I see no reason why we can't have the Great Society President Johnson dreamed about. Maybe we should just call it 'peopleism.'

Willard Ashworth Jr.


Snyder will be missed

The Herald-Leader loses again by laying off yet another beloved employee, Howard Snyder, food critic and society columnist and a 37-year veteran of the newspaper.

No other person in your employ has ever personified such honesty, class and passion for journalism as Snyder. For years, his columns were greatly anticipated and talked about simply because no one could deliver, time and time again, reviews and columns with such knowledge and authority.

You could feel that each and every review or column was a labor of love because he cared deeply about the quality of his work, and it showed.

Snyder will be greatly missed by his many devoted followers. Somehow I expected better things from the newspaper I've been reading for more than 50 years. McClatchy has much to learn about loyalty, class and dignity, dahlings.

Beverly Davis Rose


Give Billy the money

Never mind that the University of Kentucky fired a basketball coach because officials don't like his personality. Never mind that when the team was 5-0 in the conference "chemistry" and "fit" were not in the vocabulary. Never mind that the university gave a coach only two years; and never mind that it fired a man who, just last year, was SEC Coach of the Year.

The most shameful thing is that Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart and President Lee T. Todd Jr. are willing to renege on their word — now saying there was no seven-year agreement and that they don't really owe the buyout.

What an example for a place of higher learning to be setting. Do the honorable thing. Billy Gillispie was fired. Pay him the buyout.

Charlie Taylor