Letters to the Editor

Letters: July 20

South end needs Clays Mill Road widened

For years, Lexington has planned to make Clays Mill Road four lanes. In the last two years, it has installed all the needed utilities to complete the four lanes. Now, the people in the south end have been told the city does not have the money to complete the additional lanes.

What happened to the appropriated money?

The city has money to waste to eliminate the median strip on northern New Circle Road, turning these strips into extended left- and right-turn lanes.

Now, the left-turn lane leading to Liberty Road must be about a quarter-mile long, and the left-turn lane leading to the strip joint opposite McDonald's is twice as long as before. This will make all the sickies who love to see naked women really happy to get an extended left-turn lane.

The city found Obama administration stimulus money to widen the sidewalk outside the Hilton Hotel, allowing the Hilton to impress the visitors coming to the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

How many Lexingtonians own a horse or will go to the games? They are more interested in getting better roads to drive on.

Why can't some of the stimulus money be used to complete the Clays Mill project? I don't think the people in the south end will be voting to re-elect our present mayor.

Stan Dalton


Goodwine good judge

As a practicing lawyer in Lexington, I read the majority of the stories you publish relating to our judicial system and, more often than not, I agree with them.

That does not hold true with respect to your recent coverage of the sentencing of the various airport personnel by Circuit Judge Pamela Goodwine.

I have practiced before Goodwine for close to a decade. I have agreed with many of her rulings, and I have disagreed with many.

But irrespective of whether I agree with any particular decisions she has made, I can assure you she did not issue a single ruling without a substantial amount of work, research and preparation — work that often exceeds that of her peers in other courts and jurisdictions. And perhaps unfortunately for some of my clients, she has always attempted to apply the law fairly and impartially.

As lawyers, we are not often forced to make decisions; instead, our side of the debate is already chosen by virtue of the clients we represent. In contrast, judges are forced to decide on winners and losers every day, decisions that have even more importance in the context of criminal proceedings.

Perhaps before the Herald-Leader decides to second-guess our judiciary again, it will take the time to learn the background and history of those it seeks to criticize instead of simply questioning their ability to remember eight-year-old meetings and imputing some nefarious conduct related thereto.

Mason L. Miller


Sanction Iran

The time has come for the United States to move forward with its proposed sanctions on Iran. The Iranian regime has so far refused to comply with previous United Nations Security Council resolutions.

Currently, Iran has stockpiled enough enriched uranium to produce two nuclear weapons.

Both the UN Security Council and the European Union have approved sanctions against Iran in an effort to convince the Islamic Republic to abandon its nuclear enrichment activities. While the U.S. Treasury Department is helping to push for further sanctions, the U.S. can and must do more.

The new sanctions fall short of the tough sanctions needed to stop Iran. The U.S. must take additional actions to undermine — and ultimately halt — Iran's nuclear program. The White House and Congress know this but must redouble their efforts.

Congress must pass and send to the president the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act, which is the most comprehensive and toughest piece of legislation on Iran that Congress has ever considered.

If implemented, the legislation would impose crippling sanctions on Iran in an effort to persuade the regime to change its behavior and end its illicit nuclear program through diplomatic, political and economic measures.

Now is the time to press ahead with sanctions so that the Iranian regime cannot acquire nuclear weapons that would endanger Israel and the entire Western world.

Jennie Cox


Government's job

Regarding the BP oil spill, I haven't heard much commentary about why the federal government had an important role to play immediately after the oil started leaking, a role it botched completely.

After the accident occurred, there were two tasks to focus on — stopping the leak and protecting the coastline. BP was responsible for the first task; and the federal government, not BP, was responsible for the second task.

Questions about financial liability could wait. The highest responsibility of government at any level is to protect its citizens and property. With thousands of miles of coastline that can be damaged by an oil spill, the federal government should have had at least a skeleton contingency plan (it's not like the Exxon Valdez spill happened yesterday). The federal government failed to fulfill its basic responsibility.

The federal government stood around blaming BP and expecting BP to do both tasks when the government should have stopped the oil from reaching shore, while BP was trying to stop the leak.

You figure out why they didn't. I already have made up my mind why they didn't.

Nota bene with this administration: (1) "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste," and (2) there are no longer any unintended consequences from legislation from this bunch, only intended ones.

Richard L. Degener


Expand DNA testing

Some candidates for the November election will gain votes by campaigning specifically on how they will work for adequate DNA laboratories in Kentucky.

If elected, they will have Legislative Research Commission hearings on facilities to speed DNA tests to avoid expensive delays in justice that have become so frequent and costly.

DNA evidence is incontrovertible in trials and appeals. It is often present on or in bodies of the victims, including children. It can prevent false arrest, conviction and imprisonment. It may lead to early guilty pleas and reduce the need for witnesses and court expenses. It can make the string of inconsequential appeals months or years shorter, saving prison time and reducing delay in justice.

Legislators who provide adequate DNA facilities may save millions from Kentucky's budget every year. Let's elect those who say they will do it.

Rex J. Phillips


Costly audit

You have lots of praise for state Auditor Crit Luallen, but you need to hear the rest of the story.

She conducted an audit of McCreary County several years ago. She saved us some money, which the miscreants have repaid. But she dragged the audit out for so long we lost a $1 million dollar grant to build a new senior center.

Elmer R. Olson

Whitley City