Letters to the Editor

Letters: Aug. 6

Little steps make a big difference in saving energy

How many "doesn't matters" does it take to equal something that does matter?

Each of us could conserve energy by just turning off lights, conserving water (which doesn't just include the water; it includes the energy it takes to process the water) and recycling instead of throwing away, which thus makes it necessary to build from scratch items that could be built from items that have already been made from scratch.

Maybe just take a moment to stop and think before making a trip to the store to ask yourself if there are a couple more errands you could run at the same time.

Maybe install a clothesline. Put some buckets out to catch rainwater to water your indoor plants and/or water your outdoor plants later. Little steps do matter.

Whenever you think "Oh, it's just a little bit, it doesn't matter," just stop for a minute and consider how many "doesn't matters" does it take to equal something that does matter.

Maybe hanging a photo of a dolphin laying on the beach dead because of the gulf oil spill would help. Or maybe going outside and pouring a little oil on the ground of your own property would help you see how wasting energy is destroying not only our Earth, but lives as well.

How many of those "it doesn't matters" will it take to matter?

Brenda Thomas


Commentary alarmist

To paraphrase this reactionary demagogue, imagine Kent Ostrander, executive director of the Family Foundation, writing a column that is logical, well-researched and something other a shallow diatribe loaded with name-calling and alarmist language.

Whether defending an accused person or a piece of legislation, an attorney's personal beliefs are not important. When the client is a corporation or a governmental agency, the attorney's job is to represent the interests of that client.

Ostrander mentions a challenge to a piece of congressional legislation designed to prevent states from allowing gay marriage. What was the outcome of this legislative challenge? Ostrander doesn't bother with that important information. Instead, he finds it easier to use a fragment from something that sounds controversial to make the broad, unfounded assumption that U.S. Supreme Court justice-designate Elena Kagan is a "militant."

The current Supreme Court, beginning with the late Justice William Rehnquist, is an activist court and to say otherwise is a denial of reality. The only "horror" in this case is that someone as narrow-minded and inflammatory as Ostrander is dignified by space on the opinion page.

Sally Wasielewski


Chickens or college?

I am glad the Herald-Leader has informed me it is legal to have chickens in our backyards in Berea. Goats are next. And I understand the newspaper is severely understaffed when it comes to reporters.

But I think it is newsworthy that 20 students from Kentucky slept at the Capitol and sat in Sen. Jim Bunning's office for three days recently. If arrested, some risked deportation. All this for the opportunity to go to college — and that is all they want.

What would you want for a kid who has gone through our school system and done well and never been in trouble?

Maybe valedictorians can raise chickens in my backyard or maybe they can go to college and learn how to prevent oil spills. This is our choice.

Gil Rosenberg


Dems got it right

President Barack Obama last month signed a bill extending unemployment benefits for up to 2.5 million Americans.

Though funds are needed urgently in other places, the Democrats have their priorities right on this issue. They put unemployed Americans and their families first by pushing for the extension of unemployment benefits.

Here in Kentucky, Republican congressional candidate Rand Paul spoke against the bill, suggesting that workers are unemployed by choice because of not taking lower-paying jobs or jobs outside of their fields — as if there were enough jobs to go around. Paul calls his approach, which leaves families of the unemployed facing hunger and financial hardship, "tough love."

Paul and his fellow Republicans forgot we pay taxes to set up programs such as unemployment benefits to cover our behinds when we are out of work. We elect our leaders to ensure we get what we pay for with our taxes.

Democrats, including our president, did their job and got Congress to pass this bill. By attempting to block it, Republicans put the needs of working Americans and their families low on the agenda.

Tough love in a democracy means having leaders who can make the difficult decisions on how to use our taxes to take care of our own.

More than 60,000 Kentuckians may now be getting their unemployment benefits reinstated. They can thank the Democrats who worked so hard for those of us whose taxes pay their salaries. This is tough love in action.

Zoe Langley


Nursing care lauded

I have been a registered nurse for the last 19 years and have worked in a variety of health care settings, most recently as director of nursing in a nursing home. I can tell you without hesitation that the employees have been the most loyal, loving and dedicated individuals I have ever had the privilege to work with.

They go above and beyond what is required for their job every day. Our industry is heavily regulated and that's OK. We, above all people, know that the elderly are vulnerable. The inspection of long-term care facilities is an intensive process, and I've never seen a surveyor overlook anything.

I believe that most attorneys are ethical people who strive to serve the public to the best of their abilities. I also believe there are those who are not so ethical. These are the ones who take an exception and proclaim it to be a rule.

Beside the billboards that state "If you or your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse, call this number," I would like to see a billboard that states "If you or your loved one has received excellent care in a nursing home, make your voice heard. Contact your local newspaper, radio or television station."

People should visit local nursing homes before passing judgment. They will find a thriving population who is loved, respected and well-cared for.

Eva D. Hughes

Director of nursing, Harlan Nursing HomeCawood

Bummed by Obama

I am so disappointed in President Barack Obama. I had hoped for a lot more out of him.

When he's not playing golf or vacationing, he's suing a state for trying to enforce a federal law, allowing a group to install an "Islamic community center" at Ground Zero or wanting to tax an already economically depressed nation for just turning on the lights.

Marc Elmore


Don't hurt the bear

A June 29 article about a bear attack on a hiker in the Red River Gorge portrayed the event as an unprovoked attack by a bear.

Please have another look at the situation. The hiker was walking a mountain trail with a dog on a leash. Animals have a keen sense of smell and the bear was following the scent from the dog. The dog ran away in fear. The bear still sensed the smell of the dog on the clothing worn by the hiker and approached him.

The hiker became scared, picked up a handy tree branch and hit the bear. The bear bit him in self defense. The hikers said the bear should be euthanized. Please do not kill him, as he was only defending himself.

Toivo E. Puro