Letters to the Editor

Letters to editor: June 25

Prime time to allow street food vendors

Food trends come and go. The food-truck and food-cart movement in America is often called a trend. I disagree.

For hundreds of years, food vendors have lined the streets of Rome, Paris, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Mumbai, Berlin and Barcelona — providing quick, regional and affordable food for the "on the go" customer.

It was fast food before there was fast food.

In America, the popularity of street food has reached its boiling point. See Portland, Austin, Madison, San Francisco, New York, or just flip on the TV.

For a nearby example of this movement's magnitude, look at Cincinnati. This time last year, its city council created three street food zones in order to re-energize the downtown. After three wildly successful months, a fourth zone was added.

Programs like this are designed to give young entrepreneurs the opportunity to start small businesses in a tight economy and in a geographic area overlooked by most restaurateurs: the urban core.

Currently, the Itinerant Merchant Task Force is considering a pilot program that would allow street food in carefully zoned areas of downtown Lexington. Foodies, unite. Email Mayor Jim Gray. Call your council member. Or, please sign our petition at the farmers market.

With a brand new streetscape, the distillery district, an expanding civic center, an emerging East End and a new Rupp Arena looming, the time is now for food trucks and food carts in downtown Lexington.

Jim Voskuhl

Hardwood Pizza Company

Lexington

Money in wrong hands

Our governor talks about our state being broke. There's not enough money for education or to keep our roads up, but we do have enough for food stamps for our lazy population of pill poppers and dope heads to go to restaurants and eat on my money.

I am 71 years old and have worked all my life paying taxes to create a land of milk and honey for our deadbeats. I can't afford to go out and eat, or to buy all the groceries I need.

The governor needs to look at the real world.

Estil Adkins

Winchester

Marriages need saving

I was very troubled by the front page article on June 6 concerning the decline of marriage in Kentucky.

Let me say that marriage, which was created by God for one man and one woman, has been around since Adam and Eve. It's not some new thing that came along a few decades ago.

Even though the divorce rate is high, marriage itself is not to blame. The people who refuse to take marriage seriously are the problem.

A strong marriage requires maturity, humility, thoughtfulness and commitment. Since these qualities are sadly lacking in the world today, the high rate of divorce is understandable.

While it is true that some divorces cannot be avoided, many can. Living together will never solve the problem since no relationship can long survive immaturity, arrogance, selfishness and lack of commitment.

I am very thankful for my own dear husband and I can truly say that a good marriage is worth having. It is a shame that so many couples will never know this.

Kim Lehman

Lexington

Leave mess, create jobs

Employment figures for May 2011 reveal that unemployment among U.S. teenagers is at 24.9 percent — and it's your fault.

The hundreds of thousands of fast-food restaurants in America are staffed by workers that you often mock for being paid at or near minimum wage.

But before you get too smug, keep in mind that you work in the fast-food industry too, but you are working for nothing.

Every time you push your fast-food garbage through that little trash can window that says "Thank You" on it, you are costing somebody a job by furnishing work to the restaurant at much, much less than minimum wage.

Hundreds of thousands of American teenagers could be put to work now if America's fast-food customers would just stop cleaning up restaurants for free.

If you just can't resist the peer pressure of other customers staring at you as you leave an unclean table, do the rest of us a favor: bring a wet sponge or get one from management to wipe up the spilled mustard and ketchup that is still on your table.

William C. Jacobs

Lexington

March backs miners

Earlier this month, hundreds of people marched from Marmet, W.Va., to Blair, W.Va.

The purpose of the march was twofold: to commemorate the 90th anniversary of 10,000 coal miners who stood up for their rights to work in safe conditions for decent pay; and to bring attention to the devastation of mountaintop removal coal mining, which threatens to destroy Blair Mountain, W.Va., the site of this historic battle in 1921.

The marchers were a unique group. Miners and activists joined forces against the human and environmental toll coal barons are extracting from Appalachia.

Miners are concerned. Safety regulations are routinely ignored, the number of mining jobs has dropped drastically over the past 20 years (although the amount of coal mined and corporate profits have increased) and unions are being picked apart.

Communities are concerned. Appalachian culture is being lost, families are losing land that they've held for hundreds of years, water and air pollution from mining is making people sick.

Mountaintop removal mining and associated corporate practices are an assault, not just on mountains, but on an entire culture. What will happen when the coal is gone? It's time to stand up for the future of Appalachia.

Carey Henson

Berea

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