Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor: Dec. 1

Citizens should base decisions on facts not fiction

While listening to and reading all the political incorrectness in the news, and on talk shows, I had to ask myself how many citizens really feed on these sources when making decisions that affect their daily lives. Are decisions based on facts or fiction, on whom we like or dislike?

We live in a world where lies take precedence over truth. We do not — rather than cannot — accept right over wrong, and more often than not we refuse to admit when we are wrong. We sit idly while others suffer from hunger, homelessness, lack of medical insurance, physical and mental illnesses, lack of jobs and lack of education, and we offer feeble excuses that it is somehow their fault — that they did not work hard enough.

We are now in an economic tailspin. Those who refuse to accept the facts blame our president. Most of us busy bashing President Barack Obama and expressing what measures should be taken to get our country on track cannot run our own homes.

Some seize every opportunity to discredit everything Obama says or does. Those who think for themselves wonder why this president is shown such hatred and disrespect.

Keep on defending wrong over right, all this country will have to show for it is the rich controlling the country and the rest of us at the bottom of the heap, and no president will be able to do a thing about it.

Barbara Byrd


Reign of monsters

I do not personally know Mitch McConnell. I have never met John Boehner, Eric Cantor or any of the other Republicans in Congress. I only know what they have been doing the past three years.

From their actions, I can only assume they are among the most cruel, ruthless people in the world.

Since the advent of the recession, millions of men and women have been without work, without health care, losing their homes, losing their life's savings, losing everything for not being able to make a living.

Yet Republicans, to the very last one in Congress, have deliberately blocked every attempt to improve our economy so that people can find work. They have insisted on continuing tax breaks for the already super rich (which includes themselves) and subsidies to corporations that make billions of dollars in profits and ship jobs overseas. They have resisted raising taxes, even a fraction, on the super rich.

If you or I were to lock someone up (not to mention millions of people) and deprive that person of food, medical care and the other essentials of life, we would be arrested, convicted and punished.

There was another era in our nation's history when those who could bought and sold people like so much chattel.

We are witnessing the reign of those same kinds of monsters. They would make this once-great nation into two classes — the royals and the serfs.

And we thought we had gotten rid of King George III?

Lawrence E. Durr


Corporate media bias

The Associated Press article in the Oct. 27 Herald-Leader about the Occupy movement in Oakland described the injury to an Iraq war veteran, then claimed that the authorities did not know who threw the rock, and proceeded to quote another city's mayor saying her patience with the movement is waning.

Contrast this with the opening remarks of Democracy Now's transcripts:

"Oakland police repeatedly fired tear gas and flash grenades Tuesday night as protesters attempted to retake the Occupy Oakland encampment outside City Hall — only 12 hours after police tore apart the camp and arrested more than 90 people in a pre-dawn raid. Observers said that at times the downtown resembled a war zone last night. Some protesters are being held on $10,000 bail."

Or, with the Alternet description of The Daily Show's broadcast:

"Last night Jon Stewart took on the Oakland Police Department's over-the-top use of violence against peaceful Occupy Oakland protesters. As Stewart noted, 'They were concerned about a public safety threat, so they did this?' He then showed images of some of the "ruffians" who the police were targeting: a teenage boy, a middle-aged college professor type and a person in a wheelchair."

AP is corporate media. Its article is slanted, framed to try to make us forget why the demonstrators are there in the first place. Its hope is that we will fear this movement. Corporations want us to get back in our cages and stop threatening the 1 percent.

Sara M. Porter


Unfounded attack

I have been a resident of Lee County Care & Rehabilitation Center for five years. Recently, I saw an ad that made me sick and hurt me at the same time from the law firm of Wilkes & McHugh P.A. out of Lexington listing some of the past deficiencies of our centers. They had to go back as far as 2007.

All this law firm is looking for is people to take advantage of and take half their money if they win, and if they don't win the client is still out the court costs and the other fees.

As I said, I have been here five years and have never been treated any better. I could have gone to Cardinal Hill or to the so-called best nursing homes in the state when I left the hospital, but I chose to come here where I knew everyone and was close to my family.

The chief executive of Signature is being attacked by this law firm for no reason. The workers at this center do their best to take care of us. They treat all of us as family. If this law firm had taken the money spent on this ad and used it for good, rather than attacking a nursing home, then it would have done something good like Joe Steier and his Signature nursing homes do every day for their residents.

Brian Angel


Reject Keystone pipeline

On Oct. 7, thousands of concerned citizens from all walks of life across the country went to Washington, D.C., to speak out against TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline at a public meeting held by the U.S. State Department — the last after a series held in states along the pipeline's 2,000 mile-long proposed route.

There are many good reasons for the unprecedented showing of public opposition to this project, and I urge President Barack Obama to reject the Keystone XL. Tar sands pipelines are dangerous, and the Keystone XL poses an unacceptable risk to our nation's most important water resources and to wildlife like the endangered whooping crane, which relies on the same narrow migratory corridor that the pipeline would cut through.

Transporting corrosive and abrasive tar sands crude through a pipeline will lead to spills and leaks — such as the 12 spills experienced by the first Keystone pipeline in its first year of operation in the United States. If the Keystone XL spills into the Ogallala aquifer — which provides an essential water supply to 2 million people — it would be devastating.

The State Department's environmental impact statement fails to adequately address the environmental impacts and safety risks posed by the pipeline.

I'm counting on the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Interior to help guide the Obama administration to reject the dangerous Keystone XL proposal.

Michelle Harris-Shields