Youth fed up with political actions harming our future
It seems that instead of representing the needs and desires of their constituents, our representatives, by and large, have decided that their main duty in public office is to act on behalf of corporations and industries, oftentimes at the expense of human health and well-being.
We've seen it on the national level, with the recent discovery that the State Department hired someone who works for Trans-Canada to complete its environmental impact statement on the Keystone XL pipeline.
We've seen it on the local level, where our elected officials allow important pieces of legislation to go unsupported, like the Clean Energy and Opportunity Act, which would support the inevitable transition to clean energy and create thousands of good jobs here, and the Stream Saver Bill, which would protect our precious waterways from continuing to be destroyed by coal companies.
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Young people of Kentucky have realized that the poor choices of our representatives are something that will affect our futures, especially when it comes to ending environmental injustice and fighting climate change.
Their refusal to act with the people is a direct threat against our lives and access to the precious natural resources we need to survive, like clean air and water.
We want to make sure that our representatives in Frankfort and in D.C. know that we are onto them and when it is time for re-election we will be at the polls, voting for people who truly have our best interest in mind.
KY Student Environmental Coalition
In your March 10 Readers' Views, under "Sequestration question," a reader put forth the proposition that the Republicans were lying by not divulging where, and how, the 2 percent budget cuts were going to be made. Unfortunately, the reader left out a few facts of his own.
Both the president and the Congress have known that sequestration was coming for the last 18 months but during an election year, the president and the Democratic Senate majority did not want to deal with this touchy subject.
During this period the Republican-held House sent two bills to the Senate which would have allowed the spending cuts to be made in a more flexible and responsible manner and both bills were ignored by Sen. Harry Reid.
The president has been saying that the sequestration cuts would be stupid and harmful if carried out, yet it was his administration that proposed them and he refused an offer from the Republicans allowing him some discretion as to where and how the cuts would be made.
The president is supposed to represent all Americans, yet he continues to play politics with the crushing debt that hurts our economy and will burden Americans for generations to come. Now tell me, who is the liar?
Paul correct on drones
Recently I excoriated Sen. Rand Paul for his showboating over President Barack Obama's legitimate use of justified and reasonable executive orders.
Also, the Herald-Leader carried a deeply cynical and disingenuous column by the senator — or a staffer writing in his name — that willfully neglected the consciously racist Southern strategy implemented by Republicans in the 1960s to draw alienated Democratic white supremacists into the Republican fold.
Today, however, I stand in support of Paul's Senate filibuster in which he called our attention to the dangerous violation of our civil liberties represented by the Obama administration's expanded use of drone attacks on foreign soil and potentially against American citizens.
These attacks violate the constitutional separation of powers and are contributing to the further resentment of the United States around the world.
On balance, Paul is a narcissistic, reckless demagogue. But in this case, he is right. I hope other senators will join him, and use the filibuster for a legitimate reason for a change.
Rebound in 2012
The past year was both challenging and rewarding for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bluegrass. We started 2012 with a large amount of debt. We finished 2012 with an estimated $250,000 turnaround.
While successfully overcoming our financial challenges, we also impacted over 500 children through one-to-one mentoring. This was made possible through support from the Central Kentucky community.
Our situation is improved, but we still have a long way to go, and we need your help to succeed. Our goal for 2013 is to serve over 600 children, a 20 percent increase over 2012. Without the ongoing financial and volunteer support of the Central Kentucky community, all of our plans are meaningless.
If you see the benefits of the support that we provide at-risk children in our community, I ask that you consider making a financial contribution to BBBS of the Bluegrass, helping us continue our mission to change a child's life for the better, forever. We pledge to reinvest into the communities that support us. I ask that you also consider giving some of your time to the children we serve by committing to be a Big Brother or Big Sister. One hour of your time each week can make a difference in a child's life.
Thanks for your continued support of BBBS of the Bluegrass. Without you, none of what we have accomplished or hope to accomplish in the coming months/years would be possible.
I would like to express my appreciation to Lexington Center. As the winner of their "Find Your Seat" contest, I am the lucky recipient of a year of tickets to every public event hosted at Rupp Arena, the Lexington Opera House and Lexington Center.
I look forward to a year of exciting events, thanks to the generosity of Lexington Center. A special thanks to Sheila Kenny, marketing director, for her kind assistance.
Lexington is a beautiful city with much to enjoy. My family and I look forward to spending much time in Lexington during the coming year.
Dying for our sins
As you reported March 25, Tomas Young chose to end his life after nine years of suffering from his injuries in Iraq.
As Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges says, he "will die for our sins. He will die for a war that should never have been fought. He will die for the lies of politicians. He will die for war profiteers. He will die for the careers of generals. He will die for a cheerleader press. He will die for a complacent public that made war possible. ... There are hundreds of thousands of other crucified bodies like his in Baghdad and Kandahar and Peshawar and Walter Reed Medical Center."
Everyone who ever supported our invasion of Iraq, a country that posed no threat to us whatsoever, should watch the documentary Body of War about what Tomas and his family have gone through day in and day out.