Letters to the Editor

Letters to editor: July 24

Media contrive scandals, but voters wising up

The July 14 article by David Lightman of the McClatchy Washington bureau, "Where's the shame? Scandals no longer sure to end political careers," reassured me that American voters may be more intelligent than we're given credit for.

Case in point: Personal scandals are not always a death knell to a man's political career.

Apparently, we can distinguish between a person's private indiscretions (which should never have been made public in the first place) and job performance and viability as a public servant.

This does not mean that we need to condone adultery or immature Internet behaviors, but that we recognize the greater evil — the ruthless exploitation of some by the media in its chase for ratings.

Adultery and promiscuity have been around since the beginning of history. If every perpetrator were to lose his employment because of it, society would collapse.

Jean-Marie Welch


Grimes our future

I have not been as excited about a Kentucky candidate since I worked for the election of Wendell Ford. Alison Lundergan Grimes is the next generation of Kentucky leadership. As Ford served all Kentuckians, we can expect the same from Grimes.

Ford understood that he represented all Kentuckians. His job was to unite those intending to divide, to serve those who have served us in the past, to advocate for those who could not advocate for themselves, to educate the uneducated and to encourage commerce and fair competition, benefiting all Kentuckians. It is the right time to elect another Wendell Ford to the Senate of the United States.

Grimes is that candidate. She embraces the future without dwelling in the past. She has the intellect and the charisma essential to leadership. Kentucky needs innovation to forge a future, not divisiveness to protect the past.

We have an entire generation of young Kentuckians waiting for the opportunity to succeed. Success is not by chance but by design.

Our blueprint has faded with age, as has our senatorial leadership. The future is full of risk, as well as reward. The past warns of the fear of the future, rife with failure.

The choice is ours: Fear and failure or a future with promise? My choice is Grimes. She is our future.

Ray Sabbatine


Readers know more

Television is Americans' top news source, with over half utilizing TV as their main source of news. I find KET's news the most interesting because several viewpoints are presented and time is given to go into topics thoroughly.

C-SPAN also presents thorough discussions when not covering Congress live.

It is alarming, though, that only 10 percent of the news-viewing public reads newspapers and other publications.

When the Edward Snowden scandal broke, I went back to a book by Chalmers Johnson, The Sorrows of Empire.

Much of what Snowden leaked had been discussed in a scholarly manner and was known and debated in 2004. A greater problem than secrecy is that we the people are uninformed and uninterested — except for us readers.

The U.S. has 725 bases in foreign countries, with a replacement value of $118 billion, and 254,788 military personnel in 153 countries; when counting civilians and dependents, over half of a million.

These facts are from a report to Congress which is supposed to be presented quarterly but rarely is. This is not a secret, but people are unaware and uninterested.

Do we want to spend more on our military than all other countries combined? Do we want to spend 10 times more on our military than on our State Department?

Politicians should rein in our global empire and, with the lull in global adversaries, re-examine defense needs. President Barack Obama's tepid declaration of peace is a beginning. Let our politicians hear from the rest of us.

Jesse P. Mark


Sick of liberal lies

As the saying goes, this is the straw that broke the camel's back.

After reading your July 10 editorial, "IRS scandal less than it seemed," I am more than done with your bias and lies and ready to drop this subscription.

I watched the testimony of small business owners before the House Oversight Committee. These individuals, Tea Party organizations and other conservative groups that were targeted did not seem to be spinning anything. Also, why did no liberal groups come forward?

Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan's Purse and The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has said that he contacted the administration previously and informed it that his organization had been targeted by the IRS.

Are you saying Graham's organizations do not use their monies for the betterment of the communities they serve? Why in the world would they be targeted?

Could it be you are still defending this liberal Obama administration, be it the IRS scandal, National Security Administration debacle and, oh, yes, Benghazi. Some of us patriots still remember the four Americans who died.

There are other places to get my news and I don't have to read your lies. Americans are too smart to believe lies. We know the truth when we hear it.

Jennifer Williams


Helmets, please

On July 13, the Herald-Leader published an excellent column by Susan Smith-Durisek on safety while gardening. But when I turned the paper over I was shocked to see a teenager skateboarding without regard to safety.

Where are his helmet and other protective equipment? The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports 25,000 persons are treated in emergency rooms yearly. The commission lists the lack of protective equipment as the leading cause of injury.

Skateboarding is an inherently dangerous activity. Most states have laws to regulate, ban or control skateboarding. Many such laws also include biking, roller-blading and motorcycling. They are all considered hazardous recreational activities.

How many persons, especially teenagers, have to be injured before we wake up to this problem?

Woodland Park and Fayette County's recreation department should require helmets.

I am impressed with the article about Joshua Roberts' efforts to bring religion to his skateboarding friends, but I hope he is praying that no one is injured.

Barbara Vonderheide


Stumbo's tax story

I'm worried that House Speaker Greg Stumbo is telling the "rest of the story" about the diverting of coal severance tax money to Rupp Arena only because he got caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

We already have declining coal production and coal jobs. Now the only bright spot of coal severance money is being used in a way it was not intended.

Why didn't Stumbo just tell the whole story to begin with? Probably because he knew how much we depend on that money for our kids and our schools, and he was afraid to tell the truth.

Stumbo is starting to sound more like President Barack Obama and his war on our Kentucky coal than the legislator we thought was on our side. Shame and more shame.

So, is there any more to the story after this?

Kathy Baker