Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor: Nov. 16

Check phobias at the restroom door

I would like to respond to the Nov. 2 letter concerning a public restroom being used by what was described as a cross-dressing man. The writer complained, because a restaurant "allowed," as she put it, "a man to use the women's restroom."

I would like to ask her, what gives you the right to harass me or anyone else who needs to use the restroom where we are paying customers?

It offends me that people like her give our community a bad name by making us look homophobic, transphobic and suspicious of anyone different. She asked when this became "politically correct." This reeks of the days of separate but equal. God forbid if you are a tomboy, tall, broad-shouldered, or wear a wig because you lost your hair to chemotherapy. The self-appointed restroom police might ask you for proof that you are a woman.

I am a woman and that is why I use the women's restroom. I go in, do my business, wash my hands and get the heck out as quickly as possible.

Maybe you should, too. Please stop pushing your phobias on me or any other innocent person who just needs to go.

Tuesday G. Meadows


Our post-coal future

Thank you for the Associated Press' inspiring story about former coal miners moving on as the coal industry erodes. I only wish you had touched on the issue of former coal industry employees moving toward jobs in the growing clean-energy sector. As pressure to address human-caused climate change grows, we will all have to move on from coal.

We have a moral duty to reduce carbon pollution, but we also have a moral duty to make sure that former coal-industry employees can provide for their families.

I look forward to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's ideas concerning how we can best prepare for a post-coal future and the market-based measures we must take to cut carbon pollution and move toward clean energy.

Devone R. Tucker

Brockton, Mass.

Real-life economics

It is difficult for me to believe so many people are clueless, in their ridiculous ideas regarding people who work for minimum wage. Apparently, there are folks out there who are so far removed from the economic situation of the poor, they cannot comprehend the level of poverty.

The minimum wage needs to be increased because it is no longer teenagers trying to earn extra money who are employed at these jobs. People with families are striving to be providers. It's hypocritical that the ones who despise welfare so much are the ones who are against raising the minimum wage.

Also, people want a "livable" wage not "living" wage. There is a difference. If minimum wage was a living entity, it would have probably committed suicide by now.

As for the people who believe that hard work and ambition still pay off, your reality might as well consist of unicorns and faeries. Go to any gathering of recent college graduates who have been unable to obtain employment and tell them to work harder.

How much skill is needed to obtain a job these days? According to my personal observations, the main skill needed to land a job is to know the person who does the hiring. Having a rich daddy doesn't hurt. Qualifications and work experience are completely irrelevant.

Sandra Wells


UK sports puts money over loyalty

I always held the University of Kentucky in high esteem, a shiny halo, so to speak. Unfortunately, that halo is tarnishing. The loyalty propaganda for the new football seat selection seems completely corroded green.

I had an appointment to select new seats for future seasons. I had had tickets that were selected when the stadium was constructed. I liked my seats. I want my seats back. I have been loyal throughout all those losing years. I made contributions. However, I was not rated loyal enough to get my regular seats.

Evidently, the factors making up my loyalty chest were not green enough. I lost my prized seats and was shifted to less desirable seating.

I am disappointed UK has diminished its standards. If profitability is all that counts, then perhaps UK will once again have the opportunity to sell tickets at a discount to fill the stadium.

Jewel Johnson


Professional manager for schools

So, Tom Shelton has resigned to move forward and upward. Another example, it appears, of the upward mobility of the incompetent.

What I cannot understand, is why, before he left, he did not fire Julane Mullins, Rodney Jackson and Mary Wright, the three people who essentially cost him his job. Mullins and Jackson behaved like little children in separate schoolyard cliques, and their supervisor, Wright, was seemingly incompetent to end discord and solve problems among people she supervises.

What role models we have here. I haven't looked up their salaries, but I'll bet these three are members of the "$100-K-Plus Salary Club" that we have working in our education administration. Meanwhile, competent, professional teachers labor on for their, well, we all know how we pay them.

Just maybe we should consider hiring a professional manager and not a professional educator to manage our district and education budget dollars. That person, maybe an MBA, would be in charge of budget, overseeing the building of our physical plant, administering personnel and all of the near- and long-term planning.

Let's let our head educator oversee and manage the educational process.

Joe Mercer


Put candidate spending on ballot

I'm disappointed in this election. Not with the winners, but with the amount of money spent. That could have been spent on better things to help this state. Instead, it bought us what? Representation? Doubtful.

The vast majority of the money came from out of state, so I think those deep pockets will be represented, not us. We absolutely do need to rein in the spending. Why is it that the politicians (both sides) reach for the low-hanging fruit of either the social safety net or defense spending? Because it's easier? I don't care. We didn't put you there to be lazy.

We need to get the money out of politics. Corporations and unions should not be allowed to donate. Individual donations should be capped very low. This will at least prevent us from being subjected to countless TV ads that are little more than spin and a lot less than the truth.

I have a stack of shiny mailers (and one letter from Elaine Chao) that took up space in my mailbox or on my front door. None of those things swayed my vote. Neither did the robocalls. Let's vote for the candidate who spent the least money. Let's put that information on the ballot instead of their political party.

Far more useful, in my opinion.

Kathi Ailts


Cancer screenings save lives

I was pleased to see your coverage of low-dose CT screening for lung cancer (Merlene Davis: "New lung cancer screening is good news, may promote survival rates," Oct. 29). The impact of screening on early detection makes it vital that those at high risk of lung cancer go in for an annual low-dose CT.

Research shows that up to 60 percent of cancer cases and more than 50 percent of cancer deaths are preventable with the knowledge we have today.

Not using tobacco products is the best way to reduce your risk of lung cancer; their use has also been linked to colorectal, breast, throat, cervical, bladder, mouth and esophageal cancers. There are many other steps you can take to prevent various forms of cancer or detect them early, when treatment is most successful.

We encourage you to talk to your health care professional about the best time to start screenings given your family history and personal risk. Some tests to discuss are: mammograms, Pap smears, colorectal screening options, PSAs, skin exams and testicular self-exams.

With these preventive measures, we can significantly reduce the number of cancer diagnoses and deaths each year, both in Kentucky and across the globe.

Carolyn Aldigé

President and founder

Prevent Cancer Foundation


Media focuses on death

Two major news stories — about two young women, both suffering from terminal brain cancer, and their radically different approaches to their situations — show how the mainstream media" try to shape how we think.

Brittany Maynard, using Oregon's Death with Dignity Act took her own life. Across the country, Lauren Hill, also with a terminal brain cancer and only weeks to live, took to the basketball court for Mt. St. Joseph's College and scored four points.

Two women, both dealt a bad hand. One chose to "die with dignity," the other faces certain death and chose to live with dignity.

The mainstream news anchors commented about how brave Maynard was, taking control of when she would die, and suggesting that perhaps other states should pass laws allowing the terminally ill todie with dignity. Lauren Hill's decision to live a little longer, rather than just lay down and die was relegated to the sports section of the news.

What does this say to our young people? That it's better to give up than struggle against impossible odds. Our enemies don't need to defeat us, our own media are doing.

Edmond Schwab


Keep Clarke working for Lexington

I first met Harry Clarke when he knocked on my door in 2012. I mentioned I'd like to hear more about his ideas for the district and we continued to meet to discuss local and state politics. We agreed and we disagreed, but we had good, thoughtful conversations.

Council member Clarke formed the 10th District Citizen Advisory Committee made up of residents with different backgrounds and experiences. We meet monthly and discuss council issues, not to tell him how to vote but to further the discussion and give him more insight.

Clarke's loss struck me hard. Not because "my horse" lost but because he is a very active and diligent public servant. He committed himself to council issues and never stopped to brag or to become a re-election machine.

His challenger ran a positive campaign on issues and not against Clarke. However, with money, resources and time, she was able to win while he continued to do his job.

I think it would be in Lexington's and Mayor Jim Gray's best interest to retain Clarke in some capacity and let him continue to lead, build and grow our community.

Tim Buckingham


Sharing road with bikes the law"Damn bikes!" That's what the driver yelled at me after he finished hitting his brakes and swerving to avoid another driver, who had wantonly chosen to cross a double yellow line, driving directly into oncoming traffic, all on a blind curve. Damn bikes? Really?

How about "damn drivers" who menace and recklessly endanger others, just because they are impatient and "have to" get around someone else on a bike. And for the record, I was all the way over on the left side of the road and was not in any way intentionally trying to impede anyone's progress.

Unless otherwise designated, most Kentucky roads are legally open to all manner of vehicles, including buggies, farm tractors, trucks and, yes, bicycles. That said, I am also guilty of feeling annoyed when I happen upon a vehicle that's moving slower than I think is necessary. But then I remember that sharing the road is not an option, but that it's the law.

Mike J. Kennedy