Pill law adds to suffering of many
Despite no malicious intent behind Kentucky's law to curtail prescription drug abuse, no one thought of the consequences for people who must have pain medications and are not suffering from addiction.
I am one of them.
After four spinal surgeries beginning 60 years ago at 21, I walked with a cane and sometimes could barely walk. I have improved but remain unable to walk far.
When I returned to Kentucky after living in another state, I was unable to get a doctor. As soon as I relayed the information about the back surgeries, I was told the doctor would not treat me and the receptionist would hang up.
I was forced to go to another state for treatment and required to receive injections from a pain clinic before the doctors would see me. A shot a month for five months (67-mile round trip each time) did nothing for me but was a huge burden on Medicare and my insurance.
I've even had a pharmacist telephone — I suspect, threateningly — my doctor, a medical professor at Marshall University, to question a prescription. This legislation has destroyed hundreds, if not thousands, of lives and created hardships for people like me.
Church open, affirming
I was pleased to see the Feb. 7 article, "More churches open and affirming."
However, I wish to point out that the listing of "churches that are gay friendly" is less than inclusive, omitting my own faith community, St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Lexington (and likely numerous others).
St. Michael's has been openly LGBT-inclusive for many years, welcoming, affirming and fully integrating gay and lesbian members into the congregation.
Gay and lesbian parishioners have held positions of leadership over the years. Most importantly, St. Michael's welcomes LGBT members by virtue of Christ's commandment to "love your neighbor as yourself." No voting required.
Karen J. Miller
Protect the puppies
What in the world were employees at the Lexington Humane Society thinking about that would allow a 10-week-old puppy to be stolen from under their noses?
No one had the sense to stay relatively close to the animal so this would not have occurred? Thankfully, this ended on a happy note with the puppy returned. How about implementing immediate safeguards?
Jack H. Taylor
Exports fight poverty
In 2013, as reported by Kentucky One Stop Business Portal, Kentucky exported a total of $25.29 billion in products and services.
The record shows 14.3 percent of growth from a previous year. That is six times higher than the U.S. average growth rate.
So, why should Kentucky join in the fight against global poverty?
Currently, 18.8 percent of manufacturing jobs are supported by exports. If we could save the world's 17 percent who live at or below $1.25 a day, manufacturing jobs could rise, creating thousands more jobs for local Kentuckians. How do we guarantee fighting global poverty would help Kentucky?
The announcement of Indonesia's Lion Air plans in 2011 to purchase 230 Boeing 737s for about $21.7 billion — the airplane maker's biggest order — was a shock to most people, according to The Seattle Times.
For the world's fourth-most populated country, the investment by the United States and allies helped reduce poverty and create consumers of U.S. goods and products.
Since the second-largest export sales in Kentucky are aerospace products and parts, why couldn't we benefit from reducing poverty in developing countries like Indonesia?
Switch to gas
Sen. Mitch McConnell is right but for the wrong reasons.
I have a friend who works at a large electric utility that replaced a coal plant with four gas turbine generators. He says it's just amazing. Quiet, compact, efficient and cost-effective. The benefits to his company and the locality are extraordinary.
Locomotives are no longer coal-fired. The reality is that our power plants shouldn't be — for many reasons, including the massive amounts of carbon dioxide they emit: 1.6 gigatons every year, 30 percent of the U.S. total.
The American Lung Association estimates the health cost of coal power plants is $500 billion annually. There are 600 aged coal plants in the United States. Replacing them with new coal plants will lock us in for another generation. Let's switch to gas.
Here's where McConnell is right. Regulation is the wrong way. A revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend policy advocated by the Citizens Climate Lobby can provide $240 monthly dividends for every citizen by 2020 with net job gains.
That, with tariffs on goods from countries that don't have effective climate programs, and economic aid for areas affected by a declining coal industry, and McConnell has a super alternative.
Los Altos, Calif.