Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor: Nov. 29

New wage will hurt city

Lexington’s new minimum-wage ordinance has created an economic growth and jobs plan for all the surrounding counties, because they will be the places that new small businesses that provide most of the entry-level jobs will locate.

Raising the minimum wage incentivizes entry-level employers to find ways to contain their rising labor costs. And they will -- by reducing employee hours, laying people off, replacing employees with technology, etc.

No, the city won’t be held accountable for raising the barrier to entry-level workers being hired and robbing them of the opportunity to learn basic work skills on the first rung of the job ladder.

Companies that might have started up in Fayette County will start somewhere else and companies that cannot afford the increased labor costs will go quietly out of business or relocate to a more business-friendly environment.

These negative events won’t happen immediately. It will take enough time that no one will be able to trace these results to this action.

Now, why doesn’t the city mandate that every employer provide free child care for their employees? Also, it could set a ceiling on the owner/CEO’s pay.

Heck, why not just set the wages for all employees? Now that would really be “progressive.”

Ray Davis


Hike wage statewide

It is very critical that an increase in the minimum wage be placed into effect not only in Lexington but across the state.

Young new workers flee the city and state when they learn what they can earn in places like Texas or the Northwest where the cost of living is the same but wages are much higher.

National companies now mark us off their list of places to bring their better paying jobs because the best and brightest have been lured away, the workforce is hollowed out and the American economy in aggregate now demands a more skilled technology-savvy worker.

Great companies that are here seek to maintain their competitive advantage by following the better-skilled, higher-wage-seeking labor out of town.

What remains are government jobs with more taxes for all, low-skill jobs and jobs that are shortly going to be wiped out by technology.

Let us also reach out to lend a hand to our fellows in need even if it means paying a fraction more for a cheeseburger or sitting on a rock-hard pew.

Ken C. Arnold


Horses will get hurt

In response to a Sunday letter titled, “Death doesn’t have to be part of the sport of racing,” I am in my 70s and have been showing, breeding and racing horses for 60 of those years. The writer sounds like a goodhearted man who is interested in the welfare of some of God’s most beautiful and talented creatures, and I appreciate that.

What he doesn’t understand is these animals are naturally strong, fast and are creatures of flight. They have fine legs and powerful bodies designed for speed and they don’t just break their legs while racing.

I have seen them break their legs in fields, in stalls and in paddocks without even the slightest provocation. Their nature and pleasure in life is to run. And man has always loved to watch and to ride them.

Edward H. “Beau” Lane III


Euclid traffic snarls

I received a letter from the Department of Planning, Preservation and Development which proposed a project to make Euclid Avenue more accessible to pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists.

Euclid Avenue already has its share of traffic snarls beginning with the newly renovated Kroger store. They enlarged the store without providing for adequate parking or access.

In addition there is a new restaurant being constructed on the corner of Marquis and Euclid which will add traffic to an already-congested area.

If the city is seriously considering restricting traffic to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists, it will create havoc. There needs to be a viable east to west corridor. The narrow side streets are clogged with cars and cannot handle more traffic.

Those who remember the traffic problems created by the closing of Alumni Drive should consider how this will impact commuting. Cooper Drive was a nightmare and that did not include the student population.

The city needs to deal with its current traffic problems before implementing the proposed changes.

Cheryl Keenan


Truth about coal

The Nov. 17 editorial, “Time to get real about coal’s future,” is my nominee for best editorial ever written. The last sentence in the fact-based editorial provides a wonderfully simple, to-the-point summation.

Politicians on both sides need to stop misleading people into thinking that, given the proper political representation, coal is somehow going to rebound as in industry. It is not. And that’s a fact. Doesn’t have a damn thing to do with President Barack Obama or any “war on coal.”

Russ Kennedy


Stop ISIS now

While Paul Krugman is one of my favorite public thinkers, I think the reasoning in his Nov. 17 column is substantially flawed.

He (and President Barack Obama) may be right that global warming is an even greater threat to the world than ISIS terrorism and in contending that ISIS will not be establishing a caliphate in Paris.

Nevertheless, Krugman underestimates the likely long-term threat from ISIS. He seems to assume that they will merely continue their current guerrilla tactics and weaponry – assault rifles, home-made bombs, etc.

That assumption is almost certainly wrong.

Give ISIS enough time, and they will acquire chemical, bacterial and/or nuclear weaponry. We know enough about ISIS’ genocidal nihilism to know that they would not then hesitate to use such weapons, anywhere or everywhere.

Give them enough time and massive surreal catastrophes, like an epidemic in Chicago or an obliterated Moscow or a nuclear-decimated London, are almost predictable.

For this reason, Obama’s strategic objective to “degrade and ultimately destroy” ISIS, is inadequate. ISIS gives us no reasonable choice but to make the destruction of their movement a shorter-term imperative.

This would require the level of coordinated efforts, with all of our allies, that World War II required.

Let's drop the denial and do what is necessary in measurable time.

George Hunter


Bevin to the rescue

Matt Bevin is going to save me from the terrorists. God bless him.

How many Kentuckians are killed each year by handguns? He could prevent many of those deaths with gun-control leadership.

How many Kentuckians die of black lung? They could be helped by improved health choices.

How many Kentucky drug deaths should he be worried about?

How many teen suicides are caused by hate-based politics and hate-based religiosity? He could be trying to present a kind and loving stewardship of our state.

Instead, God bless him, he’s going to save me from the terrorists.

Richard Watts Franklin


Lower football hype

I am of the opinion that one big problem University of Kentucky football has is the discrepancy between preseason public-relations releases masquerading as news stories and performance during the season.

If you just read the newspaper before the season, you would think the team is going to take on the world and win. For a large part of the 51 seasons I have been watching UK football, as the current offensive coordinator might say, “They ain't doing so good.”

Let's lower the hype, keep playing hard and the performance might be a little more satisfying.

John C. Wolff Jr.