Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor, Dec. 31, 2015

NRA wrong on slippery slope

The National Rifle Association is all excited about the slippery slope of gun control after many mass shootings. What is being suggested is not gun control, but information of gun ownership. We have a registration for new guns but not for secondhand guns at gun shows. It would be helpful to law enforcement to have all guns registered by the current owner.

In the cases of gun violence, it will allow police to follow the ownership of any weapon used in a crime. This is not controlling weapons but is similar to a car title or a home deed. It is information readily available to legitimate entities that need it.

I have used and shot military-type weapons like an AK 4 and Bushmaster semi-automatic and they are meant for shooting people in masses only. It should not affect any Second Amendment rights to ban these weapons for sale to the public.

This is a reasonable first step in addressing this perplexing problem. We also need to deal with mental-health treatment and finding homegrown malcontents who have been radicalized.

Tom Sweeney


Free enterprise unbound

“There probably isn’t any undertaking on Earth short of assuring the national security that can’t be handled more efficiently by the forces of private enterprise than by the federal government.” — Ronald Reagan

Quotes like this are used to berate government, as if free enterprise without government would lead to a utopian existence. Actually, it would lead to the end of free enterprise itself and probably result in chaos.

Free enterprise requires rules to which all businesses are bound. How is ownership defined? How can things legally be sold, traded or given away? How is bankruptcy handled? How do you protect both businesses and consumers from fraud, coercion or corruption?

Governments create these rules and monitor how well businesses follow them, then correct those that violate the rules.

During the last few decades, the richest individuals and corporations have had remarkable influence over congressional actions and changed our free-enterprise system to their financial benefit. We need to be better informed and demand our representatives change the rules back, so more lower-income individuals receive an appropriate share of the wealth this nation produces on their backs.

Joseph P. Fox


People need to know

Presidential candidates are asked questions the media want to know, not what the American people need to know. For example:

Would you order the U.S. Armed Forces to invade, or place sanctions ordered by Congress against, a sovereign nation that did not harm this nation?

Would you remain silent when powerful members of the government direct an aerial attack on the United States of America?

Would you kowtow to the prime minister of Israel to be elected or re-elected?

Would you, through executive actions or whatever mode is available, order the separation of church and state in all actions involving the federal government?

Would you order the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide service-connected veterans and/or defense-connected employees their benefits and end the denial of benefits based on administrative rules?

Billy Ray Wilson


Recognize rescue teams

Most people don’t realize the hard work of rescue teams. From Kentucky to California, I have had the privilege of meeting fine people who volunteer in training for water, climbing, rope techs and repelling to save or recover someone’s loved one. Our main goal is bring them home so the family can have closure and peace. We have rescued animals, also.

Mike Sparks, leader of Powell County Search and Rescue, is one of the hardest-working people I know. He works with our team every day and has great passion for his job. The city of Stanton — along with state offices, other counties and businesses like Whitaker Bank — has the biggest heart in helping us. All those sending us food and coffee when we are out in the field we want to thank.

I am proud to be part of search and rescue. We are not able to save all, and we take this personally. Remember, if you get lost hug a tree. Welcome to the Red River Gorge, anytime.

Lisa J. Johnson


This fan’s done

Scapegoat season again? Shannon Dawson bites the bullet. He and Coach Mark Stoops don’t communicate well? Hmmm. A half-million-dollar mistake?

Tommy Mainord, apparently the best recruiter on staff, gone because of dropped balls? Chalk up a couple hundred thousand more dollars.

I don’t claim to have answers for University of Kentucky football, but we’ll be watching on TV not from season-tickets seats. I played in high school and college. I’ve had awful, good and great coaches and think I was a decent coach, too.

I witnessed this year: Poor communication on sideline, lack of coaches’ response to live-game situations; play calls on both sides of ball that seemed unusual; a team that appeared unready to play; special teams that suffered, and there’s sure more.

The new stadium bling might bedazzle a recruit, and the corporate/doctor/lawyer/horse-farm crowd now has more suite choices. But the average fan got less, not more.

We’ll miss the energy of Commonwealth but not the booze, excess of loud-mouth fans and not seeing the action, even from a good sideline seat. Give us a team that competes to win and maybe we’ll do some home and away games.

Michael A. Tyree