August 13, 2008

Inbox — Aug. 13, 2008

Letters to the Editor

CORRECTION

In the July 24 Cable Boxing, “the long white thing” from the film “The Neverending Story” is Falkor, not Atreyu. LEO Weekly regrets the error. We promise to brush up on the classics from our youth, starting with “Green Eggs and Ham.” 

 

FORGIVE AND FORGE AHEAD

As most people now know, there was a confrontation at the Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression that involved me, my mom and Ms. Gracie Lewis (as reported in the July 24 and Aug. 6 LEO Weekly). Some people have moved on from that incident, but others are reluctant to let it go. It seems that no longer is it about me getting attacked by Ms. Lewis or my mother defending me, but it is about the social justice movement and whether the older generation is ready to pass the “baton” forward.

Ms. Mattie Jones is defending her longtime friend Ms. Lewis in this situation by threatening to protest the organizations she feels have been doing her friend wrong. I think it is honorable to defend a friend, but I think it is silly to defend a friend who is in the wrong. Ms. Lewis states that LEO Weekly does not have the facts to support the article Phillip M. Bailey wrote, so Ms. Jones wants to protest them for libel. LEO Weekly, however, has gotten the statements straight from people who have either witnessed the event or have seen others like this. Once again, it is silly to defend a friend who is in the wrong and who has terrorized other youth in the arts and activism camp.

I believe that the older generation should stop thinking about things as if the next generation were trying to take the baton from them. I think now more than ever is a time for the older generation to share the baton and guide the next generation on the path of claiming the baton. I don’t think this situation will be forgotten easily now that it has escalated to such severity, but there does need to come a time when we all forgive. And I forgive you, Ms. Lewis.

Advocate Scott, Louisville

 

KEEP SPEAKING OUT

Thank you for Stephen George’s editorial “Cracked crystal ball” (LEO Weekly, Aug. 6). I became interested in Kentucky, the politics of Kentucky and the issue of mountaintop removal when my daughter and I traveled through there while visiting Berea College (where she will be a freshman in just a few short days). Periodically, I get Google updates on the issue of mountaintop removal and was appalled to read your Lt. Governor’s recent statement on the issue. Unfortunately, we don’t have a much smarter administration right now over here in Missouri … but we are working on changing that. I’m glad to know that there is an editorial voice speaking out and providing the facts about the practice of mountaintop removal. 

Victoria Day, Columbia, Mo.

 

U OF LOOT

I’ve long believed the current university system is too beholden to state, political and business cultures. The exposed criminal acts with grant money by staff personnel at U of L and other universities indicate that institutions of higher learning are also supply depots for looting.

Bob Moore, Louisville

 

IN LAWSUITS WE MUST

I just picked up the July 30 issue of LEO Weekly and was reading the Inbox. I had to put it down and put in my 2 cents’ worth, if you don’t mind.

I evidently have been asleep since the “In God We Trust” on our license plates came to issue. So here goes: First, I am Pagan … yes, I said it, P-A-G-A-N. And no, I’m not responsible for your missing cat. 

The point is, I am not Christian, and it would be a violation, to me, a taxpaying Kentuckian, to sport an “In God We Trust” license plate on my vehicle. While I do respect Christians and their beliefs, it is not my cup of tea. Therefore, if the state forces me to proclaim such, it is a clear violation of my rights. And yes, I will sue the state, as I imagine many will.

I would think the Kentucky government would have much better things to do with our limited funds than to fight lawsuits.

Angy Papp, Louisville

Editor’s note: The “In God We Trust” license plates will be optional. 

 

LIGHTEN UP ON GOD TAGS

Joe Phelps’ July 23 guest commentary gives us a good reason why we should not be alarmed at Gov. Beshear’s proposal for a Kentucky auto tag bearing the old slogan “In God We Trust.” He probably did not intend this to be a point in favor of the auto tag, but many folks I know would see it positively. 

Phelps points out that there are many different concepts of God. Some see God precisely as described in Genesis, while others see God as a greater consciousness that guides us to good purposes. Beshear’s auto tag apparently would not promote any concept in particular. 

So, each person who sees this slogan on our coins, paper money or auto tags, gets to decide for herself what it means. That’s diversity. For me, it’s simply an expression of our faith in goodness and love, in traditional terms that reach all the way back to the founding of our country. This interpretation will surely not be very satisfying to religious zealots and resolute atheists. Maybe they ought to lighten up. The rest of us are more flexible.

Tom Louderback, Louisville

 

WHAT’S THE SECRET?

During his presidency, Jimmy Carter called on citizens to sacrifice and conserve energy. In the 1980 race for president, I remember candidate Ronald Reagan telling the American people we don’t have to sacrifice. We haven’t had a president since Carter, more than 28 years ago, who has had the smarts and courage to lead the country down the correct energy path. Today we are paying serious consequences for that failure.

Republicans like to make fun of former President Carter and say he was a terrible president, but Carter was right about energy, and his legacy looks better as time passes. What I can’t understand is how the George W. Bush administration got away with holding the secret Dick Cheney energy task force meetings that began soon after Bush took office. Why were those meetings secret? Why did the media and the Democrats not push hard to find out what went on in those meetings?

In this year’s presidential race and congressional races, Democrats should keep hammering away and make an issue out of the secret energy meetings. Voters deserve to know what the Bush administration wants to hide. Former Rep. Anne Northup and Sen. Mitch McConnell blame Democrats for the high gas prices. They are banking on their spouting the party line of “domestic drilling” to win their respective races this fall.

Do Northup and McConnell — both staunch supporters of Bush energy, economic and foreign policies — know what took place in the secret energy meetings? If not, why have they been too timid to find out and let their constituents know? At least they could let us know why the meetings were secret. The media and Democrats should begin asking probing questions on the matter until we, the people, so affected by the high cost of energy, get an answer.

Paul L. Whiteley Sr., Louisville