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Published: Sunday, 1/14/2001

Riot situations now handled differently

When I saw The Blade's suggestion that the new I-280 bridge be named for Gov. James Rhodes, I said to my wife (a Kent State graduate), “Well, the antiwar protesters will come out of the woodwork for this one.” Let's just say that I wasn't wrong, and already there are letters criticizing this suggestion due to the May 4, 1970, shooting at KSU.

As the governor of the state, Mr. Rhodes did not just have the option but the duty to order in the National Guard when the local police department could not handle the riot situation. Buildings were being burned and lives were in danger at a state university. This is why the National Guard is under the control of individual governors and why guard units are called in for prison riots and (most recently) the Los Angeles riots.

As a reserve officer with the Military Police Corps the last nine years, I can clearly point part of the blame right back at the MPs (of course the rest of the blame belongs to the rioters who turned the “peaceful” demonstration into arson). Since 1970, we have made drastic changes in how we handle riot situations.

The riot was full of people who were not students at KSU. Even the Pulitzer Prize-winning photo (the one of the young lady bent over the body of one of the victims) showed someone who did not belong there (the young lady was not a student at KSU).

Every year the lives of these four students are mourned, but there has yet to be a candlelight service on the Kent campus for the 58,209 citizens who honored their civic duty and died serving our country in Vietnam. Let's put it into perspective.

MATT SMITH

Holland

Art Tatum was a major influence in jazz music. His name is known all over the world for brilliant playing and outstanding achievement. He is also from Toledo. Why not name the new bridge the Art Tatum Bridge? Music is the universal language, a language that draws people of all races and cultures together.

The name would reflect the cultural diversity of Toledo and recognize one of the greats in jazz.

JOHN NAPIERALSKI

Christie Boulevard

I am proud to work as a teacher in the Springfield Local School District. Recently I asked someone who was new to our district if they would be supporting our upcoming school levy. The response was all too familiar: “Why should I? My kids are grown.” While that may be true, I feel we should share the responsibility of educating our young people.

It is much more difficult to grow up in our world than it was 20 years ago. With so many challenges facing today's youth, it is essential that we band together and offer students the guidance they need in order to conduct <$eb> themselves as responsible, productive adults in our society.

The goal of our schools is to provide a safe, structured environment in which children can learn. As teachers, we guide our students with much love and nurturing. Contrary to what some have said, we do not have a seven-hour day. We arrive at school early to put finishing touches on our lesson plans.

We stay after school to provide students with extra assistance or to offer opportunities for participation in extra-curricular activities.

In the evenings, on weekends, and in the summer, we attend meetings or take classes that will keep us current on various issues concerning education. We care about children because they are our future.

We cannot do it alone, however. We need your help. If your children are grown, be thankful that they were able to receive a good education. Address your conscience as you get ready to vote in this special February election. Your decision to invest in children is vital to our future. I guarantee it will be one of the most sound investments you make!

BERNICE SCHWARTZ

Tontogany

My far-right friends say historian Carroll Quigley's Tragedy and Hope points out the evils of the Federal Reserve, the CFR (Council on Foreign Relations), one-worlders, and international bankers. The Eisenhower presidency (1952-1960) is discussed starting on page 897 in a way that is relevant to the 1980s and today.

“Once elected, the new President reintroduced the Republican conception of the President which had been used in 1921-1933 (Coolidge and Hoover). This conception saw the President as a kind of titular chairman of the board who neither acted himself directly nor intervened indirectly in the actions of his delegated assistants. Fully aware of his own limitations in knowledge and energy, Eisenhower allotted the functions of government to his Cabinet members (eight millionaires and a plumber) and expected to be consulted only in unsettled disputes or major policy changes.

“Eisenhower as President can be summed up in one word: amiability. He not only liked people; he was eager to be liked, and was, indeed, likable. If he gave the impression that he had no firmly held opinions, that was because of two other qualities: He was relaxed, fully willing to live and let live, in an easygoing tolerance of anything that did not disturb his own peace of mind. He was quick-tempered but was not a fighter. He had convictions, none of them very firm, but was not prepared to sacrifice his own rest and relaxation for them, except for brief occasions. His span of attention was neither long nor intense. As a consequence, he was a wonderful companion, but not a leader.

“He also had a weakness, one which is found frequently in his [military] profession, the conviction that anyone who has become a millionaire, even by inheritance, is an authoritative person on almost any subject.”

THOMAS WIDLAR

Swanton

It is readily apparent to me that Marilou Johanek doesn't get it regarding a healthy respect for honest differences of political opinion, versus a scathing lathering of any political views other than her own.

She doesn't get it on Bill Clinton. How would she like to explain Slick Willie's reference to oral sex, presidential use of cigars, and “I didn't have sex with that woman” to our precious children?

She doesn't get it on Al Gore, that he learned the art of fabrication of fiction in place of truth from his boss and spent too much time in Buddhist Temples instead of campaigning in his home state.

She doesn't get it when, in a 1999 column, she seemed to think that a robust economy (assuming that Mr. Clinton should have all of the credit) merits total relief from a sad morass of moral values.

Ms. Johanek is making Howard Metzenbaum, Ted Kennedy, and their colleagues look like dyed-in-the-wool conservatives!

This nation is teetering on the edge of moral collapse due to many factors, including this type of oblivious acceptance of decay of our moral values.

GEORGE J. EISTETTER

River Road

Before The Blade completely loses touch with reality with regard to Alan Greenspan, I'd like to point out that his action of lowering interest rates came as he suddenly realized the economy was slowing. Forty-five days ago the Fed thought there was no danger of this happening and took no action. The 55 percent of Americans who have invested in the economy have known for many months it was slowing. It did not begin in the past few weeks.

Mr. Greenspan's rate reduction caused a momentary rise in the markets but had no effect by the end of the week. It will take more than this to reverse the direction the economy is heading and The Blade does its readers a disservice by promoting the fantasy that all is now well and major tax action is no longer required.

The Fed, the administration, and Congress have waited too long to act!

DAVID J. LOWRY

Goddard Road



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