When anyone, at the behest of a friend, enables another woman to leave a battered woman's shelter and then furnishes her with food and shelter, this befriending person, who is of Hispanic descent, would normally receive high praise from the National Organization for Women, La Raza, and possibly the Farm Labor Organizing Committee.
But Linda Chavez, the former associate of Al Shanker while at the American Federation of Teachers, received nothing but criticism from the above organizations and others.
This merely demonstrates that the basis of the criticism is all about ideology. Also undoubtedly, fears about enforcing existing labor laws was a factor, and resurrecting heretofore dormant criminal prosecutions.
Notwithstanding the lack of support from her adopted political party and nominator, I think that she resigned prematurely and should have shown up for the confirmation hearings.
With historical congressional hearings as a guide, I can think of several strategies she could have pursued that would have ensured “softball” questions and concomitantly sympathetic mainstream media treatment. Here are two.
1. She could have attended the hearings wearing a Chappaquidick neck brace.
2. She could have disavowed the formerly battered woman and averred that the woman was operating a prostitution ring from her home without Ms. Chavez's knowledge. This would, of course, transform Ms. Chavez into a victim.
Unfortunately, in more ways than one, while we have history as a guide, no one seems to pay heed to history, whether in love, war, and/or politics.
RICHARD F. BAILEY
I was ecstatic to see your Jan. 6 editorial, “A blessing on the land,” about President Clinton's historic decision to protect close to 60 million acres of roadless national forests around the country. I'm proud that the Forest Service and the Clinton administration worked with the 2 million people who submitted comments in support of protecting our wild places.
As the President said in his remarks, “more Americans were involved in shaping this policy than any land preservation initiative in the history of the republic.”
The new Roadless Area Conservation Rule reflects a public mandate to protect what's left of our wild places from destructive activities such as logging, mining, and road building. This conservation plan is one the most comprehensive and essential initiatives of the last 100 years and will ensure that our national forests continue to provide clean water for communities across the country, recreational opportunities for millions of people, and critical habitat for rare and endangered species.
This great victory for the environment, along with the preservation of our old growth forests, fills me with hope. Unfortunately, the incoming administration, along with special interests such as the timber and gas industries and their allies in Congress, give me a sense of dread. The incoming and incumbent unconcerned have already threatened to roll back the new wild forest protection policy despite its overwhelming public support.
America needs and deserves pristine wilderness areas. I urge Rep. Marcy Kaptur and Sens. Mike DeWine and George Voinovich to defend this new rule in order to save our natural heritage for future generations.
One of the points made in the recent CEG study of the current pet overpopulation problem was the need to spay and neuter many more animals in the county. One of the solutions mentioned was access to a low-cost and easily accessible clinic to perform these procedures.
The solution is now here in the Toledo area. Recently, a nonprofit organization called Animal Wings opened a low-cost spay and neuter clinic. It is located off of I-475 and Salisbury Road, so it is very accessible. Local veterinarians vol-unteer to perform the surgeries.
Study after study has demonstrated that the only real long-term solution to the pet overpopulation problem in any community is to spay and neuter every adopted animal from local shelters and to promote the procedure to the public. Now cost and inconvenience cannot be an excuse not to get this very important procedure done, and it is now being performed without any need for additional taxes or license fees.
Our community needs to stand behind the ultimate goal of preventing the pain and suffering of the innocent animals.
GARY COTTON, DVM
I admire Dr. David Grossman's courage to take the initiative on banning smoking in restaurants. I have had to make the choice of “first available” too many times when I would have preferred nonsmoking. I have had someone practically stick a cigarette under my nose because the person did not want to offend the person with them. Another time, I was seated at a bar, where no one was smoking around me, only to have someone walk to the bar and light up because they didn't want to offend the people at their table.
Twice as many people are eating out today as there were only two decades ago. And what people usually ask is, “How smoky is it? Do they have nonsmoking?” This seems to be about as big a priority as the quality of food.
Also, I know several older people who have to pass on certain functions because their health problems are irritated by the smoke. I will not list all the poisonous byproducts of cigarette smoke, only to say that if any were a food additive, it would no longer be on the market.
We have handicap access cuts for the restaurant, yet we place another one up when smoking is allowed.
I smoked a pipe and several cigars in the past until I realized that it was costly, stinky, and a general nuisance to the people around me.
I am so tired of hearing how George W. Bush needs to listen to the people on the left since half the country didn't vote for him. Well, guess what? More than half didn't vote for Al Gore either (2 percent voted for Nader) and Bill Clinton only got 49 percent of the vote in 1996 and only 43 percent in 1992. In 1992 clearly 57 percent of the people wanted someone else (either Bush the elder or Ross Perot) and we didn't hear all the whining about how we needed to address the concerns of the right or middle. Mr. Clinton's first item of business was to cater to the far left. I hope people will remember the early days of gays in the military, fetal tissue research, and government-run health disasters. Let's give George Bush a chance to run the country from the middle and right; we've already had eight years of the left.
Why do Washington Local Schools parents' children feel compelled to use the school bus stop in front of our house as a garbage can? While we enjoy the sight of the kids congregated on the sidewalk as they wait for the bus, we do not enjoy the calling cards that they leave behind: half-empty soda cans (I won't attempt to address in this letter the “virtues” of kids drinking soda while waiting for the school bus at 7 a.m.), candy and gum wrappers, etc.
I suspect that the policy of WLS is not to allow kids to bring their “breakfast” (Mountain Dew seems to be particularly popular) on the bus, so the cans are flung onto the grass in front of the house as they are boarding the bus. Perhaps it would send a message if I were to gather and retain all of the garbage that I collect, say over a three-month period, ask the kids their home addresses, and then distribute their legacy in front of their houses.
Alas, I suspect that the only result of this would be a court date and a fine for me, and a continuation of this undesirable behavior on the part of the kids.
West Capistrano Avenue
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