I am a letter carrier in Fostoria. I went to work on Oct. 23 and was astonished to find our flag was not at half staff. I know that two of our colleagues had been murdered in our nation's capital. When I inquired about lowering the flags in honor of our comrades, I was told that the President did not authorize it. I was angry to say the least, then I started thinking about it.
They were just postal workers. After all, the dead ones are almost as fast as the living ones - right, Jay Leno? Postal worker - that's a Top 10 oxymoron, right David Letterman? They were just postal workers. Everybody makes fun of postal workers. At least two of us will not laugh at those jokes anymore. Why? Because they did their job. The terrorists did not kill a politician or an athlete, not even a policeman or fireman this time. Only a couple of postal workers. They weren't even important enough to be tested for exposure to the virus, at least not until they were already sick. Too late!
I don't know how to honor these people. I do know that at my house my flag will be at half staff until Thanksgiving - whether or not the President approves.
Because the postmaster general says he cannot guarantee the safety of our mail from anthrax, doesn't it seem like a good idea to halt the flood of junk mail until we get control of the situation? Yesterday I received five applications for credit cards, and a handful of department store ads.
We are increasing the risk of this terror by sending unnecessary mail. I think the banks, stores, and other businesses should consider another form of communication for awhile. Let's put our health and safety in front of profit and maybe the post office will find a way to deal with this situation. The tons of junk mail are just compounding the problem.
I am saddened to hear of the postal workers who lost their lives while going about their expected duties at work. They are surely victims of this hideous war, as were the many people murdered on Sept. 11.
I would like to suggest that we mark the 11th of each month by lighting a candle outside or putting on a porch light. This act would be in remembrance and in honor of all.
I would also like to propose that flags be flown at half mast during the month of November in respect for the loss of life from the postal service.
Several recent Readers' Forum letters, presumably from the far right, basically say “isn't George W. Bush just wonderful,” followed by the seemingly obligatory cheap shot at former President Clinton.
It would seem appropriate, then, that the other end of the political spectrum be heard from.
First of all, Congress, the American public, and indeed most of the world is united at present like no time in most people's memory.
Accordingly, even a man of limited ability can seem to be doing a good job when there is no criticism and/or dissent, regardless of whether his actions are good, bad, or mediocre.
He can get by on knee-jerk patriotism right now, but remember he has more than three years to go on his term of office, during which he will be judged on his own merits.
Not long ago, his father enjoyed tremendous popularity during Desert Storm. By 1992 however, voters were disenchanted with him to the point that they voted him out of office.
It is likely that soon the American public will grow tired of Mr. Bush's most ardent supporters and their actions.
This handful of ultra conservative senators are essentially holding the airport safety bill hostage because the new employees under this bill might unionize and vote Democratic. These guys are obviously more concerned about votes than public safety.
And finally, grumblings are already heard about the President squandering the budget surplus on his rich cronies, while recent circumstances show that this money is badly needed.
This tax cut should be rescinded, but it will take the American people to demand it, before Mr. Bush will take away anything from his wealthy chums.
What a shame that The Blade missed the opportunity to tell consumers about the values found at their credit union in “There's much to check in choosing an account.”
Nearly 200,000 consumers belong to one of 60 local credit unions right here in northwest Ohio. They probably already know that if one is really serious about saving money they only need to turn to the financial provider designed to serve and help them. You see, credit unions originated from the concept of people helping people.
Because of their unique structure as not-for-profit but for-service financial cooperatives, owned and democratically controlled by the members, credit unions almost always present the best overall value in financial services - especially checking accounts!
Credit unions have long been a best-kept secret, especially here in northwest Ohio. With just a little investigative work, almost anyone can find a credit union to join. Check with family members, employers, schools, church affiliations, and even the Yellow Pages or Internet. There is almost always a credit union ready to serve.
Had The Blade reported on checking account values at credit unions, readers may have also learned that by networking together, credit unions offer more than 50 no-surcharge ATM machines throughout this area and hundreds more in the region. ATM fees contribute heavily to the cost of maintaining a checking account relationship.
What it truly comes down to when wading through the bewildering array of personal checking accounts available is that consumers should consider the philosophy behind the business offering the service. Because credit unions put their members' needs first, American consumers have ranked credit unions as the leaders in customer satisfaction for 16 straight years, according to the latest American Banker/Gallup consumer survey.
PAULA C. SAUNDERS
Ohio Credit Union League
Recent reader commentary suggests that the U.S.A. routinely inflicts its own self interests on other countries. This is a ludicrous thought! Just imagine a country founded on the principles that we enjoy today inflicting freedom on oppressed persons through military action.
I'm sorry to be the one to tell you, but freedom is a God-given status that all individuals are granted at birth. Freedom can be taken away quite quickly, and this occurs immediately after birth in many countries.
I, for one, am proud that the U.S.A. will do those things necessary to restore lost freedoms. We as a country will nurture, feed, shelter, train, supply, advise, and instill hope, all in the name of freedom. And when our own freedom is put at risk, we will not stand still either.
The so-called “pacifists” are completely off-base in their thinking. While their thought process can be better described as “anti-violence,” the real pacifists are the persons involved in the military actions taking place in Afghanistan.
You see, peace is not something that can just be “declared.” Peace must be earned. When we are dragged into a fight, you better believe we will fight back to achieve the victory we seek. The victory of peace. The victory of freedom.
Seal it with a kiss
The sadistic kook or kooks who are using the U.S. Postal Service for delivering the anthrax samples will make a mistake one of these days. Let's hope it's in the form of a big, wet lick on one of those envelopes.
MARIAN G. ELFRING
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