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Published: Thursday, 3/13/2003

American family is also a business

Those of us who remember World War II recall gas rationing. With gasoline prices skyrocketing, we are once again told that gasoline is in short supply. Yet the message appears to be that we can have all the gasoline we want if we are willing to pay a lot more.

The “trickle down” implications are obvious. Any good or service requiring petroleum process in its manufacture, conveyance, or sale will also cost more to the buyer.

Here, then, is a thought to consider: The American family is also a business. We produce consumers, without which American business at large would wither and die.

When business loses its operating capital, it cuts back to protect itself against loss, economic instability, and even a destructive bankruptcy.

When a family begins losing its disposable income (operating capital) to an oil industry, and its oil dependent manufacturers and merchants, then it is truly time for the family to call a halt and begin thinking like a business. This means cutting back on goods, services, and especially luxuries like vacations, new cars, and appliances that end up as increased debt. This is family business money that will be put in family savings to increase family capital. The New Englanders had it right when they said, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, do without!”

One afterthought - could you imagine the kind of “market correction” families could generate if we all stopped buying gasoline one day per week?

JAMES FAGERSTROM

Perrysburg

I challenge the anti-war protesters on integrity. If they're going to preach “Thou shalt not kill,” then integrity and human decency demand that they hold all nations and all peoples accountable to the standard. The anti-American activists who get the media exposure do not do this.

Who among them waves signs against Kim Jong II's threats to incinerate the world? Who among them demonstrates for al-Qaeda to disavow mass slaughter of innocents? No one, because to them America is the only evil, white male Republicans the only madmen, and the only deaths they find worthy of their concern are those that result when their designated madmen stand up to terror and tyranny.

Three thousand people died Sept. 11. Potentially many thousands more the next time terrorists strike? Doesn't matter. Defend America by eliminating threats to its security? Absolutely not - just protest military action and give the inspectors more time to be duped, deceived, and compromised by Saddam's goons. And these are patriots?

And what about freedom for Iraqis and North Koreans? Nothing. Show concern for those who have no freedoms whatsoever? Protest children being shot for not praising Saddam loudly enough? Of course not. Saddam must be laughing at the callous irony of free speech being used to protest action against him as he tortures the slightest dissenters among his people.

I do not want war, but I want even less another round of death and destruction from terrorists that will come if we fail to stand up to those who enable such attacks. I call upon the President to defend this country, because I believe our country is worth defending. And I call for an end to the rampant abuse of human rights in Iraq and North Korea. I challenge the protesters to do the same.

THOMAS BERRY

Bowling Green

I believe Mike Ferner is a man to be admired. Few people have the courage of their convictions to go into a war zone unarmed to try to bring about peace. I think Mr. Ferner is indeed a brave man and I wish him well. I sincerely hope he finds the peace we are looking for.

SHIRLEY A. MORAN

Wendover Drive

I recently read an article about the filming of commercials in support of President Bush's Iraqi war policy. I find it ridiculous that “our” President has to resort to television ads to promote himself and his political decisions.

If the Bush Administration has to resort to persuasive tactics to get public approval, maybe he ought to take another look at his political agenda.

With so many Americans protesting a war with Iraq, why isn't the Bush Administration listening to the people who elected him to office? For some strange reason they thought he would do what is best for the country.

I did not vote for Mr. Bush, but for those of you who did, do you really think George W. Bush has the American people's best interest at heart? I would say he has the Bush family's best interest, but that's just my opinion.

ROBIN VOIGT

Temperance

So sad to read of the fate of the Fiberglas Tower. I moved to Toledo in 1963 and watching the tower go up was a favorite of mine, along with probably thousands of others.

Those of us who worked downtown got a good view of the building as it rose higher and higher each day, creating a new symbol of a revitalized downtown.

It was visible from each direction and the best view was coming in on Monroe Street or the expressways from the west and northwest. Lunch hours could be spent at ground level, watching the structural steelworkers put the 400-foot-tall jigsaw puzzle together.

Then when it was completed, lunch or dinner at the Top of the Tower was the epitome of the new Toledo experience. Later on, radio carried the music of John Thone and Hershey Cohen bands playing in the Tower dining room. It's a shame that a new use cannot be found for the Tower. It made me proud to be a Toledoan, and its heyday was too brief. Too bad.

HANK HARVEY

Cotter, Ark.

In the Feb. 23 Blade, in the “200 Years of Ohio” special section, there was an article titled “Victory by Wayne opened the frontier.” I have a problem with that title. But I have an even bigger problem with the last sentence of the article, which reads, “... the 60-minute battle had a lasting effect: It allowed for the unfettered settlement of the American frontier.”

As the author actually mentions earlier in the article, the “frontier” was already settled by the native peoples. What Wayne's battle did was bring an end to the natives' ability to defend their land and home against the white Americans. The battle did not allow for “unfettered settlement,” but for “unrestrained encroachment” by the white Americans. The native peoples were forcibly removed farther west to Kansas and neighboring areas.

I am not faulting the white Americans. I am a descendant of these people. They acted in a way natural to them and their times. But let's not whitewash what was really occurring. The native peoples were not wild animals, but they were regarded pretty much as such. However, from our modern perspective, do we have to retain our ancestors' viewpoint and still regard the natives as little more than wild animals? Using the terminology this article did implied this same old attitude.

LAMAR BENTLEY

Berkey

With all this talk about smokers, what about those who wear those cheap perfumes and colognes? Those things are more deadly to me than the smoking. Where's my protection from them?

Some of those cheap perfumes and colognes cause my throat to close up, making it hard for me to breathe. And it takes days to clear up.

I'm not the only one affected. Maybe we should get together and demand a ban on cheap perfumes in public places.

BRUCE WHALEN

Fredonia Avenue

In his bicentennial article, James Drew wrote that settlers “sometimes waited one month for their mail.” Some things never change, do they?

BILL SCANTLEN

Perrysburg



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