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Published: Saturday, 4/19/2003

Juvenile crime not addressed

A recent article was headlined: “Crime dip puts fewer in juvenile prison.”

Those of us on the “inside” know that most first-time, second-time, third-time, etc., juvenile offenders are simply charged and released, repeatedly. While catch and release may be appropriate for wildlife, is it in the best interest of either repeat juvenile offenders or society?

Repeated low-level crimes such as curfew, truancy, tobacco, criminal damage, and safe school violations often do not result in incarceration. Juveniles in Lucas County who have been arrested soon realize that they will not be detained.

I know of one juvenile who in the last two years has been charged with criminal damage, petty theft, safe school violations, unruly conduct, outstanding warrants, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, criminal damage, obstruction, and criminal trespass, yet he was not detained once.

Why wait until a juvenile becomes an adult and/or commits a serious felony before he/she spends a night or two behind bars?

I find it puzzling the juvenile detention officials can't or won't fill empty cells at the new Juvenile Detention Center.

ROBERT KRISHER

River Road

Remember the Contract with America? The 1994 election? Remember those 10 items Republicans promised they would try to pass if elected? Wasn't one of the biggies a balanced budget? I remember a large loud bunch of people who even wanted to pass a balanced budget amendment. How silly? Make it part of the Constitution. Make it illegal to do deficit financing.

Let's pretend for a moment that those very vocal people had succeeded, had gotten their way, and somehow made it impossible to pass deficits. Would that have an effect on today? Today, right now, it would be illegal to borrow money to finance this war with Iraq. President Bush could not have gone to war with Iraq due to laws instigated by his own party. Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

That same crowd also thinks dividends should not be taxed. They say dividends are taxed twice. They didn't know what they were talking about in 1994 and they don't know what they are talking about today.

Again, let's pretend they get what they wish for. Let's see what can happen when you don't tax dividends. Suppose a big corporation has a multimillion dollar loss some year. And that loss is carried back to previous tax years, And, the corporation gets all that tax money back it paid in previous years. Obviously, no tax money is paid on the dividends issued in those years.

Thanks to the law they wanted passed, recipients paid no tax on those dividends either. Should they now pay tax on those dividends they received in those previous tax years? Who should pay tax on those dividends?

MATT PERKINS

Heidelberg Road

To our elected officials in Columbus, both Republicans and Democrats, read my lips: “No New Taxes.”

They've already passed higher taxes for our gasoline, license plates, and driver's licenses, but now they want to increase the state sales tax? Where have they been the past two years when it comes to keeping an eye on our budget? I'm certain they can find ways to cut the budget without hurting our schools and libraries.

What about competitive bidding for all public contracts over $5,000 and merely continuing existing highway projects and maintenance, but no new projects until our budget turns around?

No new taxes - please.

JOHN PAVLICA, JR.

Elmhurst Road

Evolutionist Michael Ruse is a man on a mission. He recently took his personal crusade to Bowling Green State University. A proficient lecturer and author of philosophy, he's built a successful professional career promoting and defending the evolutionary world view.

His message is unwaveringly and authoritatively presented as a scientific defense of evolutionary dogma, and a fervent dismissal of creation and intelligent design science as mere religious speculation. Garbed in academic credibility and armed with state-of-the-art evolutionary factual weaponry, Dr. Ruse fends off attacks on what he perceives to be a threat to scientific progress from scientifically ignorant people who are either hopelessly superstitious or naively ill informed.

But Dr. Ruse's premise, while superficially seductive, falls apart upon closer inspection. Although he accurately describes evolutionism as “secular religion,” he misses the fact that it's as much a belief system as any other religion. He admits that science “can create a whole way of looking at the world,” yet he ignores the implication that a scientist's “whole way of looking at the world” can create professional bias.

Considering his insistence that evolutionism is an irrefutable scientific fact, it's puzzling that Dr. Ruse finds it necessary to defend evolutionism with philosophical arguments based on materialistic assumptions. He thus accepts only a non-theistic “way of looking at the world” as a valid method of scientific analysis, and discards as “irrelevant” any theistic analysis (i.e. intelligent design) even if it's supported by empirically sound and logical scientific principles.

Sadly, skeptics who maintain blind faith in the “secular religion” of evolutionism have accepted it as a fact before examining the evidence. A growing number of qualified scientists disagree, and present credible challenges to the covertly biased conclusions of the evolutionary establishment. True scientific facts are not established by philosophical manipulation.

N.G. SOLOMON

Broadstone Road

I find it fascinating that the conservative right has been struck by newfound compassion for the Iraqi people that must have eluded them 12 years prior when, upon “winning” the original Persian Gulf War, George the elder left Saddam to massacre the rebels who stood against him.

Stories emerged from that war of Marines, grown men, crying on the front lines as they watched these people being murdered in plain sight of them. But Mr. Bush had his approval rating and had assumed his re-election was assured, so their suffering was considered acceptable.

Second, though I supported the removal of Saddam once we had committed ourselves, I do not believe that's why we fought this war. It's not for oil, not a pre-emptive strike to disable weapons of mass destruction, not because of 9/11, and it sure isn't about liberating the Iraqi people.

What it is about, is justifying our already inflated military budget. When an amoral war, as I believe this one to be, breaks out, the first question we must ask ourselves is who's going to profit from it.

George W. is not to blame for this war. In the current culture of our foreign policy, the President has little say in what the National Security Council does. It's the NSC, a coalition of the military and CIA, that have built up this Third-World bully, and now that we have a new Public Enemy No. 1, he has become expendable. I only hope that the next dictator we choose to sponsor isn't another Saddam or Osama.

DANIEL McINNIS

Elmhurst Road

Hold on to your wallet

All us law-abiding taxpaying citizens are in for a wild ride. And the biggest thing at risk is our wallet.

Did you save your $600 rebate check? You are going to need it and more.

What Washington giveth, the state of Ohio is going to taketh away. Temporary income tax rise, increase fees for auto tags, driver's licenses, and higher tax on gasoline, and any other tax increase the creative minds of our leaders in Columbus can come up with that they think will not cause a total uprising. The time is nearing when all us Mr. and Mrs. Bubbas will get zero percent interest for 60 months to pay our taxes.

CHARLIE LEININGER

Woodville



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