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Published: Thursday, 4/24/2003

A lesson in respect for Canadians

Congratulations to Canadian Mike Weir, who became the first from his country to win the Masters golf tournament. How ironic was it that the Americans gave him a standing ovation when he won the green jacket, symbolic of victory?

On March 20 the N.Y. Islanders played an NHL game at the Bell Centre in Montreal against the Montreal Canadians. The American-based team, composed of numerous Canadians, stood in disbelief as the U.S. National Anthem was heavily booed for the entire rendition.

The Canadians, our long-time friends to the north, were not supportive of nor a member of the coalition in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Does that mean they are not supportive of anything American? They will have to decide.

Will Americans stop spending money and vacationing in Canada because of this? No, probably not. Americans are not that way.

Perhaps those in Montreal and others in Canada who hold such anti-American sentiment changed their minds about Americans after the warm reception Mike Weir received for winning his championship.

Americans have respect for our champions, no matter what country they are from.

Are you watching and listening, Canada?

CARY BIELSKI

West Sylvania Avenue

I would like to comment on John Harris' column about the way Tom Amstutz handled the case of Brandon Hefflin. Mr. Harris states that “a good leader should be feared as well as respected.” It is obvious to me that Mr. Harris was never in the military.

As a career army officer, and a member of the Army rangers, I think I know something about leadership. Fear is not an effective leadership tool, but respect is. By Mr. Harris' own admission, Coach Amstutz's players like and respect him. It has been my experience that people follow someone whom they like and respect with far more fervor than someone whom they fear. If he feels that Mr. Hefflin got off too easy maybe he should look to the judicial system to blame.

I am a 1966 graduate of UT, and Tom Amstutz is my cousin, though I haven't lived in Toledo since 1966, so he probably would not know me. I do, however, follow UT athletics, and I wonder why, when you have a popular, successful coach who is liked and respected by players and fans alike, someone tries to find a negative.

Perhaps we should enjoy the fact that he loves Toledo and will probably stay here forever unless people like Mr. Harris try to drive him out.

DICK AMSTUTZ

Plantation, Fla.

The Blade featured two articles side by side. One article was about the young members of Toledo City Council meeting to discuss why our educated young people are leaving Toledo. The other article stated that the U.S. prison population tops 2 million and is growing. This is a large percentage of the adult population.

I have data that show that more than 73 percent of all prisoners are illiterate and need to be supported with our tax dollars either in prison or on welfare. Shouldn't we focus on improving reading in Toledo Public Schools? This is the fundamental reason for the destruction of Toledo. Why? Young people with families leave our city.

We know the problem, let's fix it!

FORD B. CAUFFIEL

Holland

Today's workers don't know how to budget

I now know why the bankruptcy rate is so high. Today's workers don't know how to budget and can't figure out how to get along on $110,000 a year. Most people I know are making it quite nicely on less than half that amount.

My husband and I not only stayed out of debt but we managed to save money and put four children through college on considerably less than $110,000 a year. Now we are retired and get along quite well on a fourth of that amount. I was a stay-at-home mom and considered raising my children the most important job I could do.

We have become a very materialistic society with an I-want-it-now attitude. Credit cards are overused and abused by nearly everyone. No one wants to wait and save up to get the extras. The extras are now considered necessities.

Also, many people want to start out in the work force at the top and consider lower-paying jobs beneath them. Everyone has to start somewhere and very few have the skills to jump right to the top and do a good job. You have to work your way up.

SHARON TIPPING

Ottawa Lake, Mich.

Now that the war is nearing an end in Iraq, I cannot help but feel a little relieved and somewhat elated that I can actually think about other issues and happenings around the world without feeling guilty.

It seemed all focus and daily interest has been turned to that part of the world and the horrible and sad events that were unfolding for such a very long time. I am so happy and hopeful for the people of Iraq.

However, I do have one concern pertaining to that sad, unfortunate country and its people. Or, should I say, the poor, unfortunate and now recently unemployed artist, whose job it was to paint all those grandiose and highly repetitious portraits of Saddam Hussein.

Will he find another job as an artist?

Can he find a job where it doesn't require tons of khaki paint and a steady hand to get every hair right in that awful and hideous mustache?

Maybe he can start on the portraits of the wanted fugitive, Osama bin Laden, thus furthering the search for yet another desperately wanted despot.

One can only hope.

C.A. HOFFMAN

Sylvania

Brave soldiers are again used as pawns

The Ludwig Von Mises Institute in its Mises Memo a short time back said “war often follows an economic downturn. Politicians see international conflict as a nice distraction from falling incomes and declining economic prospects.”

While the spin-miesters are trying to convince us that our brave men and women are somehow fighting for our freedom, the fact remains that they are once again being used as pawns, this time for the re-election of George W. Bush.

JIM BOEHM

Drummond Road

Most of the media coverage of the anti-war, pro-American argument seems to find our citizens polarized about this subject. I would like to propose the idea that a person can be a patriot and support our troops, yet still feel the reasons for this conflict need to be questioned.

Those who would choose a side in this debate should read up on both sides of the issue before they jump on either bandwagon.

As a U.S. Army veteran I know what it's like to be in a strange country where many resent your presence. Many vets have come home, not to a hero's welcome but to indifference or scorn.

Sign me one vet who loves this country, supports our troops, but continues to question the reasons for this war.

LES ROBERTSON

Perrysburg

A salute to the Storm

With all the unrest in the world today, it's wonderful to have a local bright spot like the 2002-2003 Toledo Storm. We'd like to salute the Brabham Cup champs and the entire Storm organization for a wonderful, memorable season. This is one team that truly appreciates fan support, and we fans love watching the talent of these young men. We appreciate Coach Claude Noel and captain Jeff Mitchell's leadership. Their fans are so proud of them!

SARAH and ERIC WELLY

104th Street



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