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Published: Sunday, 8/1/2004

Government must be able to stand truth

Congratulations on the July 21 editorial that told the truth about the reality of the present situation in Iraq as compared with what the current administration in Washington feeds us.

Thomas Jefferson was so right in his preference for newspapers over government. He understood that a free press was more important to preserving freedom than government itself. In this period of media bashing and suppression by the gaggle of right-wing radio commentators and allies, Jefferson would be first to defend the right of the media to publish or speak the truth.

Government defenders say criticism is unpatriotic. The word "treason" is even invoked to suppress truth and criticism. It is the obligation and duty of the free media (and free citizens) to be the devil's advocate, especially in times of war or potential war.

Media which act as cheerleaders for questionable government actions are not patriots but endanger the freedom of all of us as they encourage government abuse of power.

Truth is the enemy of fundamentalists of any stripe and any government that cannot stand truth should not be in power.

JOSEPH C. GRASSO

Kenwood Boulevard

Not only is President Bush pro-drilling when it comes to Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, now he wants to "put the public lands to work" out West by opening up drilling in wilderness areas. Hunters are joining with environmentalists to protest this insanity.

Oil companies are conducting "experiments" to see if drilling necessarily disrupts wildlife. Take a wild guess as to what the findings will be.

Rather than look at ways to cut our dependence on oil by mandating increased fuel efficiency, improving public transit, or looking for alternative fuels, Mr. Bush is forging ahead and going along with his favorite lobbyists, the oil companies.

Four more years of George Bush will turn this country into one big parking lot for the rich. Once an oil man, always an oil man.

MONICA BIRSEN

Rudolph, Ohio

A very important issue will appear on the ballot next Tuesday, the Lake Local Schools operating levy. As a student at Lake High School, I know this levy means more to the district than many people realize.

Over the past few years, there have been many improvements throughout the district, thanks to Lake Township voters who approved the bond issue that allowed the construction of our beautiful new middle school, as well as various improvements in other district buildings. Unfortunately, growing costs, combined with the loss of state funding, have forced the district to ask for additional operating funds.

Since the announcement of the levy earlier this year, I have heard several different views. Some blame the school board for the mismanagement of funds, and will vote no on the levy to punish the board. But more than anything, it punishes the students of the Lake Local School District.

If you sincerely believe that the board has mismanaged the district's funds, then elect different board members, but please do not punish the students.

The funds provided by this levy help to pay for many vital programs within the district. The district will lose the benefits of the H.O.S.T.S. mentoring program, which provides elementary students with assistance in reading.

Students will also no longer see the benefits of extra-curricular activities. In the high school, at least one teaching position will be eliminated, resulting in the loss of several beneficial classes, including psychology, sociology, and Civil War history. Even traditional events such as homecoming and prom will be canceled.

Support the students of the Lake Local School District on Aug. 3.

ALEXANDER C. CURAVO

Northwood

Are these suburbs out of their collective minds? I read this in The Blade regarding the proposed development of the Menard's store in Oregon:

"We are not going to allow a road to be built in our city to service a business that is in the city of Oregon."

This is from the city attorney of Northwood, Brian Ballenger. What a great service to all of northwest Ohio this stalwart of the law is providing.

If I was a decision maker at Menard's, and I read that quote, I would immediately start to look for another parcel of land. We're not wanted? Fantastic, I will take all the jobs I am going to create and take them elsewhere. The actual Menard's store may not be in Northwood, but the ancillary stores and restaurants that will spring up around it, like the Wal-Mart on Glendale, will be.

Good-bye jobs.

Good-bye tax dollars!

It is this shortsighted approach that will continue to plague our region and keep all of northwest Ohio from becoming a regional powerhouse.

Elimination of these petty squabbles is the only solution. Unified government would solve these idiotic arguments and allow us to actually grow as a community.

Next time I am on that side of town and need to stop and get gas or a snack, I will make sure I stop in Oregon.

I don't need my tax dollars to go to a municipality that is so narrow-minded, to the detriment of us all. Northwood should be ashamed!

CHARLES KRALL

Royce Road

One sure fact of war is casualties. Right now we mourn the young lives that are lost in Iraq. Not so long ago we lost many of our brave servicemen in the forgotten war of Vietnam.

Today we laid to rest a man who fought in that war. Those of us who knew and loved him see him as one more name that should be on The Wall.

Anyone who has family or friends who served in Vietnam has an idea of the demons these soldiers came home with. And when they arrived back in the states they endured even more horrors.

Rather than be thanked for their dedication they were booed and called names.

When our friend came home he tried to live a productive life and for the most part succeeded. But this kind and gentle man could not deal with what he had been through.

As we mourn this new group of servicemen, let us make a vow to remember those who come home, and treat them with the respect they deserve for fighting for freedom.

As for our friend, we think "Catfish" has found his final fire base.

BUSH and DEB MEGLITSCH

Sawyer Road

Westfield Shopping Town has been transformed from a decent mall into a circus for the wealthy and a hangout for the teens who have too much money to spend and too much time on their hands.

Security is lacking and will only get worse as the place gets finished. Soon it will be another Southwyck, where people hated to go to be harassed by those who had nothing to do but go there and cause trouble.

The owners seem to be consumed by upscale this and up-scale that, forgetting that the majority of those shopping will be those in the middle class.

They are now going to the many dollar stores and other discount places instead of Franklin Park.

The inconvenience, mess, and what I assume to be an unbelievable cost of the road construction would not have been needed. I have yet to hear anything positive come out of anybody's mouth as a result of all of this.

Believe it or not, some things are better left as is.

SANDY FLICK

Rose Acres Drive

The Republicans say that gay marriage is a major threat to their idea of "family values."

What a bunch of baloney! What do the Republicans have to say about divorce? Divorce is the most traumatic event that a family can go through.

TIM SADOSKI

Elmore, Ohio



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