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Published: Sunday, 7/31/2005

Mega-dairies threaten the environment

Your recent editorial, "Mega-dairy headache," will hopefully spotlight the serious environmental issues being imposed on our area watersheds and Lake Erie by millionaire foreign investors.

One of their latest proposals, the Naomi Dairy in the Jerry City/Cygnet area, includes a 25 million gallon manure storage pond. It rises to almost 20 feet in the air. This happens to be situated in a flood plain where several of the roads had flooding with white-caps as recently as January.

As a sixth-generation Wood County farmer, I know this is very typical of flood-prone Portage Township, Wood County.

As for the fallacy of attempting to justify these environmental boondoggles based upon economic benefit, even an Ohio State University economic and fiscal impacts case study showed the dairies with major economic gain were the ones most successful at "milking" the taxpayers.

This was in the form of a Community Development Block Grant and Tax Incremental Financing. Still, OSU's study had to exclude environmental and social costs in order to adequately massage the numbers.

Hopefully The Blade's strong investigative team can uncover the impetus behind these "Mega-dairies" before 60 Minutes features western Lake Erie as the latest victim of incompetent politicians.

DAVE HOUSHOLDER

Portage, Ohio

Just what does Molly Ivins write that the editor finds newsworthy?

She does possess a clever, creative approach to her chosen subject, but it's always old news. I usually slip into my "waders" before plodding through her column of "crap." If she can write about "elephant poop," certainly "crap" is an acceptable descriptive word.

The target of her newly sharpened tongue in the July 24 Blade was Karl Rove, a Republican, of course, and thus fodder for all of her verbal abuse. Is there a Blade reader who hasn't daily heard, read, or seen more about President Bush's right-hand man than they ever wanted to know? Obviously Molly and fellow Democrats are thriving on "Roveism."

She harped about a smorgasbord of liberal issues, including Mr. Bush's handling of 9/11 and the ACLU and its valiant efforts to protect individual rights. She concluded with a reference to a former Democratic, middle-aged president who entertained a 19-year-old intern in the Oval Office (and we're not talking "tea and crumpets").

I do not share her opinion of the ACLU, but unfortunately I can't call on "Scotty" to "beam them up." Sadly, he recently departed this earth.

And I don't share her lackadaisical opinion of Bill Clinton. She states that she doesn't care about his sleazy affair. "I didn't think it had anything to do with the way he was running the country," she opined.

By golly, is Miss Molly telling her readers that American voters don't have the right to expect ethical, moral behavior from their president?

I don't know what medication she's on, but I think it's time to change her prescription!

Molly is a worthy adversary. She keeps elevating my blood pressure!

PHYLLIS MARTIN

McComb, Ohio

Shouldn't an editor have some informational background before commenting on a topic he is obviously uneducated on?

Intelligent design is not a new way of saying creationism.

In fact it points out the similar frenzy possessed by the creationist and Darwinist - both want faith to be their proof.

Creationism supports belief on faith that God alone started life; no empirical evidence is required.

Darwinism supports random mutation caused species to evolve; simple observation can piece together the origin puzzle while speculation fills in missing information. Darwinists have faith that nature alone set evolution on course, even though not enough evidence exists to support many of the hypotheses.

Intelligent Design actually wants accountability from the Darwinists before their interpretations are blindly accepted as facts.

Let's not be so desperate to teach science that we sacrifice good science. If the cardinal could be given sound data as Copernicus and Galileo presented, then perhaps he would be less inclined to dismiss Darwinism.

MELODY CARMICHAEL

Temperance

Your editorial, "Another rap at Darwin," offered a harsh jab at creation.

While you say that creation is in no way scientifically testable, let me remind you that neither is a process of change occurring over billions of speculative years.

And while you remind us that Galileo and Copernicus proved wrong the Catholic church's teaching that the Earth was the center of the universe, let me tell you that that teaching is nowhere in the Bible.

Thousands of astrophysicists, astronomers, physicians, surgeons, biologists, botanists, chemists, etc., across this land are creationists.

To top it off, most of the most famous scientists who ever lived were creationists, scientists like Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, etc.

You would do well to keep your foot out of your mouth.

DARREN WURZ

Holland

Ohio Republican Chairman Bob Bennett remarked a week or so ago that "any Democratic donkey can kick down a barn but it takes a Republican carpenter to build one."

Any Democratic donkey knows that barns built by Republican carpenters are built with lumber infested with lies, political shenanigans, and pay-to-play cronies, along with the questionable beams of electoral manipulation. These pillars are unsturdy, and will soon come tumbling down, with or without the help of the Democratic donkey.

The Republicans would be wise to learn the rudiments of building a clean, sturdy barn (or a nation) with supportive, straightforward, strong beams that would be a haven for the states' and the nation's people instead of a heavy burden on their backs.

ADELE FEDERMAN

Mockingbird Lane

Israel is committed to a true and lasting peace with the Palestinian people, and understands that peace will not be achieved through words.

Bold leadership and sacrifice are needed by both sides. Israel is taking a historic step toward a permanent peace by voluntarily closing Jewish communities in the Gaza Strip and parts of the West Bank.

The families who live there will be uprooted, and their land will be given to the Palestinian people. This will be extremely hard for the families who live there.

They will lose their homes and have to close their businesses. And their children will lose their schools. Under this withdrawal, 42 day-care centers, seven elementary schools, and three high schools will be closed in order to give the land to the Palestinian people.

This is a painful sacrifice for the families who live in these communities, and proof of Israel's willingness to do what is necessary to build a lasting peace.

WENDY GOLDSTEIN

Community Relations Director

United Jewish Council of Greater Toledo

I want to commend you on the unbiased article in your religion section about the pro-life college students who are walking to Erie, Pa. It was well written and explained.

I agree with their bumper sticker: "You can't be Catholic and pro-abortion."

However, I would add a touch of mercy to it and be more inclusive.

It would read: "We can't be Catholic and pro-abortion or pro-choice or silent, but we can be Catholic and forgiven of all three if we change."

STEVE CHERRY

Oregon



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