I wish to clarify a Dec. 30 Blade editorial, "Summit County uncivil action," and suggest an amicable conclusion to this dilemma.
The editorial admonished the Summit County Court of Common Pleas judges for refusing to hear civil cases because of an overwhelmingly high case load. Perhaps instead of judging the judges, we should look at the facts behind their decision.
For almost 10 years, the judges have pleaded unsuccessfully with state lawmakers for additional judgeships to align their exploding case load to that of similar sized counties.
Their requests have been enthusiastically endorsed by the Ohio Supreme Court, the Akron Bar Association, the Summit County Council, and many others.
Despite this weighty support, no new Common Pleas judgeships have ever been created. In fact, there hasn't been a judge added to Summit County Common Pleas Court since 1991.
The editorial also mentioned that state lawmakers should move to correct this problem. Numerous requests by myself, Sen. Kevin Coughlin, as well as Reps. Barb Sykes, Robert Otterman, and Brian Williams, to add even a single judgeship, have been denied because of political reasons fostered by the Republican chairman.
Currently, Senate Bill 171, passed by the Senate, contains this much needed provision.
This legislation, however, is again refused by the leadership of the House of Representatives. This is the second time in the last two years this issue has passed the Senate unanimously and been refused in the House.
The solution to this dilemma is simple.
Put the politics aside and pass this bill.
Remove the undue burden on the Summit County Court system and give the citizens of Summit County the representation they deserve.
KIMBERLY A. ZURZ
Assistant Minority Leader
Ohio Senate, 28th District
What is wrong with our immigration department?
First they deport the parents of a 15-year-old boy, working productive citizens who got an education, then jobs, and were raising a well mannered young son.
Then they threw a young man in jail who tried to do the right thing and got punished for it.
Is this what our once great and wonderful country is coming to be?
An arbitrary, merciless, unthinking behemoth unwilling to seek alternate solutions for people who have resided in our country for decades as good taxpaying citizens?
What a wonderful picture we are painting for our allies and enemies!
We imprison people for trying to do the right thing and we imprison them just on the suspicion of doing the wrong thing. No wonder our prisons are overflowing.
How many other innocents are in our jail cells that we never hear about?
All this is happening while we let murderers and rapists off on technicalities. What a wonderful world.
Ottawa Lake, Mich.
In response to Gerald Bazer's Dec. 29 letter, "The work of war," I'm not quite sure of his point.
Is he trying to degrade the present military efforts by quoting Stanton out of context from a Civil War perspective that killed hundreds of thousands of fighting men? Or is he trying to say that the Civil War shouldn't have been fought? Or is he saying that the generals of the North during the Civil War were in many cases incompetent?
If he is using the quote to promote the latter, I might tend to agree with him. Until General Grant took over as commanding general of the northern armies, they were generally poorly led, especially in the eastern theater.
However, "Old Brains," that is, Maj. Gen. Henry W. Halleck, who was the commanding general before Grant, had this to say, and I quote from John Marszalek's book Commander of All Lincoln's Armies: "Domestic traitors, who seek the overthrow of our government, are not entitled to its protection and should be made to feel its power Make them suffer in their persons and property for their crimes and the sufferings they have caused to others Let the guilty feel that you have the iron hand; that you know how to apply it when necessary. Don't be influenced by those old political grannies."
Now what do I mean?
KENNETH A. FOSS, JR.
Americans should study the entire fireside chat that Franklin Roosevelt gave on Christmas Eve 1943. His moving talk focused on God and the child born in Bethlehem 1,943 years earlier, the dark war and enemy that our nation faced, and how victory was certain.
Even though his health was failing, his passion for our nation was as strong as ever. The war had not been going well and we had lost tens of thousands of soldiers. During these months Germany and Japan seemed to win every battle.
FDR also addressed the naysayers of his time who were questioning our ability to win. Many politicians were calling on us to negotiate a "peace" but were actually wanting us to cut and run.
Although he mentioned that loss of life and sacrifice would continue in the struggle against our enemy, FDR knew that victory was certain. He went out of his way to ask Americans to pray for God's blessings many times during his talk. He mentioned he had recently flown over Bethlehem and was moved to pray that the Christ Child would be with all of our soldiers so far from their loved ones.
Democrats today have no tolerance for FDR Democrats like Joe Lieberman or Zell Miller. The vision that these great men have for our nation could save their party. The modern Democrats' focus is not on developing a positive agenda but meeting the strange demands of their elitist and immoral factions.
The godly, bold, and determined FDR would not be welcomed in the modern atheistic Democratic Party.
President Bush faces the same gloom and doom naysayers seeking political gain. Like FDR, President Bush does not apologize for his faith and is determined that victory in this war is certain because God is on our side.
According to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary, "duplicity" is the contradictory doubleness of thought, speech, or action; especially: the belying of one's true intentions by deceptive words or action.
In Washington there are leaks and then there are leaks. On the one hand the realization that someone apparently leaked the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame elicited hardly more than a few sleepy yawns from the Bushie crowd.
But for any who doubt that the dead can return to life, witness the frantic witch hunt now being put on by this same administration in a gallant effort to track down anyone who might have been so brazen as to leak information about arguably illegal domestic wiretaps.
Few film reviews in The Blade have been as far off base as Nanciann Cherry's critique of Memoirs of a Geisha. To give it two stars, the same as Wolfe Creek, is simply not justified.
Geisha is clearly one of the most beautiful films to appear in a long time, and will undoubtedly receive no less than three Oscar nominations come the end of January.
The subplots of the film interweave in a way that hold one's interest throughout, all coming together to a moving conclusion with no loose ends. The acting is good and many of the images are simply stunning, with costume, movement, and environment aesthetically framed and coordinated in a way that is not often seen.
Despite Ms. Cherry's review, Geisha should not be missed.
Jailing the German student was probably one of the stupidest moves made by the federal government since Prohibition!
KAREN L. GLICK
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