Thomas Sowell, in his July 6 column, asked what Theodore Roosevelt did to justify putting him on Mt. Rushmore alongside Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln? Is Mr. Sowell kidding or is he historically challenged?
Theodore Roosevelt was one of our greatest presidents. He would have been considered a great man even if he had not been a president. Consider:
He is the only person to win both the Nobel Peace Prize and the Medal of Honor.
He was the youngest president ever.
He explored and is credited with putting the 900-mile "Rio Roosevelt" River on the map.
He began the Panama Canal.
He established the Department of Commerce and Labor.
He built the Navy to make us a world power.
He established the Meat Inspection and the Pure Food and Drug acts.
He expanded the forest reserves by more than 400 percent.
He doubled the number of national parks.
He created the first 51 federal bird reservations.
He wrote his first book, The Naval War of 1812, when he was only 23.
That book and the four volumes of The Winning of the West are considered classics on those subjects.
He produced more than 50 volumes of writings in his brief 60 years of life.
He was a leading authority on mammals and birds.
As an African-American, Mr. Sowell might also be interested to know that in 1901 Theodore Roosevelt was the first president to invite a black man (Booker T. Washington) to dinner in the White House despite the uproar he knew it would cause.
Roosevelt was truly a Renaissance man. Unlike "heroes" of today, nobody has ever been able to attach scandal to his name. He not only deserves to be on Mt. Rushmore, he should have his own mountain.
West Sylvania Avenue
Editor's note: In 1996, Mr. Hennessy led the movement to award Theodore Roosevelt the Medal of Honor posthumously for his actions at Kettle and San Juan hills during the Spanish American War. President Bill Clinton awarded the medal in 2001.
There are no incentives for other governments to halt or delay their own production of nuclear weapons as long as American citizens fail to hold our Pentagon accountable for its own nuclear ambitions. Kim Jong-Il's recent posturing is a result of George W. Bush's labeling North Korea and Iran part of the "Axis of Evil," and now both countries feel justified in developing their own "nuclear deterrent."
America's excessive militarism and bloated military budget deprives our schools, infrastructure, and citizens of basic needs and has created a worldwide cycle of violence that is escalating in exponential proportions. It is irrelevant who possesses nuclear weapons because a first strike will result in retaliatory strikes and the entire world could become a nuclear wasteland with all of us being permanently and catastrophically affected.
The world needs to hear the lessons the people of Nagasaki and Hiroshima are trying to teach us. On the anniversaries of the atomic bombing of their cities they fold thousands of paper cranes and release peace doves. They visit the bombed-out buildings that serve as their war memorials and remember the dead.
And then they implore every person and every government to stop nuclear proliferation and to never let this happen to anyone, anywhere ever again.
Sally J. Keller
Imagine if President Bush had treated Iraq as an equal partner in the Axis of Evil, using negotiations and powerful international allies to help keep us safe.
Imagine the last 4 1/2 years without the bloodshed, chaos, and wasted dollars in Iraq.
Imagine being safer from terrorism now than five years ago.
Imagine all the international good will lost by going it alone in Iraq.
Imagine if President Bush had the imagination to listen to opposing viewpoints and understand how current events drastically impact the course of future events.
I cannot remember in recent memory a letter to the editor that upset and disappointed me more than the one about The Blade's coverage of the life and death of Rusty Marvin. Certainly, I agree with the author that there are deaths of young teenagers from violence, drunken driving, or unknown medical conditions that do not generate above-the-fold coverage. But you do not encourage coverage by dismissing the coverage given to Rusty Marvin.
I know the Marvin family and know that their every waking moment since Rusty's death has been spent trying to help other families who face the perils of drug abuse in the lives of their children. Rusty graduated from St. John's Jesuit, but he easily could have been a student at any other private or public high school in the area. Drug abuse knows no economic or social barrier and unfortunately affects more kids than we realize.
The Marvins have channeled their grief into the development of Rusty's House, a place for kids to come and talk about their addictions and a place for their parents to seek support.
I encourage The Blade to continue to provide coverage of this kind. And I would encourage others who question why this story was worthy of such attention to spend a day or evening volunteering at Rusty's House or any of the other worthwhile organizations that deal with teenage drug abuse. Perhaps you might understand why The Blade provided this coverage and develop a sense of empathy and perspective.
Kenneth Blackwell's toll-free use of the turnpike for campaigning purposes smacks of bad taste at the least, if not an outright ethics violation.
Seems his desire to destroy the livelihood of 1,000 turnpike employees isn't enough for Mr. Blackwell; he also wants to rub their noses in it.
Mr. Blackwell may want to take note: 1,000 employees, times 20 or so friends and family members for each employee equals up to 20,000 votes against Mr. Blackwell in the race for governor.
One shouldn't sell mom's heirloom wedding ring because of an inability to maintain fiscal responsibility. Ninety-nine years is a very, very long time; $5 billion given to a fiscally irresponsible state government will be gone in a very short time. Then what?
Remember how the state lottery was going to solve all our educational funding problems? What came of that? Oh yeah, unconstitutional funding for schools.
John P. Glaza
Let me see if I've got this straight. First the Bureau of Workers' Compensation gives GOP fund-raiser Tom Noe $50 million and he allegedly is caught with his hand in the cookie jar for up to $13 million. Now Ken Blackwell wants to lease the Ohio Turnpike to a foreign company to the tune of $6 billion for 99 years.
First Coingate, and then, if Mr. Blackwell gets his way, we'll have "Pikegate."
I want to let the Toledo Mud Hens and the City of Toledo know that the Triple-A All-Star Game was a tremendous event. I was fortunate enough to visit Toledo for the game and was totally impressed.
From the jewel that is Fifth Third Field, to the sparkling downtown hotel I had the opportunity to stay in, to the friendly and passionate fans I encountered, Toledo pride was on display! Mayor Carty Finkbeiner's recent remarks that Toledo is a great place to work, do business, and live in were apparent and obvious. Congratulations, Toledo on a job well done. You hit a home run.
Columbia Gas of Ohio