The Blade's Aug. 29 editorial, "No guns on campus," characterized college students as a population uniformly involved in "alcohol and drug abuse, unprotected sex, [and] running naked through campus."
This sounds like marvelous fun, but unfortunately, it reminds me more of a movie than my own college experience. More concerning, the editorial cited this "act-first, think-later" behavior as the reason to oppose Michigan Senate Bill 747, which repeals the state prohibition on carrying concealed weapons in college classrooms and dorms.
I recently graduated from a small college in southern Michigan. As a person older than 21 and free of any felony convictions or defects of mental health, I am one of 250,000 Michigan residents with a concealed pistol license.
I consider myself a safe and responsible adult, and by granting me a license, the state agrees with my assessment. However, I was prohibited from carrying my firearm in my college-owned residence or classrooms when I attended my final year of college classes.
I can carry the same firearm concealed in the same manner when I go to the grocery store or a movie theater. When I enter a college classroom or dorm room, however, the state immediately takes away this right to self defense. Is that because my pistol and person have suddenly become more dangerous? Hardly! A college classroom is, in effect, no different than a movie theater. My firearm does not magically absorb dangerous intentions when it enters a lecture hall.
To those who would reasonably fear any alcohol-laden citizen with guns, remember that it is illegal for a CPL-holder to carry a firearm with a blood-alcohol content higher than 0.02 percent. That's far below the limit allowed when one gets behind the wheel of a vehicle capable of speeds in excess of 100 mph.
The first laws allowing concealed carry were unsuccessfully opposed by those who claimed common quarrels would turn into gun fights. Decades later, 48 states have granted their citizens the right to carry concealed weapons. Do not allow SB 747 to fall victim to similarly fear-laden and exaggerated arguments.
Reid K. Smith
Michigan State Director Students for Concealed
Carry on Campus
Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
We seem to have a full field of people wanting to be mayor of Toledo. They will promise you almost anything and everything you might imagine.
The one thing they all seem to promise is jobs, and it is something that none will be able to produce. The only thing that is going to produce jobs is the world and national economy. But these people know what the average voter has on his or her mind: jobs.
Do they really think that they as individuals are going to create enough jobs to make that big of a difference? I would say not.
Sooner or later, the economy is going to come back, and when it does, we need a city that can offer safety, good streets, garbage pickup, parks and pools, walking and biking trails, and government that is friendly.
So to the candidates who keep up this nonsense about jobs, forget about my vote, because there is no way you can ever come close to fulfilling that promise.
When the economy comes around, we will need someone who can manage funds with the least waste and the maximum benefit.
I doubt that will happen, but there is always hope.
I have been following the controversy surrounding the proposed closing of the South Toledo branch of the YMCA recently and am dismayed by the partisan coverage of the situation.
It is abundantly clear that there is a vendetta going on and that certain facts are being left out of the information being provided through your coverage. The personal attacks have no place in this discussion. The discussion should be focused on the viability of a social service agency in this difficult economic environment that we have found ourselves in.
To help shed some light on the situation please note the following bits of omitted information:
•Robert Alexander was not married to Stephanie Dames when she was hired.
•As I understand it, her review/evaluation is handled by the chairman of the board of trustees, not Mr. Alexander.
•The YMCA is a 501(c)(3) corporation. As such, it is required by law to have audited financial statements.
•Sen. Teresa Fedor awarded the YMCA a citation in June for its early childhood programming, and then voted in July to cut state funding for the Early Learning Initiative, in essence gutting the program since it is primarily for underprivileged children whose families cannot otherwise afford to send their children to such a program.
These are challenging times for our social service agencies across the state and country. Perhaps time would be better spent determining where and how to best allocate precious public dollars to move our country forward, rather than wasting time on personal attacks against people and organizations that have a history of incredible service to their community.
Why hasn't your coverage included criticism of the state legislature for cutting the funds that made the Y closing a reality?
As a member of Planned Parenthood of Northwest Ohio's leadership council and a former consumer of its services, I am hoping to clarifysome importantissues regarding health-care reform and reproductive health care.
Reproductive health care is crucial to women's health. To remove this coverage from the health-care reform bill is to jeopardize the health of millions of women and teens. More than 86 percent of employer-based insurance plans provide some coverage for abortion, yet anti-choice groups are lobbying to remove this service from the reform bill.
Reasonable people may disagree on the subject of choice, but it is not mandated by the reform proposals. To suggest otherwise is dishonest and only serves to inflame the rhetoric. Because we are clearly in need of health-care reform, let's discuss the issues rationally (with inside voices) so that we may positively affect the outcome.
A majority of Americansrealize that providers such as Planned Parenthood offer desperately needed services to families and should not be left out of health-care reform.
I am an American citizen and as such it is my right and my responsibility to challenge and question my elected representatives when I disagree, or even agree, with any issue with which they are dealing.
Because I disagree with my President's health-care plan, some in the media and some of my elected representatives have resorted to name calling. I have been referred to as un-American, a racist, a domestic terrorist, and part of a mob, to name a few. Until my representatives can convince me this plan is best for all Americans, I will continue to challenge and question them. No amount of name calling will change my mind.
I went to school with Bob Brundage who was, by all accounts, a good and decent man. I am outraged by the judge's decision to remand the 15-year-old thug who murdered him (for a bicycle?) to juvenile court. The murderer will be out of jail in a few short years. Bob Brundage is gone forever.
Justice? I think not.