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Published: 9/18/2009

Who gets the most from gambling?

A recent article in The Blade was read with great interest, especially since I am a co-chairman with Sen. Teresa Fedor of Truth Pac, a statewide group opposing state Issue 3 that would allow casino gaming in Ohio.

The article was on point as to the infrastructure and environmental issues at the site selected by Penn National Gaming. It quotes Eric Schippers, spokesman for Penn National, as saying in regard to the infrastructure cost, “Any additional costs will be borne by us.”

Since Penn National wrote the constitutional amendment for the ballot, one has to ask: Why was that not written into the amendment by Penn National?

What Penn National did not fail to write into the amendment was the 33 percent tax rate paid to Ohio, which is one of the lowest rates in the country in states that have casino gaming.

They also included a $50 million license fee for each casino, when the going rate in other states is between $300 million to $500 million. Also what was not written in the amendment by Penn National was a requirement to actually build, a deadline to begin construction, and a requirement that jobs go to Ohioans and a “Buy Ohio Products.”

These are all very important points that should have been written into the constitutional amendment by Penn National.

The bottom line is this: One has to remember if you have ever visited these big, beautiful, opulent casinos, you have to ask yourself whether they build these casinos on winners or losers.

Conversely when you are thinking about voting for or against Issue 3, ask yourself who will benefit most if Issue 3 is approved, you as a taxpayer, or Penn National Gaming.

I bet you will cast the right vote.

JERRY CHABLER

Sylvania

So now, according to Jonathan Ross' essay, “Health care can't stand half-measures,” the insurance companies are “mobsters,” and “unintentional serial killers.” His solution: Baptize Congress as a godfather, and “in the best godfather tradition,” generously bribe them with $20 billion to “go away.” Or perhaps itself be an “unintentional serial” killer? Thus it is that he would save the nebulous “50 million uninsured,” out of more than 300 million Americans, and expand the Medicare program, which itself has dubious notoriety for efficiency and thrift.

Mr. Ross' premises are difficult to challenge as he does not list sources. But he mentions “more than 20,000 Americans” dying “from lack of insurance alone,” but fails to mention the more than 1 million annual deaths by abortion that are paid by someone or another, and perhaps soon by the government itself. Also, one cannot audit/verify the spreadsheets Mr. Ross has used for his health-care math.

Sane health-care reform is quite desirable. It should not be attained by the radical and rash propositions offered by Mr. Ross, which just may be taken up by President Obama's coterie of czars and advisers with less than clean-cut backgrounds, but by patient, intelligent analysis, and solutions devoid of rage and naivete.

Jonathan Ross, in my opinion, is a strange, latter-day John the Baptist shouting in the wilderness.

SYDNEY O. FERNANDES

Perrysburg

To the local educators who didn't allow students to view President Obama's speech out of fear of political indoctrination or that it didn't meet the academic content standards:

I share your concerns.

What is this country coming to when a U.S. president urges students to set goals and work hard in school? And he uses taxpayer dollars, to boot.

Yet despite the possibilities of what the speech may have contained, I wonder if a learning experience could have been tied to it. To you social studies teachers, what a great opportunity to discuss the nature of indoctrination with your classes. And language arts instructors, why not use the speech to meet the content standards that say students should be exposed to a variety of texts that encourage “deep thinking?”

Yes, I do understand the concerns of parents and the angst of students. But I urge educators to allow classes to explore controversial messages and also to review the meaning of democracy and freedom of speech.

Furthermore, I believe there is a place for teaching students respect for the president of the United States. I understand that Mr. Obama isn't the usual ex-con-rapper-type that school districts often hire as motivational speakers, but he is our President. He deserves our respect, socialist or not.

PEGGIE CYPHER

Brantford Road

Will the never-ending speeches pitching Obamacare continue, or will the snake-oil salesman finally run out of snake oil?

EDWIN F. DURIVAGE

River Road

I am so tired of people complaining about the Kroger store in Manhattan Plaza closing. I was born and raised in the North End, a few blocks away from Kroger, and I know this area like the back of my hand. Through the years, I have watched the North End deteriorate, including Manhattan Plaza.

The bottom line is that Kroger has lost $1 million in the last four years. You ask why? This is not rocket science. The high volume of shoplifting continues on a daily basis. A few Toledo police officers have confirmed this to me. How can a company continue to operate when low-lifes steal from them? Not to mention the thugs who try to sell you stolen merchandise in the parking lot. People are to blame because they cannot control their children from shoplifting.

Then there are those who don't hold jobs but collect food stamps and welfare. Shame on you! After Kroger in Manhattan Plaza closes, I hope the Kroger in Point Place does not turn into a “Manhattan Plaza” Kroger.

RAYMOND RYBKA

Tralger Drive

I am writing in response to the poorly reasoned and dangerous Sept. 10 editorial that criticized Judge Connie Zemmelman for declining to transfer the case of Dai'Lahntae Jemison to adult court. The Blade suggests that Judge Zemmelman should have transferred Jemison in order to “send a message.”

But the desire to send a message is not a proper consideration for a judge deciding an issue before her. Rather, a judge's job is to apply the law to the facts of the case in order to reach the proper legal result.

It is even more outrageous to suggest that Lucas County voters should vote against Judge Zemmelman in future elections due to her decision in this case. Under no circumstances should a judge make a ruling to satisfy public opinion. A judge who ignored the law in favor of public opinion would be unfit for office. So long as Judge Zemmelman continues to apply the law fairly and intelligently, she should be supported at the polls.

The moment that she starts making decisions based on fear of The Blade's attacks, she should be voted out.

Interestingly, the editorial never discusses the statutory factors that a judge must consider in determining whether to transfer a child to adult court. The Blade apparently wants judges to decide cases based on the editorial board's notion of justice rather than according to the law.

If The Blade believes that every 15-year-old charged with murder should be transferred to adult court, then the beef is with the state legislature rather than with Judge Zemmelman. She did not make the law; she just applied it properly to facts of the case before her.

DAN NATHAN

Attorney at Law

Madison Avenue



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