We have lost our elms, chestnuts, and ash trees to insects over the years. Now trees face another destructive force: the power company. I sympathize with the woman in Providence Township who is trying to prevent the needless destruction of her trees (“Family fights utility over cutting of trees,” Jan. 19).
The pleas of homeowners on Grenlock Avenue in Sylvania also fell on deaf ears. They had to stand by helplessly while their trees were cut down.
Though the utility cited safety as its reason for cutting down the trees, it was a matter of economics. The utility could have trimmed the trees away from the power lines, and come back in a few years to repeat the process.
Although utility companies have a legal right to cut trees in their easement, it is unconscionable to continue to destroy beautiful trees that have stood for decades.
It is to be hoped that the woman in Providence Township can save her trees. In Sylvania, the City of Trees, residents must unite to protect our trees.
Hat Trick Bar and Grill owner Ahmad Mahmoud (“Feud with parking agency leads owner to close bar temporarily,” Jan. 26) closed his restaurant to get back at the parking authority, then offered as a solution a personal parking space on the public street.
With business sense like that, it's no wonder he doesn't have a quarter to drop in the meter.
Why is it that when cuts are to be made to balance the city budget, it is always union wages, pensions, insurance premiums, and the like that have been collectively bargained that are attacked?
We haven't read that Toledo Mayor Mike Bell, City Council members, or city management were asked to take reductions in salaries or pension contributions.
If Toledo wants more union wage and benefit reductions, then its leaders should set the example. Take the same reductions that are considered for our union brothers and sisters, then sit down to negotiate. That's what working together is about.
Vice President United Auto Workers Local 533 Fostoria
The Blade's Jan. 24 editorial “Bring the pain” was right on, except I don't think there is such as thing as a temporary tax. We need to raise the city income tax, and there should be a tax on retirees who are in the upper limits.
No one should be exempt, including the 22nd floor of City Hall, and double dippers should resign or work for $1 a year.
The city can show we can help ourselves, and maybe the Lucas County commissioners will quit posing in front of cameras and govern the county.
So many Americans who would make wonderful parents want to adopt children from abroad, but adoption from some countries is costly and can take years to complete. I would bet Haitian children could be placed in a licensed foster home and adopted within a year.
Please, someone, find a way to get these children here.
As we watch the unfolding disaster in Haiti, is it not sad that the United States lacks professionally trained teams with nation-building skills to help Haiti's gifted President Rene Preval pull together what remains of his government and move forward in a coordinated way?
Military units are making important contributions in Haiti, but they are not trained for governmental coordination. Creating a nation-building or peace academy, similar to our military academies, would strengthen the effectiveness of American dollars when we respond to disasters and provide foreign aid.
Creek Run Drive
I met the Rev. Michael Pitts several years ago when I sat next to him as papers were signed on a real estate deal.
He was surrounded by a bevy of cronies, sort of like security guards for a rock star. He was wearing a Rolex watch, a very expensive suit, gold rings, and expensive shoes. He did not greet people at the table, but instead spoke in whispers to his advisers.
I could sense in The Blade's story on his elevation to bishop (“Cornerstone's pastor elevated to higher rank,” Jan. 23) that his focus on himself remains.
Ministers like him make people cynical about religion. It is sad to think that he is making so much money off people who believe that he is helping them to get to heaven.
Cindy Millen Roberts
The Blade's Jan. 13 editorial “Mideast morass” reflects a disturbing bias about the situation between Israel and the Palestinians.
The main obstacle to peace is not settlements, but rather Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, a position made explicit in the Palestinian Charter.
Without recognition, any peace treaty would be worthless.
American envoy George Mitchell raised the specter of suspending aid to Israel if it is not more forthcoming with concessions.
What threats are made to the Palestinian leaders if they refuse to compromise?
The message from President Obama is that the Palestinians need only wait and he will deliver Israel to them.
Such policies would be absurd, but this is how we treat our ally, Israel, in the face of terrorists who are little different from the ones we are fighting in Afghanistan. Small wonder there is no peace.
In response to the Jan. 23 letter “TARTA is not listening to riders,” the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority has listened.
However, the transit agency has been grossly underfunded for decades and faces more cuts. Consequently, TARTA and other Ohio transit agencies are forced to make cuts in service.
As long as the Ohio General Assembly keeps shunting funding toward preserving the automobile industry and the massive system of roadways, bridges, and infrastructure that supports it, mass transit will keep getting a smaller piece of the transportation pie.
The letter writer likely won't persuade her fellow suburbanites to ride the bus absent a huge and long-lasting increase in the price of gasoline.
Why is it that all my liberal friends have spent the past eight years telling me the United States can't afford to stick its nose into another country's business, but now they want the United States to rebuild Haiti?