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Published: Friday, 6/25/2010

Leadership opportunity was missed

Shouts at the recent town hall meeting sponsored by U.S. Rep. Bob Latta (R., Bowling Green) about treating Democrats as enemies and the suggestion that someone be “shot in the head” are unruly mob behavior, not responsible constituent suggestions (“Latta seems to skip query on Obama's birth origin,” June 22).

Most Republican leaders I respect and worked with, including Mr. Latta's father, Del Latta, a former congressman, would have rejected such suggestions as extremist, out-of-place, and inappropriate at any public forum.

By his earlier silence, Congressman Latta encouraged the more outrageous remarks and behavior.

The “win-at-all-costs” attitude expressed at the meeting is patently un-American and threatens the stability of our country and its economic recovery. Unfortunately, the same attitude prevails among most minority congressmen who have vowed to use every means possible to “bring down” a lawfully elected President.

Under this strategy, what happens to constituents with real problems, such as the unemployed tool-and-die maker?

They are overlooked because of political expedience and appeals for the votes of the ill-informed. Rehashing the obviously personal, partisan, and self-serving rhetoric of Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and deliberate lies presented as “news” on Fox do nothing to address real issues.

What is needed are positive suggestions on how to reverse policies that have nearly destroyed the middle class in this country during the past 30 years.

We need to recognize that “free trade” has benefited only transnational corporations such as BP and has devastated our manufacturing base, jobs, and economy.

Deregulation has transferred wealth into the hands of large political contributors, thus creating socialism for the super-rich and capitalism for the rest.

The role of leader is to educate, as well as to listen. It's time to stop diverting attention from real issues and start governing instead of playing political games with our future.

Darrell Opfer

Oak Harbor

Editor's note: The writer is a former state representative.

I was a bit amused after reading the editorial concerning U.S. Rep. Bob Latta's hearing, selective or otherwise (“Hard of hearing,” June 24).

It amuses me how clever you seem to think your personal attacks are when trying to make political points.

I'm wondering whether you might need a memory check for a more serious disease. I don't recall your criticizing President Obama's visual impairment, selective or otherwise, for not condemning the Petraeus-Betray Us ad published by leftist kooks.

Maybe he just didn't see it, or __.

Fill in the blank depending on your political ideology.

Jay Shenk

Maumee

When South Africa was awarded the World Cup in 2004, recognizing its new place on the international scene, the continuous raucous sound of vuvuzelas — long, plastic trumpets — echoed everywhere, celebrating the occasion (“Nothing musical about vuvuzelas,” June 15).

The world also heard them last year when the Confederation Cup soccer tournament was held in South Africa as a trial run of the current event.

So no one should have been surprised by vuvuzelas, as they represent new forms of self expression and South African freedom. Viewers of the World Cup should see vuvuzelas as a dynamic part of South Africa's emergence from the dark era of apartheid into a new era of hope and possibility.

Richard F. Weisfelder

Swan Creek Drive

I am a retired U.S. Army officer and understand the importance of discipline within the ranks (“Top U.S. general resigns over disparaging remarks,” June 24).

Gen. Stanley McChrystal's pronouncements about President Obama in the general's interview in Rolling Stone magazine amount to insubordination toward the commander in chief.

He should be summarily disciplined in accordance with military procedures and the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

Sankaran S. Babu

Wesley Chapel, Fla.

Editor's note: The writer is working temporarily at the Mercy St. Charles Women's Care Center.

The real issue between Gen. Stanley McChrystal and President Obama was, and is, that the general not only disagreed with the President but also lost confidence in him.

Steve Von Gunten

Ryewyck Drive

Regarding proposed changes to the City of Toledo's refuse collection policies (“City council: New rules for trash collection on agenda,” June 21) here are some possible solutions that might increase efficiency and cut costs, while maintaining satisfactory service:

• Where feasible, residents place refuse and recycling receptacles at the curb on the same side of the street, where automated collection trucks make their first pass.

• Place City of Toledo industrial-size Dumpsters at strategic locations for each pickup area for residents to put overflow refuse. The city would empty the Dumpsters as needed.

• Designate one regularly scheduled unlimited pickup each month for bulky overflow items in each refuse collection area.

Charge individual residents a small fee for any additional pickups they request. The city could also consider subcontracting extra pickups.

Reid Ahlbeck

Wendover Drive

Toledo officials are out of touch with citizens.

The city is proposing to charge for extra trash pick- up. Does the city know that because of the economy, the number of people in a house has increased because other family members have lost jobs and have had to move in with relatives to make ends meet? When eight people live in one home, there is going to be more trash.

This city has never looked so dirty. With the new system, trash is left on the streets until 4 or 5 p.m.; previously, the trash was cleared by 1 p.m.

Toledoans are tired of picking up the tab for the city's “bright ideas.” Once again, the people lose.

Patsy Rios

Woodstock Avenue

Shame on Toledo Public Schools for voting to close Libbey High School.

Edward Drummond Libbey is probably rolling over in his grave.

The woodwork and marble in that building are beautiful. There should be something it can be used for.

That building could be used as the Toledo Public Schools administration building. I've heard that the Thurgood Marshall Building, where the administration is housed, is too small.

Furthermore, Libbey would have enough students if the school officials did not let students attend schools elsewhere in the district.

A lot of prominent people have graduated from Libbey, including doctors, veterans, attorneys, judges, our sheriff, and many others.

If we need to form a committee and take donations, I'm sure we can get the alumni to help.

Janet Gollehon

Bishopsgate Drive



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