Last November, I stopped in at the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, Pa. Bethlehem is an old steel town that has seen better days, and putting the casino there was probably thought to be a boon to the local economy.
What I observed was appalling: the lack of humans at work there. People had jobs as cocktail waitresses, security guards, and counter clerks.
But what caught my attention was the fact that the dealer at every gambling table was a buxom female on a video screen. The system was run by a computer, kind of like a video game — no human workers required.
I thought of how Ohio voters were convinced to support casino gambling with the promise of jobs a casino would bring. I wonder how many and what kinds of jobs we will see created. It could be only a few low-paying jobs.
I hope our new casinos won't follow this route.
As before, hire the unemployed
Area road construction and repair are at a peak. As frustrating as it is, we all know it is summer and this work has to be done now.
But why not employ the unemployed? So many of the unemployed could get the jobs done quicker.
I understand most of the work is union, but as in the 1930's, why not hire nonunion workers at a lower wage and keep people working?
This idea worked once and saved our economy. Why not try it again?
What's the basis for water bills?
Why does the Division of Public Utilities dictate who qualifies for the trash recycling discount and/or the senior citizen discount based on homestead exemption?
The water department makes that determination according to the number of meters one has, not whether one is a property owner. However, on our water bill, we are charged according to the number of owners, not the number of meters.
Wouldn't it be logical to have the Lucas County auditor's office, which already knows who is eligible for the homestead exemption, to make that determination?
I realize the water department bills for trash and recycling, but I don't believe it understands that when property owners pay association fees, they pay their fair share of the water bill. Wouldn't that help the water department have less paperwork?
Stainbrook: You are a Republican
Lucas County Republican Party Chairman Jon Stainbrook's primary objective should be to secure and support qualified Republican candidates for public office. Instead, he decided to squander party resources by using volunteers to rescue Democrat Ben Konop's ill-conceived attempt to foist an unwanted, unproven, and unnecessary reform plan for county government on unsuspecting residents (“Lucas County GOP presses for reform vote in December,” July 11).
The Blade endorsed this mission by using a deliberately manipulative, false, and misleading headline. Shame on both of you.
Is Konop abovea cut in own pay?
After four unsuccessful years in office, Lucas County Commissioner Ben Konop is trying to stick it to county employees on his way out.
Mr. Konop recently announced that he wants county employees with an average annual wage of $35,841 to take a 1 percent pay cut (“Konop seeks 1 percent wage cuts,” July 5). Yet in 2008, he was the only county commissioner who refused to turn down his own raise.
I guess at $85,000 a year, he is above the pay cuts he wants to force on others.
TPS should give deserved credit
The Toledo Board of Education should help offset lost opportunities to take high school credits because of the cancellation of summer school and elimination of block scheduling. The policy would encourage participation in sports and perhaps save some sports from being cut.
Ohio allows high school sports and a few other activities to be used toward a physical education credit, upon approval by a district's board of education.
The Toledo board should immediately adopt this policy. It could save some athletics and coaching positions that are being cut. The importance of academics would also be reinforced, because students need to maintain a certain grade-point average to participate in sports.
Linden Green Drive
Gays don't carry all the blame
Is the writer of the July 5 Readers' Forum letter “Gay sex must be called what it is” insinuating that homosexuals are solely responsible for spreading disease, weakening the economy, discouraging citizens from serving their country in the military, and teaching innocent children that homosexuality is a respectable way of life?
Doesn't she think that heterosexuals have anything to do with any of these social ills? One would not be labeled a homophobe or politically incorrect if one would just treat every individual the way one would want one's relative treated.
Democrats just can't see straight
Sen. Robert Byrd's niece eulogized him as suffering from dyslexia, which was described as a learning disability (“Final service for senator,” July 8).
Senator Byrd was a Democrat, and I believe almost all Democrats suffer from dyslexia, from the President to the mayor to Toledo City Council members.
All are unable to understand the words “illegal immigrants.” Maybe “lagelli stnargimmi” will help.
Being in church more important
A July 13 letter in Readers' Forum said the 3 R's missing in today's church are respect, reverence, and responsibility (“The vanishing 3 R's in church”).
Churches are seeing a decline in attendance. To be concerned about what one wears in church is not as important as who is in church.
Jesus walked among those who were rejected by society and loved them. Be thankful that the person wearing short shorts is in church.
Is it necessary to attack religion?
Is it necessary for op-ed columnist Charles Krauthammer to vilify a religion? (“Absurd not to name radical Islam the enemy,” July 4).
Leave the religions alone. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam do not commit crimes; people do. People use religion for their own political agendas.
Islam is not radical; people are radical. And radicals come in all religions, colors, and nationalities.
Easy production of oil is over
We need clean energy, green energy, and climate-change management.
We could have been protected from BP's recklessness. Republicans' constant calls for deregulation during the Bush administration gave us deregulation of the oil industry.
Easy oil production is over. Deep-water drilling is too costly and too slow. End spill, baby, spill.