It did not take long for a headline to validate that voters got what they wanted: “Kasich releases Cabinet salary proposal; Some to be paid 35% more than Strickland staffers” (Jan. 7).
The article stated that Gov. John Kasich wants to reform public employee payroll and benefits programs, and that does not mean increase or improve. This is from the same new governor who wanted at first to ban the press from his swearing-in ceremony and inaugural activities.
It is not looking good now, and it is probably going to get worse before it is over.
Expect a lower standard of living
John Kasich will bring chaos to Ohio. He will pay many of his staff members more than Governor Strickland did. Yet he wants to reduce state employees' standard of living.
During his campaign, Mr. Kasich brushed off questions as to how he would balance the budget (“3 big issues will define Kasich's first year,” op-ed column, Jan. 9).
He intends to turn as many state services as he can over to private business supposedly to save the state money. That way, private businesses can set rates for services with no public oversight.
The governor will then gut programs that enhance the quality of life for the elderly, the infirm, and schoolchildren in urban districts, where tax bases are shrinking.
I want to see how Governor Kasich replaces the $400 million in federal rail money and the $3 billion in investment in Ohio that we are all now going to lose from his campaign cronies in private business.
'Out-of-sight' ruler no surprise
Big surprise: Gov. John Kasich does not want to be seen as he rules (“Kasich won't let media attend oath,” Jan. 5).
Stanley Theisen, Jr.
West Alexis Road
Others have 'entitlements,' too
You seem to have joined the club that equates “entitlements” with Social Security and Medicare (“Sharing budget pain,” editorial, Jan. 10). My dictionary's definition of entitlements. It says nothing about Social Security or Medicare.
Almost every worker receives entitlements through his job. Why is it only seniors who should have theirs taken?
President Obama has said that all Americans should sacrifice. When will federal workers, including members of Congress, be asked to give up some of their entitlements? Until they do, they should leave Social Security and Medicare alone.
Government is not the solution
Democrats in Congress have repeatedly warned Republicans that they need to pass legislation to fund government (“GOP 'playing chicken' on debt, aide to Obama says,” Jan. 3). They further warn that it would be catastrophic if government had to shut down.
Americans are long overdue for a blessing. If we're really lucky, Congress will be gridlocked for several months. President Ronald Reagan reminded us that government is the problem and not the solution.
Palin, others need help to cope
Former Gov. Sarah Palin and company are feeling unjustly blamed for the actions of an extremist (“Palin blasts critics who pin shootings on political rhetoric,” Jan. 13). Maybe they can ask some Muslims for advice on how to deal with this.
Shootings must be stopped
Forget about whether the fatal shootings in Tucson, Ariz., were politically motivated. There are too many guns in America.
Millions of guns are owned and purchased by Americans because they are easily accessible.
The National Rifle Association opposes controls on gun ownership, even though the rate of homicides with guns is alarmingly high.
Where will the next rampage occur? How many more innocent lives will be lost? If this continues, no one will be safe and we will constantly live in fear.
America must find a way to reverse this tragic trend of mass shootings.
Cora Louse Jones
West Central Avenue
Review how to protect public too
Soon after the shooting in Tucson, there was talk of beefing up security for members of Congress when they travel and meet with the public (“2 legislators differ after Tucson attack,” Jan. 10).
They need more protection, but what about people who attend their meetings? Nothing has been said about making them safer from attacks.
Lawmakers should examine what to do to prevent injuries to the public as well as themselves.
John J. Burkhart
Without comment, just report news
You used such words as “vitriolic political rhetoric,” “cross hairs,” and “targeted” in your Jan. 11 editorial “The politics of violence.”
There was the typical rush to judgment, using the same talking points as other media. Though some were driven to make the Arizona shooting political before the facts emerged about Jared Loughner, there are no facts linking this heinous act to rhetoric or politics.
Instead, the issue is the emerging trend to label opposing viewpoints as hate. We need to refocus on media that have become so biased that they only report news that reflects their political views.
The media need to re-examine themselves and Americans need to question the validity of and motives behind their reports.
Rewriting Mark Twain a bad idea
Now that the Mark Twain classic Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has been whitewashed to exclude the n-word, let's turn our attention to the most offensive book in the world: the Bible.
Let's cross out every negative comment about polygamy, slavery, homosexuality, tattoos, witchcraft, gluttony, and other offensive subjects.
Whatever you don't like, just remove it as if it never existed.
Unfortunately, with the advent of American slavery, the n-word became the favorite derogatory label used by the selfish white segment of our society to lord it over their human property.
When Mark Twain penned the story of Huckleberry Finn, it was meant to convey the social ill of slavery and the white man's arrogant belief of superiority over the black man, which he expressed through the vindictive n-word (“That's not Twain,” guest editorial, Jan. 7).
The repeated use of that word in the novel served to best illustrate the “godly” gentry who had enslaved their fellow man, woman, and child without considering the ruthlessness of it all.
Today, the repeated use of the n-word in this American classic serves to remind us of society's past shame and to instill outrage against inequality.
To delete the word from Mark Twain's book is literary genocide. It is not in the best interest of truth. And as the hotly debated Bible states: “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.”
Shelley V. Panos-Ferner
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