Seven molasses-coated Lemmon Drops to nibble on while waiting for “Sassy Sarah” to enter a 12-step program for Internet addiction: Twice this month I have read stories about protests in northwest Ohio. I discovered that the way the protesters conduct themselves can sway my opinion on an issue.
Take Mike Ferner spray-painting anti-war messages on overpasses along U.S. 23/I-475, for example. Even though I have been solidly "anti-war" from the beginning, I am turned off by Mr. Ferner's in-your-face tactics. His approach is counterproductive — it divides those on the anti-war side and strengthens the resolve of those who support our military strategy.
The other protest is quietly taking place at St. James Catholic Church in Kansas, Ohio. Since May 1, about 50 members of the church have maintained an around-the-clock vigil in hopes the Toledo Diocese will reverse its decision to close the parish. The final Mass there was celebrated on June 25. While I believe the Toledo Diocese made a convincing case for closure, those participating in the continuous vigil are doing it with dignity. Their story is inspiring because there is so much apathy in the world today. Do Lucas County Democrats realize how petty they will look if they try to remove Rob Ludeman as president of Toledo City Council? Mr. Ludeman, a Republican, prevailed in the voting of council members. And while I question whether he was the best choice, he won, fair and square.
Lucas County Democrats don't get it. They decry the environment created by one-party rule in Columbus, yet can't see what one-party rule has done to Toledo. It is the height of hypocrisy. Although I am not convinced that a levy is the answer to COSI Toledo's financial problems, I do know that I have seen thousands of kids, most of them holding the hand of a parent, walk with great anticipation toward the facility.
COSI Toledo is one of the building blocks for a vibrant downtown. However, to expect it to survive in a city center that often resembles a ghost town, without the help of taxpayers, is asking a lot. The decision not to rebuild Jim & Lou's Bar, heavily damaged by fire during the riot in North Toledo, is a sad footnote to the senselessness that took place on Oct. 15. Lou Ratajsky, 86, operated the establishment for more than 50 years. Please, TARTA naysayers, allow me to give you some perspective to the recent attack at a downtown bus stop. More than 2,000 times through the years I've either boarded a bus or gotten off one in the downtown area, and not once have I seen an incident of violence. Tell me again how passenger traffic at Toledo Express Airport can be at its lowest point in a decade and James Hartung, president of the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, is rewarded with $16,727 in raises over the last two years, bringing his salary to $164,724 annually. Loyal reader Denny, a master of puns, asks: "Does the combination of Rob Ludeman's mayoral-race endorsement [of Carty Finkbeiner] and his new position as City Council president mean the mayor's office has 'Carty blanche' to act?"