A4 IS NO PLACE FOR BIGOTRY
It is with profound regret that I am compelled to answer William Stock’s siren call (letter, May 5). His profound lack of humanity had long ago left me speechless. I know I won’t be the only one to grapple with his twisted equivocation of gays with “murderers, robbers, adulterers, rapists and pedophiles” “” a mantra repeated by the worst demagogues this world has offered for a millennium.
But I will attempt to make one thing clear: Mr. Stock is plainly wrong. In a country that describes itself almost wholly as believing in God, his worldview does not parallel the majority.
We do not ascribe to bigotry, in any form, and neither does his god. What is more puzzling to me, day by day, and year by year, is why does The Courier continue to print letters about religious beliefs? Most newspapers have desisted in reprinting religious screeds for decades.
The Courier is an amazing resource for this community, and I remain astounded by its resiliency and importance. Why, other than to lay bare and irritate the wounds that religious difference makes, would The Courier continue to print ugly, anti-gay or anti-Semitic sentiment, or “lessons” in biblical “certitude,” when there is so much more to our community than this?
Would The Courier print pro-slavery sentiment? Would The Courier print letters that stated that white people shouldn’t marry black people? If not, then I wonder, why not? What, exactly, is the difference?
It is far past time for The Courier to create standards for letters to the editor that do not demean or dehumanize anyone, including people of faith, no matter what that faith is. We should no longer tolerate printed bigotry, no matter how “heartfelt” the writer, nor the “traditions” of the newspaper.
It is far past time to stop this religious bigotry in our great community newspaper.
CATCHY SLOGAN, BUT NOT PRACTICAL
While, “Clean The River First!” was a super-duper election catchphrase and rallying cry, there are several problems with Mr. Oman’s approach to flood control.
First and foremost, the EPA opposes and forbids dredging the Blanchard. This means that no reputable company will bid on the dredging job, knowing that they would likely be fined severely for performing the illegal dredging.
Secondly, assuming someone did bid on and begin the dredging work, the EPA would immediately be notified by some well-intentioned citizen and the work would grind to a halt. Then years of legal tie-ups would follow, and Mr. Oman would be spending $100,000/mile of river in fines and legal fees.
Finally, our fine U.S. senators and representatives would likely be far less enthusiastic in fighting for federal funding to help with the flood-control effort knowing that they would be directly opposing what the EPA considers permissible.
No one likes to be patient as Findlay continues to flood, but the end of the Army Corps of Engineers study is near. We need to be patient and allow the Army to come up with a permanent solution, one designed for lasting success.
To go down a new flood-control path would be silly at best, and outright dumb at worst. The project would lose all momentum, all support of our elected representatives in Washington, throw the county back to square one, and we would be supporting a cleaning project with no guarantee of success.
Furthermore, if Mr. Oman is right and does manage to get the river cleaned, remember that trees grow, trees fall, rivers block.
But maybe I can use Clean the River Again! as an election slogan 10 years from now. And 20 years from now.
WHY NOT MAKE THE RIVER WIDER?
If removing trees, etc. from the river would prevent or reduce moderate flooding, this would have been an ongoing task from 50 years ago.
The volume of water the river and creeks handle changes (minor to moderate to 100-year flood waters). Making the river wider to handle the excess water I believe could be done. I’m suggesting not cutting the banks as deep as the river bedrock, maybe within three feet, but do make it wide enough to handle the excess volume of “moderate” flood waters. By doing this, the clams could continue doing whatever clams do.
An old farmer friend told me farmers nowadays have heavy equipment, and could remove fallen trees from the rivers and creeks that go through their farmland. The wood could be sold to help pay for their diesel fuel.
If you take a look at the railroad bridge west of the Blanchard Street Bridge, it needs to be wider. It restricts flood water similar to what Ottawa’s railroad bridge does.
Actually, in my opinion, the river needs to be wider (as I described above) starting downstream, west of the Blanchard Street Bridge and continue outside the city limits. Do that first, then go upstream from this bridge. Actually, every bridge that isn’t as wide as the Blanchard Street Bridge needs to be widened.
The creeks should dump into the Blanchard River at an angle “Y.” This would improve, not restrict, the flow of creek and river waters.
BILL COULD RAISE FOOD PRICES
On April 10, Senate Bill 150, co-sponsored by Sen. Cliff Hite, passed the House and Senate unanimously and is now law. This is the bill that places more burdensome government regulation on farmers pertaining to spreading fertilizer on fields.
According to an article in the daily Ag Net, one farmer stated, “No one has a clear understanding of how exactly phosphorus is moving through the soil profile, or can explain why there are algae blooms in areas that don’t have agricultural activity near them.”
However, a $2 million research project with more than $1 million coming from Ohio farmers and other agricultural businesses has begun. The study will measure edge-of-field phosphorus runoff, will show how phosphorus is used in agriculture, how it leaves farm fields, and how much of it is actually entering Ohio’s waterways.
Do you think food prices are about to rise?