Opinions

Sun
16
Apr

The art of the elementary (school)

When I get around to it

an infrequent column by Kip DeVore

The paintings on the walls of the elementary school on Madison Street, where Ironton’s Casey’s Store is now, were understated so much in the same muted tones as the school itself that the paintings seemed to us – or to me at least – to be a part of the building

It was as if the paintings had come with the school when it was built, probably around 1917.  Though the architecture of the high school and the elementary buildings was definitely institutional - that is, sparing the ornamentation of privately funded structures - you could still feel the leftovers of the Gilded Age of the late 1800s after the Civil War, when you grasped the heavily enameled banister, or especially the ornamental, but solidly hefty newel post at each new flight of stairs up to the second or third floors, depending on the location of your classroom.  

Sun
16
Apr

Letter to the Editor - Rant and rave

Dear Editor,

Every week I pick up The Mountain Echo and every week I get to the Letter to the Editor section and every week I read the two main writers from the liberal side of the aisle rant and rave over President Trump’s victory and everything he says or does.

However, in all fairness, once in a while one will go after our Republican Congressman Jason Smith. It is probably a welcomed sight for State Representative Paul Fitzwater due to the fact that he is usually the target of their criticism. President Donald Trump could cure cancer and they would say he must be profiting from it.

My point is a lot of their criticism is based on “unfactual” information. After a while it sounds like an irritating rattling noise. If they want people to take them seriously, they should keep their comments based on facts and not on ideological talking points. Another kind suggestion would be to give it a break and people might take you a little more seriously.

Sun
16
Apr

Letter to the Editor - The President’s thin skin

Dear Editor, 

The missile attack on the Syrian airfield was forceful and surprising, coming as it did from a President who had repeatedly belittled his predecessor for being involved in Syria. 

Hopefully the warnings given to the Russians and to the Syrians before the attack will help avoid an escalation in tension between us and them as it allowed troops to evacuate and take military hardware with them. 

But it does raise the question as to why it was important to warn Putin and Assad of the imminent missile attack yet seeking Congressional approval was deemed unnecessary.Obviously Republicans (who had denied Obama approval to similarly attack Assad) would have been fully on board with Trump, had he bothered to ask, which he didn’t, because…well, basically because he’s President and according to the new interpretation of the Constitution, President Trump can do whatever he pleases. 

Sun
16
Apr

Letter to the Editor - A wrecking ball for Obama’s legacy

Dear Editor,

On Friday, March 31, the President declared April to be “Sexual Assault Awareness/Prevention Month.” That’s so ironic considering Donald Trump’s expressed enthusiasm for groping women without their permission.

Lest you believed Trump’s declaration was out of his respect for Women, consider that on March 27, the President signed his own executive order rolling back the 2014 Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Order, fully impacting women workers. So, equal pay transparency and the ban on forced arbitration for sexual harassment, assault or discrimination is being eliminated by this administration.

Forced arbitration clauses are also called “cover-up clauses.” They are commonly used to keep sex discrimination claims out of the courts and off public records. This would be especially significant to “gropers” such as Donald Trump.

Fri
31
Mar

Taxpayers will be voting on our future

by Randy Pribble

All taxes are bad.

At least that is the mantra our politicians have fed us for the past several decades.  Of course, that statement is false.  Taxes are the revenue source for government that provides us services we would find it hard to do without: maintained streets and other infrastructure, schools, a judicial system, a national highway system, national defense, and on and on.

A truer statement would be that few people like to pay taxes, but since we do, we want to be sure we are getting our money’s worth. We also would like everyone to pay their fair share.

In the recent past we have seen the state and federal government cut the amounts of revenue they provide to local schools and counties, further straining local budgets.

Fri
31
Mar

Letter to the Editor - Too much to ask?

Dear Editor, 

The Trump Cares Less Health Care alternative to the Affordable Care Act has now hit the sewers. It’s not that Trump didn’t embrace the Republican alternative: instead of the “better and more affordable health care for everyone” he trumpeted on the campaign trail. 

It turns out he is quite willing to allow insurance that won’t cover the first $12,000 of maternity care, that would delete emergency room services and mental health treatment as a requirement, a plan that would lower Medicaid funding and institute work requirements for the few remaining recipients (as if putting the sick  and the poor under the whip will do anything more than kill them), and that was going to raise insurance rates for older adults by thousands each year. 

Fri
31
Mar

Letter to the Editor - Making the situation worse

Dear Editor, 

I hope that Trump voters are starting to get some idea of the high price they will pay for having him in the White House. 

Trump and crew had it right that the economy was rigged against the middle and working classes and in favor of the Wall Street elite, but once elected he proceeded to make that situation worse by inviting the Wall Street billionaires into the heart of his administration. 

The Trump-backed health care “reform” Republicans tried to force down our throats is just the latest case. Trump promised better care for all at less cost, but he embraced a plan which would have given worse care for higher cost and put health care out of the reach of millions of poor and middle class folks. 

Fri
31
Mar

Lette to the Editor - Voting against their own self-interest

Dear Editor, 

The Social Security Act was instituted on Aug. 14, 1935. Before Franklin Delano Roosevelt could even sign the act, every Republican in the House voted to send it back to committee and kill it.

They called it unjust, unworkable and wasteful.  Three years later, when it was extended to survivors, three-quarters of the Republicans voted against it.  

In 1950, Social Security was extended to the disabled and 90 percent of the Republicans voted against it.

At that time you had older men and women selling apples and pencils on the street just trying to earn enough to buy a meal.  If you were old and got sick, then you just went somewhere and died.  

The Republican Party has been trying to get rid of Social Security since 1936. It is a program that helps equalize conditions between the wealthy and the poor.

Fri
31
Mar

Letter to the Editor - The opposite of where we should be heading

Dear Editor, 

 

This week I’m worried about food again. Last week it was President Trump taking away school lunches from kids in his House Bill 610.  This week, it’s seniors, vets and the disabled that he wants to stop feeding. No one in this great nation of ours should have to go hungry. 

Trump’s Budget would kill  Meals on Wheels, a program that feeds 2.4 million senior citizens.

Trump says it has not demonstrated results. Are you kidding me? This is one of several programs designed to let seniors and the disabled stay in their homes and out of Medicaid-funded nursing homes. 

You want to save money Mr. Jet-Setter President? Don’t fly all your billionaire friends and family  to and from Florida five out of seven weekends. Air Force One costs somewhere around $228,000 per hour to operate. Each trip to Mar-a-lago costs taxpayers in the neighborhood of $3 million....sad!

Wed
15
Mar

Letter to the Editor - Sound familiar?

Dear Editor, 

Many people thought that they could control him. They thought that he would be a normal head of government. They were the majority and had control. Others thought that the responsibilities of office would tame and steer him in a more conventional direction.

They were all wrong.

He offered voters a better future. The poorest people voted for him and the moderate left wing Democrats. Unorganized workers, the rural masses, Protestants and Evangelicals who wanted a moral restoration, switched their votes and voted for the man that projected purpose and dynamism. He proved to be a master at manipulating the media.

He would put country first. He would give everyone a job. He would make rusty factories run again. He would crush alien ideologies.

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