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April 18, 2012

Inbox — April 18, 2012

Letters to the editor

Correction

In last week’s “Louisville Ballet celebrates 60” piece, dancer Mikelle Bruzina was misidentified. She is the ballet mistress.

Out of Context

How disingenuous, misleading and misrepresenting it is of LEO writer Joe Sonka in the “What a Week” piece from the March 28 issue. He claimed that others have accused the president of inciting a race war because President Obama said, “It’s a tragedy.” It’s not so, as Sonka conveniently took that phrase out of context from a longer comment made by President Obama. Obama had no business interjecting himself in the first place into the discussion/case and prejudicing it — as if George Zimmerman had been tried and convicted. It is racial division to claim that Obama would have had a son who looked like Trayvon Martin.

It boils down to this: It doesn’t matter what Trayvon Martin looked like. Obama said what he said as a way to garner more votes for his re-election, all the while remaining publicly silent regarding countless deaths of other youths killed in violent crimes. It is blatant opportunism.

Robert Veith, Brandenburg, Ky.

Honest Debate

A reply to Tom Louderback’s April 4 Inbox letter: I would encourage people, such as Louderback, who disparage the Supreme Court decision in the Citizens United case, to read its oral arguments. They are easily found online. After reading those arguments, see if you agree that it is the equivalent of the Dred Scott decision. I suspect few reasonable people will.

In addition, Louderback’s callous and deceptive characterization of Mitt Romney’s remarks about poor people make me wonder about his seriousness. It seems to me that honest debate in the public arena requires more attention to detail.

I understand that corporations are, with some good reason, a favorite whipping boy of the left, but Louderback’s comparison of them to slave plantations is specious. No one is forced to work for a corporation. No one is forced to buy from a corporation, unless, of course, the Affordable Care Act is upheld, in which case I will be forced to buy health insurance or pay a fine.

It is also unfair to perpetually sneer that the legislation one prefers didn’t pass because legislators are all crooks, unless one is prepared to assert the same cause when bills one likes do pass. Otherwise, admit that honest and reasonable people can disagree with you.

To simplify somewhat, the left wants to reduce the influence of corporations on legislation, and the right calls for reducing the influence of labor unions on legislation and for a less powerful government. I’m for all of the above. More importantly, let’s debate honestly.

Rich Mills, Shawnee

Reefer Moron

Regarding the March 28 Inbox letter “Retire, Mitch” by Thomas Clay Jr.: Mitch McConnell shamelessly supports marijuana laws based on racist fictions and tall tales about cannabis-induced mass murder that never happened:

“Marijuana influences Negroes to look at white people in the eye, step on white men’s shadows and look at a white woman twice.” (Hearst newspapers, 1934)

“There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the U.S., and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana use. This marijuana can cause white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others.” (Federal Bureau of Narcotics director Harry J. Anslinger, 1937)

“... the primary reason to outlaw marijuana is its effect on the degenerate races” (Anslinger, 1930)

“Marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its users insanity, criminality and death.” (Anslinger, 1937)

“Marijuana is the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind.” (Anslinger, 1937)

The Feds have never repudiated any of these reefer lies and utterly lack a valid scientific reason for throwing people into prison for growing, selling or using marijuana.

Ralph Givens, Daly City, Calif.

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