Inbox — Sept. 4, 2013

Letters to the Editor

Re-Route Ironman
I have lived in Old Louisville for close to four years. Each year residents are asked to put up with any number of walks, runs, mayoral bicycle events and an Ironman contest. During last month’s Ironman, not only was Third Street blocked off, but so were side streets between Third and Fourth. Circumnavigating these closures is especially rough for those of us living along Third and Fourth. I had my fill of blockades. Ormsby provides access to parking behind our apartment building. A lane was open on Ormsby, so I proceeded past two police cars to the alley behind my apartment. An LMPD officer followed me in his car. I think he was more upset by me not stopping and asking for permission to proceed to the alley than anything else. A testy debate ensued. I tried to show him my license on two occasions to prove my residence. He said if I tried a third time, he would arrest me.

I pay my taxes for protection, not for harassment. If folks in the East End are so interested in these types of events, please re-route them away from Old Louisville and out toward their end of town.
G. Miller, Old Louisville

Transparency is Key
You might have heard some talk of institutional racism and duplicity (aka double standards) in the Metro Council’s ethics process. What’s that? The race card again? Not hardly. Bear in mind, this is not about overt racism. No one is calling anyone else a racist. The institutional variety is subtle and frequently unintended. It’s still harmful, though.

The problem is the Metro Council’s prohibition on anonymous ethics complaints. That restriction decreases the flow of information to the Metro Ethics Commission. So, the likelihood of detecting institutional racism and duplicity is reduced as well. It’s hard to find the effects of this latent form of racism when some of the indications or possible indications are screened out.

What’s needed is more information to the Ethics Commission. Not less. Transparency is the most effective disinfectant for institutional racism and duplicity.
Tom Louderback, Highlands

Beware the King Amendment
I’m very concerned about the “King Amendment,” authored by Iowa Congressman Steve King (R), that could undo all state laws pertaining to agriculture — so laws that protect food safety, farmers, the environment and animal welfare could go out the window. Additionally, it would strip power from the states by disabling them from creating new laws about agriculture. Perhaps this is why the National Council of State Legislatures, more than a dozen Republican members of Congress and conservative columnist Kathleen Parker all agree this is bad for states’ rights.

We need to ensure the dangerous King Amendment does not get into a final version of the farm bill. I urge Sen. McConnell and Congressman Yarmuth to do everything they can to remove this harmful language once and for all from the farm bill.
Mary K. Korfhage, Highlands

Conspicuous Absence
After calling himself “the greatest defender” of minorities, Sen. Rand Paul was nowhere during key commemorative reports describing the March On Washington’s 50th anniversary. Meanwhile, Republican Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner has taken the GOP lead in demanding restoration of Voting Rights in Congress. Paul’s absence in these and other minority-rights’ struggles causes the puzzling question: Why would “the greatest defender” be conspicuously absent if his self-proclaimed title is true?
Michael Gregoire, St. Matthews