Inbox — Jan. 8, 2014

Letters to the Editor

Compassionate Kid
Regarding the Guest Commentary column in the Dec. 25 LEO Weekly by Devin Brown: It appears Devin has learned one of the greatest and most difficult lessons of life at an early age — to have a compassionate interest in others. To have this awareness while still in high school is wonderful. The challenge for him and all of us is to successfully practice it on a daily basis. This will make Haiti and Louisville much better places to live.

Thank you for publishing his experience. May we all benefit from it.
Bill Kuntz, Clifton

Great Men, Great Heroes
Dr. Ricky L. Jones simply nailed it in his column about great men (LEO Weekly, Dec. 18). He may very well be a candidate for the next one. I have made the same observations for years (referring to his column).

FDR and Churchill had discussions that would affect the world over good cigars and bourbon. God bless them; I would hope I was doing the same thing regarding the outcome. There are so many great people in this world — now out of 6 billion? It’s funny how so many could actually wait for a hero to emerge.

People, to a large degree, want to be the hero. Not for the sake, in most cases, of their self-proliferation. Most people want to simply live their lives — love someone, have a mate, have family, kids (if you dare). When you arrive at that point with souls in tow, becoming a great man comes with sacrifices other than yourself. How much would I like to jump from the highest mountain and scream the loudest?

I’d like to sit and bullshit with you, Ricky Jones.
Kirk Dixon, Middletown

Mandated Aid
LEO announced with excitement in the Dec. 25 issue that 100,096 Kentuckians enrolled in new health-care coverage, of whom 74,054 have enrolled in Medicaid.

Aye, but there’s the rub, laddie. That’s a lot of new Medicaid patients relative to the whole. The ACA pins its hopes of solvency on making droves of young people overpay for insurance. That’s why it’s mandated. Having a bunch of people get Medicaid will not help the state’s finances in the long term when the federal subsidies to the states run out.

And here’s another nasty surprise for the poor folks who get Medicaid. If you own your house and hope to give it to your kids when you kick the bucket, the state will force your estate to sell it to pay back Medicaid expenses. That’s right, kids. Medicaid isn’t free, it’s a loan, and the state is going to try to get as much of its money back as it can when you die. Do folks think the piper won’t get paid?

Before the ACA, I could have gotten health insurance for $93 a month if I could have afforded it. Of course that plan is now illegal, and the state wants me to get on Medicaid. Umm. I think not. I’ll pay the fine.

Where do people get off thinking government has the right to do any of this stuff, and why do they think government won’t screw it up?
Rich Mills, Shawnee

Money Talks
If there is institutional racism in our local politics or local government, I think Janice Rucker aptly described how it works during her meeting with the Metro Ethics Commission on Dec. 19: “When you deal in millions, you get away with it; when you deal in thousands, you don’t.”

Rucker’s remark is worth remembering. It reminds us that money is power. We also know this kind of power is usually more widely possessed by whites than blacks in white-majority communities. On the other hand, some politicians like to tell us that money is speech. They especially need to consider Rucker’s admonition.
Tom Louderback, Highlands