Letters to the editor

A site for the masses

DEAR EDITOR:

Last year, I started to hear committees were evaluating locations for the Presidential Library. Last week, the White House chose a site in Chicago for the golden shrine.

They gave the list of sites, and fourth on the proposed list was Hawaii. It made me wonder how the adoring masses could afford such a trip? When for years the liberal left has been ranting and raving that the masses are so poor they have no means to travel a few miles to obtain state photo I.D.s in order to vote. Yet, they presumed the adoring fans will find a way to the Big Island.

I guess their solution was a shovel-ready bridge. Imagine the free caravans of Trailway buses heading to Howard Johnson Motels, the ones furnished with pools and pop machines.

Just think of all the future president hopefuls that summer trek would inspire.

“I remember when I was young, my grandparents, mother, half-sister and I boarded a bus.” Oh to, the tears and cheers, they did ring out.

James Collins

Newton Falls

TPP and fast track bad for America

DEAR EDITOR:

The Republican-controlled House and Senate don’t agree with President Obama on anything. I just hope that they continue in that vein and vote down the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership) and the fast track authority that the president wants.

The President said that he wouldn’t back it if he thought it would hurt American workers. Well, it seems to me that I heard that same thing said about NAFTA, CAFTA and the South Korean Trade Agreement.

Job losses and companies moving their operations to Mexico is what NAFTA got us. We already have a big deficit with South Korea, so why in the world would this trade agreement be good for the U.S.? This is not free or fair trade, this is just another way for the United States to lose jobs and businesses, not to mention our sovereignty.

Another thing America should be worried about is the buying of our government by people like billionaires the Koch Brothers, Rupert Murdoch and the Wal-Mart clan. Under their ideology, the middle class would cease to exist and environmental controls would be eliminated. Our Tea Party Republican-controlled House and Senate are bankrolled by these anti-middle class bunch , so who do you think they are going to side with when your wages and benefits are on the line? With this new trade agreement (the TPP) you can look for more jobs to move offshore to countries like Vietnam, which suppresses workers’ rights and they also have a minimum wage of 50 cents per hour. The Koch Brothers are salivating over the TPP so they can open up shop in Vietnam. I have to mention our Tea Party and corporate-owned Supreme Court also because they are the ones that gave these billionaires the right to buy the U.S. Congress. Tell your representative and senators to vote no on the TPP fast track authority and keep an eye on your elected officials.

Bud McKelvey

Hermitage, Pa.

Amtrak crash raises awareness, not speeds

DEAR EDITOR:

The recent Amtrak accident gave cause for some questions to the speaker of the House to respond to. He did so poorly, saying that congressional cuts to Amtrak had nothing to do with the accident calling the question stupid. Sir, respectfully, you are the stupid one. By not investing in safety equipment that would have prevented the accident from happening, eight people would not be dead today and that is the fault of you, sir, directly, and your Republican caucus in Congress that do not consider Amtrak a worthy part of our country. You cannot be more wrong.

The average speeds of trains that service the people of other countries, such as Japan and Europe, are more than 150 mph. The average speeds of trains that service the American public and Amtrak are just more than 60 mph. We are so far behind the rest of the world it isn’t funny – it’s a disgrace. The people want safe, government-run train travel in this country, yet the current Congress and Republican position is no. This should come as no surprise as the Republicans are in the process of destroying another great public service and government institution in this country, the post office, which costs $0 in taxpayer money to have and operate. An attempt to build a high-speed rail system was killed by a Republican governor in Wisconsin a few years ago for his state.

Everywhere you look where Republicans control government on the national or state and local level, there is this disdain for anything the government does for people and works and efforts to minimize or destroy it mostly for corporate interests.

Voters need to be educated on what is going on in this country by our elected officials. Rail is a part of our infrastructure and Republicans say we simply can not afford to fix our infrastructure or invest in it, yet they pass hundreds of billions of dollars in tax break giveaways to rich corporations and people who do not need them. It is why we have so much economic disparity and that is now becoming a part of another form of disparity: travel disparity. The rich will always be able to go where and when they want but the average American is becoming more subjected to travel issues because of our lack of investment in our national infrastructure such as Amtrak, roads and bridges. How many more average Americans must die before Congress acts responsibly?

Leif P. Damstoft Sr.

Warren

Operation Shield comes 25 years late

DEAR EDITOR:

While I am encouraged by efforts to combat crime associated with the drug trade, I am even more encouraged by the sentiment to treat addiction separate from criminality. I breathed a sigh of relief when I heard the state patrolman give a synopsis of how addiction fuels crime and how addicts need to be treated as opposed to locked up. This sentiment has always been present in the mental health field but now with the heroin “epidemic,” the message has saturated even into law enforcement. But I would be remiss if I didn’t point out the glaring hypocrisy of the whole operation.

This was touted as the largest drug operation in the history of the state. However, heroin is nothing new and is by far not the first drug epidemic to ravish Warren city streets. I can’t help but to wonder where this same sense of urgency and compassion towards addiction was when the crack epidemic was running rough shot through the black community? Could it be that this “epidemic” is urgent due to the fact that it has moved very heavily outside of the boundaries of the marginalized communities of color and poverty?

Between 1984 and 1994, the black community hemorrhaged value property-wise as well as quality of life. In 1996, approximately 60 percent of inmates incarcerated in the U.S. were sentenced on drug charges. An overwhelming percentage of those incarcerated were addicts as opposed to traffickers. The tough crack sentences, mandatory prison terms for possession of even small amounts, were born of public panic over crime and social ills that accompanied the crack epidemic. Warren was not fortunate enough to be outside of crack’s path of destruction. Where was Operation Shield then? Where was the compassion and treatment option for the crack addicts? They were met with little more than stigma and mandatory minimum prison terms.

I am left with a familiar bitter taste. This whole public upheaval and concern over the heroin epidemic reeks with the same stench of discrimination in policy that only up until very recently had prison sentences for crack cocaine astronomically higher than that of any other illegal drug on the market. It being no coincidence that crack most heavily affects communities of color. It is sad because it feels like it took heroin affecting the status quo to prompt such pressure to react and resolve.

So, thank you law enforcement. Thank you, legislators, for the funding for the brand new opiate treatment centers. While I applaud your collective efforts, I’m thinking they are maybe 25 years too late for the community I hold dearest to heart.

Lea Dotson

Warren

No outrage over local police chase, shooting

DEAR EDITOR:

They say apathy is one of the main factors allowing injustice to prevail, and even destroy civil societies. Where is the outrage over our country turning into a police state? Locally, where is the outrage over the killing of Cody Dempsey?

According to verifiable evidence, the facts are: 1. Dempsey had failed to pull over for police flashing their lights, though this was hardly a “high-speed chase” since the speed limit on state Route 11 is 65 mph and Dempsey was doing only 70 mph. 2. officer Lowery emptied his entire 10-round clip at Mr. Dempsey less than 10 seconds after stopping his patrol car. 3. The only shot fired from Dempsey’s pistol went through the floor of the vehicle he was in and was not even heard by any of the numerous officers present.

The video from officer Lowery’s patrol car dashboard camera doesn’t show the shooting of Dempsey, although the audio portion is fairly clear. Where is the dash cam video from the other (at least four) police vehicles present? Why did it take five months to decide not to charge anyone? Was evidence allowed by local authorities to be destroyed or simply ignored? Why was no attempt made to calm the situation and just arrest Dempsey?

From the video it’s obvious that officer Lowery immediately got out of his vehicle after stopping, went behind the stolen car to the driver’s side and fired all 10 rounds at the suspect, who was still sitting behind the wheel. So Lowery’s claim that he shot Dempsey because he had pointed a pistol at the officers in the front defies credibility because Lowery had no time to make that determination. Besides, if Dempsey had pointed his pistol at the officers in the front, why didn’t they, with the better view, shoot him? A reasonable person can conclude only that Dempsey was executed.

Is that what it’s come to in America, where police can kill someone for stealing a car or not pulling over promptly with police lights on behind them?

This issue of police brutality is not the racial issue liberals try to turn it into, because many more whites are killed by police each year than blacks. Until the honorable and disciplined majority of police stop closing ranks around the dishonest or trigger-happy ones, the good ones will be part of the problem.

James Dunlap

Mineral Ridge

Schedule games around church

DEAR EDITOR:

I would like to respond to the Rev. Kenneth Dodrill’s letter concerning sports on Sundays. I agree with him that Sunday should be reserved for church. When our children were growing up in the 60s, 70s and 80s, I complained to the coaches about this.

I was raised to attend church and feel that we need to have God in our lives. It is very hard to schedule practices around people’s schedules. There are many activities that families have now and that is a good thing, but church on Sunday is important.

Different religions have different days of worship and some churches have several services. There must be some compromise so that families can attend worship together. Many young people are very involved in their churches and that is a wonderful thing. We must put God first in our lives and teach our children respect for Him. Now, more than ever, we need to instill some basic religion and teachings to our children.

I cannot believe that “nobody goes to church anymore.” What a sad commentary for a coach today. Where are our values?

Pat Heston

Niles

Gained security can mean lost freedoms

DEAR EDITOR:

Regulating Americans right out their wealth, liberty and pursuit of happiness is the current modus operandi of our current and near past elected leaders. As the media keeps striking fear into the general public as if on purpose by sensationalizing stories that are normal occurrences year in and year out, one has to wonder, is this just for the network ratings or is there a political agenda being advanced? Some of the fears include terrorism abroad, health care cost, becoming a victim of a violent crime or terror attack, social security cuts, job loss, under employment, catastrophic weather, along with many others.

When news agencies report these events, they make it sound unique and devastating each time, and the politicians are always eager to help us out by adding additional regulations to protect us from ourselves. This makes managing the John Q public much easier by taking away established freedoms. Two blunt examples of lost freedoms in the past decade are the Patriot Act and Affordable Care Act. We now have laws regulating everything from smokers to wearing seat belts along with countless IRS regulations that make it difficult for small businesses to turn a profit. As more laws are added, our freedoms are being taken from us and our wealth along with it.

Some of these laws may save lives, but we have to ask ourselves is this worth our freedom and liberty, and where does it stop? If we were to eliminate the Constitution and suspend all civil liberties, our crime rate would drop dramatically, but at what cost? Imagine, instead of due process, just shoot first and then decide later on guilt or innocence. This approach was done in Germany, China and Russia; if anyone feels that they need the government to keep them safe they should do some additional research before requesting additional regulations.

Many feel that America is declining and our nation’s deterioration is the act of a few and not the many. I say that we all have a part in this and it needs to stop. Every last one of us needs to take personal accountability for ourselves. We need to demand that our government leaders promote policies that will promote economic growth, individual achievement, innovation, along with rewarding those people willing to take the risk. Currently, our laws encourage poverty and dependency; meanwhile, penalizing those that strive to achieve.

What kind of American are you? Do you want to be independent or dependent? Maybe our leaders need to start hearing more from citizens that want their sovereignty and ability to determine their own destiny rather than those who want their destiny chosen for them with limited options.

Tim Santell

Kinsman

Letters to the editor

USPS needs to refocus

DEAR EDITOR:

The U.S. Postal Service is in rough shape and it’s a lack of good management that is to blame. In Ohio, mail processing centers are getting further consolidated, and that means deliveries are getting slower.

On the surface, the agency’s billion dollar losses annually seem to justify changes. However, debts are rising as stamp prices have increased to add revenue. Further, a study found that USPS actually enjoys $18 billion annually in government subsidies, too. With so much money coming in and fewer facilities, why are agency finances still so bad?

A review of its exploits over the last couple years shows that it is everything unrelated to mail that is weighing it down – grocery delivery, same-day delivery, expanded package delivery and even potentially banking.

The truth is that mail service is USPS’s mission, and it’s proven to be profitable.

Jeanne Bolton

Granville

Clinton wants to divide country

DEAR EDITOR:

I’m all for and have no problem with a lady president; however, Hillary Clinton has got a very checkered past and presently in a tangled web of deception and possibly criminal activities with her so-called Clinton Foundation. She is funneling money through it for political favors to foreign businesses when she was Secretary of State.

No wonder she had private servers in her house, that she deleted emails and had them destroyed as Congress was closing in. That is just one scandal of many; then she goes around and says she is for poor people and against the elite – like she is poor – she cannot be trusted.

She wants to divide the country on gender and race and not bring people together and solve problems, but divide them – how can that be good for the country? That’s their strategy. Divide and conquer. I ask you, is that good? Whatever happened to bringing people together? With the Democratic party, it’s divide the people.

Nick Boxler

Newton Falls

Candidates and equal coverage

DEAR EDITOR:

Bernie Sanders is running for president, but can he win? Many in the news media are already saying no. As a concerned voter who cares about issues more than political theater, it troubles me when the media write off candidates before the race even has begun. Bernie announced his candidacy just before May Day. That same day, one of the first major headlines about his announcement read, “Why Bernie Sanders matters, even if he can’t win.” I was pleased to see that the Tribune Chronicle, in an AP article, did not automatically rule him out. I say this to all news media: Let the American people decide who to nominate! Me, I choose Bernie. Here’s why:

Bernie is different. In an age in which politics has become a spectacle like sports and entertainment, Bernie says, “I believe that in a democracy, what elections are about are serious debates over serious issues. This is not the Red Sox versus the Yankees.” While the media is sensationalizing Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders is traveling the country speaking about income inequality, climate change, infrastructure, free health care and higher education, taxing the rich and getting big money out of politics. These goals are all part of Bernie’s overall vision for America, which he calls “democratic socialism.” As a democratic socialist myself, I want to take this opportunity to expand on what democratic socialism means. Although many think of Soviet-style Communism when hearing the word “socialism,” democratic socialism is not about eliminating economic freedom but about expanding it by eliminating extreme poverty and enormous concentrations of wealth and power through pragmatic reforms, including democratic planning of important sectors of the economy like natural resources, energy, public utilities and financial investment, based on need rather than profit. By looking to the successes of Scandinavian-style social democracy, democratic socialists advocate for a stronger social safety net, a greater public share of wealth, greater social mobility, and a higher standard of living for all regardless of income. That’s where Bernie stands, and his unexpected success in raising more than his Republican counterparts on the first day of his campaign and signing up more than 100,000 volunteers proves just how relevant Bernie’s message and ideas are.

I therefore ask all journalistic entities give Bernie and his message equal space and treatment alongside the latest Hillary scandal and the growing Republican field. In Bernie’s words, “Allow us to discuss the important issues facing the American people and let’s not get hung up on political gossip.”

William Harned

Warren

Police blitz is counterproductive

DEAR EDITOR:

My job, the only one I can get, is unfortunately just enough to meet the basic needs of shelter and food. To supplement my meager income I sometimes take on the responsibility for a friend’s dog while they are out of town. This wonderful weekend is one of those times, and they have no idea how lucky they are, being away from town now.

The thing is, they live just across the bridge from my home. One block north, over the river two blocks south plus a half east.

It takes me 20 minutes to walk that dog, but the exercise will stretch into an hour because this weekend I have to walk to get there. The streets are so lousy with cops, and a ticket will blow my budget. The police should not be making me afraid to go about my totally legal business.

The new cold war is a civil one. Poor vs. cops. And right now in Warren we are being assaulted.

I’m sure the powers that be will call this a triumph of control, that they are cleaning out the streets, that we are all safer because of this blitz, but all I see, and all many of my peers see, is tax collectors mugging law-abiding citizens in the name of “public safety.”

This is a disgrace. And all it will serve to do is inflate negative sentiment about the rapidly militarized police state. Fear is no way to rule. People who live in fear will lash out. This entire weekend is simply counterproductive, and we are all actually less safer for it.

Mike Rooster

Warren

Cursive still necessary

DEAR EDITOR:

As a retired teacher, I was happy to see that some lawmakers are taking steps to have cursive required. (Tribune article published May 8).

It appears to me that phasing out cursive is yet one more example of the “dumbing down of American Education.”

Catherine O. Swan

Warren

Word of God is Doctrine

DEAR EDITOR:

I read your Letter to the Editor on May 3 where the Rev. Kenneth Dodrill wants people of all faiths to unite with him and take a stand to boycott Sunday sports. We have too many reverends protesting against our police and laws of our lands with hate for each other. So many are trying to prove they have a doctrine better than the others.

Jesus told us in Matthew: 24 how it would be just before He returns to set up His Kingdom. Earthquakes and the signs are before our eyes to show us how close to the end of the age we are now. Preachers need to care that we be ready for Him when He comes.

Repentance must be preached in churches or no one will be going to church at all. The Word of God is sound doctrine. People read and believe and don’t let any reverend man change the Word.

Stand against false doctrine.

Doris Tackett

Warren

Have lawmakers gone mad?

DEAR EDITOR:

I have for a long time thought the country going mad, and now I know for sure it has happened. The lawmakers are for sure the maddest of all. Let me explain.

Allowing people to have handguns for starters. I don’t think everyone needs a gun. Having an open container law whereby you can walk around with an open alcoholic container outside an establishment. What? This, coupled with guns, looks like a tragedy ready to happen. Am I missing something?

Recently I read in the Tribune the lawmakers would allow, and I quote, “the bill expanding where a concealed weapon could be carried includes colleges and universities, houses of worship, day care facilities, planes, certain government facilities, public areas of airport terminals and police stations.” How insane does this sound? I can’t believe we need to expand where people carry guns. Unbelievable. Day care facilities! Houses of worship!

Who of us really travel the “speed limit,” whatever that is. I find, when driving on the freeway, at what I think is the speed limit, look into my rearview mirror and someone passes me going so fast I think the devil is chasing them. The lawmakers in their infinite wisdom increased the speed limit to 75 mph on some parts of the freeway. Heck, they could have saved time knowing everyone goes that fast and over. Why even have a speed limit?

Don’t the lawmakers have more important things to do?

Pat Zoccali

Warren

Letters to the editor

Where have all the mothers gone?

DEAR EDITOR:

It breaks my heart as I read in the newspaper and watch the news of how children are needlessly being killed. Often at the hands of a parent, a mother often times than not. Children (girls in particular) are running amok due to lack of guidance. The innocence of children seems like it goes away in the twinkling of an eye. Some “mothers” nowadays try to act as young as their children and feel content partying with them. What has happened to being and acting like a mother? What has happened to motherhood?

In my humble opinion, being a mother is the most treasured, valued and cherished position a woman can have. It is a gift from God. It is sacrifice, giving and compassion. A mother has no time off from her duties. She has no sick days. Her pay is giving love and receiving love from her children. Even at times a mother may look her worst, but she makes sure that her children will look their best. A mother may have had a long day at work, but she always makes time to study with her children, to teach them, nurture them, listen to them, always letting her children know that she will be there for them and love them always. No matter how old her children may get, they know that they can always depend on “Mother.”

A mother may have the softest voice and the most gentle manner, but when she feels that her child is being threatened, she turns into a lioness. This world is not kind more often than not. A mother worries about her children; she sheds tears at times. A mother wishes that she could bear everything that is harmful that may come her child’s way.

Mothers map out a legacy for their children.

The title mother should be honored; it should be revered.

My mother has been gone for nearly 20 years. She was a mother of nine girls and one boy. I miss her every day. She was truly a blessing to us and to everyone that knew her. Our mother left a legacy for us. I have four daughters and my legacy will be passed to them.

What a mother puts into her children, she will get back. Children are reflections of ourselves. Do you like what you see?

If your mother is here with you, show her love, respect and honor. Cherish her not just on Mother’s Day but every day of her life. If your mother has passed away, be the person that she wanted you to be. Carry her daily in your heart and always remember her. Love her always.

Jennifer Y. Williams

Warren

Recycle gravel on streets

DEAR EDITOR:

This letter is in response to a recent edition stating how this city looks dirty due to all the gravel on the roads left over from winter. I couldn’t agree more. It’s ugly. And if you ride a bike or motorcycle, very dangerous.

I’m not sure if Warren City owns a streetcleaner-type vehicle – if so, why not recycle it for use next year? If we pay for it, it would be a savings if reused. Surely we can find a vacant area to store it. If we have no street sweeper machines, perhaps this job would be part of alternative sentencing, unemployment or even volunteer programs.

Where does this stuff come from? Can we store it there? Can we store it elsewhere? Do we pay for it year after year? Surely it can be recycled.

Warren needs a serious facelift. This would be a start.

Brianna Sharp

Warren

Do not give up on education

DEAR EDITOR:

To the parents and grandparents who dislike Common Core education. I said in previous letters concerning government control of your children and now it has come to pass.

Thirty years ago, the state tried to implement “modern math,” remember? It was a nightmare; in less than eight months it was gone. Why? Parents fought the educational system. Do not give in to government on this. This form of education is supposed to make your children better and “critical thinkers.” Well, we supposedly have 535 so-called “critical thinkers” in Washington; we see how this is helping America. These so-called educated people who went to Harvard, Yale, Rutgers, Stanford, Columbia, all liberals in their way of thinking, are not doing much.

By the way, no matter what, 9+5=14 and that only takes three seconds to figure out the answer.

Ruth Lilley

Niles

Culture change is evident

DEAR EDITOR:

In November, Ohio will cast their vote on marijuana for legalization of the drug. Survey already shows more than half in favor of its passing.

I cannot believe what society has become today! In the past, the cliche “clean cut” used to mean someone with upstanding character, to a degree. We can now remove it from Webster; to me, it has lost its meaning. Today is an “anything goes” world.

I am reminded of the character Dr. Robert Neville in the movie “Omega Man” with Charlton Heston playing Dr. Neville. In the movie, Dr. Neville used biological warfare on the enemy that went astray to infect the entire planet, with transmutation of every person on the planet. The affected became like stalking ghouls, sensitive to light, with an agenda to destroy any normal life on the planet. The doctor possessed a rare element in his blood that kept him from changing. In his travels, he came across a woman who seemed normal. Together they teamed up to fight and destroy these mutants by day. At night, they would hole up in a secured safe house as the ghouls attempted to get in, but could not penetrate the fortress. At the end, Dr. Neville is surprised and betrayed by his companion, who was infected and transformed into a ghoul. She unlocks the door for the mutants to enter. They dragged Dr. Neville into the city square and killed him.

The culture change in America is evident in our society. Beliefs we once knew are now vanishing and becoming different from our upbringing: different beliefs, changing standards and expanding tolerances. Is this for the betterment of humankind? Who knows. In general, we all have a short lifespan on this planet. I feel it was meant or designed to be that. The evolution of social acceptance and constant changes in behavior would be too emotional for us to accept if our life were to be extended as we now know it.

Paul R. Lawson

McDonald

Problem affects all Americans

DEAR EDITOR:

Recently I wrote a letter that you entitled “Silence is equally evil.” I would like to emphasize the results of that silence. I draw your attention to Baltimore, Md. This is a prime example of what happens when rational and reasonable voices are silent when injustice and evil is being done. The frustrations by those who feel powerless and wronged by the system seek justice in the only way they feel they will be heard. This is not something new; we saw it in the 1950s, 60s and 70s. (Civil rights / Vietnam War era) It was injustice that gave birth to our nation.

I recently saw a television show where Islam was under attack for its terrorist components (ISIS, Alqueda, et al) In Islam’s defense, one of the panel said that there were more than a billion Muslims in the world and not all or most are terrorist or condone terrorist behavior. In response, the attacker said, If they don’t then where are the Islamic voices of outrage? Why aren’t the good Muslims condemning these barbarous acts? Are we so blind that we don’t see the same principle applies to us in this country? Where are the good peoples voices of outrage at the social and judicial injustices being perpetrated in the poor and minority communities across our country? Or are we OK with it?

This is not a Baltimore problem; it isn’t a black / white problem; it isn’t a police problem; it is an American problem; the only way it will be resolved is by Americans. Not just white, black or any subset of American society, but by all of us. It is time to set aside our instinctual tribal constructs and embrace the American dream that the founding fathers touted as the reason for America’s existence, or own the hypocrisy we have been living with for the past 200-plus years. We are again at a crossroads of American culture; we will either make a decision and do the right thing or we will let the decision be made for us.

If we remain silent, we are saying we are OK with the way things are going. The truth is we are going the way of Rome, and in a few years you may have to answer the question, what were you doing while America burned? We don’t need to be in the streets burning and destroying property when there is an apparent injustice; we need to be on the phone, down at town or city hall, or in the states capitols demanding those responsible be held accountable.

It’s the American way.

Stephen Force

Warren

Reverse course on YDC closure

DEAR EDITOR:

I am writing in hopes that the governor and state legislature will read this and reverse course on any plans to close two developmental centers for individuals with developmental disabilities.

I have a son, Frank, who is non-verbal and has been a resident at the Youngstown Developmental Center (YDC) since 1998.

Prior to living at YDC, my son was placed in a number of group homes. The experience in the group homes was traumatic for our son and our family. While living in a group home, my son was raped by another individual living at the home. What’s more, we would never have been notified of this brutal experience had the individual involved not told his own father, who went on to alert the group home and our family.

Frank was on a waiting list after that but was fortunate enough to be accepted into the Youngstown Developmental Center in 1998. Since then, Frank has called the center his home. It’s been such a relief to have Frank within the care of the Youngstown DC. I was just so worn out by fighting all the battles with the group homes.

Youngstown Developmental Center knows how to handle Frank. The staff is well-trained, responsive to Frank’s needs and they care about his well being. There is a one-on-one staffing ratio when he needs it and Frank is able to take great pride in his work at the workshop. Where is Frank supposed to work? He can’t work at Wal-Mart – he doesn’t have the skillsets. Where is Frank supposed to go?

Closing the Youngstown Developmental Center isn’t just about Frank. A lot of other residents cannot survive outside this controlled environment. The group homes are not set up for their individual needs.

I ask the governor and Ohio state legislature to reverse course and commit publicly to stopping the closures of developmental centers across the state.

Marilyn Egli

Cortland

Consider all angles before merging 911

DEAR EDITOR:

I would like to “weigh in” on the discussion about consolidating Warren’s 911 Call Center with Trumbull County 911.

In February of this year, my husband’s blood pressure had bottomed out and he was having difficulty breathing. I called 911 because I needed immediate medical assistance and an ambulance. Warren Fire Department arrived lickety-split and they were able to stabilize him because Warren Fire has EMTs on their department.

We all had to wait 15 minutes for Howland EMS to show up in order to have my husband transported to the hospital. Warren Fire was not able to transport him. However, they were the ones who did all the necessary medical procedures to stabilize him.

With Howland EMS suspending services to the City of Warren and if Warren’s 911 Call Center gets moved to the county, I believe there will be a serious decrease in the quality of emergency services to all the neighborhoods of Warren.

I am aware that the city is experiencing income tax shortages because of the loss of major businesses. I am willing to be patient as the administration works to make adjustments to continue to provide services to the residents. However, I am not willing to sacrifice access to 911 emergency services for an alleged saving for the city of less than $270,000 a year.

Warren has an aging population and the majority of the ambulance services in Warren are tied up with transports to and from nursing homes. I have aging parents and I want to know that if they need to call because of a medical emergency, 911 will be there for them like it was for my husband.

I hope council will review all possible angles and scenarios with regards to the 911 Call Center before a decision is made that could jeopardize the safety of the residents. Remember, it is an election year.

Rhonda J. Bennett

Warren

Letters to the editor

CHIP program here to help

DEAR EDITOR:

President Obama recently signed legislation reauthorizing funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as CHIP, here in Ohio. This program offers health insurance coverage to children from families with low to moderate incomes.

Since 1997, CHIP has helped millions of children across the country, including our Ohio children and families. In Ohio, children living in families with incomes less than 138 percent of the federal poverty level are eligible for no-cost health care coverage based upon income. For a four-person household making $33,465 or less per year, they would be eligible under Ohio Medicaid guidelines.

Applying for health care coverage can be confusing, and Access Health Mahoning Valley is available to assist with enrollment and other issues related to getting coverage at no cost.

We are a local, no-cost resource and have trained, certified navigators prepared to explain the process, to help in plan selection that is best for your family and to make sure you get enrolled successfully. We have been helping families in Trumbull and Mahoning Counties since January 2014 and have enrolled more than 1,500 people.

Call Access Health Mahoning Valley, 330-373-0703, to get enrolled and / or get your questions answered.

Charlene W. Allen

Certified health care Navigator

More can follow $70,000 example

DEAR EDITOR:

Years and years of hearing about the rich conservative 1-percenters vs. the liberal 99-percenters, I hear about those dastardly Republicans – how dare they be so rich, while we are so poor and needy?

Quote David Letterman about Mitt: “He’s so rich. He drives a Cadillac and owns a horse.”

A rich 99-er.

Dane Price is cutting his salary from $1 million to $70,000, using the surplus of $930,000 for his employees’ raises.

Are all the other liberals squirming, thinking they should follow Price and just live on $70,000 a year?

Kim? She buys a lot of fur coats for her 2-year-old daughter. And Lamborghinis for birthday gifts. Paris? Would she be able to buy her third Bentley to match her other two Bentleys? Poor Charley Rose? Would he be able to fly to Paris on a whim to have dinner? Oprah? Would she be able to buy her $80,000 handbags? Or another 2,000 acres in Hawaii or another private island? And poor Marc and Chelsea. They just bought a $10 million apartment in New York City. Their neighbor, J. Lo, she has a $20 million apartment in the same building. Do I see a moving van?

Seventy-thousand dollars a year; that’s “if” they decide to follow in Price’s footsteps. But I doubt it!

James Collins

Newton Falls

Time to boycott Sunday sports

DEAR EDITOR:

I read with sadness the letter to the editor published April 12 concerning sports activities on Sunday mornings. I myself played Little League baseball back in the 1960s. As well as I can remember, we never played on Wednesday and never on Sunday. Those were days reserved for the church. I find it not only heartbreaking but appalling that a coach would be so arrogant to say nobody goes to church any more. I still honor the Lord Jesus Christ by attending services on Sunday as well as thousands more in this county. I believe it has come time for people of all faiths to take a stand and show these coaches that we are going to draw a line in the sand and show them that if they don’t change this policy, our children will not be participating in the activity.

We have sat quietly by too long. I would ask every person of faith to boycott all Sunday sporting events involving our children until they change this practice. If the children are not there, then they will have to change it! Come on, brothers and sisters of all faiths … unite!

The Rev. Kenneth Dodrill

Leavittsburg

Not all veterans are covered

DEAR EDITOR:

We made a discovery that not all veterans are entitled to medical benefits. My husband was in the Air Force and was stationed in Korea. He suffers from depression, and we found out about a treatment done by a doctor at the veterans hospital in Cleveland. My husband was denied treatment because he was not in the service during a designated war time or was indigent.

Donna Dorsey

Southington

Answer is writing, not rioting

DEAR EDITOR:

It amazes me that people think violence and riots are the way to get attention and have problems fixed.

How is burning and looting a neighbor’s store or home going to get the problem with police solved?

All that is happening is that the police officers get more hours, more pay and more angry. It tells police they have the right to treat people the way they do because they deserve to be roughed up, shot and treated like they are all animals. The police need to be held responsible for their actions, just like every John Q. Public is expected to.

If you or I shot and killed someone running away from us, we would be charged with murder and put into jail. But, because they wear a uniform, they are given allowances.

The way to get this changed is not to create more problems, rioting, looting or burning out places that belong to one’s neighbors.

They need to write letters.

Get people elected who will do the job correctly, not just the ones who have the most money.

I hope this trend does not reach the Valley.

Rebecca Mason

Niles

Civil War column a public service

DEAR EDITOR:

I want to thank the CW150 Committee and everyone who worked so hard to bring the history of the Civil War into our lives over the past four years. I looked forward to each informative installment. I also want to thank the Tribune Chronicle for making it a priority to publish the articles; it was a true public service.

Larry Ringler

Akron

Taking issue with cartoon’s focus

DEAR EDITOR:

And here is yet another letter prompted by the only thing on your comics page less funny than “The Family Circus,” a feat that would be impossible if you didn’t feel the need to include a political cartoon masquerading as a comic strip along with your readership’s daily respite from the bad news.

Recently, “Mallard Fillmore” decided to take aim at our honorable president’s suggestion that perhaps our American democracy would be better served if its citizens were required to participate, via some sort of mandatory voting law, a prospect that only works in the 13 countries of the world that it is practiced.

The arguments against mandatory voting are somewhat valid, true. America is the land of choice and compelling people to do something is not what government is all about. A quick trip through the average man’s wallet could provide proof of this. Here is my Social Security card only mandatory if I want to work in this country; it’s my choice. I’m sorry, I tell a lie, that’s my auto insurance card, only required if I want to drive … it’s here somewhere … that’s my driver’s license … also required to drive … is this it? No, that is my health insurance card, which I face a fine for not having, and this here is my Selective Service card, which I need to have lest I face jail time. Hmm. Well, you get the point.

It has been suggested that compelling every citizen to show up at the Board of Elections on a national holiday where they can fill out a ballot, or at least mark that they are opting out of filling out a ballot, while eliminating the need for the 10-year census and the related expense, would put the government at the mercy of an uninformed electorate. Mostly this has been said by politicians, of both major parties, for whom educational spending is not the highest priority. Wouldn’t it be something, then, if suddenly those public servants had a vested interest in informing the electorate? These representatives, faced with the reality of needing to heed all of their constituent’s opinions when making policy, instead of as it is now, where they need only to depend on their voter’s apathy to stay in office, may find it behooves them to make certain that “the ignorant masses” get a lot less ignorant. Mandatory voting could actually force policy toward better education, perhaps raising the U.S. above the abysmal 36th among civilized countries in schooling our kids. It may even bring the average person’s intelligence up enough to realize that “Mallard Fillmore” is just ridiculously insipid, much like the inaction of today’s elected officials. Wouldn’t that be something?

Mike Rooster

Warren

Honking case hits wrong defendants

DEAR EDITOR:

I just recently moved from the Youngstown area to a much warmer and friendlier climate. Since my move, I heard about the most ridiculous and far-fetched story: “The Hubbard Honking” case.

I researched and discovered that this is a real lawsuit!

Given the information I read on the Internet, I believe Mr. and Mrs. Krlich may be subjected to harassing beeps. I will even go as far to say that maybe most beeps are intentional. It is my understanding that because of this, there has been a honking / noise ordinance put into place. Right? Therefore, I am really confused as to why the Krlichs are suing individual honkers rather than lawmakers handing out tickets or fines. We have all paid mega-dollars in speeding tickets, which in turn is revenue to the state and county. Further, are the Krlichs the only people affected by all the noise? Are other surrounding residents complaining? The Internet news is not always clear and I have so many questions.

For example, let’s just say for argument’s sake that Mr. Krlich wins his lawsuit and gets X amount of dollars. Will this windfall put an end to the honking? Is there any amount of money that can permanently change this ridiculous situation? Will drivers near and far learn some valuable heartrending, national attention-getting lesson in this drive-by honking case? Who wins?

Additionally, why would the Trumbull County courts permit a man to use the legal system in such an obvious “let’s get even” frivolous manner? At this point, many have probably invested in attorney fees and may have to lose time at work (and money) to drive to Warren to defend their “beep.”

The answers are apparently not going to be found on the Internet, and I am smart enough to know they won’t be found within a courtroom. As a recent Ohio resident, I’m aware that Hubbard and many other surrounding communities have suffered from the decline in tax revenue, due to job losses and home foreclosures; creating a mass exodus of families seeking a better life. Those who are still there for reasons beyond financial might want to work together to create a bit more positive news and publicity. How attractive do you think Hubbard appears right now to those considering business opportunities or to families looking for a new home?

Sorry, Hubbard, but the sound of a car horn may be a welcome relief in a sad and vacant town.

L.R. Vance

Spring Hill, Tenn.