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Letters to the Editor

May 14, 2010

O'Malley shouldn't be touting his 'successes'



To the editor:

I can't believe Gov. Martin O'Malley recently was in the area touting his "successes."

He was praising the town of Hancock for its care of the exhibits from the Sideling Hill Visitor Center. Why did they have to be moved from the exhibit center in the first place, where it belonged? How much money has it cost the state to close the center, install new gates and new signs? Now, we should be happy to have the state pay for one more sign explaining where the exhibits were moved to? I am outraged that they find this "acceptable."

I love this area and the town and go out of my way to support local businesses, etc. It was a great idea to move the C&O Canal museum closer to the heart of the town, but putting the geological exhibits into an old vacant department store building eight miles away from its intended home does no justice to the costs of all the years of blasting rock and building an interstate highway and museum to promote tourism. Local people on the mountain had their land divided and lives disrupted forever to make way for this.

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Also, I am surprised the local UAW is praising the governor. They have lost all dental insurance and the cost of having medical insurance has gone up from zero to $160 per person for monthly premium payments (and still having co-pays, etc.). He takes credit for creating jobs, but how many have been lost? State employees have had pay cuts and furlough days, and people have lost homes and jobs, and pride and hope.

I know it's been a tough economy, but I wouldn't be praising myself about any of it.

Sarah Hendershot
Hancock




We must address illegal immigration issue



To the editor:

Leonard Pitts' column "Shame on Arizona" (Tuesday, May 4, page A4) shows that he is a skillful scribe, one able to navigate the minefield that is immigration. But he starts out with a wrong premise: "If we wanted immigration reform ..."

If the "we" means 70 percent of Arizona's residents, he is wrong. They want immigration law enforcement, not immigration reform. If "we" means all citizens, he is wrong again. Enforcement is wanted, not reform. If the "we" means those in Congress who prefer to do nothing rather than to take a stand, then he is right.

He points to one of Arizona's U.S. representatives, Raul Grijalva, coming down against the bill. A bill that Pitts labels "the so-called ..." (the bill has a name that does not start with so-called). Well, if Grijalva was doing his job, the state of Arizona would not be taking these steps.

Pitts also steers clear of using terms like illegal or even the now popular undocumented. And, of course, he makes no mention of the impact of illegal immigration on the economy of Arizona.

Immigration is a sensitive topic for anyone to take a stand on either side. But we must do what is necessary to address the problem. Start with large fines to companies that hire those here illegally, regardless of where they are from, what language they speak or the color of their skin.

Clifford Lane
Black Rock

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