Letters to the Editor - Dec. 15

December 15, 2011

How are JFK 50 Mile entry fees spent?

To the editor:

It was a real pleasure to read and reread Saturday's Herald-Mail editorial about the JFK-Trail dispute. One sentence in particular stands out and that is: "Now, organizers say it's time 'for the gloves to come off,' in an apparent attempt to browbeat trail officials into changing their tune." The perfectly used word "browbeat" is, in my dictionary, a synonymous cross-reference to the word "bully."

Now, I have never equated JFK trail runners with bullies, but perhaps different personality traits apply to the JFK race organizers. We already know that the race organizers collect several hundreds of thousands of dollars in entry fees and then ask the county commissioners to provide free (to the race organizers but not to county taxpayers) police and safety personnel the day of the race. What we don't know is how the race organizers spend the hundreds of thousands of dollars they collect.

"Follow the money" is always good advice when nonprofits express a desire to expand their efforts to collect funds. I would like to know what the JFK race expenses are and, in particular, how much the JFK race organizers are paying themselves. I have a suspicion that if the number of runners is allowed to double, the race organizers will pay themselves more than twice the amount they are presently paying themselves.

Daniel Moeller


Are you living in the flesh or living in the Lord?

To the editor:

In this Christmas season, it is a good time to ask: Are you living in the flesh or are you living in the Lord?

Let me start by saying I am not perfect by any means. However, I try to keep the Lord in my presence, actions and thoughts. Frankly, no matter how many possessions you have, when it comes time to die, you only have the Lord with you at that time.

Some might not have an understanding of what living in the flesh or living in the Lord means. For me, it means are you burning the candle living day to day or do you have a higher power in your life? Some would ask: If the Lord exists, why is there so much chaos in the world? My response is if it were not for the Lord, the chaos would be unimaginable.

I am no theologian, just an everyday citizen trying to carve a life out, but finding out over my 60 years it is much easier with the Lord than without him. Over and over, I have found prayer works; usually not immediately or in the way you ask, but in time answered in some way. The Lord knows your needs and will provide.

Some churches are going through difficult times, while others are thriving. Worship is meant to be a group exercise. Maybe instead of watching the morning talk shows on Sunday, consider attending a church service.

Meredith Fouche

Let's start relationship with other Hagerstown

To the editor:

Did you know that there is another Hagerstown? There is another Hagerstown in the state of Indiana. Is it just me or is that kind of neat?

In fact, we are the only two Hagerstowns in the entire United States. I found out about this a year or so ago and started doing a little research. I found that the two towns have a great deal in common. Both towns have a long history with the railroad, aviation and automotive industries.

You can read more about this on the Internet. Because of the similarities with the industrial histories, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to join the two towns as a Sister City relationship. We have and have had a long and wonderful Sister City relationship with Wesel, Germany, since the early '50s. Most people I know have never had or will never have the chance to visit Wesel. That experience is reserved for those of us who are the more affluent and not within reach of the majority of the people in either of the Hagerstowns.

Hagerstown, Ind., is about six hours west on Interstate 70 and a stone's throw north. It's a small town that you could use for a Norman Rockwell pictorial. I think it would be a great idea for us, as residents of this town, to reach out to Hagerstown, Ind., and create a new Sister City relationship.

I'm not asking to end the Sister City relationship with Wesel, Germany, just to create a new one. One where many people here locally can reach out to create new bonding relationships that could live on for future generations. With a Sister City relationship with Hagerstown, Ind., there would be endless ideas exchanged between the two cities.

 I would like to think that I'm not the only person that sees wonderful experiences coming out of this venture. I'm looking forward to other people contacting City Hall and lending their support toward getting this idea off the ground.

Mike Keifer

HCC is not best location for senior center

To the editor:

Those who believe that HCC is not the best location for a senior center are correct. In my father's hometown, they built the perfect senior center. It shares space with some local government offices, is less than a block from a pharmacy, a bank and a grocery store, and is also within easy walking distance of a few amentities such as a pizza parlor and a Starbucks.

Intelligent physicians have located satellite offices near the center. An adult day care space was included when the place was built. A van is available to transport seniors to and from the center five days a week. My father can no longer drive but because of this center he can remain in his home without being homebound.

The centralization of services keeps costs low. A similar site would best serve the needs of the seniors in Washington County.

Amy Schmersal Paradise

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