News and Tribune


August 22, 2012

News and Tribune letters: Aug. 22, 2012

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — Reader hopes to rally interest for dog parks

Many concerned dog owners are looking for a place where people and their dogs can play together.

Off-leash dog parks are being established all over the country and offer a  wealth of benefits to dogs, dog owners and the community as a whole. These parks allow dogs to exercise and socialize safely and promotes responsible dog ownership. The love people share for their pets reaches beyond economic and social barriers and helps foster a sense of community.

Well-exercised dogs are less likely to create an nuisance bark or destroy property. Their presence in the park may also help deter crime. According to Ted Kerasote, author of “Merle’s Door,” informed by the author’s grasp of animal research, dogs that are socialized are less likely to be aggressive.

I believe there would be an outpouring and positive response to this idea from our community and our neighboring communities. If interested, call me at 812-987-9544.

— Debbie Byrne, Georgetown

Resident responds to political letter

For anybody out there who might come into contact with letter-writer Thomas Sinex, a word of caution. Do not get too close to him as his pants could catch on fire after the statement he made about the Affordable Health Care Act.

In a recent letter to the editor, Mr. Sinex quoted from Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson criticizing parts of the law. He argued that Gerson’s criticism should be considered unquestionable even by liberals because in Mr. Sinex’s words Gerson is a “mostly liberal columnist” writing for “the famously liberal Washington Post.” Golly Wolly! If even our own “liberal” commentators are turning on the president, I guess the rest of us Democrats should just curl up and die.

 Here’s the true story on Obama critic Gerson. This “liberal” is a graduate of Wheaton College, one of the intellectual bastions of conservative Evangelical Christian orthodoxy and the alma mater of Billy Graham. In his career Mr. Sinex’s make believe “liberal” worked as a speechwriter for Republican presidential candidate Sen. Bob Dole and as an aide to Indiana Republican Sen. Dan Coats. At one point he assisted Republican President Richard Nixon’s aide and convicted Watergate conspirator Charles Colson. In 1999, Gerson was recruited to work in the George W. Bush campaign by that famous friend of liberalism Karl Rove.

After the 2000 campaign, Gerson became chief speechwriter for President Bush, earning high praise for a job well done from the pre-eminent conservative journal The National Review. He coined the phrase “Axis of Evil” and was one of the inner circle of neoconservatives who helped steer us into war in Iraq in search of imaginary weapons of mass destruction and with a force far too small to secure the country after initial military objectives were achieved.

The Washington Post publishes Gerson’s columns to provide fair and balanced commentary on their op ed page. This no more makes Gerson a liberal than Cal Thomas appearing in the Courier-Journal could make him a soulmate of Michael Moore. So the real story here is not that a “mostly liberal” commentator criticizes a Democratic president but rather that a traditional conservative Republican finds fault with a Democrat, except that really isn’t much of a surprise to any of us.

The most important revelation in Mr. Sinex’s letter is that the Republican Party has veered so far to the right to appease the Tea Party that even traditional conservative Republicans with solid records of service to the party are now outcast as “too liberal.” And they say radical Islamists are intolerant of dissenters. Get a load of today’s Republican Party.

— Steven Fleece, Jeffersonville

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