Letters to the Editor

No oversight of yard sale guns

On Friday, Sept. 6, the News and Tribune listed an upcoming estate sale located in Clarksville. Among the items for purchase were guns!

My husband called the Clarksville Police Department asking for information concerning city or state laws governing the sale of guns at yard sales. They didn’t know of any, but said that he should contact the State Police. Indiana State Police told him there were no laws regulating this type of gun sale only that the buyer had to show proof of age (21 years). There is no waiting period, background check, permit or anything else required.

On Sunday, Sept. 8, the Courier Journal ran an article titled “Errors allow mass shooters to get guns!” The third paragraph stated, “Not all gun purchases are subject to a federal background check system. Even for those that are, federal law stipulates a limited number of reasons why a person would be prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm.”

The N.R.A. would be so proud!

— Ricki Flannery



Mudslinging distorts facts

A new low has been reached in Charlestown Mayor Bob Hall’s re-election campaign, courtesy of John Spencer, the city’s multimedia director. In a social media post about Mr. Hall’s private educational foundation (CEEF), he stated that, “Our opponents are not super worried about the future of our students.” He went on to say “Don’t let our opponents steal the future of our children.”

You would have to be incredibly naive to believe that Mayor Hall was not a party to that mudslinging. If that’s not the case, he should immediately and publicly say so. His silence on this matter would speak volumes about his lack of character.

The post was clearly intended to instill fear in the school’s teachers, students, and their parents. Voters were being led to believe that if Treva Hodges is elected mayor, she will eliminate CEEF. Let’s look at the facts:

1. CEEF is NOT a part of city government.

2. CEEF Is Bob Hall’s PRIVATE foundation, exclusively controlled by him.

3. The future of CEEF does NOT depend on who is mayor of the city.

The multimedia director knows these facts, and he should apologize to Treva Hodges for his ugly statements. Not only did he use a false premise, he picked the wrong target. Dr. Treva Hodges is currently a teacher at Charlestown High School, and has taught at the university level for four years.

Charlestown residents are desperately pleading for an end to this type of divisive behavior by city officials. That will not come about until a new mayor is elected. The choice is clear: Vote for Treva Hodges.

— Jim James



Undeserving of re-election

It’s very disturbing to us, and should be to everyone, that so many Republicans in Congress, including a certain portion of the general public, come to accept a President that has no morals, no boundaries, and insults everyone on slightest whims. A President who drives our allies away from us with his uncooperative attitude and interferes with their day to day matters, then cozies up to dictators and tyrants; professing his love to Kim Jong Un is really upsetting to the ear; then sides with Vladimir Putin against our own intelligence agency. Less time on twitter and television and more time on finding solutions for health care, gun control and infrastructure would be more presidential.

Isn’t it pathetic that Senator Mitch McConnell no longer has a mind to his own. That he aids and abets the President every step of the way. It’s a disgrace that a grown man can only act under the orders of the President. Does he have no shame? They both need to be removed by the voters at the next election as they are trying their best to restrict our right to vote. This madness needs to end. Your vote does matter.

— Glen R. Pitzer



Vaping health risks too high

More and more of our youth, middle and high school aged, are becoming addicted to Juuling/vaping. Electronic cigarettes are taking over not only our youth, but adults as well. Over 3 million youth use an e-cig and millions of adults (CDC). Many individuals are not even aware of nicotine being in e-cigs, yet alone that they are being addicted to them.

Data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey shows that there has been a 387 percent increase in high-schoolers using e-cigs compared to rates from 2012. In middle school, the increase was 385 percent. Among high-schoolers, the rates of use jumped from 3.8 percent in 2012 to 18.5 percent in 2018, an alarmingly fast rate, particularly due to the fact that cigarette use was down. All of this is giving Indiana a bad image as Indiana has one of the highest smoking rates in the U.S. among adults and youth. Approximately 3,700 Hoosier youth become daily smokers each year and an estimated 151,000 Indiana youth that are currently under 18 years will prematurely die due to smoking.

Much of the high rise in use stems from the very direct, target ads aimed at youth; something that Juul is getting into a lot of trouble over lately as they are being sued by families of those who have been affected by the addiction and negative health outcomes associated with Juuling/vaping. More and more information and adverse health outcomes are being found that are related to Juul/vape use that the FDA is now requesting and urging healthcare providers to report any cases potentially related to e-cig use.

There’s no better time to quit than now. If you’re thinking about quitting or are ready to, call the free tobacco cessation counseling line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW.

If you would like to schedule a tobacco presentation for your organization, please contact Lejla Cosic, Minority Tobacco Coordinator from Community Action of Southern Indiana, at 812-288-6451 ext. 2112.

— Lejla Cosic



The rhymes of our times

Bulletproof backpacks are now on sale....for our children to carry as shields from the shells. A trip to the store for back to school supplies...will we make it to check out without losing our lives? How about a movie, a concert or a drink? Will we be here tomorrow, we can’t help but think...

The term mass shooting sounds like a cliché...something we’ve heard so much, the words don’t even weigh. Why on earth does a citizen need an assault weapon? Are we at war here in town? Have we not learned our lessons?

You can talk Second Amendment and I have to agree...we should be allowed to have guns to own and carry...but do we really need something that’s name begins with assault? How many more will we let die before we take action to halt?!!!

It cannot be said that this is one person’s pain, or one person’s problem, these times are insane. We have a man in power who speaks in derogatory ways...a party of yes men who offer free will and praise. We have a country divided....divided we fall....it’s mind boggling to me that no one will stand tall...

Where does it begin, the contemplation of killing...in a young man’s mind, what makes him willing to give up his life and others unknown...in a rampage of hate, what seeds have been sown? For those who say we can’t blame those in power, for the constant attacks on people of color, I ask you respectfully and think real hard about this...do you really believe this rhetoric can be dismissed?

The world we are living in, this alternate facts reality...keeps moving us backward, trying to erase our evolutionary history. Yes we can build anything, we can go to the moon...but what good is all that if we are our own doom? Evolution is not just about what we can do...it’s about reaching a higher level of consciousness too. Can’t help but believe some don’t want that to be....for everything changes when we use our hearts to see..there is a connection between us all, just because some don’t believe, that doesn’t make it false...

I pray and I contemplate what I can do...I continue to believe that somehow we’ll pull through...be it God’s Grace, a change of heart, or an experience that makes it clear...we’re all in this together, we might as well get along while we’re here.

— Kim Poore



Rush-hour restrictions needed

Thinking that having one lane open on the Sherman Minton would allow a significant number of vehicles to cross? Saturday the Kentucky Transportation Department closed two lanes southbound in order to repair a horrible patch from a previous repair. It would seem that the weekend would be a great time for this. It sure wasn’t around 10 a.m. Saturday.

A conclusion might be that one of three lanes being open would allow one-third as much traffic to cross in a given time, but it does not work that way. My suggestion is that if this is to be tried, prohibit all vehicles with more than two axles during rush hours.

— David Isaacs

New Albany


Working for the common good

I served 21-plus years in the Army, including joint assignments within DoD. Volunteers from every socioeconomic background in America working together to achieve a common objective. It’s high time we remind the three branches of the Federal Government that is precisely THEIR job as well. Legislate, execute and interpret the law for the common good within the limits of the constitution. Period.

— Clay Gabhart


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