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Wednesday, August 4, 2004

Letters to the editor


Light a candle to support tolerance

The headline on the guest column by Chip Harrod "'Candle in the window' marks a safe house" in the Aug. 1 Forum section inspired me with the following idea:

What if, on the Underground Railroad Freedom Center's grand-opening day, Aug. 23, the entire Cincinnati community joined in lighting candles to put in their windows, to participate in the center's opening? Many Cincinnatians would welcome the chance to demonstrate that this is a city of good, tolerant, fair-minded people. I plan to put a candle in my window - or a picture of one - on Aug. 23. Please join me.

Anita Bechtold, Mount Airy

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Dogs can be like deadly weapons

Regarding "Pit bull jumps fence, mauls boy" (Aug. 1): The attack of 10-year old Daniel Foster by Rhonda Byrd's pit bull was horrifying. Even more horrifying is that the city of Cincinnati has eased its restrictions on these killer dogs. Ohio law says your dog must be confined in a pen "that has a top, or some other locked enclosure." What is also horrifying is that Byrd will only get a maximum $1,000 fine and up to 30 days in jail, while Daniel is disfigured for life.

Owning pit bulls should be illegal. Attacks by pit bulls, especially in cases where owners disobey confinement laws, should be assault with a deadly weapon.

Peter Freeman, Elsmere

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Reforming Medicaid right thing to do

Why reform of Ohio's Medicaid is needed:

• It currently guides clients into nursing homes instead of using the much-desired Ohio's Passport community and home care services.

• In 2001 nursing home care cost Medicaid $147 a day, compared with $31 for Passport home care services.

• Medicaid costs Ohioans $11 billion a year for 33 percent of the state's budget - much higher than the national average of 20 percent.

• An AARP poll reported that 99 out of 100 older people clearly indicated they want to age in their own home within their own communities.

• Reform is the nonpartisan right thing to do.

Albert Zenz, Fairfield

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Bush's bullying comes back to hurt us

I am writing to underscore a comment in "Iran nuke program developing while U.S. is stretched thin" (Aug. 3). An Iranian official said, "There is no justification for accepting suggestions to hold negotiations with a country which adopts a bullying attitude toward others."

Most of us learned in kindergarten that it's not nice to bully and you'll have no friends if you do. Apparently President Bush was "left behind" when that lesson was taught.

The rest of the world knows that we definitely have weapons of mass destruction. And now that we have made war on a country that didn't actually pose an imminent threat to us, why should any group feel safe in negotiating with us? With Bush in office, we have lost our most valuable negotiating tool, the assurance that we will negotiate with integrity.

Patty Thomas, West Chester Township

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Vet experience irrelevant for president

Regarding the column by syndicated columnist Richard Cohen ("Kerry shows poignantly why being a vet matters," Aug. 1): If combat and war experience are so necessary for a president, why didn't the people instead of Bill Clinton pick Bob Dole?

What about Clinton sending troops to Somalia? He had no service experience, he sent a lot of people, and unfortunately many perished. I'll bet Cohen abandons this theory when Sens. Hillary Clinton or John Edwards run for president.

Nick Guerrera, Dent

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Smart Arab-Americans understand

I do not agree with Derrick Z. Jackson's analysis that portrays some Muslims as stupid ("Many Arab-Americans abandon GOP," July 30). The examples that he highlighted - of Arabs objecting to terrorist searches - are not typical of the majority of Muslims who are smart and aware. For anyone who has the physical appearance of the worst mass murderers the world has ever seen - for any Arab to not understand that they look like a threat to people of all religions and nationalities - is pure stupidity.

As a non-Arab, I have been inconvenienced as much as, if not more than, any Arab at airports, only because of the previous and continuing actions of Muslim Arabs.

Ted Day, Montgomery




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Letters to the editor