The State Journal encourages readers to submit letters to the editor for publication by noon Wednesday for the following Sunday’s paper. All letters must contain the writer’s full name, mailing address and telephone number for purposes of verification. The State Journal will not withhold the name of a writer. Any letter received without a mailing address and phone number will not be published. The State Journal will not publish thank-you letters, obvious form letters or letters addressed to third parties or to the public at large. Any letter may be rejected at editors’ discretion. All letters submitted for publication are subject to editing for length, form and content. Letters may be no more than 500 words long. Letters may be mailed to Letters to the Editor, The State Journal, 1216 Wilkinson Blvd., Frankfort, KY 40601; or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To the Editor:
“You can get over being ignorant but you can’t cure stupid.”
State Auditor Adam Edelen has completed the audit of the Kentucky Agriculture Department under the leadership of Richie Farmer. As expected the audit found continuous abuse of the state treasury and a “king-like” life Farmer made for himself while an elected official. The report claims he was using state employees and his own personal staff to cut his grass and take care of some work at his house and most anything needed that cost money.
The report shows numerous violations of ethics and public spending, like the $97,000 Farmer spent during the big “powwow” of the agriculture commissioners across the Southeast.
It’s not every day that someone hands you a collector’s issue of a Winchester rifle. The very collector’s item Farmer passed out during the big celebration. He was, at that time, the big man on campus. The expense to taxpayers was very near $100,000.
The report, by Edelen’s office, shows other violations by the former agriculture commissioner. I don’t know about you but for me it’s time our justice system puts these freeloaders in the state prison.
It matters little Richie Farmer was a very good basketball player at Kentucky. His election was tied to his identity as a UK basketball hero. Farmer has no significant business or working accomplishments since graduating from UK. Rather, he has chosen to play off his name and reputation and for a time that was good enough. Now Richie Farmer may be depending on his popularity to get him through the mess he created by being either arrogant or stupid, probably the latter.
When Farmer’s actions are certified and the statutes are identified it may be that Richie Farmer will be the best player on the LaGrange Prison team. If Farmer did abuse the office, where else should he be besides prison or jail?
Now in the sunshine we will have an opportunity to see if the Commonwealth will make an example here or just look the other way. The results may make you ill! However, since Richie has left so much trash at his doorstep the high up, politically savvy Republicans will have to decide if the former commissioner of agriculture has become too controversial to be a poster boy for the GOP in Kentucky.
Bottom line: There is plenty of evidence to support the claims of using state money for Farmer’s personal interest. When it can be proven, Farmer is likely to end up incarcerated.
I feel confident Farmer never gave a thought to possible violations he continuously committed for his own personal pleasure because he was a UK all-star basketball player.
Jim Anderson Stivers
To the Editor:
It seems to me that there is ample evidence to indict Richie Farmer on multiple counts of grand theft and several counts of gross misbehavior or conduct unbecoming...
A conviction, especially theft, ought to mean jail time and I think it would for most of us. Meanwhile, those who are in charge of such things should make a trip to the rafters of Rupp Arena and unceremoniously remove Richie Farmer’s jersey. That is the very least we could do.
To the Editor:
The U.S. government is the largest and most destructive terrorist organization in the world. By its own definition of terrorism, which has been shoved down the throats of citizens for years, the U.S. is guilty of conducting terrorist operations all over the world.
The definition of terrorism, reiterated by the second Bush administration in its “change of attitude” campaign, states that anyone who harbors or supports terrorists is just as guilty as the terrorists they support. There was a change of attitude, a violent change, but not of policy. The policy regarding terrorist activity at that time, and still today, has been the same for more than 30 years. I think it is a fair assumption that most considered Saddam Hussein to be a terrorist, and the U.S. supported him during his worst atrocities, the gassing of the Kurds is one example. Thus, by their own definition, the U.S. is guilty of terrorist activity as well as an absence of morality.
U.S. policy can be described in this simple observation: If they do it it’s terrorism, if we do it it’s counter-terrorism. The government has represented terrorism as one giant force that’s coming to get us. It has convinced people that military action is the only way to keep them safe. “We have to get them before they get us,” claimed George W. Bush in a July, 2003, press conference. The U.S. has military bases in strategic locations across the globe, making sure that everyone stays in line. These bases are not installed to “keep the peace” as many government officials claim, and that claim is accurate in the minds of the majority of American people. Threatening with and using advanced weaponry does not represent peace, it instills fear. Fear is a valuable tool for the suppression of opposition. Another favorite excuse is that military presence brings stability to unstable parts of the world. Bullets and bombs do not bring true stability, they bring war and destruction. When the U.S. government mentions “stability” or “stabilizing an area,” the true meaning is that the area is not yet subordinate to U.S. “interests.”
The U.S. government has three main interests at heart, money, power and control. We all know how money and power are obtained. The overwhelming evidence that connects the government to the corporate world is easily visible, and intimidation brings power. Having control is not only about control over global affairs, it also means control over the population. We’re given zombievisions, multi-tasking phones, and are told the news filtered through corporate ideals. As long as we stay on the sidelines and play with our electronic devices, watch TV for five hours a night and take an apathetic point of view we’ll see nothing change for the better, it will only get worse.
In conclusion, the U.S. quest for global hegemony has caused death and destruction on a massive scale. Millions have died and countries have been left in ruins all in the name of advancing U.S. domination. The “preemptive strike” of U.S. intimidation and criminal military action all over the world is blatant international terrorism.
To the Editor:
No, we’re not the Kentucky State University Mighty Marching Thorobreds, nor any of the athletic teams known for bringing the community out for late-night games! We are the Kentucky State University Concert Choir, a well-developed and selective group of undergraduate men and women from all academic areas of the university, who all take pride in their love for music and knowledge of Kentucky State.
Under the direction of Dr. Carl Henry Smith, who has served 50-plus years thus far, one has no choice but to act and carry oneelf as a professional at any given time, so when challenged with a song that’s very rarely written in the English language, that’s exactly what we do, execute the task with an aura of professionalism. Throughout the years this choir has produced some of America’s most talented people, from executive positions, managing A-list celebrities, and starring in Broadway Productions. We’ve put on shows, completed several recordings, and have traveled near and far, all while still remaining some of the campus’ most active and honorable students outside of the choir room.
Many people believe we’re just a singing group that goes on a tour through various places such as Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Washington D.C, Maryland and New York, just to name a few, during the spring semester. Little do people know, while they’re relaxing on beaches during their spring breaks kicking back, we’re out doing our part, recruiting for this great institution, giving back to the school we’ve come to love, showing many high school juniors and seniors what it is to be a Thorobred and that although we may be small in number our hearts and talents outweigh any other institution out there.
Lucas Lamar Byrd
To the Editor:
I am a child of God, uniquely made and special. For those who want to ridicule me and take photos of me and send them through email, get a life and get to know God.
I was informed that an email is going throughout the state with me in line at the Hardee’s drive-through. This is what our tax money pays for – grownups to take a picture of me, title it “Kentucky’s finest” and email it on state time.
Kids every day are taking their lives based on being bullied and ridiculed. How can we teach them, when we as adults do the same? Yes, I’m Kentucky’s finest. To those of you who find me offensive because of what I look like, get over it, because I’m gonna continue to live my life, roll in my powerchair and if I’m hungry or thirsty I will drive through to satisfy my need. Don’t like it, look the other way. Millions of people are trapped in their homes because of what society thinks about them. Well, I’m a survivor, not your victim. God bless everyone. He’s still blessing me.
To the Editor:
Arguments, fights, worries and just the little things that we think are a big deal and important. We all do these things on a daily basis, but why?
I couldn’t answer that question a year ago, but now I can. I was very sick and needed a lung transplant to live. One year ago I got the call that there were lungs waiting for me. My recovery was slow, but now I’m doing fine and have been given a second chance at life. So today I can answer that question. Arguments, fights, worries and the little things don’t amount to anything. Life is too short to live the only life you have been given by God to waste it on nonsense. Do the right things and be the best person you can be, because you might not be as lucky as I was and get a second chance at life.
To the Editor:
May is Foster Care Awareness Month.
Many people know of foster care, but few really understand how the system works, the role of the foster parents and most importantly, the experience of the children and youth in care.
More than 6,800 Kentucky children and youth are in out-of-home care. Most are placed in temporary foster care due to parental neglect or abuse. The average age of a child in care is 10.7 years.
More than 73 percent of the children/youth in care are white; 19.3 percent are black and 4.3 percent are Hispanic.
Of the children/youth in care, 50.7 percent are male; 49.3 percent are female. The average length of stay for children in care is 25.5 months.
More than 32 percent of the children in care range in age from 12 to 18 and most just want a place where they belong, where they feel secure.
Is foster parenting easy? No. Is it for everyone? No.
Will you make a lot of money foster parenting? No.
What you will get is the deep satisfaction of knowing you made a difference in a child’s life – whether the child is 5 or 15. Your actions may be the ones that turn his or her life around.
There is an urgent need for qualified foster parents, especially those who can accept a sibling group of two or more children.
To learn more, call (877) 259-6677. Help make a difference in a child’s life.