Letter carriers not to blame for rate increase
A recent "Blondie" comic strip was out of line and not funny. Once again, someone is perpetuating the myth that whenever a postal rate increase comes about it promptly goes to line the pockets of the mail carrier. Nothing could be further from the truth.
If the postal rate increase did go into the carriers pockets, they would be rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous, vacationing several times a year in the Bahamas and driving solid gold Cadillacs. Give me a break.
Carriers do get an annual clothing allowance. After purchasing a coat, shoes, shirts and pants there is little, if any, money left. Money for anything else a carrier needs must come out of the carrier's own pockets. Carriers' wages are only a fraction of the USPS budget.
X The writer is a Youngstown letter carrier working out of the North Side Post Office.
Reducing sulfur from coal should be an Ohio priority
As a former committee chairman of the Ohio House of Representatives it was our committee's charge to study the possibilities for the clean burning of Ohio coal. Therefore I wish to discuss the "cleaner coal" and Frank E. Lockwood's report which appeared in The Vindicator of April 22.
Our committee found that Ohio is blessed with large amounts of coal which have the high BTU that is needed for our electricity. The trouble was and still is the high amount of sulfur. Reducing the sulfur would help all Ohio with its energy and environmental problems.
The process is now perfected: smash the coal, add water, heat it to 2,700 degrees with pure oxygen, and Ohio coal is made into a mixture like oil and transformed into a much cleaner burning gas.
Then what's the problem? It's a matter of politics. Gore and Bush both supported money for cleaner-burning coal technology. President Bush has earmarked $150 million for clean coal research and more if needed. We in Ohio should support this, and we should let Congress know our thoughts on this matter.
Doug Gibson of the United Mine Workers said that it's a win-win for everyone. We have bipartisan friends, and led by Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., Ohio should not let this golden opportunity pass. We have to act now to reduce our electric bills, to help attract industry and to clean our air.
THOMAS P. GILMARTIN Sr.
Children with special needs cannot be excluded
Regarding an article appearing in a recent Vindicator headlined "Board postpones open enrollment policy," I would like to respond to Superintendent Anthony D'Ambrosio of Girard Schools regarding that policy.
Mr. D'Ambrosio explained that he and the building principals would screen applicants and would not accept special-needs pupils because there is no room in that program.
I would like to inform him that special-needs pupils have the same rights of accessibility as typical children, and his comment about not accepting them because there is no room could be construed as very discriminatory.
Mr. D'Ambrosio should read the Americans with Disabilities Act very carefully, as well as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, which is very specific as to the rights of children with special needs in public and special schools. Due process can be quiet costly to school districts if special-needs children are not given the same opportunities as other children.