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It's more than a market



Published: Sat, August 13, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



It's more than a market

EDITOR:

A farmer's market is held Saturday mornings at the corner of Elm and Illinois, across from Wick Park. The name is something of a misnomer in that it truly is a community gathering with fresh produce offered among many other items -- baked goods, coffee, books, items promoting peace, and on and on. The produce is at it's peak now, and a goodly variety is offered of fruits and vegetables. When one is hungry there are ribs and hot dogs offered also.

This Northside Farmers' Market is through the cooperation of the Unitarian-Universalist Church, Richard Brown Memorial United Methodist Church and Congregation Rodef Sholom.

On a recent Saturday we were also entertained by Rabbi Mueller playing guitar and singing with Atty. Christine Legow, both lovely to listen to. Their repertoire spanned a fair time frame and was extensive.

The market officially opens at 9 a.m.

Participants on these Saturday mornings seem to have a good time, neighbors chatting, looking over wares that are offered by various vendors, and being outside for fresh air. Won't you come and join in the camaraderie?

SHIRLEY A. BARTLETT

Boardman

Campaign's problem was, it wasn't much of a campaign

EDITOR:

Your editorial of Aug. 7 commented on the failure of the school levies. I address only the Jackson-Milton levy.

Sometimes an election becomes larger than the basic issue to be voted upon. I can't help but feel that is the case in this instance.

In your column you speak of the "campaign" for passage of the levy. My question would be, what campaign? Information concerning the coming election was basically a letter sent home with the students. No signs, no letter to the general electorate. This has to be the quietest campaign on record. Not until the waning days before the election was there any notification even posted on the two marquee in front of both schools, and even then it was minimal -- Vote 8/2

The manner in which this "campaign" was managed did nothing but alienate an electorate that has proven to be difficult, at best, to persuade to vote affirmatively. In the General Elections this issue had fared well, not passing by a small amount of votes. The result this time was resounding.

My feeling is that at this time it behooves the board and administration to re-examine their responsibility to the community as well as to the school. I'm sure they have their "spin" as to why they pursued the course they did. All well and good. There's still no substitute for character and credibility.

JEFF SMITH

Diamond

Cal reaches new low by quoting Bible to preach hate

EDITOR:

The few times I have read Cal Thomas' column he was irritatingly sanctimonious. However he has reached a new level with his July 31 rant about Jane Fonda. I am no Fonda fan but I feel it is journalistically irresponsible to quote Bible verses to support your hatred for someone. Even the smarter-than-Jane-Fonda and holier-than-thou Cal concedes that we still have the right to freedom of speech in America. Then why is he so vindictive toward Fonda because she has a different opinion than he does?

I am also a Christian but oppose the war because of my religious convictions. I support the troops but not the war. As tempting as it is to start spouting scripture to support my views I will refrain. However I will advise Cal that if he wants to convert Christians through his column he had better take the vitriolic nature of his tirades down a notch or two. He is looking less righteous and more like a crazed zealot with every pious column he writes.

I also find it shocking that a person who makes a living writing would make a thinly veiled threat that the media will be going after anyone who holds a different opinion than the moral majority. Shouldn't journalists above all people support the right to state your opinion not threaten to take it away? After all, Cal is being paid to state his opinion. God forbid his livelihood be taken away if the hand that feeds him doesn't like his opinion.

KATHY AARON

Boardman

Who owns the water rights?

EDITOR:

Your article spanning the majority of the Sunday business section glorifying Aqua Ohio was most concerning to me. Throughout the world, water privatization has proven time and again to be less efficient than public municipal systems and with varying outcomes. Look internationally: In Bolivia, a Bechtel subsidiary made it illegal to collect rainwater on one's own property without a permit. In Africa, the trend is leaning toward privatized water meters that deny fresh water to those who can't afford it. What is happening in Africa is the prepayment water debit card. If you have money on your card, you can buy water. If you don't, well shame on you. In Canada, the battleground is over bulk water exports. Various "water wars" in America are just beginning to show signs of stress in the southwest.

Now let's look at our community. Aqua America, the nations largest publicly traded water utility, only has to answer to it shareholders. What do shareholders care most about? The bottom line. Does that insure that our small-community citizens are getting their life-essential water at a fair price? Aqua America only has to ask PUCO for permission to raise their rates, which they have done plenty in the past, every year or two. According to The Vindicator's own article, on March 7, 2004, "Rates from private water companies are the highest in the Mahoning and Shenango valleys." We are starting to see just how high the price of life can be. The company states that it has "miles upon miles" of pipes to maintain. Well, so does the MVSD, which just implemented its first rate hike (for capital improvements) in many years.

Putting a social need like drinking water in the hands of a private firm is scary. Privatize water, and you put the very existence of every man, every woman, every kid, into the hands of a few corporations who pursue maximum profit through capitalism.

This leads me to my final question: Is water a commodity or a human right?

J.M. McCARTNEY

Youngstown




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