Recycling success is more than a matter of degrees
In response to Tuesday's How We See It, "Commissioners should use former director as standard:"
Let's talk about credentials, and then let's talk about actions. I hope that the Mahoning County commissioners have higher standards than when they hired Timothy B. Berlekamp. It's not because he was a "heavy hitter," but rather because the state of solid waste in this area is deplorable, and our recycling efforts are pitiful. You need not look any further than the facts.
In the last several years, over 1 million tons of out-of-state Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) has been dumped each year in Mahoning County landfills. Add to this number the 500,000 tons of non-district, but in-state waste, and that total is 1.5 million tons of MSW, which is not even ours. (Source: Mahoning County Health Department)
In 1993, our curbside recycling was at 17.1 million pounds. Currently, Mahoning County is less than 10 million pounds, a 70 percent decline, which is nothing to be proud of. As stated in H.B. 592, the state mandate for recycling and waste reduction rate is 25 percent. Mahoning County is at about half of that. Also, the U.S. EPA curbside average in America is 430 lbs/home/year, and Mahoning County is at 137 lbs/home/year.
We need help in this community.
We need honest, dedicated individuals with integrity, sincerity, and devotion to their work in order to make any progress. These traits cannot be found within a bachelor's degree. Experience has far more to do with who is qualified for the position. Therefore, focus should not rest upon the type of degree obtained by the applicant, but rather the commissioners should rely on what each applicant has done in his/her experience.
Youngstown has great potential, and I strongly believe that we could be a national recycling center, which would create jobs, as well as revitalize the community.
Parents should monitor games kids buy and play
I am replying to the article "Parental advisory" published Dec. 27. I don't think parents should be enraged by video games. Most games are violent, but that is no reason to get mad. They are meant for fun.
Video games have ratings listed on the box. It is a parent's choice if they want their child to play a rated M game which contains violence or sexual content. You must be 17 years old to purchase these games. Just because someone buys a game like "Grand Theft Auto" doesn't mean they are going to go out and commit crimes like those seen in the game --this goes for any other realistic games. For games such as "Doom 3," which are fictitious, people are not going to start looking for creatures like those that appear in the game. If the parents' child is easily influenced by games, then the parent should know this and take it into consideration before purchasing the game.
Movies and TV, which use high tech special effects and real actors, showing murder, shootings and robberies are often worse than that in games. Commercials such as "Victoria's Secret" and "Herbal Essence", which are sexually explicit, are seen almost daily. In the news there are stories of violence daily; you can't expect the news to stop telling us these things going on in the world, no matter how bad they are, or for parents to keep their kids from watching it.
As stated in the article, "The answer here is not a law but a reminder to parents that they need to take responsibility for the games their kids play." Most parents do take responsibility and are aware of the content in the games, and some of them even play the games themselves. So I think the answer is not to ban games of this content, but to remember that they are games.