Dean's mouth will run Democrats into the ground
The Democratic National Committee chairman and former presidential candidate Howard Dean recently made a few controversial and false statements while making a speech in San Francisco. Mr. Dean said that the GOP is "a pretty monolithic party. They all behave the same. They all look the same. It's pretty much a white Christian party." This could not be farther from the truth.
The Democratic Party has for years been able to get the majority of the minority vote, yet the Republican Party was founded as an anti-slavery party and Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower ended the segregation of public schools in the South. President George H.W. Bush appointed Clarence Thomas, an African-American man, to the Supreme Court. Yet Bill Clinton did not have one person of color in a high level position in his cabinet. The closest African-American to President Clinton was his personal secretary. The closest a Democrat has come to putting minorities in cabinet positions occurred in the Carter administration, yet those positions were in low profile offices.
The fact is no president in the history of this country has elevated more minorities to government positions than George W. Bush. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, and HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson have all been appointed by President Bush. How can Mr. Dean and fellow Democrats claim that Republicans are not open to people of different backgrounds when members of his own party have refused to elevate minorities to high end positions in the government? I think the DNC needs to find a chairman who is going to bring people to the party, not drive them away.
Time to keep on walking
If war is Hell -- as I believe -- we have been there many times. Some of us had family in the Revolutionary War, some had family on both sides in the Civil War. Our loved ones have died on foreign fields in WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam. Each time our country called, young men and women have answered and paid with their lives.
Almost 2,000 Americans have died so far in Iraq. Our hearts are broken with their deaths. As more die, it will hit closer and closer to home. The pain their families feel will be our pain. War is Hell.
Yet, in this Hell that is Iraq, people have voted for the first time in their lives in a fair election. Despite dying in the thousands, young men in Iraq keep lining up to join the police or army. They are the preferred target for the terrorists that are fighting to deny them freedom, yet they have never faltered in their desire to fight for their country. Their courage is matched only by our own. In a country of 24 million, our coalition forces number only 150,00. That lays lie to the terrorists claim of U.S. occupation.
In the month of April, in this Hell, 140 Muslim fundamentalists blew themselves up to murder fellow Muslims. They destroy the Koran by destroying the places where they are kept and still believe they are going to Paradise. I believe they have exchanged one Hell for another. Against such insanity we must prevail. We cannot set a timetable for withdrawal because they will wait us out. They are insane with a flawed belief and human life means nothing to them -- not even their own. We must salute the Red, White and Blue and these colors don't run.
As Winston Churchill said during the darkest days in WWII when Hitler was demanding England surrender, & quot;When you are walking through Hell you just keep walking. & quot;
Crown jewel is tarnished
I can't begin to express how disappointed I was to see the condition of the grounds at the relatively new "crown jewel" of Poland, the Public Library.
The small area of grass in front of the library was full of weeds and dandelions and in need of fertilization. The ivy was full of vine-like weeds, wrapping themselves around the wrought iron rail. The pine trees had not be shaped. Many of the shrubs needed replacement, and the beds needed weeding and mulching. The creek side of the library had plastic coverings over sandbags - the view from the bridge was horrible. The hose had never been sprayed to clean off the walkways in front of the main entry. The windows had not been cleaned from the residue of winter weather. The paint on portions of the building was checked and pealing.
I suggest the trustees of the library take a look at the 250-year-old grounds of Poland Presbyterian Church and let that be the model from which to strive to maintain. Is this the same group of library trustees that is going to ask the taxpayers for millions of dollars to build a new palatial library in Canfield (and not properly maintain it)? The people of Poland may have to get help from some of the citizens groups in Poland and take a more active role in the grounds maintenance and beautification of this landmark.
The library was a gift to Poland -- let's respect it and keep it the focal point of our village for years to enjoy. I can't wait to see how the City of Youngstown is going to maintain the grounds and surrounding area leading to our new Convocation Center.
Who needs steroids? Nobody
I am a 16-year-old sophomore at Jackson-Milton high School. I'm 6'1", 180 pounds, I bench press 225 pounds, squat 330, and have a vertical leap of 33 inches. I play basketball, run track and might play football this fall. I enjoy the athletics at our school. The reason I am telling all of the things I do is because I don't use any steroids or any other performance enhancing drugs. I have good coaches who teach me a lot of discipline and a God-given talent to be a good athlete.
As an avid ESPN sports fan, I am able to keep up with the latest sports news. As I watch ESPN, the news of another professional athlete using steroids or some other performance enhancing drug is disappointing. It's time to start testing these drugs. If a player tests positive, it should be up to the organization that he plays for to intervene. Sports facilities are equipped with all kinds of health equipment, equipment that if used properly will give you an athletic advantage. So why use steroids? Is it the easy way to better condition your body for your sport? A few hours a week of weightlifting and some aerobic exercise can make you a good athlete. Why take the chance of becoming ill from the use of steroids? Brain tumors have been associated with the use of steroids. Professional football player Lyle Alzado died from a brain tumor associated with his use of steroids.
Professional athletes who are tested positive for steroids should be punished harshly and should pay a hefty fine. They should also be required to go to junior high and high schools and colleges to talk about the hazards and long-term effects of using steroids and other enhancing drugs. Explain to these students how they can be at the top of their game without the use of these drugs.