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Taking a threat seriously



Published: Sun, July 29, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.

Taking a threat seriously

After reading “Letter car- riers should stick to a schedule — or risk getting bit” last Sunday, think it’s important to clear a few things up since the safety of letter carriers is at stake here. Every year, on average, more than 3,000 letter carriers are bitten by dogs, many suffering sever injuries with permanent scars — both physically and mentally.

About the only thing I can agree with in the letter is that the mail could be delivered at just about any time of the day. The problem is the writer’s logic and his shifting of the blame to someone else after his dog nearly bit the mail carrier.

It is his responsibility as a pet owner to keep his dog under control. Dogs are required by law to be restrained either on a leash, chain, or in a fenced-in area where they aren’t a threat to anyone.

According to his way of thinking, it’s somehow not his or the dog’s fault if it bites the mail carrier because he or she was delivering to his house at the “wrong time”.

Well then what about the UPS and FedEx drivers, Vindicator carriers, meter readers or anyone else who ventures on to his property? Do they have to follow a strict schedule too?

He should be advised that if his dog does threaten, attack or bite a letter carrier he will be forced to either move his mailbox to the street, rent a PO box or get rid of the dog if he wants to receive mail.

It is true that many carriers are told to do their extra assignments first, and for many reasons we don’t agree with the policy and we’re dealing with it internally. However it doesn’t excuse someone from letting their dog run loose.

If the mail carrier is injured, the dog’s owner is also subject to any legal action taken by the Postal Service and or the carrier. As for his “free” lawyers and suing the Post Office for five times what he is sued for, good luck with that.

John Fire, Youngstown

The writer is the safety and health representative for the National Association of Letter Carriers, Branch 385.

The myth of the self-made man

Far too often we confuse what we’re proud of with what we ought to be thankful for.

A writer last Sunday referred to the president of the United States as a clown and a socialist, a man of limited intelligence and ability, a man who is lazy and corrupt whose only purpose is to mislead. In quoting the president (insufficiently and out of context) — “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen” — the writer either missed the point the president was making in that speech or purposely missed the point so he could deliver his misguided rant. What tripe.

Early in my life I had the good fortune of acquiring a mentor, a master sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps. Ed O’Toole, an orphan raised in Los Angeles, joined the Marines in 1939 and spent WWII in a Japanese prison camp. He became a mentor to me in 1955 — quite like a big brother. When I was first assigned to his unit I was under the impression I had raised myself up by my own bootstraps, having gone a lot further in life than others in my own family and much further than I had expected just several years earlier. Sgt. O’Toole set me straight by pointing out all of the things in my life that preceded me and benefited me by people I didn’t even know, such as: the hospital I was born in, the roads and bridges to that hospital, the school system that educated me, the effective local, state and national governments of a freedom loving nation, an economic system allowing personal progress, those who preceded me in the Marines who made it the great organization it was, these among many, many other things too numerous to list.

Even though I voted for Ike and he voted for Adlai Stevenson, Sgt. O’Toole ultimately succeeded in fostering a realization that I was born on second base — I had not hit a double.

John Wendle,Youngstown

Too many guns, too many dead

The latest act of gun vio- lence taking place in Aurora, Colo., left 12 of our fellow American citizens killed and many more in the hospital critically wounded.

I believe gun buying is up and sensible gun laws are weak or nonexistent because of the N.R.A. and the U.S. Congress and their unwavering support of the 2nd Amendment. Gun merchants are now proliferating guns to our young and old in on the street corners of American cities and towns in every state in the union.

I often wonder how many of our fellow American citizens have to get killed on the streets of America due to senseless and random gun violence before our political leaders (both Republicans and Democrats) act? And also what would America’s great future be like if it had not been robbed of the great voices and future leaders (known and unknown) who where killed by gun violence, including Abraham Lincoln, JFK, RFK, of Martin Luther King, Medger Evers, Malcolm X, Huey P. Long, James A. Garfield, William McKinley, the Columbine victims, Ford Hood victims etc.?

I believe that the senseless and random gun violence is stripping America of its future leaders and heroes today, tomorrow, and forever. The American people need to act now.

Willie James Richards, Youngstown

Share the wealth with our schools

Gov. Kasich says that the state will have a $235 million carryover surplus for 2012. A good portion of this money belongs to public school districts that now have to go to their voters for additional taxes (levies).

Then this $235 million will double to $482 million. Every school superintendent should be outraged that this governor is bragging about the large surplus at public schools expense. Our governor has forgotten about the hundreds of tax increase issues that were on the ballot last November because of his cleaver.

Superintendents and school boards have no choice but to ask voters for help. The majority of tax increase issues are defeated, so they all have to make painful cuts and issue pay-to-play policies. All of this at the expense of our number one natural resource, our students.

Gov. Kasich is counting on Ohioans’ amnesia also when our Supreme Court said funding for public schools is unconstitutional. This November, remember who is to blame and who are the enemies of our public school system.

Ed Freisen, Newton Falls

Realizing a mistake a bit too late

The Vindicator reported Thursday that “Ex-Citigroup CEO: Break up big banks.” Sometimes a short article drops a bit of information that is very insightful. In this case Mr. Weill says that “consumer banking units should be split from riskier investment-banking units.” Thirteen years after the Congress repealed the Steagall-Glass Acts of 1933 and 1934 a banker now says the investment banking should not be a part of the consumer banking industry.

The following is the first paragraph of my response ,which you printed November 1999. It is still pertinent as the banking industry rejects any regulation. “Law OKs one-stop financial shopping (Vindicator, Nov. 13, 1999). Such euphoria. After two decades and millions of lobbying dollars, spent in the last few years, banks, investment firms, and insurance companies have turned back the clock. Man has always wanted to travel back in time. Until now it was not possible. We should pray that this carry back does not also take us back through the 1930s.”

Investment banking is not the only item that should be removed from consumer banking, it is also insurance, and being stock brokers. Regulation is a must. What is now being referred to as a great recession will not resolve itself. We need only to look at what has happened in the last 13 years to know that greed is still with us and only properly enforced regulations will hold it in place.

Leonard J. Sainato, Warren


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