Attorney General DeWine deserves praise, not scorn
This is in response to the political cartoon that appeared in The Vindicator on Monday, June 5, ridiculing Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine for suing pharmaceutical companies he says are responsible for the opioid epidemic. He believes that taxpayers are paying the price for dealing with this epidemic, and the culprits should be held accountable.
What the cartoonist probably doesn’t know is that pharmaceutical companies (“Big Pharma”) fund our medical schools; therefore medical schools reflect Big Pharma’s agenda: to sell prescription drugs.
Drug companies are not in business to make people well or cure diseases; they are in business to make money and they are very wealthy and powerful. They knowingly teach their main sources of prescription and nonprescription drug distribution, medical doctors, to prescribe addictive painkillers creating the opioid epidemic, shamefully taking advantage of people’s desperate medical conditions. So while Big Pharma is enjoying all the profits from the opioid crisis it also is making even more profits selling the remedy for overdoses. Is this not conflict of interest? Who can stop them from this unscrupulous practice?
Bravo to our AG Mike DeWine for having the courage to publicly call Big Pharma accountable and to all the MDs who recognize this and care enough to work ethically to protect their patients (because the threat of losing their medical license is always over their heads if they don’t agree with Big Pharma’s agenda).
Yes, many people make bad choices on their own, but that doesn’t relieve drug manufacturers from taking advantage of the people’s fear of pain and death.
Sandy Groza Hrabowy, Liberty
Warren ought target funds to best fight housing blight
There has been a great deal of conversation concerning blight and possible strategies to ameliorate it. While a regional council of governments concept may help to address some specific larger scale problems, it does not seem to be the right model to address day-to-day blight issues facing Warren.
The city has lacked a comprehensive, long-term approach to code enforcement for decades. Blight, litter and dilapidated abandoned structures are strewn about the city. The city has approximately 306 condemned properties and 264 properties slated for demolition. However, there are hundreds more not officially in the system.
Currently, the health and zoning departments do aggressively investigate complaints. And while the investigative process does identify derelict property owners and brings them before the board of health and court, there has been no noteworthy abatement of the nuisances on the back-end.
The city operations department is authorized to clean up the debris, cut the grass and weeds, even demolish structures and place the costs of such abatements as a lien upon the property tax duplicate. However, herein lies the crux of the problem: The city does not seem to have a budget to have the operations department abate these nuisances. There should be a minimum of a two- to three-person crew whose mission would be to aggressively hit those properties with debris and grass issues. This crew could also collaborate with neighborhood associations and non-profits to tackle some specific projects. The city should also explore utilizing the military and Ohio National Guard for demolition projects.
The current general fund budget is approximately $28,000,000. If just 1 percent of the budget was appropriated for demolition and nuisance abatement programs, there would be $280,000 available annually and approximately 30 houses per year could be demolished. This cost could be lowered as efficiencies in demolition process are developed.
And while I would like to see this budget amount doubled, I believe that a 1 percent annual investment is a very reasonable and measured start. What a significant health, safety and aesthetic improvement this would make for the city.
Nick Bellas, Warren
Multiple crimes against city woman unacceptable
Robbing the moth- ers of our own community is dead wrong, and whoever does it needs to be caught and pay the time for the crime. The robbing of Elder Bessie Jackson’s home in Youngstown three times in the last few days is totally unacceptable.
Mothers all over the nation like Elder Jackson have fought long and have fought hard for the betterment of our community, and deserve to feel safe in their own home that they worked so hard to pay off.
Pastor Arthur L. Mackey Jr., Roosevelt, N.Y.
Rev. Mackey is pastor of Mount Sinai Baptist Church Cathedral in Roosevelt
Ohio Legislature tries to undermine tenure
House Bill 49 under- mines the competitiveness of state universities in Ohio. First of all, it proposes a post-tenure review every five years, even though we already have this type of procedure in place. Although it may seem insignificant because it is redundant, it sends a signal that they are working to undermine tenure. This makes it harder to recruit new faculty and retain top faculty.
Since our searches for job candidates are done nationally, and sometimes internationally, word gets around quickly when candidates learn that they are trying to undermine tenure in a particular state. For example, in states where tenure has been undermined such as Wisconsin, they lose top professors (and in fact, UW-Madison paid $9 million extra to keep some of its top professors from leaving, as they were offered positions with secured tenure in other states).
Not only do the students miss out on that high quality of education from them, but when those professors leave, they often bring with them research grants and projects that they have initiated that benefit the local community.
Also, this bill proposes a drastic cut to sick leave, which disproportionately impacts female faculty, as they are often the ones who end up caring for parents with dementia, sick kids, newborn babies, sick in-laws, children with disabilities, etc. Lastly, it proposes that professors pay a fee of $35 each year to disclose that we do not receive gifts of over $25 from textbook publishers. This legislation basically suggests that professors are somehow to blame for the high costs of textbooks. We choose textbooks based on the quality of the material and what is most affordable for our students out of what is available. We do not control the costs. The costs are high because there is a monopoly right now. There used to be many textbook companies in higher education
Lastly, I thought our state was supposed to be moving in the direction of fewer regulations. These are clearly more regulations.
Diana Palardy, Poland
Palardy is a Foreign Languages and Literatures faculty member at Youngstown State University.
US sorely needs truth in Russia-Trump controversy
It is so sad that people still can’t get over how Donald Trump won on Nov. 8, 2016, in the presidential election.
They have tried and tried to get Trump for something that he didn’t do. I wish that the truth would turn out showing that Russia instead helped Mrs. Clinton, not Trump.
The Russians gave them millions of dollars to raise money for their election. The press helped them raise money, too, but Fox News didn’t. This made all of those donors very angry because she lost. They had to blame Russia stealing her e-mails.
. Also, why is it OK for the Democrats to talk to the Russian ambassador and not the Republicans? I feel that this is so stupid that one party can work with the Russians for eight years and now the new party can’t because they want to stop the winner totally.
I feel when the truth comes out, this will set the people free from these lies.
Lena Fox, Youngstown