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Thursday, May 2, 2013 07:16 am

Letters to the Editor 5/2/13

Pirate radio

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Mbanna Kantako of Springfield is an activist turned pirate radio station host in 1987.
PHOTO BY BRUCE RUSHTON

UNSUNG TREASURE

Of course Mbanna Kantako has made a difference (“Keeping it real,” by Bruce Rushton, April 25). If Mr. Kantako has been able to widen just one person’s view of the universe (with all of its glaring injustices, absurdities and whatnot), he has succeeded. In fact, it appears as though a whole bunch of folks, myself included, have been influenced by his bold – and daring – actions. To anyone harboring the altruistic goal of righting history’s wrongs, he is the renegade we all want to be.

As well, Mr. Kantako has provided us with a thought-provoking, never-ending musical soundtrack that is an incredible body of work in its own right. The songs will live on long after we’re all gone. Why this man’s residence – and more importantly, his history of unflinching direct action on both local and national fronts – isn’t on a Springfield history tour map and celebrated as part of our official history, I’ll never understand. We are lucky to be alive at the same time as someone like Mbanna Kantako. Respect for this unsung treasure of a man is long overdue.

Jason Perry
Springfield



FOUL FACTS

If salmonella-tainted chicken doesn’t make you sick, this news just might. According to a recent piece in Mother Jones, the vast majority of chicken and turkey bodies inspected in slaughterhouses are contaminated with feces, feathers, lungs, oil glands, trachea and bile.
Yet the Obama administration is poised to scale back the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s oversight of the nation’s largest poultry slaughterhouses — while allowing companies to speed up their kill lines. Instead of four inspectors (who are there to inspect the flesh, not how it goes from living to dead), there will be one. Is it any wonder that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found that poultry is the most common source of food-borne illness?

Eight billion chickens and 250 million turkeys are slaughtered every year in the U.S. Yet these interesting and personable birds are afforded not an iota of protection under our country’s Humane Slaughter Act. In fact, birds are specifically excluded from protection.

If you care about your health, and can spare some compassion for birds, go vegan.

Jennifer O’Connor, PETA Foundation
Norfolk, Va.



YES WE CAN

We have learned that sometimes it takes an army to help someone. Today, we thank the members of Local First and residents of Sangamon County for joining our army, The Salvation Army. This was the fourth year that the members of Local First organized their shred event (held April 20) and each year it has grown in size. County residents were able to shred up to five boxes of records, recycle old electronics and out-of-date prescriptions all for a donation of a case of food or a cash donation to The Salvation Army Food Pantry. We received over a pallet of food and over $1400 in cash donations!

Through everyone’s generosity, they have joined The Salvation Army in our fight against homelessness and despair. To someone with very little, your caring means everything.
If you would like to learn more about Local First, go to www.localfirstspringfield.com.

Major Paul Logan, Corps Officer
The Salvation Army
Springfield



SUPPORT COMMUNITY CHOIRS

Those who have been in choir in high school know the camaraderie and fun there is in choir and yet only a fraction have any choir connections after high school. They might be in college choir or church choir, but people forget about community choirs and other adult choirs. If you don’t feel like singing, just attend their concerts and support the spirit of choir.

Raymond Lawson
Aurora

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