Your Turn . . . 8-28-03
Home sweet homely
I can help answer the question, "Whatever happened to Scenic Springfield?" [August 21] The article covered a number of events that can help explain it. I wish to add to the list.
The first is an expansion of the trash issue. Even though the city replaced trashcans downtown with recycle/trash receptacles, most people don't bother to read the print on them before dumping their garbage. Some people don't use them at all, leaving their refuse on the sidewalk and streets.
Secondly, Springfield is supposed to be a tourist attraction, but places of historical interest have decreased over the years, due to demolition mostly, despite public objections. If this continues, there will be few reasons for people to visit Springfield or even live here.
I'd like to see people take pride in Springfield; if they don't, there are plenty of other cities they can live in.
Joseph E. Perkinton
On behalf of the many horseshoe pitchers in and around Springfield, the Marvin Taylor Tavern League, the Earl Bomke Horseshoe Club, the Wednesday night doubles league, and the Lake league, we would like to thank the Illinois Times, reporter Imran Siddiquee, and photographer Ginny Lee for the fine article on August 7 ["The other horseshoes"].
We think you captured the enthusiasm we feel playing the game. It has no limits on age. If you can throw 40 feet, you can play.
The man in the sequential pictures, Ivan Glasscock, just captured first place at the world tourney in his class. Also in their classes: Al Jones got a first, Mark Hylton a first, Lee Wadkins a second, and Jim Kramp a second.
The drivel spouted in a letter in the August 21 issue of Illinois Times was both inflammatory and just plain wrong. Conservatives have been lambasted for years as a group of intolerant homophobic racists who worship fascism and rape the environment in order to fill their bank accounts. I would like to thank the letter writer from Rochester for proving the liberals are much worse.
The venom-dripping letter--which insulted the president, the pentagon, our military forces, the citizenry of the United States, and lest we all forget conservative Republicans--illustrated who the real hate-mongers in the country are. Anyone who refers to the President of the United States as a "two-bit, tinhorn, self-righteous, war-mongering madman" and refers to any conservative Republican as an "enemy of the planet" who should be "hanged" is ill-equipped to debate anything, much less politics.
No evidence of the letter-writer's claims were offered up, just venomous attacks. No examples of the "will of the world's peoples" being damned were given. The strongest factual evidence offered concerned the president mispronouncing words! No evidence given of "nature-hating thugs defiantly imposing their will on the planet" were given. All in all, the letter did nothing to prove the case being made by the letter-writer. What it did do (much to my delight and that of my goose-stepping comrades) was to provide a perfectly executed example of "hate-speak."
Bravo and thank you, sir, for proving whom the real "enemies of the planet," as well as the country, our armed forces, the pentagon, and our president, really are.
Carl P. Long
An unpatriotic act
John Ashcroft has got some nerve flying across the country in a last-ditch attempt to sell the merits of the "Patriot Act" to the American people. The act is already curbing free speech, allowing the government to spy on whoever it wants whenever it wants with no warrant or justifiable cause, and it gives the government the right to read your e-mail and monitor your Internet usage without your knowledge or consent. In short, it is turning America into a police state. The home of democracy will not take this affront to freedom lightly, and John Ashcroft and George W. Bush should quickly become aware of this nation's distaste for tyranny.