Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 24, 2013

Letters to the editor - Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013

Perspective of next generation farmer

Many of us learned at an early age that, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” This is infallible truth from an infallible source, but any time spent researching the Internet yields other thoughts and beliefs that are backed by many “legitimate” supporters and sources.

World renowned British physicist Stephen Hawking and many others have adopted the “big bang theory.” They claim the creation of the universe is “a consequence of the laws of physics alone.” You can do extensive research about the big bang theory, but does that mean it is the truth?

Using the Internet you also find research linking microwave ovens, cellphones and frozen pizza to cancer. Yes, frozen pizza.

You may be asking yourself what Stephen Hawking and frozen pizzas have to do with anything? The answer is this: The Internet caters to us. Who knows how many millions of people in this world believe in the big bang theory? Or how many have decided to throw away their cellphones, trash their microwaves, and vow to quit eating frozen pizzas. Just because an issue is supported by numerous studies and backed by “acclaimed” researchers doesn’t mean it is true.

When it comes to Tipton County and the Prairie Breeze Wind Farm, you can’t use the Internet as your main information source. Sure, it does have useful information. I found that cats kill around one thousand times more birds per year than wind turbines (this is conservative). Sorry, cat lovers.

Have people gone to Benton and White counties, where the wind farms have been established for a few years? What have they done for the local economy? Have these counties turned into ghost towns because of the wind turbines? How have the schools been affected? Are the roads in good shape?

I shouldn’t have to tell anyone that the northern part of our county is experiencing financial woes. However, it is said that Prairie Breeze won’t help Tri-Central Schools. Money will not be available in the general fund.

If your child has worked hard and received a full ride to college, does that help the finances of a family? Just as that full ride scholarship indirectly helps the family financially, you can’t convince me that the money placed in Tri-Central’s capital fund won’t indirectly help a school that has been placed on “emergency spending only.”

The next step for us as a community could be voting on a property tax referendum so the school can continue operating and employing the great people in the school system. What does this mean for my grandparents who are owners of farmland and are already paying over 10 times the average Tipton County property tax? Have you ever researched what landowners contribute to this community in property tax money? That’s a real example.

It is time to stray away from the not-in-my-backyard thought process and think about the community as a whole. Yes, our community needs this.

To answer your next question, yes, I farm with my family. I am not currently a farmland owner, but my wife and I do own a house. The accusations, injustice and disrespect that have been directed toward farmers and landowners in this community are disheartening. Farmers have always worked hard together, with integrity, in order to support their families and yours.

Last time I checked, I’m still doing this as a “new generation” farmer.

Brady Peters, Sharpsville

Where are Indiana’s Statehouse leaders?

When you get right down to it, the de facto position of the Indiana Republican Party establishment is one of support for Obamacare. The state GOP will vehemently deny that charge of course, citing virtually nothing beyond its own empty rhetoric.

But the bottom line is this: Republicans can either actively move to block Obamacare (SB230), or passively permit its implementation. It seems they are perfectly content with the latter. In fact, the only determination they have shown on the issue is their steadfast resolve to do … nothing.

Remember Nancy Pelosi saying, “We’ll go through the gate. If the gate’s closed, we’ll go over the fence. If the fence is too high, we’ll pole-vault in. If that doesn’t work, we’ll parachute in”? Remember her saying, “We have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it”?

Remember her mocking dismissal when a reporter asked her to cite authorization within the Constitution for the individual mandate? “Are you serious?” she scoffed. Remember this bill was over 2,000 pages? Nobody read it before voting to pass it (on Christmas Eve, of all nights, in the Senate).

Pelosi and Reid relied on vigorous legislative chicanery to assure its passage, and then connived to avoid a formal conference committee to reconcile the House and Senate versions. It was marketed by the administration on the basis that it was not a tax, but then successfully litigated on the basis that it was in fact a tax. In other words, Democrats pulled out all the stops, fighting tooth and nail to get it through while they controlled the White House and both chambers of Congress.

Wouldn’t it be something if Indiana’s elected Republicans — who hold the governorship and large majorities in both chambers of the Statehouse — were willing to exhibit boldness equal to such brazenness? But no, instead of joining a number of other states pressing ahead with nullification legislation, they meekly contend that the Supreme Court has the absolute final say on all constitutional questions. After all … the high court itself has said so.

Where are the statesmen we so desperately need today?

Aaron Williford, Kokomo

Don’t breed pets; rescue the abused

I can’t go into the Humane Society; I start to cry every time. I tried three times, and it’s pointless to try again. It embarrasses my husband when it happens. It just proves I have a caring, compassionate heart.

I can’t stand going in there, knowing the little furry people have someone to take care of them, but no one to spend a long happy life with. Sadly the majority of animals in the shelter are put down. That is due to stupidity on their owners’ part.

They let them roam, only to procreate and make more animals to roam and procreate, and on and on — much like people do.

All three dogs I have (Bubba’s no longer with me) are rescues. Lady was from Pals for Paws, and Mabel was to be a hunting dog. She was scared of loud noises, so they didn’t treat her well. If the person who had her then could see my face when I typed that, they would be afraid of me. (As well they should be.)

I can’t abide an abuser, whether it be of animal or people. Don’t mistreat anyone, two or four legged, when I’m around. I make no bones (no pun intended) about my dislike for them. And I believe that everyone who has taken an animal out to the country to abandon them should be treated the same way so they know how it feels.

One more thing: Don’t breed, rescue!

Susan Louks, Kokomo

Wind turbines can save Tipton County

I would like to give the people in Prairie and Liberty townships a history lesson.

In the 1960s, Prairie, Sharpsville and Windfall schools consolidated. They became Northern Community School Corp. Everyone knew a new school would have to be built. The question was when and how much it was going to cost.

Plans were drawn up. The new school would have a pool and large gym, because back then almost everyone went to the basketball games. We had no football team.

When all was said and done the residents voted against it because it would make their taxes go up and we didn’t need that big of a school. Eventually, a new school was built, which wasn’t near as nice as the original school and it cost more money, because of inflation.

Now, we learn Tri-Central is having budget problems. What could happen if the revenues don’t increase? Will it close? Will the kids all be bused to Tipton? Will they have to split the county and some kids will go to Western, some to Tipton, some to Taylor?

It looks like the time has come that inevitably the taxes will go up. The reason most people moved to Tipton County in the first place was because the taxes are lower than in Howard County.

Just a warning: Taxes will probably start going up. You can build all the subdivisions you want, but the taxes will still go up. Then the next thing they will want is to annex everything, just like they’re doing in Howard County and Indianapolis.

Everyone wants to know what the wind turbines will do for them. Just keep an eye on your property taxes. Wind turbines can save our county. We can have lower taxes and still keep the farmland.

Gloria Maxwell, Russiaville