This is in response to the Dec. 30 commentary by Doug Oplinger, “We’re hurting each other. Are we able to stop?”
I’m a baby boomer, but this is not another wistful look back at the good old days. Over the years, I have observed a gradual decline in the faith the American public has in the institutional structures of our society.
By this I mean the societal structures that are identified with social purpose and permanence and with the rules governing cooperative behavior. Examples would be marriage, family, education and religion.
My opinion is that this decline began with the Watergate scandal, but that’s another letter. Suffice it to say that the resignation of Richard Nixon, coupled with the damage caused by the war in Vietnam and the resulting divisiveness, caused a significant segment of two generations to lose faith in the cornerstone institution of government.
Sad to say, this was only the beginning. As faith in government diminished, it was followed by a parallel scenario in education, marriage and many other areas. Nature abhors a vacuum, and as this one grew, greed, irresponsibility and a me-first attitude quickly took over.
The commentary chronicles some of the results that have accumulated over the past 40 years. The phenomenal increase in political, corporate and fiscal scandals, declining school performance, incivility, personal-injury lawsuits, apathy in elections and the way campaigns are run are the norm in today’s world. Nobody cares about anything.
At the risk of sounding misanthropic, I have a hard time with one of Oplinger’s conclusions, that “regular people are on the verge of seizing control.”
The only way to reverse the situation is for altruism and personal responsibility to become important to all of us. I’m afraid I just don’t see that happening.
Boom and bust
The so-called gas boom in Ohio was probably destined to happen, like a toothache.
Huge trucks will destroy Ohio roads. The trucks carry water, chemicals, pipe and other equipment. We have never had anything like this.
Gov. John Kasich wants the severance tax to increase to 4 percent, but several legislators think the tax should be 7 percent or more.
It would be sad if taxpayers paid for road repairs, let alone for other potential threats. Too bad only a few people in the state will ever benefit.
One wonders how cheaply the sellers of mineral rights gave their wealth away to hustlers. These people were not sophisticated players. Many were land-rich but cash-poor all their lives, selling away their wealth for what may be peanuts.
Of course, politicians are swayed by money. We end up with the best government money can buy.
John D. Ambrose
The Constitution does not give the individual the right to own a gun for personal use. The Second Amendment states the individual has the right to bear arms to form a militia. It says nothing about personal use, not even hunting. Why the Supreme Court misreads this, I don’t know.
When a gun is used in any crime, the person who provided the gun should also be partially responsible. If guns were not available, the crime could not take place.
Hunting is evil. A man shoots a small, helpless animal, even a deer, that presents no danger to anyone. How can the gunman enjoy this?
Guns should be removed from the market. The National Rifle Association would oppose this, buying off Congress. Is there someone in government willing to take this on?