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Reply from Masons
I take exception to the reporting in the story (“Masons put seal of approval on judicial center,” Nov. 30) about the laying of the cornerstone at the Shelby County Judicial Center. It read more like an op-ed piece than an informative news article. I certainly do not want to disparage reporter Lisa King's abilities as a journalist, but even a cursory Internet search would have answered many of her misconceptions.
If she had bothered to investigate her newspaper’s archives, she would have found at least minimal information about the Masons. As recently as April 27, 2012, Todd Martin wrote an article, I furnished him with information. Although he did make some minor errors, the article was, by and large, factual. I will try to clear up a few of the misconceptions in your more recent article.
Why are the square and compasses on the cornerstone? Simple. It was laid, symbolically, by Masons at a ceremony on July 22, 2010. I assisted Gregory C. Powell, past grand master, in the ceremony. It is my understanding that The Sentinel-News was advised of the ceremony and did not show up. The items in the time capsule, to the best of my memory, were merely membership lists, business cards and a copy of the newspaper.
Ms. King wrote that none of the Masons returned her numerous phone calls, but she also wrote that she could find no contact information on Solomon's 5 Web site. The master, secretary and webmaster's E-mail and phone numbers are listed at solomons-fam.com/System/contact.htm. Did she bother to check Wingate 161 or Shelby 662? Both located in Shelby County and both listed on the cornerstone. Did she institute a Web search?
Free masonry is one of the most researched topics on the Internet. I'm sure she could have found some information. To find correct information may have required some effort, but it would have given her a place to start. For future reference, the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F. & A. M. (the statewide governing organization) maintains a Web site at www.grandlodgeofkentucky.org. If it does not contain the information you are looking for, E-mail contacts are provided for the Grand Lodge officers as well as nearly every lodge in the state.
The practice of laying a cornerstone dates from the era of cathedral building in the Middle Ages. It was the practice of operative Masons to lay the first, chief, or cornerstone in the northeast corner of a building.
Ms. Jamie Neal, public information specialist for the Administrative Office of the Courts, seems equally oblivious. She states that she doesn't know what the Masons’ involvement has been, if any, in other judicial centers constructed in Kentucky. Since 2008, I have participated in the laying of cornerstones for judicial centers in Livingston, Grayson, Shelby, Hancock, Adair, Monroe, Wolfe and Garrard counties.
And, finally, the Shelby County Courthouse, built in 1913, does contain a Masons-dedicated cornerstone. Solomon’s Lodge has a list of the items contained within the time capsule. They are fairly mundane.
Control vicious dogs
Tuesday our dog of 12 years was attacked in our yard by a pack of five dogs. He was almost torn in half. My mom had taken our two dogs out to use the bathroom, and I was startled when I heard her screaming. I ran outside to her to find her crying and our dog, Smokey, in her arms, almost torn in half.
I could barely breathe but got us in the car, and we rushed to the vet, where they immediately decided his windpipe was punctured and that there was nothing they could do. My mom and I watched as they gave him the shot to put him down, and I kissed him on the forehead as he passed away.
These dogs should have been caged or on leashes, and this issue needs to be known throughout the community. This could easily have been a child or another dog, and we don't want anyone else to go through this pain so please do something about it. And to the people who don't contain their dogs, I absolutely dare them to come back on our property. I will fight them to the death with my bare hands. An innocent little Chihuahua was absolutely no threat to these viscous animals.