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Opinion

  • The continued consideration by the Shelby County School Board of expanding to all elementary- and middle-school students a pilot program for learning Spanish appears to us to be a waste of time.

    Because there should be no pause in implementing this expansion.

    Shelby County’s increasing diversity, the role of Spanish in the world’s culture and the opportunity for students to be immersed in its intricacies at an early age make this a simple decision.

  • I saw the front-page headline in The Sentinel-Newson Friday (Nov. 18), and I was deeply troubled.

    PROBLEM 1: The front page is misleading.

    What was the overt message of Friday’s front page? There are several ways to read that page.

  • What will you say on Thursday? What will cross your heart and your lips and spill out from your soul onto the dinner table like so much runaway gravy?

    Thanksgiving is the day when more of us express their truest, innermost feelings more openly and freely than at any other time of the year.

    We may express surprise and elation at Christmas, love on Valentine’s Day, reverence on Easter and respect on a parental day, but Thanksgiving…well, isn’t it built on our best emotions?

  • Congress has an opportunity this week to make a historic decision that would permanently change the culture of spending in Washington. Our nearly $15 trillion of accumulated debt is a threat to our nation’s economic recovery, our national security and the welfare of future generations.

    We have already succeeded in changing the debate in Washington from “How much can we spend?” to “How much can we cut?” Now, we must go even further and pass a Balanced Budget Amendment.

  • They gathered there, at midfield of a football stadium, before more than 100,000 witnesses. They joined hands, oversized men in black, white and red. Their loyalties and potential animosity had been deposited on their sidelines.

    Their heads were bowed, and they were praying.

  • We now know that Steve Beshear gets another four years to run Kentucky. An overwhelming plurality of statewide voters thought he had done a good enough job to deserve an encore.

    And there also was a strong endorsement in Shelby County, which was a small surprise considering that Republicans have dominated the top-of-the-ticket races among our voters for the past few elections.

  • We love the holiday season and all that it represents. We are glad so many in our county embrace that season and present many wonderful opportunities to celebrate. But we have a suggestion:

    The Celebration of Lights is celebrated too early.

    This community festival, the county’s largest, is a wonderful event to bring the public to downtown Shelbyville, to erect the city’s Christmas tree and to light up the season.

    But we think its scheduling nearly two weeks before Thanksgiving is out of perspective.

  • ne of my favorite movie quotes comes at the end of Robert Redford’s A River Runs Through It– based on the book by Norman Maclean – “The river was cut by the world's great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs. I am haunted by waters.”

  • From A to Z, or perhaps Antiques to Zebrafish, you can find gifts in Shelby County for nearly everyone on your holiday shopping list. A wide variety of items that are sure to please and surprise a friend or relative are yours for the looking.

    And the looking is just part of the fun of shopping Shelby County businesses.

    Unique gifts can be found in businesses housed in intimate historical downtown buildings as well as large modern businesses that have sprung up throughout the county.

  • The footing on the course for repairing the multipurpose athletic field at Collins High School appears to be as unsure as it would be for an athlete or band member who might try to play on its ineffective and dangerous artificial surface.

    In fact, the plan for that repair seems to be changing so rapidly, we aren’t sure that the contractor, Whittenberg Construction, and Shelby County Public Schools are reading from the same page at the same time.

  • Veterans Day took on a new meaning for me a few years ago.

    As a child of the Vietnam Era, I admired and feared for those who took up arms for our country, but being a timid little country boy, I shamefully admit that I wasn’t real keen on participating.

    Perhaps admiration and guilt combine to form my odd interest in fiction and films about World War II, maybe they are  why I’ve read The Winds of War/War & Remembrance six times and watched the miniseries of the latter nearly that many times.

  • In October, LST 325 (Landing Ship Tanks) was docked at the Fourth Street wharf in Louisville.

    With an old Coast Guard buddy of mine, Don White, I got a chance to visit again the type of ship on which I served in World War II. In celebration of Veterans Day, it seems like a  good time to look back at those ships.

    LST 325 is the last of more than 1,000 LSTs constructed in World War II by the United States. It was purchased by Greece after the war and used as a cargo and spy ship.

  • When I think of “oozing, bothersome blemishes,” I get a bit nauseous. Is this “bothersome blemish” referring to the folks that hire undocumented workers? I doubt it. Rather, I believe that the reference is aimed at the workers themselves. The people who since the mid-1990s have come to Kentucky, harvested crops, worked with horses, helped keep prices down and worked for very low wages in dangerous conditions for long hours.

  • Shelby County residents are having to say good-bye to two of the good guys.

    Charlie Frazee, the county’s first head of the Emergency Management Agency, and Frank Chuppe, longtime city attorney for the City of Shelbyville, are moving on to the next phases of their lives.

    For Mr. Frazee, that happened on Halloween, and it was certainly a trick and no treat.

    Under his leadership Shelby County became a much safer place to live, with more planning, coordination among protective agencies and expansion of alert processes, systems and capabilities.

  • That was a double dose of good news last week for the so-called City Centre project that would bring a much-needed enhancement to downtown Shelbyville, a theater/conference center project to be built on the block surrounding the Shelby County Community Theatre.

    This is the inspired brainchild of educator Leon Mooneyhan, who has been working methodically with a small group of partners to pull together all the plans and funding needed for such a facility.

    And now he has received two early Christmas gifts.

  • We are concerned about projections we are hearing that most of you are planning to skip your appointment at your polling precinct on Tuesday.

    Statewide projections are that barely more than one in four registered voters will exercise that right and duty in choosing our next governor and other state leaders.

    We don’t really understand. We can’t grasp why any person 18 years and older would not register to vote and then do so at the appropriate times.

  • Here’s the first thing I recall from watching a World Series: In 1961, the Yankees were manhandling the Cincinnati Reds in five games, although I can’t recite details, not the heroes or the records or even the elation I must have felt when it was over.

    I just remember that my man Mickey Mantle didn’t play because he had an oozing sore on his hindquarters. They called it an abscess, which to a third-grader sounded like recess but otherwise meant nothing. I just knew that Mickey was hurting and that was a bummer, so to speak.

  • State Rep. Brad Montell (R-Shelbyville) last week took a new and hopeful stab at addressing a problem that we all recognize and rebuke: the hiring of illegal immigrants.

    His proposal – to require those most likely to hire undocumented workers to go through a specific process of ensuring the legal residency of those individuals – is not entirely original, but it at least keeps open the discussion of an idea that could help solve a problem that costs our country, state and county millions of tax dollars annually.

  • It makes sense that the horse industry would bring Shelby County serious recognition in the big-time international sports arena.

    On Sunday in Mexico, Hannah Sue Burnett, formerly of Finchville, staked a claim to a spot in the 2012 U.S. Olympics by winning a silver medal in eventing at the Pan American Games.

    Ms. Burnett, who was no worse than third aboard Harbour Pilot throughout the 3-day competition, also was the highest-ranking scorer on the gold-medal-winning U.S. team.

  • I absorbed the very little I know about trees from living beside them, beneath them and seeking their shade on a hot summer days, invading their fortress of darkness, where a boy could pretend he was hiding from the good guys or hunting the bad ones, and later enduring those cursed magnets that lured his errant golf balls to their deep, dark, deadly jungles.