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Letters

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

The Front Royal Golf Club, owned by Warren County, sparkles in comparison to similar courses. Established in 1938 on land donated to the residents of Front Royal and Warren County by the William E. Carson family and built by the Civilian Conservation Corps, a government works project in another era of bad economy, it is one of the finest nine-hole layouts in Virginia.
It was dedicated and deeded for recreation purposes. If the property ceases to be used for recreational purposes, the ownership returns to the Carson family. Any proceeds from a sale would go to the Carsons, according to our legal adviser.
For years it was the only local golf course, with a swimming pool and boat access to the Shenandoah. Before motels, state boat landings and today’s mega-golf courses this was very unique. Then it fell on hard times and was acquired by the county simply for paying off the outstanding debt, a true bargain. A Citizens Advisory Committee was created and the three authors of this letter are members of that group.
Mr. Stanley was recently able to negotiate and sell Allegheny Power the easement it needed for a new electric line for more than condemnation would net. This paid back Warren County every cent of the original acquisition investment, leaving a modest remainder to improve the property at no expense to the taxpayer.
Because of coincidence, timing and good management we have this historic landmark, paid for, with walking trails and even a cemetery. We are grateful for the farsighted and farsighted Board of Supervisors.
Come see it. It’s paid for and it sparkles.

Dave Wines
211 Jamestown Road
Staige Miller Jr.
8 Gloucester Road
Joe Swiger
336 Rivermont Acres Road
Front Royal
July 8, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

There goes Gene Rigelon again making another futile attack against the Catholic Church (letter, July 8 issue). His latest letter implies that the Catholic Church does nothing to combat the social ills of society. As usual, Rigelon has no facts to back up his claims.
The facts are as follows regarding the Catholic Church throughout the world today: parishes and missions: 408,637; primary and secondary schools: 125,016; universities: 1,046; hospitals: 5,853; orphanages: 8,695; homes for the elderly and handicapped: 13,933; dispensaries, leprosaries, nurseries and other institutions: 74,936.
From the above statistics, I would say that the church devotes quite a bit of its resources to combat the maladies of the world.
Rigelon also wants the church to give up its moral voice on issues like abortion, homosexuality and family life. Gene, it’s never going to happen.
Mother Teresa, the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize recipient for her work among the poorest of the poor, put things in perspective in her 1994 National Prayer Breakfast speech. Given in front of political and religious leaders from across the United States including President Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton and Vice President Al Gore, the speech was followed by a prolonged standing ovation from all except the president and his entourage.
She stated: “But I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child — a direct killing of the innocent child — murder by the mother herself. And if we accept that a mother can kill her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? … Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching the people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want. That is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.”
Rigelon should read Pope Benedict XVI’s new encyclical “Charity in Truth,” which addresses issues of economic justice. It is already being hailed even in the secular media as an extraordinary document, both in its challenges and in the solutions it prescribes. Perhaps then Rigelon would see the wisdom of God working through his church.

John W. Fusto
1112 Happy Ridge Drive
Front Royal
July 8, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

Residents of Clarke County:
We would like to congratulate the School Board on taking a big step toward completing the new high school. With the land purchased, the school’s basic design chosen and the siting complete, the next steps are ensuring that the design is as energy efficient as possible, given the projected cost of energy, and adopting internal design elements and materials that create an atmosphere that is healthy and conducive to learning.
Making sure the school is an energy-efficient and healthy environment will place challenges on an already limited budget, but managing these aspects now can and will ensure the school does not cost the students and the taxpayers more in the future.
So we are asking you to talk with your School Board members. Ask them:
• What measures are you taking to ensure the construction of an energy-efficient building?
• Are you planning to use energy modeling to help you decide on the best design elements and materials?
• How will you track and assess energy usage over the long term?
• Do you plan to use any materials in the school’s construction that could pose health risks which can be alleviated by the use of low-emitting materials?
• Are you planning for programmable lighting and maximizing the use of daylight to conserve energy?
• Will you use “commissioning” to systematically assure the building will perform in accordance with the design intent and the owner’s operational needs. If not, how will you make sure the building runs right?
How well our School Board manages the next design phase is key to how much the new school will cost us in the future, and key to ensuring a healthy environment for our children.
Help Clarke County build a school that will teach our children conservation and stewardship of the earth’s resources.

Laure G. Wallace
Clarke County
Green Advisory Committee
9 Tadpole Lane
Bluemont
July 10, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

Unfortunately, the public mistakenly believes that “children who live in families that cannot afford health insurance already get it for free.” In Virginia, as many as 187,000 poor children live without health insurance coverage.
Virginia should and could offer insurance to all kids in Virginia by raising the income eligibility limit for FAMIS coverage, as 28 other states and the District of Columbia have done. According to the governor’s bipartisan Commission on Health Reform, raising FAMIS to 300 percent of the poverty line would allow an additional 21,200 children to enroll in the FAMIS program. This expansion would also help reach children in families with lower incomes who are currently eligible for Medicaid and FAMIS but are not enrolled in these programs.
Despite Virginia’s relative wealth (ranked ninth nationally in per capita personal income), the state’s Medicaid program is extremely limited. Virginia is ranked 48th in per capita total Medicaid expenditures and 50th in per capita federal grants, such as Medicaid.
One of the most glaring deficiencies in Virginia’s Medicaid program is inadequate coverage for very low-income families. In Virginia, a parent with income more than $6,000 a year doesn’t qualify for Medicaid coverage. This is now ranked the sixth lowest in the nation. Virginia should change its eligibility to — at least — reach the national average of Medicaid income eligibility for parents: 64 percent of the federal poverty level.
Virginia can and should do much more to ensure that its low-income citizens have health care, a right and not just a privilege to be enjoyed by some of our citizens.

Mary Narayan
Social Action
Linking Together
10340 Brittenford Drive
Vienna, Va.
July 10, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

Over the past few days, the Rev. Al Sharpton has been stating that Michael Jackson made it possible for people like Oprah Winfrey, President Obama and many other Afro-Americans to make it to where they are today.
That’s funny, I think that a very courageous woman named Rosa Parks was the person who led the way. Shortly after Rosa Park’s death, it was Oprah who said, “I would not be standing where I stand five days a week had it not been for Rosa Parks.”

ROBERT RINEHIMER
P.O. Box 1167
New Market
July 7, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

Vice President Biden, an avid supporter of the “cap and trade” legislation, is now avidly campaigning in Virginia for Creigh Deeds. It is high time that Deeds make known whether he shares the vice president’s support of this critical bill, disingenuously labeled the “American Clean Energy and Security Act.”
Deeds’ silence on this legislation is telling because he surely recognizes that this nasty little bill promises to wreak havoc on Virginia’s businesses and consumers alike while threatening thousands of jobs in southwest Virginia.
In the face of the worst recession since the Depression, this bill would levy the largest energy tax in history, raising the price of electricity and consumer goods across the board. It thus threatens hyperinflation, already a concern due to profligate government spending, and will drive overseas what is left of U.S. manufacturing capability. It is a job killer in a state where even Gov. Kaine has stated that Virginia is too dependent on coal for energy to imagine a near-term future without it.
Even if the legislation succeeded in decreasing overall U.S. carbon emissions, that decrease would be more than offset by the economic growth of India and China, which reject international regulation of emissions. China’s emissions already exceed those of the U.S. even though China’s economy is substantially smaller. India and China will not follow America’s good example and have said as much.
In short, this bill threatens considerable harm to the U.S. and the Virginia economy while doing little or nothing to mitigate global warming.
Deeds’ opponent, Bob McDonnell, opposes the bill and proposes instead off-shore drilling that could create both jobs and energy with the newest technology that is environmentally safe.
Deeds must clarify his position on this bill or Virginians will assume that he supports it as does his campaigner in chief, Biden.

Anne Campbell Gruner
7604 Georgetown Pike
McLean
July 15, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

A few weeks ago I wrote a letter to your paper supporting the Strasburg Rescue Squad in the dilemma if was facing. I attended two meetings and spoke at one. I talked and listened to both sides of the issue after the fact.
I still stand behind the squad and all the people who have served over the last 40-plus years. You have done and are doing our community a big service and saving the taxpayers a lot of money. I hope things are getting better for your sake as well as the community.
There are some people I owe and apology to and, without naming names and pointing fingers, you know who you are. That would do no one any good to name names.
After thinking things through and looking at both sides, I really do think that everyone — and I mean everyone — did what he thought was best at the time. We all have done things that seemed right at the time but in the end were not the best of choices. Policies are written after the fact in most cases to try to keep from making the same mistake again.
My doctor told me to lose weight, so, with my foot in my mouth and eating crow, perhaps I can accomplish this without taking pills. Crows are hard to kill and taste horrible.
There is a good side to everything if we look hard enough.

EARL M. CUTLIP
3094 Oranda Road
Strasburg
July 13, 2009

Editor
Northern Virginia Daily

Sir:

The FDA does not need to have the tremendous power that this bill will give them. It cannot be trusted to do what is right for the small and/or organic American farmer.
We need effective regulation for our food safety, which the FDA has shown it does not care about.
Please defeat this bill.

Lillian Thomas
5227 Supinlick Ridge Road
Mt. Jackson
July 15, 2009