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Readers’ Opinions, 4-9-2014

Working tools


The most important business in any village, town, city, county, state or federal government is the operation of the governed governing themselves in an effort to sustain and enhance the quality of life for all, not just a few. Our forefathers knew that. They were the educated, the rich, the famous, the knowledgeable. They also knew that good government could only be based on sound principles. They knew that self-pride and greed would tear down and destroy these principles, so they strove to create a Constitution based on those basic principles in the hope it would be a mirror for us to see ourselves and keep us on the right track, and that the American experiment might give rise to a unique form of government and endure.

Presently, based on the same governmental foundation of that which our forefathers endeavored to base their very lives, we need people properly prepared to serve — not to be served — in all areas of government: from the local villager to the President of the United States, working diligently to uphold, maintain and make secure the continuation of the vision laid down by our forefathers.

What a person’s ethnicity is does not qualify a person to lead, nor is who they know, nor how much they’ve contributed. Only by real basics are they qualified and capable to do the job. Are the people we presently have in local, state and federal government striving to take responsibility for the betterment of their constituents’ lives, liberty, justice and general well-being? Do they have within themselves the fundamental principles of wisdom, morality, law and justice along with the education, knowledge, and experience to properly do the job? They need to have all those as daily working tools. If they do not have those tools, we don’t need them.

Lauren Humpage, Meriden



April 6–13 is the 40th anniversary of the National Volunteer Week. We would like to give a “shout out” to the countless number of volunteers in Southington who have embraced the culture of giving back. Our town has traditionally embraced the incredible opportunities we have to make a collective difference in our community.

Of course, we would like to send our special thanks out to over 700 local Y volunteers who faithfully serve our Y in a variety of capacities including: board and committee members, clerical helpers, youth sports coaches, gymnastic swim team and Adventure Guide parent clubs, child care aides, maintenance helpers, teen leaders, fundraisers, road race, special event and YMCA Camp Sloper supporters.

Volunteers have been and will always be critical to our success of meeting the needs in the community. On top of their time and talents, they are an inspiration for all of us who work at the YMCA. If you’re looking to get involved at the Y, please give us a call. We do have one of our annual volunteer events coming at YMCA Camp Sloper for our annual spring clean-up. Last year, over 70 volunteers provided over 300 hours of time and talent to help get YMCA Camp Sloper ready for the upcoming camp season. (The writer is Executive Director, Southington-Cheshire Community YMCA.)

John Myers, Southington

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Letter-writer Kevin Coane urged readers to write to their state and Congressional representatives, telling them “what you want them to do” (“Money rules,” R-J, April 6).

Sadly, our representatives don’t read our letters. Their staffs statistically recap voter opinion on multiple issues gleaned from letters, e-mails and phone calls. An occasional letter might be picked if there’s a PR opportunity, but reps are spared details of the overwhelming majority of constituent opinion. Too busy “doing the peoples’ business,” I guess.

In my own experience, I wrote U.S. Senators Murphy, Blumenthal and U.S. Rep. DeLauro on Oct. 25, asking one question: How many Connecticut residents lost insurance coverage with Obamacare? Nary a reply. Locally, I raised a safety issue in a letter hand-delivered to Wallingford Mayor Bill Dickinson’s office in 2012. Nothing. The solution to unresponsive representation? Vote. No politician, party or super-PAC can buy that. Even the U.S. Supreme Court hasn’t taken that away.

So come any election time, get off your “But mine doesn’t count” and vote no-reply incumbents out. If 58 percent of Afghan voters can show up at the polls in defiance of terrorists’ threats backed by bullets and IEDs, any “I didn’t vote because” excuse you dream up will sound pathetic. And you get what you deserve.

Peter Barr, Wallingford

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