Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Opinion

January 8, 2014

In Your View

ASHLAND — Use churches as shelters

As a life-time resident of Ashland, I’m well aware homelessness is an issue in our area. If you live in this area, you know there are many with no place to call home. With temperatures dropping dangerously low earlier this week, my question is this: Other than the Salvation Army, where there is limited space, where can these people find shelter?

Well, I have a suggestion. In our city alone, there are many churches not in use, save Wednesday and Sunday. As members of the body of Christ, is it not our passion to reach out to the community? Shouldn’t keeping God’s people warm be a priority?

Many may say this is a bad idea. After all, the sanctuary (a large area full of pews that could serve as beds to people who usually sleep on the ground) might be damaged.

Surely, it is not the will of God that our churches be damaged! But let’s remember the “church” is meant to be a body of believers, not a building. And anyway, what are our tithes being used for? Unfortunately, they are all too often put back into the building for cosmetic upgrades such as new carpet or fresh coats of paint.

Why not open the doors of our churches and show people they are truly loved? It is our responsibility as Christians to be a light in this dark world. Let’s not just be Christians on Sunday. Let’s connect with people right where they are and help them. This is what a church is meant to do. A church’s doors should never be locked.

Katie Hughes, Ashland

Education is lamp to our freedoms

My concern is a nation of the people, by the people and for the people is turning into a plutocracy. Peeling back the layers like an onion reveals unfettered money in our political process, outsourcing of jobs, free-trade agreements, globalization, venture capitalism, right-to-work states, Wall Street and corporate greed and the elimination of unions.

 All these factor into America’s middle class income disparity and decline. This ever-widening vortex is sucking in more families.

 This disparity affects all aspects of life with less funding for cities, states, schools, Social Security, Medicare, infrastructure, charities and churches. Little or no money can be set aside for a child’s college. Today, our nation is receding on the world stage in math, science and reading skills. Our politicians would rather hire an armed guard in the classroom and reduce funding for math, science and remedial-reading teachers to offset the cost.

The seeds of intellect lie dormant in all walks of life. The nourishment that comes from education feeds those seeds and America reaps the reward from it.

Heretofore, the middle class has borne the cross to a free democracy through a living wage coupled with its marriage to higher education, thus allowing one upward mobility to a higher standard of living. Just as a rising tide lifts all boats, an educated people makes for a stronger America. Education aids in removing the varnish and separating the chaff from the wheat put forth by our politicians. Wisdom is a cousin to freedom, and education is the lamp to democracy.

Earl Ferguson, Wurtland

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Opinion
  • What's next?

    While virtually all cities in northeastern Kentucky provide their residents with some utility services — water and sewer, mainly, and sometimes natural gas — to the best of our knowledge, Olive Hill is the only town in the FIVCO region with its own electrical company.
     

    April 13, 2014

  • 'Waited too long'

    Lt. Garlin Murl Conner left the U.S. Army as the second-most decorated soldier during World War II, earning four Silver Stars, four Bronze Stars, seven Purple Hearts and the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions during 28 straight months in combat.

    April 12, 2014

  • Enact HB 3

    The National Rx Drug Abuse Summit is under way hundreds of miles from eastern Kentucky in Orlando, Fla., but the three-day conference which runs through Thursday, was organized by Operation UNITE, the eastern Kentucky anti-drug group that knows all too well the devastating impact the prescription drug epidemic continues to have on this region.

    April 11, 2014

  • State officials cease efforts to stop advance of ash borer

    Kentucky’s war against the tiny emerald ash borer responsible for already killing more than 25 million ash trees in the eastern United States has ended in surrender — by state officials, not the tiny insect.

    April 8, 2014

  • Demise of apparel industry in Kentucky continues

    The steady demise of the once thriving clothing industry in small Kentucky towns continues with the latest factory to announce it is shutting down being one of the largest: Fruit of the Loom has announced it is closing its last remaining plant in Jamestown, a move that eventually will see the elimination of more than 600 jobs in the small town near Lake Cumberland.

    April 7, 2014

  • None on ballot

    The 2014 Kentucky General Assembly considered an unusually high number of proposed amendments to the Kentucky Constitution on such issues as casino gambling, the restoration of voting rights for convicted felons and the elimination of state and local elected offices.

    April 4, 2014

  • In Your View

    Letters to the editor

    April 3, 2014

  • Time runs out

    Two bills proposed by House Majority Leader Rocky Adkins and designed to boost the economy of this region have apparently died in the Kentucky Senate after being approved by the House of Representatives. Despite easily being approved by the Democratic-controlled House, neither bill was even brought up for a vote by the Republican-controlled Senate.

    April 2, 2014

  • Time runs out

    Two bills proposed by House Majority Leader Rocky Adkins and designed to boost the economy of this region have apparently died in the Kentucky Senate after being approved by the House of Representatives. Despite easily being approved by the Democratic-controlled House, neither bill was even brought up for a vote by the Republican-controlled Senate.

    April 2, 2014

  • Dismal numbers

    The good news is that the health ratings of all but two area counties improved in the latest ranking of the state’s 120 counties. However, before we pat ourselves on the back for those improvements, the overall health of residents of counties in northeast Kentucky remains rather dismal. Yes, we are improving but we still have a long, long way to go.

    April 2, 2014