To the Editor:

The advertisement on Page 17 of West Life’s Oct. 7 issue briefly and artistically presented reasons to change the occupancy of the White House. The ad labeled “Paid for by Ed Pivcevich” made me smile in a time when reasons to smile are rare.

For many years Ed Pivcevich was West Life’s owner and publisher. I had the privilege of working as a writer for his paper for 17 of those years. During that time his writers knew they could address any issue in their towns, even controversial ones. Ed had only one measurement – “Is it true – do you have all the facts?”

It is reassuring that in retirement Ed continues to tell it like it is.

Louise Seeholzer

To the Editor:

Gayle Manning is the most high-integrity, empathetic and down-to-earth legislator I have met. Her strong sense of family, intelligent understanding of current issues and a commitment to those she serves, makes her my enthusiastic choice for re-election for state representative for the 55th District. People with good intentions make promises, but people with good character keep them. This is Gayle Manning.

Ronald F. Arndt, DDS, MBA, MAGD

North Ridgeville

Westlake

To the Editor:

In 1980 Ronald Reagan asked voters, “Are you better off than you were four years ago?” Answering this question today reveals that we are weaker due to the alienation of our allies and the growing suspicions of the United States as being unreliable internationally. We are weaker from growing threats of natural disasters due to unaddressed climate change and complications of the elimination of environmental protections. We are poorer due to the loss of businesses shutting down and increased unemployment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the lack of leadership to combat it. We are sicker due to more than 215,000 deaths and nearly 8 million COVID cases. This is nearly 25% of the world’s deaths and cases, while we are only 4% of the world’s population. Our COVID deaths are more than the American military losses in Iraq, Vietnam and Korea combined. We are more divided due to the extreme rhetoric of Donald Trump that has emboldened domestic terrorist groups.

Trump has associated his administration with persons convicted of felonies: George Papadopoulos, Rick Gates, Michael Flynn, George Nader, Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen, strategist Roger Stone and Giuliani’s friends: Parnas, Fruman and Sader. A recent arrest of Steve Bannon, a major adviser of the president, is pending conviction. The Southern District of New York is investigating the tax improprieties of Trump and his company and he was impeached. Despite all this, Donald Trump has decided that he is the “law and order” president. He has attacked the truth on so many levels, and is constantly gaslighting Americans.

Trump has called our troops “suckers” and “losers” and mocked Gold Star families. He has never addressed the Russian bounties put on our soldiers in Afghanistan with Putin. Nearly 500 retired generals, admirals and national intelligence experts have signed a letter warning us that Donald Trump is a national security threat.

Qualities of good leadership include integrity, accountability, empathy, humility, resilience, vision, influence and positivity. Trump lacks every one of these qualities. His primary job was to protect Americans, but instead, we are weaker, sicker, poorer and divided.

We need a president who has these leadership qualities and has a plan to help us get out of these troubling times. That candidate is Joe Biden. This election will decide who we are as Americans and if we choose well reunite our country to be stronger together. I urge everyone to vote for Joe Biden for president.

Jane Sidwell-Coniam

Avon Lake

To the Editor:

Federal Judge Dan Polster recently enjoined Republican Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose from preventing the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections from establishing drop boxes for ballots in the Nov. 3 election at six libraries throughout the county. We hope this puts an end to the Republican plans to suppress our votes.

In the interest of a fair election, voter health and safety in our COVID world, LaRose should now drop his appeal – three courts have now ruled that his actions are wrong. (Judge Polster, Cuyahoga County, Judge Frey in Franklin Country as well as the Franklin County Court of Appeals.)

These judges’ rulings on this very important issue offer some hope that our treasured balance of powers in a democracy is still alive, despite the abdication of its powers by our Republican representatives to the executive branch under President Trump.

Mel Maurer

Westlake

To the Editor:

As a wife, mother, and public defender working within our criminal justice system, I support Monique Smith for state representative (HD-16). Monique is empathetic, compassionate and believes in ensuring a strong and fair justice system. She is the voice we need at the table when tough decisions are being made, especially when it comes to criminal justice reform.

Monique believes that those members of our community who are accused of non-violent crimes and do not pose a flight risk should be released without cash bail, when possible. This not only saves our state money, but it also avoids major disruption to a person’s life that can cause a downward spiral into the criminal justice system. Being incarcerated unnecessarily – even for a day or two – can cause a person to lose all sense of stability. Loss of job, housing and child custody issues are just a few of the long-lasting consequences that Monique recognizes and will fight to avoid. Monique will always balance the rights of the accused with the need for public safety. Monique supports the recommendation of ACLU Ohio, which is projected to save Ohio up to $264 million per year: Instead of resources determining someone’s freedom, we propose that most people go home on the same day as their arrest, and for those who pose a flight risk or a threat to a specific person, a conditions of release or detention hearing should be held within 48 hours.

When I look at Monique, I see a mother of young children, who much like myself wants to make a difference. She will always listen and make thoughtful decisions in the best interest of our district. Monique Smith will work for YOU in Columbus.

Jennifer O’Donnell

Bay Village

To the Editor:

Last year, Matt Dolan sponsored an amendment to give a $5.8 million a year property tax break to one of the wealthiest communities in Ohio, the Village of Hunting Valley, whose average income is $500k and average house is valued at $1.3 million.

How did we find out? Not through the usual legislative review process because the amendment was quietly slipped into the budget at the end.

Fortunately, Orange district officials identified the change and alerted the governor who used a line item veto to strike the amendment from the budget.

It is important that voters not forget about this unethical move by Dolan with the election just weeks away.

His opponent, Tom Jackson, wants to stop the detrimental siphoning of taxpayer dollars from public schools. I agree. When the time to vote is here, make sure to support Tom Jackson, the candidate who will ensure our public schools are funded.

If Dolan stays in office, who knows which school system would be targeted next to appease his big-dollar donors. My vote is for Tom Jackson for Ohio Senate District 24.

Marcia K. Bakst

Lyndhurst

To the Editor:

An important issue appears on the Nov. 3 ballot for voters in the Lorain County JVS District, a permanent improvement levy that will not only increase the safety of students but also modernize the facility.

Issue 18 is a 10-year, 0.66-mill levy that would generate approximately $4.5 million annually. These funds are dedicated to building maintenance, repairs and enhancements, such as sprinkler systems for fire suppression and secure entrances.

If approved, a homeowner would pay about $2 per month for every $100,000 in property value.

Lorain County JVS has been committed to strong fiscal management. In fact, it hasn’t passed a ballot issue for new tax dollars since 1985. Please remember that strong school systems and strong communities go hand in hand.

Dr. Kathy McFarland
Deputy Chief Executive
Ohio School Boards Association
Columbus

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