In response to the negative back page political ad (May 20 edition of The Tribune-Democrat) that is critical of the Section 8 rent-voucher program: A realistic consideration is needed.
The program, managed by the Johnstown Housing Authority, provides affordable home accessibility for a portion of the lower-income families.
These federal dollars actually help to promote healthier neighborhoods through the HUD housing quality standards and tenant regulations, along with mandatory and routine Section 8 inspections conducted to verify compliance by both landlord and tenant.
For landlords, if the paint is peeling, or doors, windows, stairs or walkways are in disrepair, or life safety systems such as smoke alarms are inoperable, you must have them repaired.
Tenants, once accepted into the program, are likewise required to keep their homes or apartments in decent shape, abide by the federal HUD guidelines, and if known serious criminal activity occurs, they are removed from the program.
When considering the many Section 8 housing participants who have benefited from this program over the years, the majority, by far, have abided by the rules while struggling with limited resources to provide for their families.
It is truly sad and ugly to read ads – approved by misguided council candidates – denigrating this program and the families it helps.
Keeping intact communities with high rates of unemployment, poverty and a seemingly endless recession is a huge challenge that begs for positive leadership, cooperation and a broader in-depth understanding of the problems.
Pro-life units uncover blatant murders
The abortion industry and Planned Parenthood are trying to dismiss the Kermit Gosnell case as a one-off, an aberration that shouldn’t be used to judge them.
There is, however, mounting evidence that is not the case. Two pro-life organizations, Live Action and Life Dynamics, have uncovered situations that contradict this assertion.
Live Action has exposed four abortion clinics that admit to performing late-term abortions and even killing babies born alive after botched abortions. Visit www. liveaction.org/inhuman/videos.
The Life Dynamics organization interviewed three women who worked at an abortion clinic that regularly killed babies who were born alive. One of the women told of the abortion doctor actually “twisting the head off the neck” to kill it. Visit www.lifedynamics.com.
These videos expose the abortion industry for what it is: A big business and a dirty business. It does not care about women’s health. It cares about making money.
A figure quoted in one of the videos is $4,000 to $5,000 for a late-term abortion. It also makes reference to add-ons by the abortion doctors to drive prices higher.
Many times, as a result of abortion procedures, women experience significant health issues, even death. See also www. bloodmoneyfilm.com.
These videos are not pleasant to watch, but if you genuinely want to know what’s happening in the abortion industry, take the time to see them. But, be warned, they are chilling, as befits an industry of evil.
Economic-development competition unwise
In response to the Commissioners Corner article on May 15: I find the negative tone of the piece and the disparaging slant toward the community college very unsettling.
I’m curious about the purpose and scope of the planned Cambria County Economic Development Authority, beyond the creation of a Free Trade Zone at the John Murtha Johnstown-Cambria County Airport. Importing Argentine wine through Johnstown might sound interesting, but it won’t create a significant number of jobs.
Attracting businesses to our area and providing related support has been a task of Johnstown Area Regional Industries for decades. Is it necessary to invest in a competitive effort to accomplish the same goals?
I’d like to see the Cambria County commissioners support the other entities already focused on this task, enhance their efforts and avoid competing to provide the same type of services.
In some ways, the steelworker work ethic has gone by the wayside.
Unfortunately, it has become a Cambria County tradition to fight for control, rather than for the well-being of our friends and neighbors. Even in the nonprofit sector, I see more local competition than cooperation.
If people can’t get along, they decide to strike out on their own and do it their way.
It’s difficult to move things forward when there’s so much tugging side to side.
I ask the commissioners to consider a cooperative rather than competitive effort.
Perhaps other entities will follow your positive example and we’ll all come out better on the other side.
Employee, Pennsylvania Highlands Community College
Pondering album of Hiroshima bombing
When I was 12 or 13 years old, I came upon a photo album in our hallway closet that chronicled the destruction of Hiroshima, Japan.
Multistory buildings were bowed down and kissed the earth. Block after block was strewn with debris. Streets were indistinguishable from the rest of the block. In infrequent cases, a lone building survived the bombing.
People had huge radiation burns on their cheeks and possibly other parts of their bodies. Their only crime was that they had been born in the wrong period of time and in the wrong place on Earth.
One thing that puzzled me for years was the more than a dozen pictures with a step and black markings on it.
In 1995, an educational-TV station in Pittsburgh aired a program marking the 50th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima. Footage shown I had seen previously in the photo album, including of the step.
Scientists have theorized that a person was sitting on the step at or near ground zero and had been vaporized.
Human beings are always inventing ways of killing other human beings.
My uncle would never talk about what he did in the Navy. I believe he might have driven the famous admirals and generals of this period to view with their own eyes the horrible destruction of Hiroshima.
I believe he had the photo album because of this.
I also believe wholeheartedly that God blesses America every day and in every way.
Honor war dead by respecting life As Memorial Day approaches, out of respect for “those who gave some and others who gave all” for the sake of liberty, ask yourself, freedom to do what? Freedom to control resources, thus the domination of people? Or freedom to celebrate, enjoy and share the blessings our planet offers?
To embrace the latter, we must realize that money, including any type of currency, is a made-up tool to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. Goods and services, through the work of human hands, become the primary ingredients of the word “economy.”
Do we respect the work of human hands? Or do we exploit them, such as the American companies related to the Bangladesh tragedy?
Yes, our family members who gave and continue to give all, did and do so, for those who exploit and prey on the work of human hands with money as their god and master.
When elected officials in public office cowardly use the word “funding” as an excuse for declining and decaying communities, while valuable resources (natural gas extracted and exported, precious water sold and ruined) leave communities, it is evident their agendas are not rooted in core character and values needed to celebrate, respect, enjoy and share the blessings of this planet.
The general public has great power and influence as consumers. But first we must be honest about our answer to: Freedom to do what?
Christians have not done their job
Years ago, the venerable American Roman Catholic Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen lamented that we are no longer a Christian nation. Since then, a lot of water has flowed under the bridge. And the longer it has flowed, the muddier it has gottten. At each degree the culture decayed, the poor man rolled over in his grave.
If we are no longer a Christian nation, then what are we? Muslim?
Not yet, but give it time. Looking at the culture, we see abortion as the law of the land; same-sex marriage soon to be the law; widespread cohabitation and breakdown of the family; and perhaps 50 percent of births to unwed mothers.
Widespread corruption is in all areas of human activity. We sacrifice our unborn babies to the god of convenience, like the pagans of old who sacrificed their children to their gods.
Sin is denied. Influential atheists try to get God off the coins and out of the Pledge of Allegiance. And the list goes on.
All of this is pure, unadulterated paganism.
In the last pesidential election (I know not the statistics of other denominations), 50 percent of us Catholics voted for our pagan administration. If they voted for it, that must mean they agree with it. Hence, can we not label them Christian pagans?
How did all this happen? It’s because we Christians did not do our job. Instead of influencing our culture as Jesus was counting on us to do, we allowed it to influence us.
As Jesus once wept over Jerusalem, I suspect He is now weeping over the United States of America.