The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

October 4, 2013

Readers' Forum 10-4 | Penn State's focus remains blurred

Submitted by Readers

JOHNSTOWN — It’s questionable whether or not The Tribune-Democrat should have published the tripe from the Penn State Daily Collegian, but I’m glad it did. This is another example showing that Penn Staters don’t get it.

Sanctions on the football program were intended to drive home the point that the abuses occurred because that program’s existence was made the sole rationale for any possible reporting of crimes to the proper authorities. If anyone saw a crime in progress (think of a woman being raped), wouldn’t he or she call 911 immediately? And wouldn’t one attempt to interrupt the abuse if one could do it safely (think young, strong man versus old man)? Would you leave a child alone with such an abuser? What is so hard to understand about that?

My neighborhood is suffering from the effects of having a child predator living among us. I think about the young victim every day when I look at the house. The abuser is serving 40 to 80 years for his crimes, but the appeals will make the news and bring us fresh nightmares. The neighbors have suffered retaliation from an acquaintance of the man who lived there. But it is not about us, we get it.

We should not be asking young men to risk their health and fight gladiator-style for our amusement in order to get an education. Penn State would be a better educational institution if that particular program did not exist. Then the focus would be on what matters.

Carol J. Harp


Writer questions senior centers’ rules

Recently, the Retired Senior Volunteer Program honored area volunteers with a dinner, and the speakers bragged about the many volunteers.

The following week, all local senior centers received a letter supposedly from the Johnstown Nutrition Group stating that the volunteers are limited to 1 1⁄2 cups of coffee per day.

I am a five-day-a-week volunteer at a local senior center. After I finish packing the homebound meals, I like my cup of coffee. That means for lunch I am only allowed a half cup of coffee with my meal.

I wonder if the nutrition group or whoever is responsible for this stupid rule only has a half cup of coffee with their lunch.

This means that I need to bring my own instant coffee to the center. Maybe they won’t let me have the hot water, either.

They may as well toss all the coffee makers out and force us to bring our own coffee.

I think all volunteers should quit, then they could close another senior center.

Now another gripe. I am not yet homebound, but recently the homebound received one-half of a baked potato with their meal. If they can afford it, they pay more for the meal than we do at the centers and receive less. Just another ripoff.

It sure must take brains to make a rule like this.

Ralph Gutshall


We can’t allow Congress’ tantrums

“Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance and eliminate labor laws, labor unions and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are a few Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or businessman from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid.” (President Dwight Eisenhower, 1954)

Eisenhower remained popular, and history is finally recognizing his wisdom. He was also a moderate, pragmatic Republican who would not recognize his party today.

What has changed from his day are that Texas millionaires are billionaires and there are more politicians and businessmen in this splinter group of extremists.

We also have a more complex country and problems. I imagine that Ike would issue a new memorable quote over the shutting-down-the-government tactic.

Why don’t we learn from our history?

In America, we debate, argue, call our representatives, protest and write to the newspaper. Then we vote, continue the discussions, compromise and problem-solve. That is our democracy. We do not get to practice anarchy or stage coups.

Grown men throwing temper tantrums because their candidate for president lost is not the American way. They do not get to order (former presidential candidate) Mitt Romney’s agenda into place when President Obama won the election by more than 50 percent of the vote. A parent would give a toddler a time out. What do you do for adult toddlers’ tantrums?

Anita Altman


Kudos to park for solving problem

It’s great that the Roxbury Park Bandshell has been able to move the roller rink back. Now, the crowds have more seating for their lawn chairs.

Also, it would be nice to see a place set aside for the many dancers who enjoy the live music each Sunday, as most know it’s very hard dancing on the grass.

Great job, Mary Borkow.

Kathy McCombie


Destroying livelihood is not justifiable

I guess it is justified that if you have a disagreement with someone’s economic way of living, you can destroy that life.

Surely, every one of these Animal Liberation Front members and Bite Back subscribers are vegans.

Casey Schneck


Shame on few who shut down nation

In 1939, the United States adopted President Franklin Roosevelt’s Social Security act. The GOP opposed it, but came together for the good of the country.

In 1965, President Lyndon Johnson proposed the Medicare act. Again, the GOP opposed it but came together again for the good of the country.

In 2013, we were given Obamacare (Affordable Care Act). The GOP opposed it, but this time a few inexperienced, immature lawmakers hijacked the GOP and shut down the government.

Shame, shame.

Frank Filia