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Mountain Messenger
Lewisburg, West Virginia
March 20, 1990     Mountain Messenger
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March 20, 1990

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4A The Mountain Messenger, Tuesday, March 20, 1990 Harley Staggers is an intense young man, He visited his district on Saint Patrick's Day -- all dressed in green down to emerald socks ready to lalk about what's going on in Washington with as little blarney as the holiday would permit. The congressman talked about the national budget for sometime. He feels the President's budget is unrealistic and takes exception to what he contends are actual Presidential cuts to education. Congress faced with the responsibility to come up with a "realistic" budget sometime in April. Mr Staggers thinks its a big order. When we asked him how much he was paid he quickly responded, "Too much." His annual salary is $92,000. In addition to this rather princely amount, there are any number of "'perks", such as money for office rental, money for staff, money for telephones, money for mailing privileges. Mr Staggers says, tl)ough, his salary is pretty nluch eaten up by the high cost of things in Washington. Hc intimated he has a pretty rough time making ends meet at times. We hasten to add that Mr Staggers didn't ask for the $92,(X)0 per year and all the extras'--- that just comes with the job these (lays. On the West Virginia teacher's strike, Mr Staggers said, "It's so unfortu- nate. It could have prevented." He feels the only way to get the West Virgima teacher's salaries in line with the rest of the country is to have a progressive income-based tax -"that would be the fitirest way." He added "lf I were governor, I would never have draw a line." Mr Staggers on the ever-escalating costs of medical treatment: "Doctors will say it's the insurance companies and lawyers: insurance companies will say it's the doctors and the lawyers: lawyers will say it's the doctors and the insurance companies. There has to be reform in insurance, medicine and tort (law)." He thinks there should be additional emphasis on providing more competition, more clinics, more nurses, more physicians assistants and more home health care. Mr Staggers and his wife are expecting their second child in a couple of months. They live "On The Hill" in Washington right now, but they are looking for property in Jefferson County, West Virginia. The congressman could then live in a country setting ("I'm a rural person") and commute to Washington by train. The Staggers haven't beert successful yet in obtaining land in Jefferson County because of the costs. "There's been an explosion there in building and new business. It's only a little over an hour from Washington." Mr Staggers holds Jefferson County up as a model of progressiveness which other parts of West Virginia could emulate -- even though he admits that Jefferson County ~s also in a turmoil now because it lacked a compre- hensive plan for grow~. Utilities are unable to provide the expected serv- ice. police departments are understafl~l, and the influx of people continues. ICharles A. Goddard STAFF Chas. A. Goddard. Editor l)ottie Brackenrtch. Office Manager Troy Forren. Advertising Sales Terri Boone. Advertising Sales David Poole. Advertising Sales Debbie McClung. Ad Design Betty Morgan. Ad Design ,Jonathan Wright. StaffWntcr Lou Burroughs. Type.setting Brenda Gherman. t~oduction 122 N. Court Street Lewisburg, WV 24901 304/647-5724 Published every Tuesday Circulation: 22,819 If you would like to submdt material for publication: Articles submltteo to The Mountain Messenger should be lypewr~lon or clearly written m Ordor Io DO consclered for pobhcatlon. Please include your name and a ohone nurnoer whore you may be reache~ clutmg business hours. The Mountain Messenger reserves the right to edit any material and regrets at- Iles cannot be returned. Letters to the editor must include a full signature and address. I! you would like a photograph re~urnecl, please provide a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Please observe the following deadlines: News Items: Thursday, Noon Display Advertising: Thursday, 5 p.m. Classified Advertising: Friday, 9 a.m. SUBSCRIPTION RATES: In State, $14; Out-of-State, $15; Students (9 mos.) $10, By Jonathan Wright One of our employees here at the newspaper office is h.ving her fortieth birthday April 21. I won't reveal her identity---mere's no need for that, and she'd kill me anyway. My point in these few lines is to con- vince all cynics out there that 40 isn't nearly as bad as some claim Just three short years from now I'll reach that milestone, and [can truthfully say I don't dread it all that much. There are several reasons. First, 40 isn't that far away any- more. Once it seemed to be the age of parents, teachers, and all people in the mainstream of adult life, Now here I am at its threshold, and I still feel as young as ever--well, almost. Second, I spend a lot of time around folks older than me. It does wonders to make me feel young. It's all in one's perspective, of course, for what is young for some people is old to others. Third, I keep n mind how many more years I have left if, for in- stance, I live to be 80 Forty is only half-way there. To make me feel even better (and younger), I think of the ultimate example: 112-year-old Ettie Mae Greene of Springfield Comprehensive Care Center in Lindside Imagine this: at 40 years of age, she had at least 72 years left! Fourth, I remember this: when I reach any birthday, I am actually only a day older than I was the day before. All of us grow old one day at a time--no more, no less. So you're 40 years old! How old were you the day before your birthday?--39 years and 364 days. Big deal! Finally, to keep things in a more eternal perspective, as one who loves the Lord, I can't help realizing that each birthday serves as a re- minder I am one year closer to Heaven. I am absolutely convinced of that, and I am gratified God has allowed me another year down here to be used by Him. I only hope He is pleased with how I am using my time. It goes by all too quickly. Forty years of age? Enjoy it! Boast about it! Then forget it! Fifty will be here before you know it--an- other milestone to celebrate in the long parade of years. By Tedd E. Urice Look to the skies, West Virgini- ans! You, the descendants of those men of iron who preferred a life-or- death struggle with misery in the mountains and valleys of your state, instead of suppression, you, the off- spring of those hardy pioneers who set their faces against all dangers and difficulties that surrounded the early settler's life, cleared the land, and, eventually prepared the way for you and me, look to the skys! It was 7:55 Sunday morning, skys were clear, in the distance. white clouds touched an endless expanse of motionless water. Hu- manity began to st~r, some folk were readying themselves for church, oth- ers stretched their way out of restful sleep, a few dug out their baseball caps for a heated game with the Giants. The game was never played. Within hours, twenty-three hundred people died. How many West Virgmians were among the bodies as the. world exploded? The date was December 7, 1941 Four years and thousands upon thou- sands of American bodies later, the war with Japan ended, or did it? Steel and lead bullets have been replaced by paper projectiles, or money, if you will. West Wrginians, we are losing the battle! Tl'is state, with certainty, is not finar'ciatly secure. What state, at this time., really is? Outside money can look qu~te appet=zmg, but its source ~s important. Unemployment figures are rising to the 10 per cent mark. West Virginia's future is leaving the state in droves. Teachers will seek oppor- tunities elsewhere. How many towns are quickly becoming ghost towns? How many schools are to be closed? How many hospitals will shut their doors? At what price will heritage be sold? If the selling or Virginia properties is tion to state ployment is drastically foreign investors and would benefit. West noted for being are, as well, known Maintain the pride, tage. Unless quickly, heritage will is left holding the state Foreign investments should be welcomed, guarantee of this to have legislators bill which would prevent lease of historically erties to foreign or their representatives. One particular case Andrew S. Rowan of the fertile mind of son, and visited by torical figures including Lee and his family. It be a travesty to have flag from its staff. Jackson's be sold for scrap Pearl Buck's home us forever. Hundreds ments to our past are portance. If the legislators of are unable to hear said, consider what get for the U.S.S. Golden Dome of Charles Look to the skies 'ans! Note: Mr Urice is a West Virginian and a World War II and ber of various well as a chairman of Centennial of Indiana his writings and appeared n many C" Dear Editor: The 1990 session of the West Virginia legislature is history. Who Js keeping score? Where were the pri- orities? Lets look at a few bills going to the governor on the last and cru- cial day. Business ef State com- plete??? Bill: Limit liability for horse stables, In the process of all the bull sling- ~ng ~n side-tracking critical bills such as "tax equity" it's now mixed with horse dung. Guess there was fear of the public tiring of the same old diet. Bill: Create New River Gorge Bridge Day Commission: Time spent wqutd have been bet- ter utilized deterrr{ining the positives an d values of '1he Recall and Refer- endum Act." Fayette County citizens have left little room ~r improvement on this subject, the6 such infallible leaders as Chuck Chambers want a commission that will permit them to jump "without parachute" for such "boo-boos" as Chambers' inference that we common voters don't pos- sess sufficient intelligence to man- age our own affairs. Bill: Declare the fossil coral offi- cial state gem: Come on now! and while we are faced with such crucial issues as our education system's predicament, Small. wonder then why no one can think of solutions other than tossing more tax dollars into a system de- clining in both quantity and quality, while cost goes up; good manage- ment dictates opposite, has no one in resoonsible position ever given thought to conceivable facts that we continue to support a top-heavy administrative organization? While first line teaching personnel are forced to make-do on thread-bare budgets? Is it not true that high-paid non-teaching personnel chew up massive tax dollars that can be util- ized on the classroom level to pro- duce much bmproved results? Is it not about time we gave the school system back to those who foot the bill and do the work; parent and teacher? gllh Provide study of private land recreation. More time and tax dollars wasted at chipping away at citizens' rights, while more than half the world's population struggle for freedom and rights for individuals. The people you and I elect push us in the oppo- site direction using our money. When do we say enough is enough???? J. W. Pennington President, Greenbrier County Citizens for Progress Dear Editor: Remember the Maine! Remem- ber the Alamo! Remember the Sweat Shops? Around the turn of the century when immigrants and others were exploited in the garment industry, especially by greedy em- ployers. The young, the old, chil- dren, worked under intolerable con- ditions. They spent long hours in fire traps and in filth and were paid a ptttance, Remember? No unions in those days. No one to fight for their rights. So the evil, greed~ creatures, ex- ploiters of human beings had their way -- until the unions came. If the teachers miners, sale- speople and others were accorded their rights, including decent sala- ries, adequate benefits and Chris- tian treatment, there wouldn't be all this trouble. If they cannot or will not do this then we will lose many of our skilled, respected, honored teachers. They will move away to other states for a better life. Students will fail because West Virginia shall have failed its teach- ers. Most West Virginians want to the proud of our state and hope our un- fortunate image will become a petter image, one of more honest politi- cians, fewer greedy money grabbers and less ill-mannered drivers and others. Just think what it would be like were it not for the unions -- worse than the sweat shops. Sincerely Henry Dunn Lewisburg Dear Editor: On Saturday, March 9 the Ku Klux Klan held a "recruiting march" in Union. Close to 75 people met them with signs, songs and voices as they entered town. We let them know in no uncertain terms that their brand of hate and bigotry is not wel- come in Monroe County! The KKK message went largely unheeded and they soon grew discouraged and left town. (I understand they then went to Peterstown to conduct a march there.) The people of the Greenbrier Valley need to know that the Klan is once again attempting to person our communities with their message of white supremacy. I fear that they n- tend to visit other towns in our area soon. While they certainly have the constitutional right to freedom of speech, We do not have to listen! Please, we must let such hate- groups know that their message wil not be tolerated in these parts. We need to work for a world where free- dom and dignity are offered to all people. My four-year-old son carried a sign on Saturday which read "All God's Children Are Equal!" Let's continue to strive to live by that creed in this valley. Love wil indeed conquer hate. Sincerely, Dee Cole Vodicka Alderson Dear Editor: Hurray for Harry Walkup MD.of Marlinton for his courageous and well-written letter warmng pro-abor- tionists of God's judgment on those who shed innocent blood and those who support this abomination. Hurray also for the Editor of this fine publication for printing Dr Walkup's letter without any editorial notes. Realizing that the contents of the "Letters to the Editor" do not neces- sarily represent the opinions of you or your publication, I thank you for publishing Dr Walkup's letter You could have stuck it under the blotter on your desk or in File 13, as many people of this day have seemingly dispensed with their consciences, Roy L. Spinks Lewisburg Dear Ed Itor: To the 120 Greenbrier County teachers who have gone into the schools during the teachers' strike. I respect you and admire your professionalism, high principles and integrity. I respect your sense of responsi- bility which causes you to honor your contracts with the school board. I respect your devotion to the children of this county and your commitment to their education. I respect your loyalty to the Board of Education which has placed you n a confrontational and dangerous situation by keeping schools open during this unprece- dented strike and by asking you to cross picket lines to teach so that they will continue to receive State Aid Formula money. I am awed by your courage to go alone through the picket lines manned by your associates, friends, parents, and sometimes students. I respect your quiet bravery and strength in bearing the criticism, the insults and threats from your associ- ates, friends, and parents. I am ashamed that I have not walked with you through the picket line. I apologize that I did not stand with you when.you were criticized and harassed. I am ashamed that you have been alone in satisfying your obliga- tion to teach. You few teachers deserve the thanks and praise of all the people of this county for it is by your actions m crossing the picket lines and keeping the schools open that the county Board of Education has con- tinued to receive money through the State Aid Formula to keep the school systems operating in the amount of $65,490.82 per day: Had you not crossed the picket fines and continued to teach, Greenbrier County would not have received State Aid Formula money during the strike. Without State Aid money the school systems would collapse. The Board of Education can never repay you for the abuse and trauma you have suffered from your associates, friends, and parents. You few brave, valiant teachers have shown the people of this .o county true professionalism, great integrity, true leadership and cour- age in action! Your bravery and de- votion to your chosen profession of teaching commands the respect of all the people of this county. Billle Jean Hutsanpiller Srnoot Dear Editor: I moved to West Virginia three years ago and have since witnessed the most unprofessional, uncivil, ille- gal conduct by local law enforce- ment and elected officials in my forty-eight years of life. I suspect that a certain elected official has used a controversial sub- ject (Nazis) as a device to increase his own popularity and is presently grooming himself for higher public office. I further suspect that the of- lenses against me were the result of my investigative efforts into the sub- jects of the Second World War and racial hatred. Of course this clown did not know the motivation for my research and evidently concluded I am a "Nazi" and could be used as an "election tool" to further his own serf-interest. At this point I feel the reader is entitled to an explanation of my mo- tivation to research the Nazi phe- nc menon. In the mid 1950s Queen Eliza- beth, via Her Majesty's Navy, res- cued a young Polish merchant ma- rine who was being held captive aboard a Polish vessel. My mother sponsored this young man to come to America. Anthony suggest I go to -- contacted my sponded and su! someone else. At this point I up, right? --- Like Hellt! Since my civil nied and since I have seek redress through command" type of been forced to take the The United Natiol Declaration of Human cember 1948 and the January 1976 of member nations the erties as enjoyed I am now tions of the United to my government to before mentioned tify the wrongs I have prosecute the offenders" K. lived with us and had a tremen- able or unwilling to dous influence on me during my wishes we must youth. I had put my fingers on the We must demand ployees (elected and every citizen witll respect without status, financial cal clout. If our dividuals from our are more inclined their employers We need industry be a decision of the people need em not ask for the right the People" will give' authority to solicit to invest in our future. Our forefathers tion that resulted in the periment in democracY of mankind. This start with muskets started with the pen, forum (i.e. Letters to us use it to reaffirm to this great about a more our children. I am fed up and ing to form a interested, please 6644 between 6 weekdays only. scared holes where a machine gun and ripped open his legs when he was just a young boy attempting to escape a concentration camp. This story has remained a secret for 35 y~ars. I have only recently told this to my children and a few select friends. I have spent the last 25 years researching this subject, often doing without necessities in order to buy books or send for information from all manner of organizations. This research was my secret, sacred obsession not to be shared with anyone. However, thanks to some opportunist my 25 years of re- search has just gone down the drain. To redress the offenses against me I made at least ten phone calls to a county commissioner. Having never received one return call I then attempted to contact a senator on the state level. I had made cam- paign s=gns for this man as per his request at no charge to him and was sure I would at least receive the courtesy of a phone call, Again I was ignored. I then wrote my con- gressman who sent my letter to the governor who then wrote me and through the election ment process. We can