State lawmakers should have a no-gift policy
Thank you for covering the astounding conflict of interest problem with state lawmakers who can apparently take gifts of any value from those who are attempting to influence them. I was horrified to be reminded of that. I hope our legislators will finally vote to change the policy for good and allow only gifts of minimal value (a cheap pen or baseball cap), if that. A no gift policy would be best. I teach ethics and the behavioral research is clear that, even though people think they are not influenced by such gifts, they absolutely are. That means that their decisions change to favor the gift provider. As a citizen, that is certainly not what I want from my elected officials. If it is important for legislators to have dinner with a lobbyist, funds should be appropriated so that they can pay for their own dinner (which does not need to be at a fancy restaurant or resort — after all, they’d be spending taxpayer money). And, I don’t understand why Pennsylvania legislators need to go on foreign junkets. I appreciate very much that Governor Tom Wolf saw fit to remove the problem from the executive branch of state government. It’s time for the legislators to do what’s so obviously right.
Commissioners lauded for solar decision
When I lived in New Mexico, I was surrounded by solar panels and I appreciate what getting power from the sun means for one’s pocketbook and everyone’s environment. So congratulations to our county commissioners for going solar at the correctional facility on the Benner Pike. It’s rare for elected officials to think beyond the next election; our commissioners are thinking out 25 years. Now if we could just get a handle on climate change so we get to see the sun more often.
Disgraceful disrespect of our military
Members of my family have served our country in the Navy, the Army, and the Air Force during WWII, the Vietnam War, the Granada rescue mission, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War.
I have a deep respect for our veterans and our men and women now serving.
I am shocked and disappointed to read the recent reports about Navy personnel wearing what appear to be “Trump” patches and the covering of the name of our Navy warship, the John McCain, during Trump’s Japan visit.
This level of disrespect to the honor of our US military veterans and the failure to assure the proper separation of politics from the military is stunning.
I am requesting our Congressional representatives to launch an investigation into these disgraceful incidents of disrespect to our veterans.
The application of proper discipline to the people responsible for these egregious violations is necessary to prevent further erosion of our American values.
Congress must step up to respect and defend the honor of our veterans and to enforce the proper separation of the White House and our military.