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Letters to the editor

Band together Editor, The Sun: John Soper's letter to the editor that appeared in your Sept. 15 edition was not only a wonderful analogy, but was very timely as well. While he spoke of the "lords of the land" trying to dictate to us "commoners" over the need for a new hospital, the front page story was rehashing the bypass. Many of these same "lords" have done everything in their power to stop the completion of the bypass since its first proposal in the 1960s and have fought every other attempt we make to better our community. They have even been able to persuade a very vocal minority to follow in the name of preservation while all they have achieved is the systematic destruction of the very thing they purport to care about. We the people have been left with the fruits of their labor, such as loads of hazardous materials being pulled down Main Street, businesses struggling and/or failing because the few people who don't have to leave town for work don't want to fight the big trucks, and let's not forget the long lines of school buses. Yes, I am talking about the traffic problems we are told don't exist. If we had had a state representative and/or state senator willing to stand up for our community, we could have had a bypass in any of the last 50 years. It is time we band together, take control of our destiny, and make the changes we need to bring hope and prosperity to all in Woodford County. Our children deserve a better world than we are leaving them; let's start by fixing things here at home. Dan Fister Versailles Emotional appeal Editor, The Sun: John Soper, in his letter to the editor in the Sept. 15 issue of The Woodford Sun, chooses to resort to name-calling to refer to two groups of Woodford County citizens as "landed gentry," "feudal lords" and "Thoroughbred millionaires," because they have filed lawsuits in which they disagree with the conduct of our governing body. Mr. Soper, a retired banker and chairman of the Woodford Economic Development Authority, has the audacity to believe that he speaks for those of us he calls "peasants" and "serfs." Our democratic system of government provides avenues for the courts to settle this issue. That is what preserves our democracy. This is exactly what the two citizens' groups are doing. Although I do not belong to either, I respect that they are expressing their dissatisfaction this way, rather than with innuendoes designed to manipulate public emotion. Ward Crowe Versailles Pattern of opacity Editor, The Sun: I would like to respond to John Soper's letter in the Sept. 15 edition of The Woodford Sun. First of all, as I understand it, fewer than half of the plaintiffs in these suits are Thoroughbred farm owners. So far as Thoroughbred farm owners are concerned, I would like to remind Mr. Soper that Thoroughbred farms in Woodford County have not been bought "on the cheap," but have been purchased at premium price, then had millions more poured into them for improvements. They provide significant portions of Woodford county's revenues through property taxes and payroll taxes, not to mention the services they buy, the goods and services purchased by their employees and by the tourism they attract. There is no opposition to a new hospital nor to an agricultural industrial complex. There would be strong support for these two projects if they were on land already within the Urban Service Boundary. As chair of the Woodford County Economic Development Authority, Mr. Soper is aware of and should be able to recommend sites that would face no opposition. If Mr. Soper had read the complaints that have been filed, he would have seen that the suits were filed because the plaintiffs believe the city and the Planning and Zoning Commission acted illegally and inappropriately in approving the annexation and rezoning. The concerns have nothing to do with the opposition to a hospital or an agricultural/industrial complex. I believe many of the city's and county's citizens would agree there is a pattern of opacity and a lack of respect for the voices and opinions of Woodford County citizens in the Planning and Zoning Commission, city council and the mayor's office. And lastly, though the editor's note states that Mr. Soper submits his letter as a private citizen, he is the chairman of the Woodford County Economic Development Authority, an official appointed by the government and paid by all taxpayers, not by just those who may agree with his position. Therefore, it seems highly inappropriate to comment publicly in this manner. On a personal note, my wife and I own no farm property in Woodford County. I am from Southern Kentucky originally. We worked as teachers in Michigan for many years and just over 20 years ago we retired to beautiful Woodford County. We can't imagine a better place to live. If you want to truly appreciate Woodford County, then go visit the Metro Detroit Area. It was also once beautiful. Frank and Ellen Gibson Versailles Show respect Editor, The Sun: The "Local lords" letter to the editor in last week's Woodford Sun would seem to imply that we citizens of Woodford County are simple-minded, that we are not aware of the difference between a monarchy and a democracy. The writer appears to be encouraging disagreement and hostility instead of focusing on the common ground and the common good. It assumes that we citizens are intolerant, and that we want to paint those with differing opinions and values as people who are evil, inhuman, monsters. The writer attacks citizens for using of the rule of law, a constitutional right to have the courts intervene when reasonable people have differing opinions. Most disturbing is the implication that perhaps we should consider a revolution to impose an end this disagreement. Let us show respect for the perspective of everyone in Woodford County. Ed and Frances Ross Versailles

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