Letters (April 1, 2009)

Seek local settlement for atrazine problem?


It was reported in last week?s paper that the cities of Hillsboro and Marion have joined a class-action lawsuit against the makers of the herbicide atrazine.

The health problems associated with atrazine have been known and publicized since the 1990s and European countries have banned its use for over a decade.

I wrote letters in this paper about the presence of atrazine in Marion Reservoir more than 10 years ago, pointing out the need to stop the use of it in the watershed.

In 1998, Kansas Department of Health and Environment submitted its list of impaired lakes to EPA in which several lakes in Kansas were identified as impaired by runoff of atrazine.

Atrazine should have been banned years ago, but the powerful industrial agri-business interests lobbied hard to stop any efforts in protecting water sources and human health.

Now, because of the power of special interests over public health, we are left to the long, expensive process of using the courts to sue for the funds to clean up the water by expensive water treatment processes. Much of the money from this lawsuit will end in the pockets of the Texas lawyers, Baron & Budd.

Why don?t the attorneys for the cities of Marion and Hillsboro contact the local agricultural chemical suppliers that are selling atrazine and the farmers that purchased and applied atrazine and negotiate a settlement to clean up the water supply?

There is a lot of ?lip-service? paid to being personally responsible and finding local solutions rather than depending on ?big government? or ?wicked trial lawyers,? so here is an opportunity for those who put the pollutant in the water to help get it out.

Harry E. Bennett



World needs more Jesus, not less


My husband and I experienced something very disturbing today. We decided to get lunch at our local Wendy?s and, as usual, we joined hands and silently gave thanks for our meal before eating. A gentleman sitting across the room looked at us as if he was disgusted at having to witness our custom.

During our dining experience, pleasant and soothing Christian music was playing in the background. As we left the restaurant, this gentleman motioned for the shift manager to follow him out?he was behind us?and we heard him say to the employee, ?Do you really think the Jesus music helps sell hamburgers?? He seemed put off by the music.

As I heard this, my first reaction was shock. I?m not ignorant to the fact that not everyone believes the same way we do, but this blatant declaration left me speechless. I did not recognize this man, I do not know if he is even from here. But my hope is that he reads this newspaper to hear what I would have liked to say to him if I had been able to ?recover? before he left the parking lot.

Sir, do you know Jesus? Most of us in this community do. Let us help you get to know him, too, so that you actually might enjoy the inspirational music as a nice change from a lot of the trash that is played on radio and TV these days. If you will look around you, you will notice that the restaurant is full, so obviously no one else is insulted.

You are free to dine wherever you wish, but we feel?especially in this day and age?that a little more of Jesus is exactly what this world needs. So if you are that offended, dine elsewhere?or better yet join us, talk with us and get to know Jesus yourself.

Brenda and Bob Hiebert


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