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Letters 10-03-18

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Kaine will fight for low health care costs

    As politics are an integral part of our lives, on election day we are given the opportunity to elect candidates  who best reflect our concerns. Mine is affordable health care. I suspect it is for most. 
    Corey Stewart has expressed little concern for this troubling issue, while Senator Tim Kaine has made it clear he will continue to fight ever-increasing health care costs. I believe him.
    Let me be clear. I am a veteran and am blessed with stellar health care. My parents weren’t as fortunate. When my father suffered a stroke in 1977 that left him disabled for 10 1/2 years, my parents lost everything they’d worked for all of their lives.
    Senator Kaine’s service as Virginia’s Governor and U.S. Senator (not to mention he was the people’s choice in 2016 for U.S. Vice President) is a record difficult to ignore.

Rodney A. Franklin
Thaxton

How to attract tourists
downtown

    Recently we have seen a number of articles about making Bedford more attractive to tourists.  
    I believe the suggestion to create a walkway from the Bedford Welcome Center to the downtown area and to Liberty Lake park is completely unrealistic.   The distance involved, the lay of the land, and the traffic patterns would make it highly unlikely that anyone but the most healthy and hardy tourists would ever attempt that journey.   The D Day Memorial attracts many World War II veterans to our community, but I doubt that many of them would attempt that hike.  
    I hope the organizers and planners involved in this project will pause and ask themselves how they might make Bedford more accommodating to tourists.   We need a better selection of downtown restaurants, with hours of operation to include all-day and evenings, Saturdays and Sundays.   Our retail stores need to be open for business throughout the day and into the evening, and a few of them need to train their employees how to talk to customers.   Downtown desperately needs improved parking, especially for handicapped or wheelchair-bound visitors.  
    In my opinion, the primary need in attracting tourists from the D Day Memorial and the Welcome Center to venture downtown is to make it easy and comfortable for them to do so.   Many communities have increased their tourism activity by providing trolleys, or small-scale buses running on an established schedule between key locations.   It is not uncommon to see these vehicles designed with an appearance similar to San Francisco cable cars, which would tie in with Bedford’s historic charm.  
    Certainly, it would be far less expensive to purchase four trolleys than it would be to remake the landscape, sidewalks, lighting, and general appearance of the large residential area bordering Crenshaw Street. Trolleys could provide shelter from inclement weather which hikers might encounter.    Also, a staff of trolley operators would provide jobs to Bedford residents. Tourists who want to hike could be encouraged to visit the Peaks of Otter and hike to the top of Sharp Top.
    I hope these few comments might be helpful.  

John Ketwig
Bedford

Common sense and common courtesy

    To the driver of the blue van that  pulled out in front of me at Timber Ridge Road on Route 460 on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at approximately 5 p.m.:
    Maybe you really didn’t see me. Or more likely you thought you had  time to cross both lanes of traffic. I’m not sure what you were thinking, since I was maybe 30 feet from the intersection when you pulled out. And it was raining.
    I may very well have saved your life when I made the decision to swerve instead of hitting you broadside. But you almost cost me my life.
    Virginia drivers, what is happening? There are other people  on the road besides you. So you think you drive good enough that you can text simultaneously. So you think you can drink and drive and tell yourself, “Oh, I won’t hurt anyone.”
    So you don’t bother to turn on your headlights, thinking, “I can see.” Never mind the fact that you can’t be seen by others. Why does it take two lanes for some people to make a right turn? Why do some people think it’s okay to cross into my lane when they are making a right turn?
    If there is an obstruction in your lane, why do you think it’s acceptable or proper to come into my lane to avoid the obstruction in your lane, assuming that I will go into someone else’s lane, or worse, run off the road so you can go by? What about all those people who turn right on red, in front of you, even when your light is green.
    And don’t even get me started on left lane drivers. Is it time for mandatory driver refreshers? I don’t know the answer. But I do know that if there is a next time, either I or the blue van driver may not be so lucky.

Robin E. Zimmerman
Bedford

A vote for Kaine

    My vote this year will be for Senator Tim Kaine and our 5th district Congressional Representative candidate Leslie Cockburn. Leslie strongly supports health care as a right -- not privilege -- supporting the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Medicare for all.
    At age 82, I am fortunate that my health care needs are covered by Medicare, supplemented by state retirement plan coverage. Recent news articles about plans to privatize Medicare scare me. While private health insurance plans have some benefits, that is not usually the case for most folks.
    A Kaiser Family Foundation study found that privatizing Medicare would result in increased premiums for 59% of plan participants. Other studies reveal privatization could not guarantee seniors attaining needed levels of coverage; at monthly premium and deductibles rates affordable on fixed incomes. Despite some politicians’ fear-baiting claims, Medicare is not running out of funds.
    A young conservative friend recently spoke of his deep suspicions of ACA -- until he actually enrolled. Now covered under ACA, he is fearful to lose it; especially so due to his having a pre-existing condition. Many folks share this concern.
    Leslie’s opponent vows to repeal ACA, and despite their assurances to repeal and replace, Republicans have no viable plan to replace, resorting finally to just repeal; thankfully failing on each of 50+ attempts.
    Returning to pre-ACA status-quo is unacceptable for me or the people of our Commonwealth.
    For this reason alone, join me in supporting Tim Kaine and Leslie Cockburn – Vote this November 6.

Sara B Braaten
Bedford

Detestable

    This past Sunday, we began a new sermon series called “Masquerade” and the masks we wear to hide who we really are. Our pastor also referenced Proverbs 6 and acts that are detestable to our Lord, also written as acts of “Abomination”.
    As I listened, I was comparing the message to a current event in Bedford County, the detestable acts that happened this past May to Dr. Cherie Whitehurst.
    NIV, Proverbs 6: 16-19 – There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.
    What does the Bible mean when it speaks against “haughty eyes”? It’s someone who is arrogant, full of pride and acts superior.
    I would say Doug Schuch (along with his majority of School Board puppets) is guilty of most of these detestable acts against Cherie Whitehurst. It is also my understanding that Schuch isn’t worried because Whitehurst’s support is only around the Town of Bedford. Talk about haughty eyes!
     “No changes planned for the leadership at Liberty High School”; a lying tongue. Eliminate the one that questions discriminatory comments; a heart that devises wicked schemes. Blindside Whitehurst; feet that are quick to rush into evil. Flip events and twist dialog; a false witness who pours out lies. Ignore the outcry from the public and willfully destroy an exemplary career of 29-years; a person who stirs up conflict in the community.
    As time passes, so does public interest. But we, as the Bedford Community, have a responsibility to be steadfast in our support of Cherie. We, as “only around the Town of Bedford,” should be outraged at being ignored. We should never become complacent to those that do evil deeds. They will not stop until we stop them.

Tammy Parker
District 7
Bedford