Excerpts of recent editorials of statewide and national interest from Ohio newspapers:
The Blade, April 22
Americans’ awareness of the details of the Holocaust is fading as that historic crime recedes into the past. We cannot accept this.
A survey conducted by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, found that 41 percent of Americans couldn’t identify Auschwitz as one of the concentration camps or death camps where Jews and others unwanted by the Nazis were systematically put to death. Some 31 percent of Americans erroneously think that fewer than 2 million Jews died in the Holocaust, the survey found.
This survey should not be taken as the final word on this subject. It was commissioned by a group passionately committed to keeping public awareness of the Holocaust alive, so it is not completely unbiased. And, the survey of 1,350 adults does not disclose much demographic detail, which would have to be disclosed for any political survey to have credibility.
It must not be forgotten that a supposedly highly civilized European country, predominantly Christian, planned and came close to successfully executing the extermination of a religious minority. We in the United States were on the winning side in that war, but it was not a foregone conclusion that we would enter the war, and there were many in this country, bound by the slogan “America First,” who wanted to turn a blind eye.
The Akron Beacon Journal, April 22
Two analysts at the Brattle Group have reinforced the argument for keeping open the Davis-Besse and Perry nuclear power plants. They include in their assessment, released last week, the Beaver Valley nuclear plant, also owned by FirstEnergy, and the Three Mile Island plant, owned by Exelon. These four plants in Ohio and Pennsylvania, slated to shut down, generate 39 million megawatt hours of zero-carbon electricity each year.
So closing the plants means the loss of a massive amount of clean energy, just as the country, and the rest of the planet, should be thinking about how to maximize energy sources that do not emit the greenhouse gases fueling climate change.
This is a moment ripe for environmental groups to rally, but their voices barely have been heard. No doubt, nuclear power comes with complications, starting with the time and cost in constructing new plants. Yet this discussion isn’t about the broader future of nuclear. It is about what to do now with the largest source of clean energy available in an era of mounting climate change.
Consider that 15 or more nuclear plants could close in the next decade. Brattle defines the harm in shutting down just four.
The (Ashtabula) Star-Beacon, April 22
Earlier this month the Star Beacon, along with our sister papers across the country, launched the first installment of the Pulse of the Voters project. What we found is that Ashtabula residents are having many of the same conversations about politics around their dinner tables and coffee shops that are taking place across the country. Few have changed their minds about President Trump since his election - though most voters on both sides have urged him to keep off social media.
One thing that became evident during the project is the need for increased diversity in terms of interaction. Many people said they had lost or cut out friends or even family members over the 2016 election. But cutting people out often leads to less understanding, not more. As people gravitate into groups that think as they do, the tribalism of today’s politics gets worse. That creates an “us versus them” mentality that makes it not only hard to broach difficult topics, but reduces the willingness of people to engage in open-minded, civil discourse.
Being willing to engage with smaller groups of un-like minded individuals is easier said than done of course. And doing so also requires having a wide range of knowledge. Far too many people, no matter their ideological views, will seek out news sources that only reaffirm what they already believe.
The Lima News, April 21
Cliff Rosenberger is turning out to be just another political fat cat.
Well on his way being the person who could make or break someone’s political dreams, Rosenberger threw away a promising career that just three years ago saw him, at age 33, become Ohio House Speaker with the largest Republican majority in nearly a half century.
Power and perks were the apples from the forbidden tree that led to his collapse. It came in the form of lavish travel, fine food and high living. However, not until the FBI launched an investigation and he resigned from office did it come to light.
Rosenberger had used funds from his campaign and the House GOP caucus to pay for more than $310,000 of food, catering and drinks; $150,000 to pay for lodging, travel and car rentals; $70,000 for flowers and gifts; and more than $30,000 on giveaway coins that bore his signature and the state seal.
Of course Rosenberger denies any wrong doing. In announcing his resignation, he said the inquiry could take months or even years to resolve, and noted, “Ohioans deserve elected leaders who are able to devote their full and undivided attention to (lawmaking). . I take this step with full confidence in my ultimate vindication.”
Ohioans deserve honest and ethical lawmakers.
Whatever his reason, resigning from office was the proper thing for Rosenberger to do.
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