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Speak Your Piece

Tell us what's on your mind. No need to give your name. Call 633-7508 from 9 am Tuesday to 9 am Friday.

Tell us what’s on your mind. No need to give your name.
Call 633-7508 from 9 am Tuesday to 9 am Friday.

E-m@il address
In addition to the telephone and the U.S. Mail, The Mountain Eagle accepts comments to Speak Your Piece by electronic mail. Our address is: mteagle@tgtel.com

I think our Neighborhood Watch Program on Cram Creek on drug prevention with UNITE is going to be a good thing. Things are coming together. That way we can get these big drug dealers off the hollow and even get these small drug dealers because we’re tired of it and we have people living beside us selling drugs. That ain’t going to happen no more. That’s just it. If you’re selling them, you’ll be turned in and there are other ways. If you’re a drug dealer on Cram Creek and read this or Pine Creek or Mayking, remember this because you will be in jail, guaranteed. Thank you, UNITE, and everybody else for coming together to put this drug program to work. You’re fine citizens.

Does anybody know where I can find a dressmaker? I would love to find one.

This is something that every American needs to think about. If you are the majority you need to vote your nationality, because when you become a minority you will lose. So think about that. If you are the majority, vote for your race. If you are a minority, do whatever you can but remember, the majority should win.

Here I am back here at this cabin all by myself and it’s such a beautiful day. My old big buddy’s down there in the Whitesburg jail and I’m back here having to drink all this by myself. Wish you were here.

For the person who called in a sour grapes reply to some praise that had been given to Leslie Combs: I hope you are still watching. You said people don’t deserve commendations for doing what they are hired to do. Since a lot of elected officials have not cared for and visited their areas, you can see that Leslie Combs continues to go the extra mile, literally, for Letcher County. If she wants to run for office again, I believe the people will choose her. Although her present term is only for two years, we may get to revive the old football cheer, ‘Two, four, six, eight, who do we appreciate? Leslie.’

Upon my word of honor, my husband does anything he wants to do – and so do I – in spite of the lies that a certain jealous tramp like to spread.

Exxon made $40 billion profit last year. That just doesn’t seem fair. If that’s not price gouging, what is? I’m thankful if I’ve got meat in my oodles and noodles. There are just too many Democrats and Republicans and not enough Americans to stand up about this. Viva America. This is keeping us in chains and bondage to the big old companies and they are cracking their whips on hardworking people. Yes, I’m a Christian and guess which cheek I’m turning to them. Something to think about. God bless America.

Is that you, Ishmael?

A comment about all the drug use in Letcher County. Well for starters, the sheriff’s department should go to the doctors’ offices and stop all the pillheads from getting all the pills and coming out and selling them in the parking lots. I think it’s a shame that people that are really sick can’t go and can’t even take their kids to the doctor’s office because the parking lot and the doctor’s office are full with the pillheads. Everybody’s wondering where all the pills are coming from. They are coming from the doctor’s office and the doctors are giving them to all the pillheads who are selling them to underage children. I think this should be looked into. I think someone should go to the doctors’ offices and see. It’s 24/7. No matter where you go to the doctor, you cannot go in the doctor’s office to get cold medicine or whatever for your children. It’s a shame, but that’s where they’re coming from.

This goes to a certain girl who goes to high school in Whitesburg: If you’re going to go out with that one boy, go with that one boy. You need to quit fooling around with boys in high school.

This is in response to the single man looking for a good looking woman 25 to 45: How about a 43-1/2-year-old, bisexual, part-time transvestite man? I will pay the car insurance, baby.

Yes, I see that all the drugheads and the drug dealers that got out of jail in the last drug bust are still doing drugs. I can’t understand why they are on probation. Aren’t our probation officers doing anything? Maybe our probation officers need to be checked.

I am sorry for hurting you. I’m sorry things didn’t work out the way we planned. I hope things work out between you and the other woman, but you told me that you didn’t even love her. Good luck.

I’m sure glad that the Starlite Cafe lost its license. That’s the best thing that ever happened. Maybe the place will be closed for a while, I hope. I hope they shut it completely down. They were serving beer left and right all the time to people. I’m glad that happened. I hope that place never get its license back.

I think Letcher County over there needs half of the Kentucky State Police out of Pike County here. Maybe that would help over here. They need these good state police over there for a while. Maybe they would clean up the drug problem. I’d like to see about five of them go over there and work Letcher County a month or two. That’s all you hear, Blackey and Doty Creek, drugs and all that up in Isom and everywhere. They ought to take about five of these from this post here. They’ve got real good ones; they’d do the job. They’d help out that woman they’ve got over there.

Well, well, well. Before I even worked this morning I saw on the news that Congress has put the brakes on any chance of extra money being given to the working man in tax returns. Even though it may boost the economy and put a stop to recession, they put a stop to it. I wonder how they’ll vote when it comes time to give themselves a salary raise. Well, since a working man can’t get any help maybe they can give it to the Mexicans who don’t have a green card or a work visa, or just keep giving it to the rich and big industry on tax rebates.

This is for all the parents who have children attending Letcher Elementary: This is to inform you, in case your child didn’t come home and tell you, that the school checked heads the other day. So beware. It’s just a shame the school doesn’t inform us by sending out letters. That way, we could check our own kids and keep them home if we needed to. Oh well, I guess it’s good that the kids will tell us something.

I think it’s time to give credit where credit is due. I was just sitting here thinking of the Letcher County citizens who give unselfishly, time and time again and two people come to mind though there are many more. Kevin and Wendy Day have gone the extra mile in helping children who are less fortunate that most of us. Plus, their jobs do a great many services to our county as well as other counties. Commendable job, Kevin, Wendy. It’s appreciated by more people than you might realize. Thank you.

All the players on the Letcher County Central boys’ basketball team need to be recognized for their good work. Just like No. 13, he had 25 points one game. Why wasn’t his picture on the front of The Mountain Eagle? No. 3 had a real good game one night and he’s a senior. Why wasn’t his picture on the front page? No. 12 had a real good game at Knott Central and so did No. 20. The big tall boy has had some good games also, but they are never recognized with their pictures in the paper. I believe all the players should be recognized with their picture in the paper each week for their good work they have done in a game. One player doesn’t win a game, but if you look at the paper he’s the only one that’s good. He is an excellent player, but so are the rest. They work real hard.

(Sports photographs that appear in The Mountain Eagle are chosen based on the quality of the photo and how well the photo will reproduce on a printed page of newsprint, not on who the player is.)

To a certain county official: If you’re going to take someone with 20 years’ worth of experience, demote them and put them at another place to work, and then put someone who has no experience in their place, you need to tell that person that has no experience she doesn’t need to be out bragging that you owed her daddy a favor and that’s how come she got the job. Just a little heads up on that. She’s got a big mouth and she likes using it. A lot of people aren’t pleased with the way that went down.

We would like to wish Robin and Wendy a happy Valentine’s Day. From Mom and Dad.

About two weeks ago someone asked why Neon police were chasing people to Hemphill. I just wanted to let them know if they’re looking for a certain person up there, I can’t wait till they catch them.

This is in regard to the person complaining about the boys’ basketball at Letcher Central. That not only goes on at the high school level but at the middle school level, too. We have some good middle school boys that are getting done the same way because you have parents who suck up to the coaches. They get more playing time than the good players do so it’s not only a high school thing.

The other day as my kids got off the bus – they go to Letcher County High School – one of the students got off the bus and as soon as she got off the last step she lit up a cigarette. I just don’t see why the Letcher County Board of Education would allow kids to have cigarettes at school with them, especially on the bus. I don’t appreciate that being around my kids. I think that the school board should do some more looking into kids bringing cigarettes to school and smoking them in the bathroom. Is Letcher County really getting to be that bad? Somebody should do something about kids bringing cigarettes to school. I think all the kids should be searched.

(Can you imagine the number of lawsuits that would be filed – and rightfully so – if school children were patted down for cigarettes each day? Since that idea won’t work, just what can the schools do to be absolutely certain that no student is carrying a cigarette?)

I would like to report that there’s a 16-year-old child in Gordon with no permit and no license driving around in mom and dad’s car. This child even drives mom and dad to town. I think the police need to get involved with this because innocent lives are being endangered. I think the police need to start staying in Gordon a whole lot more often than they do.

Happy birthday. We love you.

I wish this long overdue drug raid from Doty to Isom would go on and happen just like a sinking ship so we can watch the rats jump ship. I hope and pray they can swim.

With all the theft of the big oak trees, will there be any acorns left for the elk to come to Letcher County?

This is to a certain girl who is a student at Southeast Community College at Whitesburg: Why do you shake it so much when you show up at Wal-Mart?

Thanks again, Mountain Eagle, for the picture of the commissary. That was real interesting, but what was even more interesting was the fact it made me sit back and think about the big commissaries that used to be in West Virginia that were brick structures. So with that, I made a couple of phone calls down to West Virginia to the Bluefield Chamber of Commerce and I asked them if anybody had taken on a restoration project to take these buildings back to the way they were back in the camp days, and the answer was no. I said, ‘Why has anyone taken on these projects?’ They said, ‘Of course, you know the number one would be the money and then the second would be there was so much vandalism you could never restore them back to the way they were. And then three there was flooding damage, and four the asbestos removal from the building themselves.’ The reason we chose the West Virginia coalfields is they were brick structures, not like most of the commissaries in eastern Kentucky. We thought they would be a lot easier to restore and somebody could take on the project. The folks that grew up in this era of time are gone but they are never forgotten thanks to The Mountain Eagle. Good day.

Is it really necessary to keep raising school taxes when the personal homes of certain officials are being assessed for far less than the market value? Would it not be more fair to have everyone pay lower taxes on their fair value than to have some of the people carry all the burden while others enjoy the spoils?

Well, here I sit, kicked back in my condo – or con-do. But I’m actually a pretty good interior decorator, and let me tell you that it’s plush. Yes sir, it’s as plush as you’ll ever know, nice woolly army blanket, good thin mattress, and the hygiene stuff is top of the line, good ol’ lye soap, Bob Barker deodorant, Bob Barker comb, Bob Barker shower shoes, and even got some Bob Barker toothpaste. That Bob Barker is a good fella; he takes good care of us ‘outlaws,’ just can’t go wrong at a resort like this. And the food, Lord, son, let me tell ya, it’s just like Granny makes back at home, good ol’ cathead biscuits, homemade gravy with big sausage chunks in it, large sunny-side-up fried eggs throwed on the top, fried apples, and well, you would have to be here to believe it. Now, you probably think that the Kentucky Ridgerunner has lost his mind. And yeah, I actually have lost pieces here and there, but there’s one thing for sure my friends, that dude in LaGrange or whatever prison he is in over in Kentucky, the one that done what he done to little T.J. and his dad, let me be the one who gets this message to you, pal, you will not walk around in prison population and live good like I have talked about. You will be placed in a protective custody cell and stay there where you belong. You are the dirt on the bottom of my shoe, buddy, so don’t get comfortable in that prison because this ol’ hillbilly just ain’t gonna allow it. You think everything has died down. You ain’t even got a clue, do ya? Let me borrow your ear for a minute, mister. Do not get comfortable and walk around in that prison like you have done something to make you bad or whatever. Because you are a weak coward and the court system should have put you in the gas chamber. But you know what, that would have been too easy. I am glad you’re confined for good, but don’t get comfortable. This ‘outlaw’ took that personal, what you done, you scumbag. Do you want to know who I am, buddy? This is the Kentucky Ridgerunner. Ask around, you’ll get my real name. I want you to get it. I hope to look you right into your eyes, face to face, and put a behind-the-barn whippin’ on you that you ain’t even gonna like. No, you ain’t gonna keep living good in prison, ain’t gonna happen. So you lie in your nice comfortable bunk and be sure that not one day goes by that I don’t despise you for still being in this world. Hi, Blue, I love you and the day is coming close when we will stroll hand in hand and whoever don’t like it, oh well. This is the Ridgerunner signing off till next time. God bless and pray for me.

To The Mountain Eagle: Why don’t you write something in your paper about the misuse of ATVs on the highways? Why in the hell are old people being harassed by children riding those things all night long in some cases, out on the main highways where they do not belong? Those children do not have driver’s licenses – they are under the age of 16. It does not do any good to call the law on them; the law will not come out. Why does the law not come out when they are called? Is the Kentucky State Police underfunded for some reason by the Kentucky State Legislature’s budget control mechanism? Don’t reckon surely that somebody along the chain of political control is getting paid off by the drug trafficking industry. It should be looked into. This letter is not talking about up in the hill under the trees, or up some hollow road which belongs to the county government – it is talking about the illegal use of ATVs on KY 80, KY 160, KY 550. It is not my place to get out there in public and find out whose children they are and then go and get a warrant for the parents as it has been suggested for me to do by the police dispatchers. It is the place of the Kentucky State Police to enforce the laws regarding ATVs. That is what you are paying taxes for. It is not my place to act as a vigilante; again, that is why you – and I – pay taxes. When you call the local law enforcement agencies, they advise you to call or write your state representatives with matters concerning ATV activities. When you write Frankfort, they write back that it is a matter for local authorities to deal with. Signed, the Voice of Old People Who Cannot Speak for Themselves.

On Friday, February 1, I dropped my SSI check I had just gotten on the floor of the Whitesburg Post Office. I didn’t know I had lost the check, which I had signed, until I got down to bank in Whitesburg and had no money. Right then I started to panic and didn’t know what I was going to do or how I would make it. As I crossed the street to the courthouse, here came some guys from the Whitesburg Fire Department and said, ‘You looking for this?’ I said, ‘I sure am.’ I just want to thank the Lord for honest people. I never was so thankful in my life. Thank you, Stanley D. Pack.

An adulterous, lying hypocrite will stoop to any level to get what she wants, walking all over children and turning good people against her so much at the sight of her they could vomit. It is beyond me what is the purpose for a person like that.

Can anyone explain farm tags to me? I see them on certain vehicles, but I don’t know where the farms are. I hear that that type of tag eliminates your vehicle tax.

I want to commend Mitchum Whitaker of Roxana for the way he is handling his timber dispute. If all the rest of us would have handled it so directly, instead of wasting our time by trying to get something done officially, we would be rid of this evil. He apparently didn’t worry about surveys, appraisals, or trying to get the law to do something. He just put up his sign, announced that he had gotten no response from the law, and went on about his business. I don’t think the person taking his logs, or the law who is supposed to do something about it, will have the nerve to go up against this guy. God bless him. I wish there were more like him.

This is to the people of Jenkins: Why are you standing still for all the stuff that is going on? They say that they cannot find out who the house belongs to. And why not? I am sure that they have some kind of record. If not, why don’t they go ahead and take it down? You can bet that whoever owns it will not care. You would doing them a big favor. I go by there at lest once a day. Something bad is going to happen. Someone is going to get hurt very bad. It is a shame that they would let this go on. Bring it down before you have to put someone in the ground, because it is going to happen if they wait very much longer. They do some crazy things around here. Please do not put this off any longer. I hope none of my family gets hurt over someone dragging their feet. Who pays taxes on this place? There is one way of finding out. Bring it down. Someone that lives in Jenkins.

The Letcher County school system was notified by me personally two times about the flu spreading across Letcher County. Many other parents expressed their concerns as well. She told us that it was not an epidemic, therefore school would continue on regular schedule. School was only called off one day last week. You can’t get over an illness like this in three days. On Sunday night, I took my own child to the ER. A little over 30 people were waiting along with us, all of them with the flu. A nurse informed me that they had already seen close to 150 that day. I can only imagine how many were there in the days before. Is this the epidemic she was waiting for?

The state Office of Mine Safety and Licensing is apparently still trying to settle the mining death of David ‘Bud’ Morris on terms highly favorable to the co-owner of the mine, according to a Courier-Journal report. The co-owner, Gary Wayne Bentley, stood by the grievously wounded Morris and rendered no aid, according to state and federal investigative reports and other miners, although he was the only person there trained to save him. According to the article, the state Mine Safety Review Commission has rejected the Safety and Licensing Office’s fourth attempt to settle, because they apparently have not proposed penalties stringent enough to satisfy the panel. The article also said the mine safety office’s initial complaint accused Bentley of failing to treat Morris ‘in a responsible manner,’ but their complaint sought only minor sanctions against Bentley. The holdup on settlement appears to be that the office has not identified Bentley as the co-owner of the mine, but as a mine emergency technician, which would allow him to still function as an operator. The Safety Commission pointed out that safety would be better served if Bentley were prohibited from owning or operating a coal mine again. The article also disclosed that the Mine Safety Office also has taken no disciplinary action against Donald Allen, the driver of the vehicle that struck Morris, although a federal report said a drug test showed opiates and marijuana in Allen’s system. The C-J reporter said Bentley did not respond to repeated telephone messages, nor did his attorney, Gene Smallwood of Whitesburg, respond to several messages. While they are not required to, of course, the non-responses do not reflect favorably on either of them, as far as I’m concerned. I agree with Tony Oppegard, the attorney representing Morris’s widow, that the Safety Office’s proposed settlements are a ‘sweetheart deal,’ and I person- ally think that this office is no more than an advocate for mine owners. I also think this is a very alarming situation which should be noted and condemned by everyone, and it should be extremely disturbing to anyone working in the mines, or to anyone who has relatives or friends working in the mines. My father worked in underground mines more than forty years, and in retrospect I shudder to realize that these are the kind of mine owners and regulators that were in charge of protecting his safety all those years. No wonder we have had so many mining tragedies in the last two years if this is all we’ve got.

To a very special cousin: You have been gone for 26 years, but I have not forgotten you. I know for a fact that we would have been the best friends ever. All the precious memories I hold dearly. And you are in my thoughts ev- ery day. I’ve got your picture up, and never will I take it down. You are so badly missed by all of us. I know you are with me everywhere I go, and I know to this day you would be as beautiful as ever, but more precious now with your wings and halo brightly shining. When I see them I have no worries because I know you’re watching over me and my family. Many nights I have wanted you to come see me, but I remember I heard your sweet voice that night and so did Mammaw and Mom. That I will never forget. I know that you have received another angel on 9-20-07. She’s beautiful, isn’t she? Please hug her and kiss her from me. Sweet precious cousin, I so do miss you. I love you, sweetheart. Love KayKay. In loving memory of Melissa Ann Belcher, July 7, 1969 – February 9, 1982.

I read with amusement about the demand that county workers wanted an eight percent cost-ofliving wage increase. These people seem to be living in a fantasy world. The government costof living index went up 2.4 percent last year. The reason I know this is because that is the percent of raise I received on my Social Security check. Then, the government turned around and took $5 of that huge increase back for an increase in Medicare premiums. I also read the county had given these workers about an 11 percent increase last year which included payment of medical insurance premiums. Did these workers forget about that increase? Just because a worker does not see an increase in his paycheck does not mean he did not receive an increase. That means these workers would have seen a decrease in their paycheck without the payment of these medical insurance payments by the county. These workers should be happy they have a job and make the wages they do. They need to realize there is only so much money to be doled out in raises and should take what is offered. Where do these workers think the money they are demanding is going to come from? Quit being so greedy in a county that has a high unemployment rate and be grateful they have a job. The retired people living on fixed incomes are the ones paying these workers through property taxes.

The greatest hindrance to any improvement in this area is its saturation in corruption. Politicians buy votes and win elections, and keep running. UNITE steals our coal severance money in order to pay a congressman’s toadies outrageous salaries. Outside industries team up with unscrupulous locals to remove our resources, and leave a wrecked and terribly unhealthy environment. People have got to abandon their passive, complacent attitude and demand what is right: a fair price from drillers and miners, protection from logging thieves, relief from the drug plague, and leaders without rap sheets. All of these forces will keep pushing until we stand up and stop them.

The people who are getting excited about tourism should take a hard look at this place: the mountains wrecked by mining, drilling, and clearcut logging, the unprecedented and uncontrolled crime, and the litter which reappears as quickly as it is removed. Does this sound like a good scenario for building a tourism industry?

There’s only one way to stop these timber rogues, and that’s to cut off their market. There are only one or two lumber companies here and they should know their loggers better than anybody. I think the law should be taking a hard look at them.

I would like to thank the gentleman who wrote the story about tree hugging in Speak Your Piece. I’ve enjoyed the mountains and the majestic old oak trees all my life. I knew of a spot where the timber thieves didn’t get, so I called my cousin and said, ‘Let’s go to the mountains.’ Didn’t have to twist his arm and off we went up to this giant old oak tree and we sat down under it for a bit, then we tried this tree hugging thing, him on one side I on the other. We couldn’t see each other and our hands were nowhere near touching. What a great old living antique. We both walked down the mountain just a’smiling, we also recommend this tree hugging thing so go try it. It seems to be a good thing. Take a AK-47, a big clip because they make great tree guards.

I saw in The Mountain Eagle where Blackey is talking about annexing other areas. Somebody in one of those areas said they wanted to be annexed and even said they would pay higher taxes. Before the rest of us go along with that, somebody better take a look at who pays taxes. Most of the people brought in, like the speaker, are old enough to qualify for homestead exemptions and won’t be paying any taxes. Some of the rest rent or are on welfare or otherwise don’t pay taxes. It’ll be the rest of us – a small number – who will have to pay to provide services to everybody. Also, don’t be fooled by promises to get water to the annexed areas. Blackey has no way to do that – no money, no authority, and no competence to establish a water system.

I seems to me that timber theft could be stopped overnight by one group, and that’s the sawmill operators. I think it’s very unlikely they don’t know the reputations of those they buy timber from. I don’t see how their buying stolen timber is different from buying stolen jewelry, or stolen cars. If they were careful whom they bought from, the rogue loggers would have no market. Finally, I would like to applaud Mitchum Whitaker, of Roxana, for the stand he has taken. If everyone was as out-front as he is, timber theft would have been stopped, also.

I just wanted to say thank you for the great service that I’ve received at the local restaurants, and I greatly appreciate the great job they are doing. On the road alone it’s always welcoming to see such enthusiastic waitstaff. But I have noticed that some people don’t tip well, or don’t tip at all. I worked many years as a server and it just surprises me that some don’t tip accordingly, and that used to insult me. Maybe some people just don’t know how to tip, so I will inform those who may need some pointers and etiquette on tipping. First of all, servers don’t get paid minimum wage – far from it. They are there working for tips. Fifteen percent of your bill is the average tip. Twenty percent is for great service. And if you have small children making messes, an extra tip is appreciated. If you think about how much you would like to get paid for the mess of other children, you would at least add a couple of dollars. Now if you come in during a rush, please be patient and understanding. Your server is doing his or her best to accommodate you. If your food is running late, remember that food takes time to cook, and there are a lot of others in the restaurant. So please be kind, understanding and patient with your server. They’re working for you, not their paycheck.

With Thursday, February 14, being the scheduled day of indictments in the Potter timber theft, the results will be very interesting. The whole world will be watching Letcher County’s courts.

Standing so proud with their limbs moving in the air. They’re all cut down and not enough people care. All my trees are gone, not sold but stolen, I never got a dime but the timber thieves’ pockets are swollen. In fact, it cost me more than the trees they were taking, probably more than the timber thieves were making. It’s still not over, no trial has come about, I think it’s all known my money is running out. I don’t know what to do I feel so rotten all my trees are gone and some people just want it all forgotten.

When I was in elementary school we had a morning prayer to start the school day. A group from an orphanage came about once a month and gave Bible training and encouraged us to memorize Bible verses. In high school we had a religious assembly every morning, and a revival once a year. Most of these activities have been struck down as church/state conflicts, and I’m not going to argue that – I’ll leave that to greater minds. I do believe, though, that a basic need of civilized states is a set of moral/ethical standards, a code of behavior to live by, and that this society no longer has such a code. We have a state senator who was convicted of essentially buying votes. He is still in office, with a leadership position, and is planning to run for that office again. We have other officials who are blatantly disregarding their sworn duties, for political or other reasons. Community ministers and business leaders tolerate these conditions with seeming ease. The public doesn’t betray any discomfort with the poor leadership or the crime that is accelerating daily. When I see promising youngsters, I often wonder what kind of state and country they are going to have to contend with.

A charming and courageous couple, Marvin and Verna Craft, have probably done more to curb timber theft in, and beyond, Kentucky, than all of the law enforcement and prosecutors combined. Now Mitchum Whitaker has joined in. Bless them all.

We hear more and more about people’s emotional attachment to their land. It might be because the land they own seems solid and stable, in an environment that isn’t. That’s probably why an invasion of their property is so disturbing to them. Law officers and prosecutors should take account of this, and show them some understanding if they are upset.

Mitchum Whitaker said in The Mountain Eagle article that he reported the matter of his lost trees to law enforcement officials but never heard back from them. Why not? Is it just that they haven’t gotten around to it? Do they plan to get to it at all? It seems that they would at least return his call.

Does anyone in Letcher County have any idea why I would overhear two Letcher County road workers say I should be run out of the county just because I have taken some pictures of them hard at work? All who have seen the pictures like them. Is it possible they were working on private property with county equipment and supplies?

When I was growing up here, Letcher County was a rough place. There were roadhouses, moonshining, bootlegging, and fights every weekend. There was little or no stealing, though. No one locked their doors – many houses didn’t even have locks. A simple wooden latch was enough to keep the chickens and dogs out of the house, and that was enough. The rough element pretty much stayed to itself, and except for the occasional theft of a chicken or a watermelon, decent people weren’t bothered. Things are different, now. Crime of almost every kind is rampant, no one is secure, and there seems to be no control. I think this is because there is no respect for the law, from the criminals or the public. Most crimes are plea bargained, and those that get to court don’t result in enough punishment to make the whole thing worthwhile. Years ago law officers weren’t nearly as nice as they are now. If a rogue strayed out of his place and got in the way of good citizens, justice was swift and sure. The officers would usually start the process off by beating some sense into the violator and throwing him in jail. He would then have to deal with a prosecutor and court that weren’t much more generous than the law officers. I don’t know that we can ever return to this – the whole system has tipped heavily to the side of the wrongdoers – but it looks like it could at least be improved from the lawlessness we now have.

Most of the people around Blackey thought the government had folded and that an improvement committee was running things. They have been having meetings and putting out a newsletter and sponsoring things. But now we are hearing that the government is back and getting involved in a lot of stuff. I can’t imagine how that could be a real government, but I do know that pretending to be a government and doing government things is illegal. It’s like pretending to be a law officer. They’ve gotten away with a lot in Blackey. I think it’s because no one in authority thought they were important enough to fool with. They may be making themselves that important, though.

So, some lowdown person has decided to help the town of Whitesburg get another black eye by making a few bucks by selling alcohol to minors? It isn’t bad enough that drugs are taking over the mountains? I am glad they were caught. Now, why can’t there be something done about the drugs that are destroying peoples lives?

Hey, Sweet Cheeks. I hope you have a happy Valentine’s Day.

That’s a great article and a new twist on timber theft. This guy sounds like he knows how to handle such things, and I’ll bet he gets more restitution than those who went with the law. More power to him.



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