Letters to the Editor

BND readers sound off on nepotism, corruption, Confederacy

Clayborne’s family, friends

I am responding to the article by Joseph Bustos and the many Sound-offs on May 8 about Sen. James Clayborne. The senator’s political patronage hiring started years ago and included his sister, Sherry Smith. Sherry was given this position and displaced other workers who were qualified and had seniority in the union. I absolutely agree that Beth Hundsdorfer and George Pawlaczyk should do an in-depth examination of patronage hiring.

Bost must listen

I voted for Bost the last two times he ran. I thought it was time for a change. Now that I see that Bost is uninterested in what his constituents think and votes only the way his party tells him to, I won’t be voting for him a third time. If he’s too cowardly to hold town hall meetings and listen to what his people have to say, I don’t want him in Congress.

Caseyville Township’s queen

I thought I live in a democracy but in Caseyville Township, it feels like a monarchy. Why should Rick Donovan’s wife take his place? She wasn’t elected and has no experience running a multi-million dollar agency. I think someone outside of our community wants her in charge so they can take care of the money in the township account. Watch how fast it disappears if the Democratic party gets its hands on it.

Costly, corrupt

I’m glad that the Belleville Township is out of business. Why don’t we eliminate all of the townships in St. Clair County? All they do is cause the taxpayers to pay more and we get nothing in return. These are over-lapping services. Plus, there’s corruption in townships.

Township retirement

Could the BND look into if Mayor Eckert hired two of his friends to take the jobs of the women who used to work for the township? Also, is there anything to the story about how the township owes the state retirement fund around $400,000?

Heads down, silent

I went to the Belleville City Council meeting on May 15 and it was a disappointment. The aldermen voted with their heads down and would not make eye contact with their constituents. Very little discussion was done before the actual votes. A vote on a street closure was approved with little opposition or discussion by the board. It’s no wonder that the people of Belleville question the action or lack of action by Mark Eckert and the council.

Party for Reed

Mark Kern, Bob Sprague and company will have a going away party for that corrupt mayor in Alorton. It’s sad that these people can stay in power for so long. Perhaps if the expensive and unnecessary East St. Louis election board were eliminated, we would get election results that actually mattered in St. Clair County.

Backing ‘Dolla Bill’?

I couldn’t help but notice that Judge Stephen McGlynn swore Ron Duebbert into office. My question is, if he knew then what we all know now about “Dolla Bill” Duebbert, would he still have agreed to administer such a sacred oath to that man? He must have known about Duebbert’s numerous ethical violations with the ARDC. I know they are both Republicans, but party lines aside, there should be limits. I’m not sure our community can tolerate another judge scandal.

Taxing credibility

The article on Michael Crockett could use some clarification. What was Fult’s tax bill before it was lowered? Why was Fults allowed to pick his appraiser and what’s with the Wite-Out? In my book, cherry-picking your appraiser and handing him an envelope with $500 is clearly a bribe. The feds need to further investigate this case as Kelley’s dismissal verdict appears to be political. What is really sickening is the blatant lack of fairness in the judicial system in St. Clair County.

Respect the flag

I’m a senior and I’ve had enough of these caving-in, spineless politicians. How can they take down historical statues and the American flags? It’s so disrespectful. It’s like burning the flag and stomping on the ashes. Have we forgotten what the American flag stands for?

Re-writing McCoy

McCoy’s cartoon about the media in the padded room with the caption, “He’s crazy,” would be accurate except the label on the straight-jacketed guy needs to be “Trump Supporter” and he should be scrawling, “He’s wonderful.” Then it would make sense.

Gossip as news

When someone tells me something negative about about another person, I ask where they heard it. If they respond that they just heard it somewhere, that’s just gossip. When the papers print something about the president and write, “sources say,” that’s the same thing to me. Just gossip and there’s no difference.

Walters’ expertise

Jim Walters, a self-proclaimed music critic, recently had a whole mouthful of derogatory comments to make in regards to deceased St. Louis native and 1986 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Chuck Berry. Walters says “good riddance.” Meanwhile, across the river, they’re considering a museum at Berry’s old home which they’ve called “the birthplace of modern rock and roll as we know it.” Maybe Walters should just stick with religious commentary, something else he knows nothing about.

Collinsville negativity

The BND reports every negative thing that happens in Collinsville followed up by an editorial, but when two new council members are sworn in after beating the incumbents, where many of your negative stories came from, there’s nothing reported. If you wanted to run something negative, you could have written about how the two losing incumbents Nancy Moss and Jeff Kypta were to be honored for their lengthy service to Collinsvillle, but they didn’t show up.

Durbin’s job

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin is grandstanding again. His proposed solution to getting to the bottom of Russian influence on our 2016 election is: “To preserve his reputation as a credible prosecutor, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein must appoint an independent special prosecutor to pursue possible criminal charges, or he must resign.” Just go down the Justice Department’s chain of command until one is found that will do his bidding? Illinoisans didn’t send Durbin to Washington to run the executive branch. Do your job, Dick.

Cemetery mess

On Mother’s Day, I went to Mount Carmel cemetery to put flowers on my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother’s graves. Mount Carmel is an absolute mess. There are weeds over a foot tall between the graves. The grass hasn’t been mowed. This is an embarrassment and disrespectful to the dead. One of the tenants of the Catholic church is to take care of the graves. This is a horrendous lack of care for those who died before us. Shame on the church, shame on the diocese and shame on whoever takes care of Mount Carmel cemetery.

Dam that Illinois 15

In the 1930s, Hoover Dam, one of the world’s largest concrete constructions, was built. It is 726 feet tall which is equivalent to a 60-story building and used 3.25 million cubic yards of concrete. They built it with rudimentary construction equipment in four years. The Illinois 15 construction repair is still not finished after four years. The contractor should refund half of the money.

Stop speeding

On Illinois 15 between 157 and 159, so many vehicles are doing 70-plus miles per hour. Where are the Belleville police? If they came out here, they could clean up. These drivers are dodging in and out of traffic and just flying. I’ve worked down here for over a week and haven’t seen one cop.

Hillary, nyet

Do you think that if Hillary Clinton was in office that we’d still be fixated on this Russian election nonsense? I think she lost the election and it blew people’s minds. They can’t let this go. It didn’t fit their vision of how the election should have gone. If Hillary was president, would we be putting her on trial for those pesky emails? Why aren’t we doing that now anyway? I bet the Russians are covering this up somehow.

Digital goldfish

I think the BND and newspapers in general have started to rely on their websites and sensationalism to carry their stories instead of focusing on quality reporting and research. If I wanted to watch a reporter talking about the daily news, I’d turn on my television. The strength of the newspaper has always been in its depth, breadth and number of reliable sources. I understand that the world is moving towards the digital and one day I will not be able to pick up my beloved paper copy of the newspaper off of my front lawn, but we’re not there yet. Videos and ridiculous headlines appeal to those with the attention span of a goldfish. I weep for the future of this country and the minds that are going to be running it.