Letters to the Editor

BND readers sound off on Belleville decline, vote buying, weeds in park

Bye, bye, St. E’s

After spending hundreds of thousands of our tax dollars to try to legally prevent St. Elizabeth’s from leaving Belleville, which was a fool’s errand, Mayor Eckert is now going to “cooperate?” What does that even mean? Here’s an idea, Eckert: Take a good hard look at Belleville and you might learn why residents and businesses are leaving. Maybe you could even do something about it. Otherwise, the last one out can turn out the lights.

O’Fallon school hiring

Schools say that they don’t have enough money. But, O’Fallon District 90 schools approved a new position for curriculum coordination and assistant principal duties. The base salary doesn’t even include the perks like life insurance. I guess they’re not hurting so bad after all.

Aiding vote buyers

Regarding the ballot selfies, I don’t think they should be allowed. That’s how vote buyers get evidence that the voters they paid voted the right way. No selfies — especially if it shows how they marked the ballot. They can take pictures of themselves in the box, but not the marked ballot.

Compassion, please

After the horrendous murder of an innocent mother in East St. Louis, I’m shocked that the mayor and city manager had nothing to say about it. No wonder their city is showing no progress. The least that the mayor could have done was show some compassion for the family. What is going to take to turn this situation around?

Township money

We’ve never seen an East St. Louis supervisor act the way that Alvin Parks did at the township meeting. The last supervisor just went to jail for stealing money. Why do they need a human resources director when there’s no money to hire employees? Why don’t they wait and see how much money they have?

County park overgrown

Why aren’t the trails at St. Clair County’s Engelmann Park maintained? The trails are disappearing with weeds that are covering most of the gravel. We’d like to enjoy walking there again without worrying about ticks and rashes from all the weeds and grasses. Mowing is only a short-term fix; the weeds need to be sprayed and killed.

County critter catchers

St. Clair County Animal Control will only deal with cats and dogs. Don’t bother them with wild critters. We now must call a trapper or pest removal specialist at our own expense to dispose of captured gophers and raccoons.

Supervised litter collection

Today I saw my Belleville tax money at work. Two city employees were in a parks and recreation truck driving through the skateboard park. The driver pointed out pieces of trash to his partner who reached down and picked it up. Good to see my tax money at use with two people on the job that would take only one.

More time for murderer

Only 20 years for first-degree murder? Jeremy N. Jackson should have gotten more than that. Nathan Funkhouser will never see his family again.

Military disability

We are being exploited by many of the people we honor and support. Ninety-two percent of those retiring from the military are declared by the Veteran’s Administration to suffer from some form of disability in spite of the fact that very few have seen a shot fired or been in harm’s way. This allows them to receive benefits in addition to their retirement pay. Many of the “disabled” retire and go to work for the civil service or base contractors for additional compensation, often in excess of $100,000 a year. The system is broken.

Birds chase cat

Go Cardinals. Rally cat or whatever it was, what a relief to finally see some wins. Keep it up, guys.

Show ID to vote

I’m calling about: “Another Time to Sign Registered Voters Bill,” a story in the BND. It says that the governor may sign a bill that when people go to the secretary of state’s office to get a driver’s license, that they can register to vote. In Illinois, at least, you don’t have to be a U.S. citizen to get an Illinois driver’s license. Rauner, don’t sign this. If they want to vote, make people show an ID.

Teacher education

I read about the Granite City schools changing their schedules for a teacher’s meeting. They’ll start an hour later on Mondays. Wouldn’t a simpler solution be for the teachers to come in an hour early on Monday? I forgot — teachers are overworked and underpaid. So, that’s not going to work.

City want ad, really?

In the Aug. 6 BND, the East St. Louis treasury department had an ad seeking an accountant. Why are they bothering to put it in the paper? You know they’re just going to hire a relative or friend of the mayor or city council.


Is anybody minding the store in Washington, D.C.? Trump has only been in the office for a couple months and we’re on the brink of nuclear war. His secretary of state says that we’re not but I can’t believe this. We’re in the hands of a maniac and high-functioning psychopath. Would somebody call Washington, D.C., and figure out what’s going on?

Let Trump be

I’m sick and tired of the attacks and investigations against our current president and his family. This guy hasn’t been in office even a year and the attacks continue. It’s really disheartening.

Nuclear verbal attack

The liberal news networks are talking about the terrible rhetoric that Trump is using against North Korea. North Korea’s idiotic dictator has threatened to annihilate us. Is he supposed to take the Obama way and say, “We have to treat you nicely.” Look at the way that we treated ISIS for example. Look what that got us. Trump tells it like it is.

Business of healthcare

Regarding the opioid addiction crisis in this country, if doctors fixed the source of pain in patients instead of masking the problems with drugs, maybe it would go away. But then, they wouldn’t get the kick-backs from big pharmaceutical companies or the repeat business from customers needing prescriptions. Remember — healthcare is also a business.

Stop the drugs

We’ve recorded over 150,000 deaths to opioids in the last two and a half years. I lost a very dear, sweet relative of mine because of it. If you want it stopped, putting Band-Aids on it isn’t going to help. We’ve got to stop the drugs from getting here.

Happy retirement, Sue

I hope that Sue Boyle has a happy retirement. Thank you for providing quality reporting and food editing for so many years. She will be missed. I’m grateful that she was with us for as long as she was. Hopefully, Sue will have a long and happy retirement.

Celebrate incompetence

The once prosperous Land of Lincoln has been turned into the failed Land of Obama. Aug. 4 is officially Barack Obama Day in Illinois. Illinois Democrats love to celebrate incompetence and failure. Obama was nothing more than a community organizer, who after three tries finally became an Illinois Democratic legislator. Obama voted to spend Illinois into the fiscal mess it is in now. Despite record spending, Obama managed to create record levels of poverty, food stamps, Medicaid and welfare, which still stands today. Let’s celebrate another day of failure in Illinois with Obama Day.

Dump Trump

It’s a shame that frequent letter writer Lee Pitzer has to spoil an otherwise mundane yet informative letter on the process of canning tomatoes with a poke at President Trump. Pitzer must start every day with his morning constitutional, complete with chants of “Dump Trump.”

Hillary the hawk

In his explanation for why he is no longer a Republican letter writer, Lee Pitzer points to Bush’s invasion of Iraq as if it were a unilateral decision. If memory serves, Bush had large bipartisan support of the U.S. Senate, including New York Sen. Hillary Clinton’s vote, for the invasion. I wonder how Pitzer was able to rationalize that inconvenient truth away when casting his 2016 presidential election vote.

Hate spewers

Everyone has a right up to a point to say what they want. But there is a hate monger group that goes after candidates and doesn’t allow people to answer a question without coming after them and interrupting them before they can answer. I believe this diatribe is working against these groups. The constant “hate spewing” will get them nowhere.

Exposé on county time

Why is the purchase of a home in Collinsville by Councilmen Jeff Stehman the business of the Facebook Group “Concerned Citizens of Collinsville?” It’s run by two Madison County employees and a CARD board member. This seems to be another form of harassment that goes on at Collinsville council meetings. Taxpayers have to wonder if these Madison County employees are using their job positions to investigate these kind of things.