Archive for the ‘The Western Star’ Category

>Response to Western Star bigotry

November 24, 2010

>Bessemer’s Western Star is published by Trib Publications, Inc., and their president, Bob Tribble, exhibited his lack of education and his bigotry in a recent editorial. You can read it here.

Three letters appeared in today’s Western Star in response. One is from me, the others are from Elisa Macon and Trey Noland. This will make for a long blog post, but I am posting all three letters here. Click “Read more” to view the letters.

Trey Noland is a former Assembly of God minister and foreign missionary.

Dear Editor,

In his editorial regarding the repealing of DADT, Mr. Tribble manages to present himself as level-headed and makes sense until the last 4 paragraphs of the letter. That is where his logic is replaced by superstition (disguised as faith).

Mr. Tribble, as do many religious men and women, begins to claim to know what “God calls” and what “God wishes”. I would say Mr. Tribble may know as much about God as he does about gays. Just like his knowledge of gays is obviously prejudiced, here-say, and stereotyped perception (it’s ridiculous to claim all gays are covering up misery and unable to find peace)…so his understanding of God is prejudiced by his own perceptions and what others have told him about God.

Now, that’s a common human trait and not so horrible in and of itself. However, Mr. Tribble is going beyond just believing something…he is using his personal understanding and beliefs to condemn others.

There are only seven scriptures which address homosexuality in the Bible. Every one of those scriptures refer to either rape, sexual idolatry, or pederasty between two people of the same sex.

There was no concept of modern-day, committed, monogamous gay relationships…not to mention any understanding by Biblical authors of recent advancements in science that suggest one’s orientation is innate and unchangeable. Even if one believes the Bible to be without error, it is arrogant to believe your understanding is without error. Mr. Tribble and other Christians (myself included) need to keep this in mind before we speak out in condemnation of others.

Trey Noland

**********

Elisa Macon is a Birmingham Realtor, and former educator.

Dear Editor,

A recent letter writer spoke in support of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Please allow me to offer a different opinion.

It is wrong to expect our distinguished men and women in uniform to lie about who God made them to be. There is no honor in suppression of the truth. Therefore, DADT is wrong. Period.

The letter writer continued to share his opinion of homosexuality. He stated opinion as fact, and he was wrong on at least three very important points:

1. “The Bible is clear about homosexuality.” This is a false statement. As all Biblical scholars know, the King James version of the Bible is a translation from original language, and there was no term related to sexual minorities when the Bible was written. The translation of “homosexual” in Romans is from a word meaning “weak-spirited” and referred to those who refused to acknowledge Christ in public. The passage from Leviticus is also often quoted, but those who follow Christ know that He said the law (Leviticus) is to be put away, and He is the new high priest. Those laws were to a specific people at a specific time of near-extinction, and no one obeys these laws today (unless you sacrificed a calf on your front lawn last Saturday). There are in fact beautiful homosexual love stories in the Bible, including Jonathan and David. Read it for yourself. Finally, Sodom and Gomorrah had nothing to do with homosexuality, but with inhospitality and greed; again, stop taking passages out of context and read the whole Bible for yourself.

2. “Homosexuality is a sin.” This is a false statement. Sin is an act, not a state of being. For instance, according to the Bible, judging and condemning others is a sin, because it is a chosen act; but Jesus himself embraced diversity in making sure we understood that there is no male or female, no Jew or Greek, but that we are all the same in God’s eyes. Homosexuality and other sexual minorities are just beautiful diversities in creation, like height and hair color. Though redheads are in the minority, it is not a sin to be born red-headed. It is a sin, however, to turn souls away from Christ’s love through discrimination, as this letter-writer has done.

3. “Gay lifestyles can never produce peace and happiness in their hearts.” This is a false statement. First, gay is not a “lifestyle” any more than being short or tall is a “lifestyle”- again, it is a creation by God. But those who are living God’s will for their lives are filled with the fruits of the Spirit- love, joy, peace- whether gay or straight. The only misery comes from denying who God made you to be. This letter-writer obviously lives in misery, but there is no misery in truth. God blesses and loves his gay children who have the courage to acknowledge Him and be honest about who He created them to be.

This letter writer would do well to observe Jesus’ commandments to love God with all his heart and love his neighbor as himself. This includes everyone- every “whosoever” God ever made.

Elisa Macon

**********

My letter. Y’all know who I am.

Dear Editor,

A recent editorial in the Western Star (written by their out of state owner) urges congress and the military to keep the current “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in place.

The writer bases his position on the errant belief that military chaplains would have to leave the service if they could not preach against homosexuality. As the acting chairperson of Equality Alabama I feel that this issue should be addressed, but it was another statement in the editorial that motivates me to respond.

“Homosexuals call themselves gay but that is only an attempt to cover up their misery. Gay lifestyles can never produce peace and happiness in their hearts,” the writer says.

Across this state gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals are leading happy and fulfilled lives, some in partnered relationships, and others as singles.

To assume that all gays are trying to “cover up their misery” is ludicrous, and stems from outdated mid 20th century beliefs that homosexuality is a mental disease, which we now know it is not.

It is true that some gays suffer from low self esteem and depression but so do some heterosexuals. And many of the problems that those gays have stem from the uneducated and hateful rhetoric they hear from people like this editorial writer.

At a time when anti-gay bullying and LGBT teen suicides are in the news, one would think that an editorial writer could show more compassion and sensitivity toward their gay readers.

As for the issue of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, 75% of Americans (ABC News/Washington Post 2010), including 60% of churchgoers (Gallup, 2009) are in favor of repeal. The recently leaked military survey reveals that those currently serving are also comfortable with lifting the ban, and that there will be little if any effect on the operations or effectiveness of our military.

Let’s base our support for repealing the policy, or lack thereof, on whether it would affect military readiness and on the wishes of the American people, not on hateful rhetoric based on decades old research.

LGBT soldiers are serving and are dying for our country now. If they can die for our country, they should be able to do so without being asked to lie about who they are. Where is the honor in that? Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell should be repealed now.

Joe Openshaw
Equality Alabama Interim Chairperson
Bessemer, Alabama

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>Western Star Apology and Water!!!

June 26, 2008

>In The Western Star this week another apology ran. This one is more suitable:

Apology

The Western star did not follow company policy on running letters to the editor when a letter ran in the June 4, 2008 edition signed by the Bessemer Neighborhood Association. Association secretary, Joe Openshaw, informed The Western star the letter was not written by the BNA. The newspaper apologizes to the Bessemer Neighborhood Association and to those mentioned in the letter for any inconvenience or problems that its publication may have caused.

Thanks Dale, for setting the record straight. The association accepts the apology.

But the individual wonders about the sincerity. I say that because this apology was read to me and OK’ed by me by Mitch Tribble on June 19 over the phone, and he seemed sincere and concerned that the letter was even published.

Quite different from the email I received from Dale the other day. However, being a peacemaker…I will let it slide, and just be thankful the readers of The Western Star know the truth now.

I might as well admit I also read with interest Representative Priscilla Dunn’s column titled The First Steps Toward a Statewide Water Plan. Rep. Dunn (who by the way is always complimentary to me regarding my columns) is absolutely right on the importance of developing a statewide water management team. I have written about water both in The Western Tribune and on this blog enough that everyone should know my concerns.

One such concern is bottled water. To make the bottles used for America’s and our water, over 17 million barrels of crude oil are used annually. this is enough to power a million vehicles for a year (Update). That doesn’t account for the diesel or gas used to transport the bottles to the retail outlets, or across the sea for those waters that come from Fiji or Europe.

While our household has not cut down 100%, we have greatly reduced our bottled water use by getting a refillable big bottle and cooler for our drinking water. We get refills at Lowes. We still buy an occasional case of Dasani for use in special situations.

Most tap water is fine, and a lot of people I hear are returning to tap water, either with or without a filter. Many refrigerators have a filter and the water that is dispensed is fine.
Enjoy this Water Sculpture.

Plus think of the money you will save by not buying water that is costing as much or more per gallon than gasoline. Conservation. Fiscal. Good.

Western Star Apology and Water!!!

June 26, 2008

In The Western Star this week another apology ran. This one is more suitable:

Apology

The Western star did not follow company policy on running letters to the editor when a letter ran in the June 4, 2008 edition signed by the Bessemer Neighborhood Association. Association secretary, Joe Openshaw, informed The Western star the letter was not written by the BNA. The newspaper apologizes to the Bessemer Neighborhood Association and to those mentioned in the letter for any inconvenience or problems that its publication may have caused.

Thanks Dale, for setting the record straight. The association accepts the apology.

But the individual wonders about the sincerity. I say that because this apology was read to me and OK’ed by me by Mitch Tribble on June 19 over the phone, and he seemed sincere and concerned that the letter was even published.

Quite different from the email I received from Dale the other day. However, being a peacemaker…I will let it slide, and just be thankful the readers of The Western Star know the truth now.

I might as well admit I also read with interest Representative Priscilla Dunn’s column titled The First Steps Toward a Statewide Water Plan. Rep. Dunn (who by the way is always complimentary to me regarding my columns) is absolutely right on the importance of developing a statewide water management team. I have written about water both in The Western Tribune and on this blog enough that everyone should know my concerns.

One such concern is bottled water. To make the bottles used for America’s and our water, over 17 million barrels of crude oil are used annually. this is enough to power a million vehicles for a year (Update). That doesn’t account for the diesel or gas used to transport the bottles to the retail outlets, or across the sea for those waters that come from Fiji or Europe.

While our household has not cut down 100%, we have greatly reduced our bottled water use by getting a refillable big bottle and cooler for our drinking water. We get refills at Lowes. We still buy an occasional case of Dasani for use in special situations.

Most tap water is fine, and a lot of people I hear are returning to tap water, either with or without a filter. Many refrigerators have a filter and the water that is dispensed is fine.
Enjoy this Water Sculpture.

Plus think of the money you will save by not buying water that is costing as much or more per gallon than gasoline. Conservation. Fiscal. Good.

>Our Patience Has Run Out

June 19, 2008

>Two weeks ago, on June 4, 2008 The Western Star ran a letter under Readers Opinions with the title “Illegal activities on Owen Avenue.” The letter was signed “Bessemer Neighborhood Association.”

The letter, which I will not reproduce here in its entirety, began with “The Bessemer Neighborhood Association would like to inform you of the activity of the tenants of *** Owen Avenue, Bessemer.”

It continued, making accusations of illegal drug activity and sales, truancy, vandalism, and animal cruelty. The letter named 4 people, and described two vehicles and gave their tag numbers and addresses where the people live.

From the paper, “People believed to be involved in illegal drug sales and theft: ‘person 1’, ‘person 2’, ‘person 3’ and ‘person 4’.
Tag numbers of cars involved: ‘AL tag # 1’ and ‘AL tag # 2’. “

The letter also said copies were being sent to community leaders, and ended with “We strongly encourage you to take action.”

Where do I begin. First and foremost, the Bessemer Neighborhood Association did not write, authorize, or suggest that this letter be written. Furthermore, the officers of the association are not aware of the activities mentioned in the letter.

The Bessemer Neighborhood Association’s mission is to improve the quality of life in Bessemer, but trying to do this with slanderous accusations is not in our methods list and we feel that the printing of this letter will be counterproductive to our efforts.

We were promised an apology yet the attempt that was printed in yesterday’s paper falls short. Here is the apology as it appeared in the June 18, 2008 Western Star:

Apology

The Western Star did not follow the company policy on running letters to the editor when a letter ran in the June 4, 2008 edition from the The Bessemer Neighborhood Association. The newspaper apologizes to those mentioned in the letter for any inconvenience or problems that the letter may have caused them.

Dale Jones, the editor, knows that the Bessemer Neighborhood Association did not send the letter. He knows that we feel a letter of this type will be counterproductive and will undercut our efforts to improve things in Bessemer. Yet his “apology” states that the letter was from our association. The apology says that “he” did not follow company policy when running “our” letter, indicating that the problems with the letter were ours. They were not, because the letter was not ours.

Those are the facts. This is the opinion. Dale Jones should not be running a newspaper. Already, we have documented plagarism by Jones, and now a breach of ethics and professionalism. Any newspaper editor who would:

  • print a letter that defames individuals with no basis
  • would print such a letter without verifying its authenticity
  • would print a letter from an organization without an individual letter writer’s name
  • would print such a letter without even getting the name of the person who sent it (so he claims)
  • would print a letter that endangers individuals,

…should not be editing a newspaper. He should be relieved of his duties.

This newspaper is owned by Bob Tribble of Trib Publications, PO Box 648, Manchester GA, 31816. 706-846-4336.

Our Patience Has Run Out

June 19, 2008

Two weeks ago, on June 4, 2008 The Western Star ran a letter under Readers Opinions with the title “Illegal activities on Owen Avenue.” The letter was signed “Bessemer Neighborhood Association.”

The letter, which I will not reproduce here in its entirety, began with “The Bessemer Neighborhood Association would like to inform you of the activity of the tenants of *** Owen Avenue, Bessemer.”

It continued, making accusations of illegal drug activity and sales, truancy, vandalism, and animal cruelty. The letter named 4 people, and described two vehicles and gave their tag numbers and addresses where the people live.

From the paper, “People believed to be involved in illegal drug sales and theft: ‘person 1’, ‘person 2’, ‘person 3’ and ‘person 4’.
Tag numbers of cars involved: ‘AL tag # 1’ and ‘AL tag # 2’. “

The letter also said copies were being sent to community leaders, and ended with “We strongly encourage you to take action.”

Where do I begin. First and foremost, the Bessemer Neighborhood Association did not write, authorize, or suggest that this letter be written. Furthermore, the officers of the association are not aware of the activities mentioned in the letter.

The Bessemer Neighborhood Association’s mission is to improve the quality of life in Bessemer, but trying to do this with slanderous accusations is not in our methods list and we feel that the printing of this letter will be counterproductive to our efforts.

We were promised an apology yet the attempt that was printed in yesterday’s paper falls short. Here is the apology as it appeared in the June 18, 2008 Western Star:

Apology

The Western Star did not follow the company policy on running letters to the editor when a letter ran in the June 4, 2008 edition from the The Bessemer Neighborhood Association. The newspaper apologizes to those mentioned in the letter for any inconvenience or problems that the letter may have caused them.

Dale Jones, the editor, knows that the Bessemer Neighborhood Association did not send the letter. He knows that we feel a letter of this type will be counterproductive and will undercut our efforts to improve things in Bessemer. Yet his “apology” states that the letter was from our association. The apology says that “he” did not follow company policy when running “our” letter, indicating that the problems with the letter were ours. They were not, because the letter was not ours.

Those are the facts. This is the opinion. Dale Jones should not be running a newspaper. Already, we have documented plagarism by Jones, and now a breach of ethics and professionalism. Any newspaper editor who would:

  • print a letter that defames individuals with no basis
  • would print such a letter without verifying its authenticity
  • would print a letter from an organization without an individual letter writer’s name
  • would print such a letter without even getting the name of the person who sent it (so he claims)
  • would print a letter that endangers individuals,

…should not be editing a newspaper. He should be relieved of his duties.

This newspaper is owned by Bob Tribble of Trib Publications, PO Box 648, Manchester GA, 31816. 706-846-4336.

>Improving Education in Alabama (and Some Rambling)

December 7, 2007

>There is something good in The Western Star this week, but you have to look past the unreadable dark front page and other faults*.

The good is the Guest Editorial by Priscilla Dunn, our representative to the Alabama House of Representatives. In this week’s issue, she writes in support of the plan to expand the Alabama pre-kindergarten program.

I am assuming her facts are true (she is not employed by the newspaper). Dunn writes that “children that attend a quality pre-k are less likely to repeat a grade, less likely to require special education classes, and more likely to graduate from high school.” Sounds like a wish list for Bessemer education, doesn’t it.

Pre-k in Alabama is entirely voluntary, and some parents say that a public program for four year olds infringes on the family. Apparently they don’t understand the definition of the word “voluntary.”

Now governor Riley is promoting a plan to expand the program (story)from the current level of around 2300 to around 21,000 kids. He says the legislature has to find a way to fund it and the money would come from the Education Trust Fund. Paul Hubbert, executive secretary of the AEA (and sort of the real governor of the state, but that’s another story), says the governor needs to find another source of funding.

Huh? This is education. It makes education in Alabama more effective. Test scores will go up. Why should it not be funded out of the Education Trust Fund?

****************************
*faults such as hypocrisy.

For instance criticizing “stupid, idiotic,…anti-gun crazies…” on the editorial page while running a front page story headlined “Described as ‘good person,’ local man killed in Bessemer.” The story relates how bullets were fired from a passing car leaving Timothy Horton dead. Something doesn’t add up there. On the editorial page he is promoting the very gun ownership that allowed Horton to be killed.

Oh, here is the rest of Dale Jones’ description, “…these stupid, idiotic, tree hugging, pro-government, global warming, anti-war, anti-life, anti-gun crazies are openly trying to run this country into the ground.” I think he would include me in that group, except I I am not sure what “anti-life” means. And the country has already been run into the ground by the republican administration!

So Jones must be anti-environment and conservation (like Rush Limbaugh), anti-government (Dale this will get you in trouble with Dick Cheney!), pro-war , pro-life (except when it comes to government sanctioned killing… both in “wars” and in regards to the death penalty), pro-gun (like the killers of Timothy Horton).

I know that Jones and a couple dozen other people still support the war and the president, but I am so glad that there are only 410 more days until inauguration day.

Nothing, I mean, nothing could be worse than having this administration remain in power more than one day longer than necessary. Every day I become more disgusted at the president, and I am even trying to avoid listening to him. But his lies about Iran are so blatant that he is having difficulty trying to hop, skip and jump his way through it.

That’s enough rambling for today. I have a take home final I need to work on. More about Bush later.

Improving Education in Alabama (and Some Rambling)

December 7, 2007

There is something good in The Western Star this week, but you have to look past the unreadable dark front page and other faults*.

The good is the Guest Editorial by Priscilla Dunn, our representative to the Alabama House of Representatives. In this week’s issue, she writes in support of the plan to expand the Alabama pre-kindergarten program.

I am assuming her facts are true (she is not employed by the newspaper). Dunn writes that “children that attend a quality pre-k are less likely to repeat a grade, less likely to require special education classes, and more likely to graduate from high school.” Sounds like a wish list for Bessemer education, doesn’t it.

Pre-k in Alabama is entirely voluntary, and some parents say that a public program for four year olds infringes on the family. Apparently they don’t understand the definition of the word “voluntary.”

Now governor Riley is promoting a plan to expand the program (story)from the current level of around 2300 to around 21,000 kids. He says the legislature has to find a way to fund it and the money would come from the Education Trust Fund. Paul Hubbert, executive secretary of the AEA (and sort of the real governor of the state, but that’s another story), says the governor needs to find another source of funding.

Huh? This is education. It makes education in Alabama more effective. Test scores will go up. Why should it not be funded out of the Education Trust Fund?

****************************
*faults such as hypocrisy.

For instance criticizing “stupid, idiotic,…anti-gun crazies…” on the editorial page while running a front page story headlined “Described as ‘good person,’ local man killed in Bessemer.” The story relates how bullets were fired from a passing car leaving Timothy Horton dead. Something doesn’t add up there. On the editorial page he is promoting the very gun ownership that allowed Horton to be killed.

Oh, here is the rest of Dale Jones’ description, “…these stupid, idiotic, tree hugging, pro-government, global warming, anti-war, anti-life, anti-gun crazies are openly trying to run this country into the ground.” I think he would include me in that group, except I I am not sure what “anti-life” means. And the country has already been run into the ground by the republican administration!

So Jones must be anti-environment and conservation (like Rush Limbaugh), anti-government (Dale this will get you in trouble with Dick Cheney!), pro-war , pro-life (except when it comes to government sanctioned killing… both in “wars” and in regards to the death penalty), pro-gun (like the killers of Timothy Horton).

I know that Jones and a couple dozen other people still support the war and the president, but I am so glad that there are only 410 more days until inauguration day.

Nothing, I mean, nothing could be worse than having this administration remain in power more than one day longer than necessary. Every day I become more disgusted at the president, and I am even trying to avoid listening to him. But his lies about Iran are so blatant that he is having difficulty trying to hop, skip and jump his way through it.

That’s enough rambling for today. I have a take home final I need to work on. More about Bush later.

>Is Bessemer Opinions "Illegitimate?"

November 29, 2007

>Oh no, another conspiracy theory. But this one is really sweet.

It seems the Canadian divisions of Cadbury, Hershey and Nestle have developed a price fixing scheme in the chocolate bar industry.

This investigation may spread to other types of candy as well.

Does anybody think it is just coincidence that all gum used to be a nickle (later a quarter…and now who knows how much) a pack, regardless of brand, or that all candy bars used to be a dime, (then a quarter, now who knows how much)?

One thing is certain. The cost of litigation to fight these charges will be passed on to the Hershey bar eaters (that includes me) and Nestle Crunchophiles (me as well).

Here’s a quote from a local “News” paper, The Western Star, from editor Dale Jones’ column..

Now I will admit, I’m human, and it is a bit frustrating when loud mouth cowards hide behind anonymous names, taking shots at me and making false statements on illegitimate web blogs.”

From The American Heritage College Dictionary:

Illegitimate adj. 1. Against the law; illegal. 2. born out of wedlock 3. Gram. Not in correct usage. 4. Incorrectly deduced; illogical. 5. Biol. Unacceptable as a scientific name because of contradiction to the international rules of nomenclature. “

I did a quick and incomplete web search and did not find a lot of references to Dale Jones on other blogs, and with the reaction I have received from him after previous references I am sure he is referring to Bessemer Opinions. So let me assure you this blog is 1. Not against the law, 2. Not born out of wedlock, 3. Not a grammatical mistake (although it sometimes contains such errors), 4. Not incorrectly deduced or illogical (to some degree a matter of personal opinion, may apply to certain postings but certainly not the entire blog) and 5. Not primarily biological in nature and thus not subject to the rules of scientific nomenclature.

In the past Jones has accused me of hiding behind my blog (“Stop hiding behind this pathetic blog ” he once wrote), but I don’t see how that is possible, because the blog and it’s author are out there for the world to see. And I don’t post anonymously so I don’t think he is referring to me when he talks about cowards (although he did use “pathetic and extremely GUTLESS” when referring to me once).

So on the same day that I receive numerous congratulations for the success of this blog, it is called illegitimate in a local paper. I just wish he had used the name Bessemer Opinions…with the few additional readers that might have been directed here my rating could have climbed into the top ten! Well, maybe his readers will google his name after reading his column to see what has been said about him, and if so they will arrive at Bessemer Opinions.

Since I did read The Western Star this week, and since the editor does claim to present the news…wait…he actually says “you are going to be reading true, relevant, honest, factual, comprehensive information about what is going on in your neighbohood.” In fact, the word “news” is not found in his editorial about his paper.

And he is right. The front page this week has three articles, none of which are news, all of which are community stories. The Western Tribune, on the other hand has two news stories and one community information story on the front page. The “Star” entire front section has only one news story of sorts, and even it is of a religious nature, about Garywood Assembly of God Church moving, so really that is just community news.

In fact, there are no other stories of any kind in the 10 pages that make up the first section. Ads, announcements, continuation of front page stories, editorials, reader’s opinions, obituaries, social scene, the religion page and the Southern Styles column are all that is there.

In contrast, The Western Tribune, in addition to the news stories on the front page about the Bessemer City Council and the Mayor and money (something of great importance to Bessemer residents) and the luxury hotel deal that is about to die, has a news story about our water filter plant, news briefs, ads, sports, Chuck’s outdoor column, a news story about Larry Langford’s replacement, a community story about Festive Church Programs, Bubba’s column, and readers opinions, also in 10 pages.

Now, if you want weekly news about what is going on in our community, about what will affect you as a tax payer, where will you turn? The Western Tribune, of course (call 425-7171 to subscribe).

And if you want daily news about what is going on, return to Bessemer Opinions. There you go.

Is Bessemer Opinions "Illegitimate?"

November 29, 2007

Oh no, another conspiracy theory. But this one is really sweet.

It seems the Canadian divisions of Cadbury, Hershey and Nestle have developed a price fixing scheme in the chocolate bar industry.

This investigation may spread to other types of candy as well.

Does anybody think it is just coincidence that all gum used to be a nickle (later a quarter…and now who knows how much) a pack, regardless of brand, or that all candy bars used to be a dime, (then a quarter, now who knows how much)?

One thing is certain. The cost of litigation to fight these charges will be passed on to the Hershey bar eaters (that includes me) and Nestle Crunchophiles (me as well).

Here’s a quote from a local “News” paper, The Western Star, from editor Dale Jones’ column..

Now I will admit, I’m human, and it is a bit frustrating when loud mouth cowards hide behind anonymous names, taking shots at me and making false statements on illegitimate web blogs.”

From The American Heritage College Dictionary:

Illegitimate adj. 1. Against the law; illegal. 2. born out of wedlock 3. Gram. Not in correct usage. 4. Incorrectly deduced; illogical. 5. Biol. Unacceptable as a scientific name because of contradiction to the international rules of nomenclature. “

I did a quick and incomplete web search and did not find a lot of references to Dale Jones on other blogs, and with the reaction I have received from him after previous references I am sure he is referring to Bessemer Opinions. So let me assure you this blog is 1. Not against the law, 2. Not born out of wedlock, 3. Not a grammatical mistake (although it sometimes contains such errors), 4. Not incorrectly deduced or illogical (to some degree a matter of personal opinion, may apply to certain postings but certainly not the entire blog) and 5. Not primarily biological in nature and thus not subject to the rules of scientific nomenclature.

In the past Jones has accused me of hiding behind my blog (“Stop hiding behind this pathetic blog ” he once wrote), but I don’t see how that is possible, because the blog and it’s author are out there for the world to see. And I don’t post anonymously so I don’t think he is referring to me when he talks about cowards (although he did use “pathetic and extremely GUTLESS” when referring to me once).

So on the same day that I receive numerous congratulations for the success of this blog, it is called illegitimate in a local paper. I just wish he had used the name Bessemer Opinions…with the few additional readers that might have been directed here my rating could have climbed into the top ten! Well, maybe his readers will google his name after reading his column to see what has been said about him, and if so they will arrive at Bessemer Opinions.

Since I did read The Western Star this week, and since the editor does claim to present the news…wait…he actually says “you are going to be reading true, relevant, honest, factual, comprehensive information about what is going on in your neighbohood.” In fact, the word “news” is not found in his editorial about his paper.

And he is right. The front page this week has three articles, none of which are news, all of which are community stories. The Western Tribune, on the other hand has two news stories and one community information story on the front page. The “Star” entire front section has only one news story of sorts, and even it is of a religious nature, about Garywood Assembly of God Church moving, so really that is just community news.

In fact, there are no other stories of any kind in the 10 pages that make up the first section. Ads, announcements, continuation of front page stories, editorials, reader’s opinions, obituaries, social scene, the religion page and the Southern Styles column are all that is there.

In contrast, The Western Tribune, in addition to the news stories on the front page about the Bessemer City Council and the Mayor and money (something of great importance to Bessemer residents) and the luxury hotel deal that is about to die, has a news story about our water filter plant, news briefs, ads, sports, Chuck’s outdoor column, a news story about Larry Langford’s replacement, a community story about Festive Church Programs, Bubba’s column, and readers opinions, also in 10 pages.

Now, if you want weekly news about what is going on in our community, about what will affect you as a tax payer, where will you turn? The Western Tribune, of course (call 425-7171 to subscribe).

And if you want daily news about what is going on, return to Bessemer Opinions. There you go.

The Western Star and Global Warming

October 29, 2007

Certain topics will be addressed again and again, and global warming is one of them. When I read something that is absolutely in error, in fact, that makes the writer look foolish, I will comment.

So when I read in The Western Star on Wednesday the Dale Jones editorial slamming Al Gore and the Nobel Peace Prize process I felt obligated. Here is what he writes: “There is absolutely, positively no scientific evidence to support global warming.”

I could argue against that statement, but I don’t need to. Read on.

Here are some quotes from Dale’s article:

“While ground-level temperature measurements suggest the earth has warmed between 0.3 and 0.6 degrees Celsius since 1850, global satellite data, the most reliable of climate measurements, show no evidence of warming during the past 18 years”.

A Gallup poll found that only 17 percent of the members of the Meteorological Society and the American Geophysical Society think that the warming of the 20th century has been a result of greenhouse gas emissions – principally CO2 from burning fossil fuels”.

“While atmospheric carbon dioxide has increased by 28 percent over the past 150 years, human-generated carbon dioxide could have played only a small part in any warming, since most of the warming occurred prior to 1940 – before most human-caused carbon dioxide emissions”.

Now…here are some quotes from a brief analysis from the National Center for Policy analysis written by H. Sterling Burnett:

“While ground-level temperature measurements suggest the earth has warmed between 0.3 and 0.6 degrees Celsius since 1850, global satellite data, the most reliable of climate measurements, show no evidence of warming during the past 18 years”.

“A Gallup poll found that only 17 percent of the members of the Meteorological Society and the American Geophysical Society think that the warming of the 20th century has been a result of greenhouse gas emissions – principally CO2 from burning fossil fuels”.

“While atmospheric carbon dioxide has increased by 28 percent over the past 150 years, human-generated carbon dioxide could have played only a small part in any warming, since most of the warming occurred prior to 1940 – before most human-caused carbon dioxide emissions”.

First, Dale, this information that you are basing your argument on is 10 years old. This was written in 1997. Ten year old data!!! Scientists and others…even Newt Gingrich (his new book A Contract with the Earth) are currently overwhelmingly supportive of climate change and man’s role in it, along with mankind’s responsibility for doing something against it. (I admit I have not read Gingrich’s book, and wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him, so I don’t how supportive he is, but that is beside the point).

Second, Dale, and more importantly, this is plagiarism. You are writing for a newspaper, and should know better than to copy someone elses work without giving them credit. If I were to do this in school, I would be severely disciplined…we are warned about it all the time. You should know better Dale. People from newspapers more prestigious than yours have lost their jobs for plagiarism. You should lose yours too, if you can’t even put the outdated material you report as fact in your own words. Have you taken any journalism courses Dale? What did they teach you?

Dale, you also plagiarized from this site , and probably others. Why should we believe anything written in your newspaper, when you take credit for the work of others as if it were your own?

Don’t write about that which you do not know about, and when you do, give credit where credit is due. If you are allowed to keep your job.