News From Terre Haute, Indiana


September 8, 2013

READERS’ FORUM: Sept. 8, 2013


Focus on helping working folks

Nancy Guyott’s Labor Day letter was a good rallying cry, but I thought it came up short in some other areas.

While national politics are part of the solution, should we be focused on what we can do in the next election in Indiana to start laying the groundwork for the change she speaks of? In Indiana, there will be House and Senate seats up for election. Can we stop or slow the influx of low-paying jobs coming into Indiana by changing leadership here? Can right-to-work be revoked? If so, is this where that is started? Could part of the solution be to stop giving companies property tax breaks that take away from the education of our kids? If these companies pay a sub-standard wage that does nothing for the local economy, then why give up anything for a negative return?

I just cannot get behind raising the minimum wage as being part of the solution. Won’t the employee lose the raise once the price increases that usually follow this kick in and won’t it put people making more even farther in the hole? Granted, the current job situation makes these family-supporting jobs, but they are supposed to be entry-level jobs for younger people. If everyone is working then will we need the extra weight of Obamacare on our system here in Indiana?

Other questions I have are what does the immigration bill have to do with the employment conditions in Indiana? This sounded more like party politics to increase the voter base of the Democrats. Voting was not mentioned in your letter. Won’t the number of non-union voters have the biggest impact on the next election? Should it be stressed that if you are tired of paying for the millionaires club tax breaks or not, and making a living or existing check-to-check, then vote the leaders out who are OK with the current employment situation here in our state.

Also, it should not be forgotten that some citizens are at the lower end of the pay scale by their choice, not some political policy. It’s no secret that lack of a high school diploma or GED will get you nothing but a low-paying job that offers nothing. So it is up to those citizens to take that step in fixing their employment status.

We should be focusing efforts to help the citizens that go to work every day, not the ones who would rather sit at home and let someone else work and support them. It should be remembered that a lot of these everyday workers have heard how important they are at election time only to be forgotten after. Right now they don’t have much of a reason to believe or trust anyone who says they are fighting for their situation.

— Mike Travelstead

Terre Haute

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