Get it right about the Wright brothers

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

In February as the Ohio House of Representatives was preparing a bill proposing to add the Wright Flyer to the state seal, the editorial board of the Gaston Gazette, a newspaper in metropolitan Charlotte, N.C., decided to chime in with a tongue-in-cheek and carelessly pejorative editorial on the subject. Their opine was titled, “No state can take our claim to the Wright Brothers.” The article was laced with factual errors, including, “…Orville and Wilbur lived there before the bicycle makers decided to abandon the Buckeye State for the flight-friendly sand hills of Kitty Hawk.”

Such transparent deceit deserves to be discredited. The Wright brothers, lifelong Ohioans, who conceived, designed, engineered, and constructed the airplane in Dayton, tested the first of their three motorized planes in North Carolina in 1903. The successful proof of concept flights of Dec. 17, 1903, culminated in a flight of 0.16 miles.

The second Wright Flyer, built in Dayton in 1904 and tested at Huffman Prairie near Dayton, incorporated turning, and maxed out with a 2.4-mile circular flight by the end of that year. The third Flyer, built in Ohio in 1905 and tested at Huffman Prairie, completed the invention of the airplane, flying a circular course for 24.2 miles on Oct. 5, 1905. Only then did the Wright brothers begin to reveal to the world what they had accomplished. So much for abandonment.

It would be easy to roll one’s eyes and dismiss the Gaston Gazette editorial as tabloid chicanery, were it not for the fact that the article is now being trolled on the Internet. For that, even our North Carolina aviation brethren are likely to be put off, by their overzealous media standard bearers. LOUIS CHMIEL, DAYTON. Chmiel is the author of ‘Ohio: Home of the Wright Brothers, Birthplace of Aviation.’

Springfielders have a chance to help city with tax issue

The Springfield City Commission held a first reading at its July 5 meeting to place a temporary 0.4-percent earned income tax on the November ballot.

This five‐year, temporary earned income tax will allow the city to focus on public safety, streets and the creation of an environment that attracts needed jobs to Springfield. If it passes, the city will be able to maintain its current level of safety and city services.

The city is dedicated to fully preparing our residents for a vote in November. This is an important decision that will affect everyone who lives in Springfield, so it is our priority to ensure that everyone knows the facts about this issue.

Over the past five years, the state of Ohio has cut millions of dollars in funding annually to our city. Our safety forces are presently operating at minimum staffing levels and neighborhood street restoration projects have been postponed.

The passage of the issue will allow the city to maintain its current service levels including police, fire and parks. Passage will also allow the city to reinstate the Neighborhood Street Improvement Program and to establish a Safe Streets Task Force to combat violent crime and the heroin epidemic our community faces. The Johnny Lytle Police Station and Fire Station No. 5 will also remain open if the issue passes.

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For more information about this temporary earned income tax, visit www.springfieldohio.gov, and click on the Springfield Strong logo. JIM BODENMILLER, SPRINGFIELD. Bodenmiller is Springfield’s city manager.

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