Thoughts about area’s water

Contaminated water a concern

I have attended several of the recent public forums discussing the merits and problems of the proposed changes to the City of Dayton’s Source Water Protection Program. City officials are proposing expanding listed prohibited chemicals and activities in the well field protection area. At the same time, they are suggesting shrinking part of the existing protection area in which some of these regulations would apply. This is in hope of allowing some existing businesses near the well fields to expand operations and jobs if they are allowed to use more of the prohibited chemicals.

In my opinion, considering reducing the well field protection area is not a good idea at all. As a professional geologist, I have firsthand knowledge of drinking water problems up and down the Miami Valley. Several projects I have worked on required the replacement of water wells or entire well fields due to contamination from businesses operating in the source water protection area. The cost to the water users have run into the millions of dollars while the businesses that cause the contamination have went bankrupt or move operations to another town.

Perhaps the city can work with the existing businesses near the well fields in more equitable chemical exchange or reduction programs? Whatever the solution, I believe the short-term rewards of a few jobs pales to the long-term costs of a contaminated water supply. I suggest the city reconsider the proposed changes in the protection area from a reduction to an expansion in size. — BRENT HUNTSMAN, BEAVERCREEK

Reader in favor of gay marriage

The arguments for and against gay marriage can be divided into two groups, the religious and the secular. The religious arguments all should be set aside, as we do not live in a theocracy, and religious intolerance should not be enshrined into secular law. There are no secular arguments against gay marriage. In fact, there is one very strong reason in its favor: “All men are created equal” and should therefore enjoy equal protection under the law. (This “equal protection” is not susceptible to a popular vote. It is there whatever the majority happen to think at any given time.)

Note: In most of Europe there are two wedding ceremonies, one secular and one religious. In the U.S. the two tend to be joined together. Here individual churches certainly have the right to refuse to perform gay marriages, but they do not have the right to tell the secular state that it cannot perform secular gay marriages. — JOSEPH PATROUCH, KETTERING

Concerns about spying

There are laws that prohibit U.S. intelligence agencies from spying on U.S. persons (“CIA says it hacked Senate computers,” Aug. 1). However, the NSA and the CIA flagrantly ignore these laws, the U.S. Constitution, and civil rights that exist to protect U.S. citizens. The NSA continues to build mega-data centers to collect and retain information on U.S. citizens (and others) while the CIA is busy hacking and spying on U.S. senators.

Meanwhile, the IRS is busy targeting non-liberal groups while their dogs eat their email messages. Employees of the U.S. government do not have to obey orders from superiors or political appointees that are illegal. More should refuse to do what is clearly illegal. Is it any wonder that there’s a proliferation of groups that don’t trust government agencies, politicians, and political appointees? The actions of the NSA, CIA, IRS, and politicians reinforce the beliefs of these groups.

Our diversity, tolerance and inclusiveness are what make the U.S. strong and we shouldn’t be focusing our scare, government resources on destroying ourselves from within. — DENNIS LOVEJOY, FAIRBORN

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