Don't hurl flaming arrows at Casey County

October 06, 2004

Dear Editor:

Once again, half-truths have been embellished upon to make editorial fodder in The Advocate-Messenger. Friday's opinion article by Todd Kleffman is not only one-sided, it fosters the continuation of hate and discrimination against people who choose a rural area as their residence.

I have lived all of my life in Casey County and worked for more than 17 years in Boyle County and I find remarkable similarities in the people from both areas. I know good-hearted, open-minded people from both counties that judge people for what's on the inside. I also know people from both counties who discriminate against people because of their skin color, their religious beliefs, their ethnic background, and yes, even their rural background.

I challenge Mr. Kleffman to check with the Apple Festival committee to see if they "allowed them (the Klan) to set up shop and openly peddle hate." I am certain the KKK rented the booth space under the guise of some more socially palatable organization. Mr. Kleffman offers no proof that the Apple Festival committee condones the principles or behaviors of the Klan.


Mr. Kleffman shows his own narrow-minded thinking when he says "in a place like Casey County." That statement assumes that all Casey Countians are unable to think for themselves and do not have the ability to distinguish between right and wrong. When that type of thinking is applied to people of different colors or ethnic backgrounds, it is called stereotyping, but Mr. Kleffman obviously sees no harm in profiling Casey Countians as if we all come from the same mold.

Finally, I cannot believe that Mr. Kleffman called for the school board at Casey County to remove the "Rebel" nickname at the Casey County High School, yet did not implore their Boyle County counterparts to do the same. As I said before, I know many people from both areas and there are people who practice discrimination in both counties, but that is not a legitimate reason for either school to change its nickname. There are many prejudices in this world and changing a school mascot is not going to cure any of them.

Mr. Kleffman, the citizens of Casey County have enough problems without enduring attacks from someone who claims to be one of our own. Why don't you either truly become one of us and help us overcome the issues we face or leave us alone? We can use genuine help, but we do not need flaming arrows hurled at us from another county by someone who hides behind the facade of journalism.

Jeff Bastin


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