July 10, 2007
Dear Editor, Ben Pixley's response to the minimum wage hike was emotionally valid, but his logic fell a little short of the mark in that it was not inclusive enough. The fact is everyone - without exception - receives a pay decrease when minimum wage hikes are enacted. Everyone but our beloved state government, initially. I have been disabled and living mostly on Social Security Disability for 17 years. I am on a fixed income, as are many elderly. We receive no additional funds when minimum wage increases raise the cost of goods and services; nor do my parents, who own a small business; nor, generally, do people on salaries.
November 6, 2006
Dear Editor, I never thought the day would come when I would agree with Brian Cooney. No sir. Republicans do not care about the working poor. I am 65 years old, and in all of my lifetime, no Republican administration in the White House of Washington, D.C. have ever raised the minimum wage for the working poor. Liberal Democrats are the only ones who have any compassion for the working poor now, and in the future. We can find things unethical and wrong with both parties if we look close enough, but to keep the minimum wage earner $2,500 below the poverty line (for a two-person household)
November 16, 2006
Dear Editor, The majority of people in minimum wage jobs are trying to be financially independent. There are families in this country where both parents are working two minimum wage jobs just to feed their children. To suggest that they don't care about their children is wrong and demeaning. Mr. Martin's arguments fail to consider the many educated people whose jobs have been outsourced to other countries. In the era of Reaganomics, we were told that tax cuts for the wealthy would "trickle down" to those at the bottom of the wage scale.
October 31, 2006
Dear Editor, I am 65 years old and counting. No Republican administration in the White House has ever raised the minimum wage for the working poor in my lifetime. If it gets raised at all, you can say it was liberal-minded Democrats who care for the little man. I may have changed from a Democrat in 2004 to a Republican, but it doesn't mean I am a team player regardless of what my party stands for. David Sparrow, Mike Harmon, Ron Pemberton, Leroy Hardin and John Long are all good people that I personally know, and it's a hard decision this election as to whom I should vote for. M. Wendell Anderson Danville
April 19, 2007
Kentucky lawmakers missed a rare opportunity last month to lead the nation on a matter of basic social justice. Granted, the legislature did pass an increase in the minimum wage before Congress could do so, and Gov. Ernie Fletcher signed it. But the bill they ended up with could best be described as "the minimum. " The original bill, filed last November by Democratic Rep. J.R. Gray of Benton, would have been one of the most progressive versions in the country. It would have raised the state's wage floor from $5.15 an hour, where it has been stuck since 1997, to $7 an hour this year, then increased it to $7.25 in 2008.
November 3, 2006
Dear Editor, In your Oct. 23 issue, Mike Harmon commented he had left his job to go to the Kentucky legislature, and I assume this move was because he felt he could serve there for the good of the public. This statement might encourage applause from his constituents if, in fact, one of his desires is to raise the minimum wage. However, according to his recent letter to the editor, this does not seem to be on Mr. Harmon's agenda. Records show that in 1950, 56 years ago, the minimum wage was $.75 an hour.
July 13, 2006
Some people have been arguing lately that Kentucky should raise its minimum wage. But raising the minimum wage to eradicate poverty is not a solution. It is a Band-Aid ? and a poor one at that. We can all agree that poverty is a problem, but most of the time liberals and conservatives clash over how to solve it. In particular, I have seen some recent comments by liberal pundits regarding the issue of raising Kentucky's minimum wage, and I think they are way off base. To start with, some have made the assertion that no one can afford to live on $5.15 an hour.
June 27, 2006
Dear Editor, The minimum wage for working people in the United States has been $5.15, or $10,700 a year, for nearly a decade. The salary for a United States senator is now $165,200, and the salary has increased about $30,000 in the same time period. Our Kentucky senators voted against any raise in the minimum wage for working people in our country. Tommy Ellis Liberty
January 25, 2007
What would it be like to live on minimum wage? Let's say you and your spouse both earn $5.15 an hour. You work full time, and she or he gets just under 40 hours most weeks. Together you would bring home about $20,000 a year before taxes. On that income, it isn't likely you could own property in Winchester, but you might rent a two-bedroom apartment in a drafty old house for about $500. Utilities would cost another $200 if you kept the heat turned down. Cable TV and telephone service would be luxuries.