Thursday, June 16, 2005

Letters to the Editor

Milan thank you:
Dear Editor,

To begin this thank you letter, an apology is not what I want to do; it is what I will have to due. Due to one trip to the emergency room and two hospital stays I have been unable to get this letter written.

Having said this, I want to sincerely thank The South Reporter’s editor, staff, proof reader and any other personnel connected with the paper for a great reception. The decoration was beautiful, the food delicious, and the plaques humbling.

Permit me to thank Rev. Leroy and Sister Henrietta James along with my church members and friends for their presents, gifts, cards and words of congratulations plus a liberal donation from Hopewell No. 1 Baptist Church.

Sincere thanks are in order for a relative-in-law who wired gifts across the fruited plain, plus the presence of the principal from Ashland High School.

Mayor of our fair city Holly Springs, president and vice-president of our local college Rust, and leaders of our developing museums, we truly thank you for attending.

To my own family: wife, cousins, sons and daughters of my siblings, Uncle Henderson thanks you from the bottom of my heart for your interest, love and caring concern shown me through your calls and visits. Be assured your uncle loves you in return.

We thank the First State Bank for the wonderful bouquet of cut flowers they sent to our home.

A thank you to my comrades, our Retired Education Personnel for their tokens of congratulations, also a thank you to Chulahoma MB Church for their generous donation.

Finally, dear readers, I thank God; all of the glory belongs to Him because He led me into touching your lives in such a positive way. Therefore, individually and collectively, I thank all of you.

Henderson Milan

Volunteers are thanked:
Dear Editor and Citizens of Marshall County:

I want to begin by thanking all of the volunteers who once again came through for me during the organization and presentation of this year’s Kudzu Festival. A sincere, from the bottom of my heart “thank you.”

On Thursday, the rain stopped just in time for the Gospel Jamboree to take flight and bless us all with the wonderful talents of our community.

The J Bar B Rodeo was expertly presented on Friday and Saturday nights. The crowd was not disappointed at the antics of the clowns or the excitement of the cowboys and cowgirls.

This year the food vendors were small in number but spectacular. In the South, if you can get catfish and fried green tomatoes on the same block, Heaven can’t be far away.

I must say we faced some major obstacles. Due to the last-minute cancellation of our carnival of 16 years, some decisions had to be made out of desperation. As a result, mistakes were made. I have received a lot of positive feedback, but even one unhappy supporter is reason for concern.

Some problems were brought to my attention during and after the Festival. The problems that I was made aware of during the event were handled immediately, to the best of my ability. The problems that I was made aware of after the fact cannot be undone.

I, as a representative of the Chamber Board of Directors, issue a public apology to anyone who was offended or taken advantage of in any way during this event.

You have my sincere promise that our Festival next year will not be a reflection of this year. Steps are already being made to assure tat we will revert back to “the good ole days” in 2006.

As we begin to make plans for next year, I would like to extend a personal invitation to anyone who would like to join in our efforts. This is a community event and we welcome all ideas and help.

Carol Person
Kudzu Festival Chairman
Chamber of Commerce

Thanks expressed:
Dear Editor,

On behalf of the Byhalia Area Chamber of Commerce, we want to thank each of you who contributed and supported the 14th annual White Oak Classic Walking and Racking Horse Show. With 13 states and 220 horses represented at the Dudley R. Moore, Jr. Memorial White Oak Classic, this was one of our biggest shows to date. Dudley Moore, Jr. was inducted into the 2003 Mississippi Walking Horse Association’s Hall of Fame. He has remained in our “hall of fame” for his determination and encouragement that led us to begin the White Oak Classic. He loved the show and proudly welcomed everyone. The first place trophies were given in loving memory by his wife, Frances Moore.

The show’s proceeds have benefited several non-profit organizations such as the Marshall County Habitat for Humanity, Byhalia Sports Association, local youth groups, the fire departments, church groups, Cub Scouts and the Byhalia Lions Club. This event is the main fundraiser of the Byhalia Area Chamber of Commerce and we are proud to share with other organizations in our area.

A special thanks goes to our Chamber Champions, the affiliations, class sponsors, ribbon sponsors and the advertisers. Thanks to Doris Lee, Suzanne Thompson, Dave Young and Janice Wagg for another advertising book. It is used throughout the year to promote our advertisers and show. Please stop by the Chamber office, to pick up your free copy. White Oak Classic t-shirts are also available for $10 each.

The volunteer spirit is alive and well in Byhalia! Our volunteers continue to contribute time, talent, products, and support to the show.  We cannot thank the volunteers enough who organized and worked concession shifts, provided the delicious cakes, worked registration, the arena gate, sold raffle tickets and t-shirts. A huge thank you to the Byhalia Lions Club members who directed parking and handled the admission gate.

Thanks to all the chairs of the committees. Because of your organization skills and willingness to lend a hand, a product or a service, the show runs very smoothly. Our deepest gratitude to Rep. Tommy Woods for assisting us for years with the concessions and of course, his delicious barbecue is enjoyed by all. Our gratitude to Mayor Dempsey, Pat Woods, Mac Burrow and everyone who pitched in with the cooking.

We appreciate Paul Summers, Janice Wagg, Frances Moore, Sue O’Brien, Bo and Debbie Harris, Mitch and Robyn Turner, Theresa and Hank O’Hearn, Amy and Wade Burrow, Charles Crain and Terry Sawyer for chairing the many areas of the show. Thanks to Bro. Anthony Langley for beautifully singing our National Anthem. The Ribbon Girls were Ashley Davis, Lauren Poteet, Hannah Hamblin, Hannah Cook, Olivia Clanton, Regan Murphy, Shelby Taylor, Cameron Gant, Sarah Thompson and Mandy Bolden. The girls added extra beauty to the show holding the banner made by Doris Moore.

We appreciate Barry Thomas for providing the indoor arena for the show. Barry went the extra mile to assist us. Thanks to the contributions of the center ring decorations and Stake Class Horse Shoes by Quality Landscaping, Frances Moore and Minnie Tunstall. A special thanks to the Holly Springs Chamber of Commerce for lending the center ring fence. Providing the ribbons and t-shirts were Bill and Debbie Kinkade with Champion Awards.

Our sincere appreciation to the owners, riders, trainers and spectators. We thank the chamber staff Karen Conway, Jan Sisk, Doris Lee and Sammie Shackelford for the extra hours of work. Thanks Barry Burleson and staff of The South Reporter and Pigeon Roost News for running coverage prior and after the show.

Everyone’s support and attendance helps to make the White Oak Classic known across the country  for the great show that it is!

Sarah Sawyer, executive director
Terry Rodgers, show manager

Women's Ministry:
Dear Editor,

The Heart to H.A.R.T. Women’s Ministry held our annual women’s retreat on June 4 at the Brigadoon Farms Retreat and Conference Center. The goal of the Heart to H.A.R.T. Women’s Ministry is to facilitate growth, self-worth and self-esteem in the lives of women. Approximately 25 women attended the event this year and thanks to the generous support of local businesses, the ministry was helped to enrich the lives of each woman in attendance. Our guests enjoyed a continental breakfast followed by the anointed ministry of Sis. Barbara Shouck out of Kentucky, a health-conscious lunch that consisted of vegetable lasagna, baked chicken breast and a side of cold salad. Sis. Tina Selman, the founder of Heart to H.A.R.T. Women’s Ministry, shared words of encouragement. Sis. Sharon White, a certified nutritionist and anointed Bible teacher, shared on the subject, “Ministering to the Body, Mind and Spirit.” We would like to thank our sponsors for helping make this event a memorable experience. A special thanks goes to: The Basket Island, New York Fashion, Dollar Millennium, Stix-N-Tones, Simply Beautiful Hair Salon, Jennie’s Flowers, John Henley Jones, DDS.

From the Heart to H.A.R.T. Women’s Ministry of Latter Rain Church, we thank you for your generous support.

Loleta Dickerson
Holly Springs

Response to columnist:
Dear Editor,

Re: Stem-cell research comment by Mr. Salter

While I seldom find cause for serious complaint with the opinions of Mr. Sid Salter, I feel I must at least comment upon a statement contained in his column of last week. Having recently suffered the tragedy of losing his wife to multiple sclerosis after battling the illness for most of her adult life, his sympathy for stem-cell research may be understandable; but his reasoning is not.

Apparently assuming that stem-cells would indeed provide a cure for MS and further assuming that only embryonic stem-cells could be used, Mr. Salter stated, “Who but the cruelest, most ignorant people would advocate allowing people now and in the future to suffer so much for so long when science exists which could alleviate that suffering.” I will not address whether or not the science does in fact exist; I will assume, for the sake of argument, that it does.

Let us assume a poor country with a failed harvest and a population too large for the food supply. Let us further assume that the country contains a large number of people who are too old to contribute to the nation’s well being with useful work. Let us also assume that there are a large number of people who are suffering from AIDS and are too ill to contribute any useful work to the nation’s economy. By killing these two groups of people (people who cannot live much longer anyway) we can reduce the population to a level that can be supported by the food supply. No longer would innocent children with distended bellies lie in the merciless sun awaiting a slow and painful death from starvation. Healthy young adults and adolescents would have enough food to allow them to do useful work and keep the economy going. Would it be only the cruelest and most ignorant among us who would speak against the killing of the old and the infirm?

Many people would say that the two cases have nothing to do with one another, and I must admit that they may be right. If an embryo is nothing but a cluster of cells with a life indistinguishable from that of a plant, they are right. The two cases have nothing to do with one another. On the other hand, if human life begins at conception, then the two cases are exactly the same. We are killing some human beings in order to the improve the lives of others.

I believe that human life commences at conception. Apparently Mr. Salter does not. Which of us is right? Unfortunately, there is no way to determine the answer to that question. We know for certain that human life commences somewhere between conception and birth. Neither I nor Mr. Salter can say for certain when it commences. We can only give our opinions. What if my opinion is right and Mr. Salter’s is wrong? If I am right, destroying embryos is no different than killing the old and the ill. Are we, as a society, ready to ignore the facts that we may very well be destroying some innocent human beings for the benefit of others?

Very truly yours,
J.R. Dunworth
Holly Springs

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