Readers write: Power of science, regional change, enjoying and learning

Letters to the editor for the April 24, 2017 weekly magazine.

Alfredo Sosa/Staff
An abandoned coal preparation plant operated by the Kentucky May Coal co. rusts away on February 28, 2017 in Knott County, Kentucky.

Power of science

John Yemma captures some of the stellar glow of science in his March 20 Upfront piece, “The pure spirit of science.” But the gleam of science goes well beyond the wonder of new discoveries and the excitement of dedicated workers. It is the scientific mode of thought that can transform our nation and the world. Scientific thinking provides a logical, inspired pathway to solve problems and trigger scintillating inspiration. Let’s hope that we can find some way to utilize more of this vital “national resource.”

Dr. Allan Hauer

Corrales, N.M.

Regional change

Regarding the April 10 cover story, “Appalachia’s new trail”: I am encouraged that some people are accepting that coal is not coming back to eastern Kentucky in any big way. The days of high school graduates getting a high-wage job without college or specialized training are long gone. Some people choose to cast blame and feel sorry for themselves while others find a way to forge their own future. I applaud Russell Huff’s entrepreneurship and desire to stay in eastern Kentucky to be part of the solution.

Idaho County, where I live, faces similar struggles. Logging and timber manufacturing are traditional industries that used to offer many unskilled labor jobs. Unlike many small towns in the West, Grangeville, Idaho, is fortunate to still have a sawmill. Most of the operations are mechanized with few low-skill-level jobs. Skilled, technical-type jobs dominate. The diversification of new ideas and small businesses in the area is slow, but there are signs of hope.

Norma Staaf

Harpster, Idaho

Enjoying and learning

Regarding the April 3 Home Forum essay, “A golden host of my own”: Christopher Andreae’s articles are always delightful, and we learn something, too! More, please!

Dr. Karen Fanta Zumbrunn

Princeton, N.J.

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