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July 4, 2001

By Staff
Declare independence from drunk driving
To the Editor:
Independence Day does not mean independence from responsibility. During this Fourth of July holiday period, we encourage the people of the Meridian area to make responsible choices, such as using designated drivers and designated skippers to keep our highways and waterways safe.
A nationwide survey of adults says that 94 percent of the American public believe the use of designated drivers is a good way to reduce drunk driving fatalities. For more than two decades, we have helped make the term "designated driver" a part of our everyday language.
Now, a generation of adult drivers believe that drunk driving is completely taboo. That's why drunk driving fatalities are on a decline. The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that Fourth of Jury holiday drunk-driving fatalities are a whopping 52 percent lower since 1982. Year-round total alcohol-related fatalities have dropped 41 percent the lowest level since record keeping began.
How can you help in the fight against drunk driving? Simply exercise personal responsibility while attending parties, picnics, barbeques, fireworks shows, summertime sporting events, on the water or relaxing in the back yard. That means drinking responsibly, designating a driver or skipper or calling a cab to ensure that our roads, highways and waterways remain safe this Fourth of July. Join the new generation of American adults who have declared their independence from drunk driving.
Manny Mitchell
President
Mitchell Distributing Company
Meridian
Thanks for support
of Relay for Life 2001
To the Editor:
Relay for Life was a giant success due in part to your tremendous support and sponsorship. Thank you for helping us surpass our goal and raise $400,000 to fight cancer through research, education and patient services.
We are now the number one Relay in the state, region and Mid-South division, which includes Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee and Kentucky. Meridian and Lauderdale County really rallied to the cause and our community did take up the fight.
We sincerely appreciate you and your staff helping us to spread the word about Relay. Without your help we could not have achieved the success that we now enjoy.
Please accept my personal thanks for your sponsorship of Relay for Life 2001.
Thank you is also in order for the enthusiastic team from The Meridian Star. Their enthusiasm and team spirit was very commendable. They really were the "Stars."
Betty Lou Jones
Chairperson
Relay for Life 2001
Meridian
False promises' beget job losses
To the Editor:
I was very upset to learn that another 24,000 jobs have been lost in this country, this time in the steel industry, because of what the politicians call "free trade." It is now nearly impossible to find clothes, toys, stereos, computers and many other items that are made in the USA.
These industries are gone because our leaders promised us that giving these jobs away would make it easier on us in the long run by lowering prices, creating jobs and improving the lives of workers here and elsewhere.
Have any of these promises come true? Have prices dropped? Have we replaced the hundreds of thousands of industrial jobs that have been lost? Are workers better off?
The record is clear. These were false promises. We had better make sure we don't throw away another industry and certainly not one as vital to our national security as steel.
Because of imported steel, the USA is only producing 86 percent of its capacity and the percentage is steadily dropping. Why is the USA importing so much steel when it is not utilizing its full capacity? "Free trade."
Where is the imported steel coming from? According to World Steel Dynamics reports, Latin America, Japan, China and the Commonwealth of Independent States, including the Federation of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
Our national security must have USA produced steel to be secure.
Ronnie Turner
President
Mississippi Association of Central Labor Councils Amory

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