News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


Hourly wages not
Delphi's only expense

In the Oct. 9 edition of THE DAILY, under the headline "Delphi goes bankrupt," there are many quotes from the chief executive officer of Delphi, Steve Miller.

There are, however, a few items that he failed to mention. I thought the community might like a little more insight into the situation.

First of all, Mr. Miller will make $4.5 million dollars this year alone. He stated that this was a "fair" figure, considering he came out of retirement.

Second, the executive who was in line to get the CEO position prior to the hiring of Mr. Miller was given a $1.1 million dollar compensation for not getting the position. This is over and above his $850,000 annual salary.

Third, in the Delphi Corporation, there is one salaried person for every 2.1 hourly employees.

Mr. Miller claims that wages are the reason for the bankruptcy and openly stated that he wants wages cut by 60 percent.

My question is simply this: Does it sound as though hourly wages are the problem?

Mark Letson


Reduced wages better than unemployment

I was disgusted when I saw the worker from Delphi on the news. He was complaining about wages being cut from about $27 per hour to $10 to $12 per hour. I would like to tell him that a lot of people in this area would love to make $10 to $12 an hour. It beats unemployment or working for minimum wage. I am sure it would mean a lifestyle adjustment, but it would be better than no job at all.

I was laid off from Champion Paper Co. about seven years ago and if I had been given a choice of working there for lower wages and fewer benefits, I would have taken it. It would have been better than what I faced. I went from working at a $15 per hour base wage to raking yards nine hours a day for $35 a week to put food on the table for my children.

So, if you can take a pay cut and keep your job, then feel blessed and thank God for that choice. Alabama unemployment compensation is about $192 per week, so you would have a lot of yards to rake to bring in an average of $10 or $12 an hour.

I would have been ashamed to have gone on television to complain about that.

June Munoz


Catholic practices
often misunderstood

It's great the number of letters of support that have been written to Annunciation Church in Decatur. I do, however, understand in some ways the whole "worshipping statues and false idols" statement that some people made. I, too, am a Roman Catholic and have seen many times the people who focus on the statue and pray before it. I realize that in the Catholic Church, the statue is just a symbol of a person who did so much for us. In our faith, we are not taught to worship statues or "false idols," if you will. We are taught that they are just "tributes" to those great people who lived, who have had a great significance and closeness with Jesus.

A woman read me the riot act one time, when she said that Jesus isn't on the cross anymore and that it was evil that we had a crucifix in our church. I then asked her if there was a cross in her church, to which she replied yes, there was. I told her it was the same thing, except we have the image of Jesus on the cross. She then became quiet and finally understood. She felt guilty because her minister taught her that Catholics weren't Christian and she now knew that wasn't true.

What I'm getting at, though, is that the people of Annunciation have shown their true Christianity and it was a public thing. So much bad news comes from the Catholic church, but to see how the people of Decatur came together and took down those four people who were doing something that they knew nothing about, yet they were still kind to them after they got them under control. I'm very proud to say that I'm Catholic and very proud of that great community that is Decatur, Alabama!

Rick Clarke


Trees have more soul than some residents

I watched in horror and disbelief as the city cut down the oak tree in Delano Park and wondered why? Does the city have nothing better to do than cut down these magnificent trees that have more soul than some of the citizens in Decatur?

Did some city/county official need firewood? Are they selling the oak? Some of these trees are in better health than their weak replacements will ever be. The last storm damaged almost all the trees around the walking path and the city had to remove them. What did this cost the citizens?

Please stop wasting time, money and resources cutting down some of Decatur's oldest treasures.

Where once there stood a mighty oak there is now an empty space — you know, like the one in some of our city leaders' heads. It can never be filled, so we will replace it with something smaller and weaker. Thanks to Ms. Smartt and Ms. Kelly for the hard work, and caring enough to try and replace what is lost!

Margaret Wyker


Alabama football
entering a new era

Former University of Alabama football coach Mike Price has had his day in court, or at least out of court and at the bank. Time Inc. and Sports Illustrated have paid him, and his lawsuit against them for publishing allegations that he had sex with a stripper while working for the university is over.

The vestiges of an ugly period in University of Alabama athletics are fading. Without regard to wins and losses, Time — the company — and "time" — the memory-eraser — are releasing UA football from the scandals of the recent past. May sound judgment, common sense, fair play and hard work be the attributes of UA football today and tomorrow, just as they were so many yesterdays ago.

Tim Shelton


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