Van wreck and poverty

There was a column in the September 30th Kokomo Tribune written by Jon Webb of the Evansville Courier & Press. It was the story of 22 immigrants in a 1994 Dodge 16-passenger van who were traveling from Washington, IN, to a temporary employment center some miles away. The van was in very poor state of repair including bald tires. A tire blew. The van crashed killing two and injuring all others aboard. Jon’s column is the story of poverty and what it does to people who are desperate. I wrote to Jon……..

“Jon… thank you for your column about the 22 people in the van. Personally, I believe there to be no excuse for any in the United States to go hungry or not have a proper place to lay their head at night….. or for that matter not to be able to find a job that pays a living wage. That might sound strange from a life long Republican given the crop of do-nothing “Republicans” in Congress now; particularly the extreme religious right wing variety.

We send billions to other countries when not taking care of our own. We send millions of jobs overseas that once were the economic engine for our country. We poke our nose militarily into places or conflicts that pose no threat to the USA. And we are on the way to economic catastrophe with spending out of control.

Then there is immigration. You mention that the 22 in the van mostly were Haitian immigrants. The thought that immediately flashed into mind was whether they were in the USA legally or illegally…. not that that would make any difference as to the tragedy that befell them. Then thoughts wandered to what is happening in Europe with the mass migration of people from the Middle East and Africa and what, clearly, is the case with our own southern border. It all ties together.

I think unless we have the will to take bold action, this country will be in deep trouble…. already is. Our political class has sold us down the river for their own personal gain. I find that I have become a fan of one who once was a politician, Pat Buchanan. He was a proponent of “fortress America”….  America first. First with a healthy America; then reaching out into the world. We are not healthy. Again, I find it appalling that any in the USA are hungry or without shelter. Shame on us. “


About Kent Blacklidge Ph.D.

As one of a newspaper family who owned a 34,000 daily newspaper in the heart of the Midwest for 85 years, I have a deep belief in a strong “Fourth Estate”, the press. Without a diligent, truthful, and assertive free press, the power would be taken from the people. People have the absolute right to know. After earning a degree in Industrial Management from the Krannert School of Management at Purdue, I spent over 20 years in newspaper management with several as publisher. I also hold three graduate science degrees including a Ph.D.. I have a passionate interest in science, the environment, government, and politics. I have very little tolerance for ignorance and stupidity.
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