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Payday loans not appropriate target for legislative action

| February 22, 2007 11:00 PM

To the Editor:

I'd like to respond to Mrs. Eileen Carney's letter of Feb. 14.

In her letter, she suggests that we, as a society, need legislative action to protect ourselves from a few wolves in sheep's clothing.

Well Mrs. Carney, I'm with you in the sentiment that the world is full of blood suckers and cutthroats, and the world would surely be a better place without them.

However, I don't think the answer lies in dragging the government in to make yet another decision for us that anyone with a sixth-grade education should be able to make for themselves.

If we have to get big brother to do this for us, what's next? Socialism?

If you have extra money to spend, how about we go for something like fraud or identity theft? Let's pick on something that's a real problem.

In your letter, you elude to the targets of these payday and title loans as "poor and unsophisticated." I grew up here in the 1950s and 1960s, and these two adjectives would have fairly accurately described me and my family. At least from a materialistic stand-point.

Be that as it may, I don't remember my dad hocking his gun, his tools or the title to his truck, but I do remember him working long hours to make ends meet.

Anyone who knows me knows I grew up in a large family with a lot of kids, and I know what it's like to have to make do. Fact is, I don't think that's such a bad thing. It teaches you value and builds character.

It also teaches us to tighten our belts from time to time and live within our own means. Something many are not taught these days.

Even though the majority of us are opposed to these types of loans, the problem with making them illegal is, by the time it gets through legislation, there will be another four or five liberties tacked onto it that we don't want to lose.

I think by honing budgeting skills and exercising a little self-discipline, these legal bandits would soon be out of business due to an absence of customers.

The freedom to choose is a responsibility that must be assumed by us all if we're to live in a free society. If I may quote Paul Harvey here, "self government won't work without self discipline."

Bob Creighton