Letters to the editor (8/9/09)

August 7, 2009 

Right-to-life crowd that backs US wars is rife with hypocrisy

"Right-to-lifer" hypocrisy is no more clearly demonstrated than by the fact that these self-righteous bigots invariably support violent post-birth abortions of Iraqi and Afghani children via horrendous methods like "daisy cutters" -- or dismiss it as "collateral damage." Apparently religion and/or pigmentation of a child's parents are factors when deciding whether or not it has the "right to life."

The only honest American "anti-abortionist" I ever heard was former KKK Grand Dragon Tom Metzger. He plainly stated: "We're opposed to abortions for white women. We're in favor of abortions for non-white women."

That's the real issue for Bible-thumpers. If melanistically challenged teenagers didn't patronize abortion clinics, you wouldn't hear a peep out of these folks. And I say this as someone who wholeheartedly believes in a Scripture that -- unlike the Bible -- takes an unequivocal stand concerning outrages like "abortion-on-demand":

"Do not kill your children for fear of poverty -- verily, Allah will provide for them and for you. To kill your children is a grievous sin."

-- Al-Hajj Frederick H. Minshall

Anchorage

Health care is broken? Agreed

I read Dr. Tucker's letter and wondered if he or a loved one had a bad experience with one of the entities mentioned. While I agree many government entities could be run more efficiently, it isn't necessarily due to government ineptitude. Some is fraud by Dr. Tucker's colleagues, much of it a woeful lack of funding from Congress. There are more important money pits to throw our tax dollars into, such as $1.3 trillion tax cuts for the few who make the most, ironically about the same intolerable cost to insure all.

One thing everyone agrees on is the system is horribly broken. Finger-pointing and talking heads spinning various solutions they disagree with resolves nothing; it only serves to make an already confusing situation more so. Perhaps honest discourse of the positives and negatives of various solutions would better serve all of us. It will take awhile to repair what has been broken for many decades. It will happen quicker if we work together.

-- Anne Pitts

Anchorage

Son's suicide is still haunting

Lately when I sleep, I wonder if my son, who committed suicide 12 years ago, will enter my dreams so I can tell him I miss him. Books stack up on the shelf waiting to be read to see if I can find an answer, and the question of what I could have done differently.

"The Suicide Index," by Joan Wickersham caught my attention, to read how she tried to understand her father's suicide -- she wrote, "Suicide damages your memory." Many days have passed; I had wondered if I even knew my son at all, but I must not feel defeated without an answer, move forward and love him unconditionally.

Don't be afraid to ask for help. Call in a favor and ask your friend to help you to get through the things that trouble your mind. Those who have been touched by suicide, my condolences. Please take five minutes of your time to call your friend. If you know someone who may be thinking about suicide, remember the Careline Crisis Intervention number 1-800-266-4357.

-- Barbara J. Franks

Anchorage

Anchorage streets a disgrace

I read the Department of Transportation's Jack Fullerton's excuse on Aug. 3 for the roads being not maintained/swept. There is no excuse for his poor performance as a manager. I have called DOT twice and even contacted the mayor's office, pleading with them to sweep Northern Lights Boulevard.

Smith & Sons may have been the low bid, but you pay for what you get. They are the worst contractor in Anchorage for this job.

I suggest that these low-bid contractors have a performance bond requirement. This is a complete embarrassment for the DOT and the state of Alaska, and heads should roll over this.

-- Mark Flaker

Anchorage

Don't let good clunkers die

This country is, in the middle of an economic crisis, destroying useful goods. Does that make economic sense?

In the interest of getting "clunkers" off the road, we are destroying thousands of perfectly good engines. (The "Cash for Clunkers" program requires running their engines with oil replaced by sodium silicate until the engine seizes). Some engines are so far gone they should be melted down, sure. But others could be cleaned up and put in service somewhere else, or salvaged for parts. Still others could be rebuilt and put back into rebuilt vehicles, thereby creating jobs for several thousand mechanics. How's that for healthy stimulus?

Call your favorite senators and representative and suggest that a less wasteful way to take clunkers off the road be incorporated in the re-authorization of the "Cash for Clunkers" Act, please.

-- Larry Schuller

Anchorage

Please sweep

The state can't seem to get Boniface Parkway and its sidewalks swept, so I slog through six inches of dirt on the way to work every day. The municipality just swept my clean neighborhood street (just off Boniface) for the third time this summer. Mr. Mayor, can you see an opportunity here?

-- Glen Denning

Anchorage

Don't make people associate

It was good to be in my home state for a couple of weeks this summer. It was intriguing to follow the debate about granting "homosexual rights" in Anchorage. Having grown up in Alaska, I had the naive idea that Alaskans were not susceptible to some of the political and ideological silliness of the "Lower 48."

I hope those pushing the notion of "homosexual rights" will have the fortitude to admit what they are doing. This is about power and the destruction of liberty. It is immoral to use the civil government -- which means force or the threat of force -- to force people to associate. Liberty can be messy, and people do not always live the way we like. But liberty is precious, and to be a free people is to be free to associate with whom one wants to associate. To deem "discrimination" against homosexuals to be illegal is one more step in the destruction of liberty. I hope there are enough Alaskans who will oppose such a measure.

-- Brad Green

Jackson, Tenn.

'Parvenue' can apply to many

Thanks to Jim Woolever for his letter teaching us a word most of us did not previously know: parvenue, which he says is "a female who has suddenly acquired wealth and power, especially one who is not fully accepted socially by the class associated with the higher position." But I wonder to whom he was referring? Michelle Obama? Hillary Clinton? Nancy Pelosi? Sonia Sotomayor? Jim, please enlighten me, I can't stand the suspense!

-- Drew Mullin

Palmer

New governor continues to use off-the-record e-mail

Gov. Parnell admits he has used private e-mail accounts to conduct official business and that he handed over those e-mails in response to record requests. (ADN, July 28). Like his predecessor Sarah Palin, Parnell has breached the integrity of the Alaska Public Records Act by using non-secure e-mail servers to conduct State of Alaska business. Just like Palin, Parnell also refuses to issue an executive order that prohibits the use of private e-mail accounts for official business. One would assume he would jump at the chance to strengthen what seems to have been a vacuous policy for Palin administration officials. You'd think he'd send a strong message to Alaskans that he respects the public's right to access government documents. As an attorney, you'd think Parnell would understand the importance of only using secure e-mail servers to preserve and protect official public documents and communications. Parnell's flat-out rejection to do what it takes to guarantee open, honest and transparent government doesn't bode well with this Alaskan.

-- Valerie Henning

Wasilla

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