Letters to the editor: July 27 - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Letters to the editor: July 27

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Posted: Sunday, July 27, 2008 9:35 pm | Updated: 9:31 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

Barack Obama seems to like the comparison of himself to another young, inexperienced Democrat who ran for President — John F. Kennedy. Although he is no John Kennedy, I feel compelled to point out to the many too-young-to-know or remember supporters of Obama that the inexperienced John Kennedy put together the failed and costly “Bay of Pigs” debacle.

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PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

JFK not the legacy to follow

Barack Obama seems to like the comparison of himself to another young, inexperienced Democrat who ran for President — John F. Kennedy. Although he is no John Kennedy, I feel compelled to point out to the many too-young-to-know or remember supporters of Obama that the inexperienced John Kennedy put together the failed and costly “Bay of Pigs” debacle.

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He also was the president who sent the troops into Vietnam, leading the United States into that terrible and costly war. In addition, JFK’s presidency was so lackluster that had he lived, it was generally believed he would have been a one-term president. Is this Obama’s legacy?

JIM MOONEY

MESA

McCain fails to attract the right

John McCain proudly panders to the pagan left while reveling in his disdain for the only people in this country that matter. His quest for revenge is more important to him than winning the election. McCain is not a maverick, he’s a megalomaniac. Faded heroes should fade away. Far away.

LEROY DUNCAN

MESA

SCOTTSDALE GROWTH

Piecemeal planning wrong

I’m writing about the July 1 meeting of the Scottsdale City Council meeting and the citizens’ petition asking for a public vote on height and density issues. A council majority rejected the residents’ petition on the basis that residents cannot be giving input or taking votes because there is currently no official plan. Staff stated that the plan would be drafted sometime in the fall, and then they would conduct a proper process for citizen input.

So, the public is again given the brush-off; allowed to be briefly heard at council meetings, but not allowed to have real input or even put critical issues to a public vote. On the other hand, developers are being heard, projects are being approved, and the steel and concrete are going up.

This situation creates a double standard. For residents, lack of a “plan” equates to preventing or dismissing their input. But for the developers, the lack of a plan apparently allows all the input they could want and a green light for projects. How can anyone be this hypocritical with a straight face?

We all understand that, in reality, downtown development is being “planned” by default – one piece at a time, using variances, expedited approvals and even a declaration of emergency. This default, piecemeal process is a type of planning, but it is not a good one.

AMY MACAULAY

SCOTTSDALE

LAND SWAPS

Protect environmental law

Why should Arizonans desire a congressional land swap bequeathing 3,000 acres of U.S. Forest Service land to two foreign mining companies with abusive third-world environmental and human rights records? Under Sen. Jon Kyl’s bill (Sen. John McCain introduced it earlier), an Australian and a British company would be exempted from our nation’s most important environmental protection law, the National Environmental Policy Act.

This “block-cave” mine would be two miles across and collapse the earth at least 200 feet. That’s deeper than Niagra Falls, and four times wider. Being exempt from NEPA, the mine does not have to disclose its giant hole’s location, its smelter’s location or pollution controls, where it would dump its mining wastes, what streams and aquifers it would pollute or dewater, how much of Colorado River’s already over-committed water it would use annually (reportedly as much as all of Tempe uses), or how much of Apache Leap they would obliterate.

Kyl’s NEPA exemption greatly weakens endangered species oversight and Native American cultural and historic protections. So much for the endangered cactus found there, and for Apache Leap, where U.S. Cavalry forced more than 75 Apache warriors to jump to their deaths.

Native Americans must wonder: would Kyl or McCain approve a strip mine at Gettysburg if it created jobs and growth? Two U.S. presidential orders (from Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon) declared this site a national treasure, permanently free from mining.

HERBERT S. FIBEL

TEMPE

Marriage

Children deserve one mother, one father

For thousands of years the term “marriage” has been used to describe the religious, contractual and now governmental relationship between a man and woman into which, most often, children are born. There are good reasons for the use of a word which defines this relationship of commitment. In the last few years, the gay community has chosen to try and hijack this term to describe their homosexual relationships, perhaps in order to make such acceptable under the cover of the legitimate term of “marriage,” and, once obtained, use it as a word to provide more societal disruption.

Gay couples should just get their own word to describe their relationships and not change the use of a thousands-of-years-old word. It is similar to now deciding after all these years to call oranges “apples” because they have commonalities; both are fruits and are sweet. Some people like Marilynn J. Miles (“No reason to deny same-sex couples,” Letters, July 19) and, unfortunately, some judges, are buying into their proposals. All of the “benefits” they seek can be contractually or otherwise provided to them without the term “marriage” applied to their relationship.

To allow them to use that term would impact all the currently existing laws made for a different circumstance, providing confusion and litigation throughout society, of which we have enough already.

A serious fault with “same-sex marriage” is that it also redefines a “man-woman marriage” to create “genderless marriage.” The damage it will do to children is substantially documented, see unitedfamilies.org/coreissues_marriage.cfm. Every child is entitled to a father and mother, not “legal parent A” and “legal parent B” as is done in Canada or “progenitor A” and “progenitor B” as is done in Spain. Children deserve better.

FRED ASH

MESA

ISRAEL

No negotiating unless Israeli captives are alive

It behooves Israel to modify, somewhat, at least one of its policies. Israel has always assured its military and civilians that it would be relentless in obtaining the return of any of its kidnapped or imprisoned soldiers or civilians. And it has kept its word in this reassurance, engaging in lopsided swaps of a few, usually dead, Israelis for multiple live terrorists.

However, Israel must henceforth make it clear that only live Israelis will be accepted in any swap for live terrorists. This eliminates the incentive for terrorists to kill Israelis before any swap and, so, is beneficial to Israelis in this activity with terrorist scum.

A perfect example of this earned scum label is Israel’s recent swap, which included terrorist Samir Kuntar — the confessed killer of, among others, 4-year-old Einat Haran, whose head was bashed in with Kuntar’s rifle.

The massive celebration and exaltation by Hezbollah after the release of Kuntar, and its taunting of the families of the dead Israeli soldiers exchanged for the child-killer Kuntar and many other live terrorists, exemplify the total wickedness of terrorists such as Kuntar and Hezbollah.

GERALD L. ANCHOR

SCOTTSDALE

ROUNDABOUTS

Drivers don’t know how to yield

Now that Loop 202 is open in east Mesa, you should do a feature story on the roundabouts at the Brown Road and McKellips Road crossings. The roundabouts are a new concept that most people don’t understand.

They come flying off of the freeway and into a roundabout instead of a stop light. After driving on the new freeway twice already, I discovered that few people don’t read the “yield” signs. There should be some high profile public education on these new roundabouts.

MICHAEL MOWERS

MESA

SCHOOL VOUCHERS

Education can ease difficulties for disabled

Although the recent financial cutbacks affecting school vouchers may be inevitable, the hardships on the children can be ameliorated. While I was happy to hear that so many of the children with autism were making great strides in the private setting, it saddened me to read Robin Sweet’s description of their experiences while in the public schools, full of teasing and bullying (“Voucher ruling could oust kids from schools,” Tribune, June 5). If these children will need to transfer to another school for the fall, a few suggestions may be helpful.

One of the main reasons that a child with unique characteristics gets teased is due to a lack of understanding. In order to minimize these problems in my school, the regular education students in the child’s mainstream classes were taught about autism in general, and about the child’s needs in particular. This was done by having the parent, school psychologist or special education teacher speak to the non-disabled students in each classroom. The peers’ responses were amazing.

Once peers learned that the students with autism have neurological problems, they became more understanding. When they were told about the type of communication and sensory difficulties that could be expected, they became empathetic. When the peers were asked to be friends and buddy helpers, they became leaders.

In this process, the regular education teachers became more aware of the needs of the children with autism and could make accommodations. Has it been easy? No. Has it been worth it? Definitely.

If you find that your child will need to move to a new school this fall, knowing how difficult change can be for him or her, you may want to adopt this approach. It can help lessen teasing and increase understanding. Ask your local school psychologist for more information or assistance.

BONNIE BARTOL

TAYLOR JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL

MESA

RACIAL PROFILING

There is nothing racist about a physical description

Let’s say there have been a rash of bank robberies by tall, white, blond-haired, blue-eyed, northern European-looking men in business suits. If a bank robbery just took place by a group fitting this profile and the police see a group fitting this profile going away from the bank, they have the right and obligation to ask questions.

If a police officer sees a group of dark-skinned, short men standing on a corner all day with cars occasionally stopping and, after a short conversation, several enter the car and leave, the police have the right and obligation to ask questions.

Objecting to the rounding up of illegal immigrants is a clear case of reverse discrimination.

HENRY RICHARDS

CHANDLER

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