On Oct. 5, President Bush called upon Congress to pass an economic stimulus package. On Oct. 13, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle agreed to put aside politics for the good of the nation, and when the House passed a stimulus bill, Daschle said he hoped the Senate would pass an economic stimulus package by Thanksgiving. The next day (the 25th), Daschle changed his focus to more government spending in his appropriations bill. Then, on Nov. 2, he said Bush's stimulus package needed to be passed by Nov. 30. December 3 found the Democratic Finance Chairman saying, "We can do it (a stimulus package) if we're reasonable."
Since then Sen. Daschle has said he wouldn't even bring a bill to the floor unless he has 2/3 of the Senate Democrats supporting it. So much for putting aside politics for the good of the Nation.
Fox News Sunday's Brit Hume asked Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), the Senate Democrat's assistant majority leader, if his party is "obstructing the president and the nation's business on a number of fronts, from the stimulus package to judges and a list of other things. How do you plead?"
Reid's reply: "We plead guilty." (Sunday, 12/9/01)
So, while the nation needs help, partisan Democrats in Washington would rather score political points, buying future votes, than help the economy. It's the same old, same old from Daschle and his cohorts. They play Robin Hood with taxpayers' monies to ensure their political futures, and the nation be damned.
Let the Democrats know you have had enough! It is time to focus on America's needs and agenda, not on theirs!
Executive Order 9066
Executive Order 9066, February 19, 1942, authorized the military to detain any individuals from West Coast military zones. The order followed earlier roundups of individuals suspected of ties to the Japanese government and restrictions on travel, employment, and business activities of Japanese-Americans. Implementation of the order led to the internment of about 110,000 Japanese-Americans, two-thirds of them U.S.-born citizens.
I abhor the events of Sept. 11. I wish for Old Testament justice for the perpetrators of these acts of senseless violence. I do not understand the mind that creates or obeys such incivility. But neither do I understand the collective mind that creates or allows Executive Order 9066. Will Sept. 1 and Dec. 7 have more in common than "days that will live in infamy" Will they also share the panic that enjoins the irrational logic that permeates and perpetuates racism and prejudice? The rational of Executive Order 9066 was that we were at "war with not only the Japanese government, but the Japanese" race as a whole. This obviously meant no matter where individuals of Japanese ancestry resided. We are not at "war with all individuals of Arabic/Muslim ancestry,." regardless of John Ashcroft's interpretation of the law.
What does this have to do with the holidays? Because of September 11 our mortality and vulnerability are like an open wound. We cannot escape it. We have been attacked. We are at war. We should be holding each other more often. We should be more thankful for our blessings. We should take the time to notice, perhaps what we once would not have. We should let others know we appreciate their kindness. We should rejoice our humanity and our morality. We should open our hearts and not be blinded by the patriotism of bigotry.
Michael J. Erickson
This in response to the gentleman who claims that Jesus is not real, the Bible is a fantasy book and those who read it are guilty of childish and delusional thinking.
At the same time he tells about a "real man" by the name of Josephus, a Jewish historian, who never wrote about any Jesus of Nazareth. According to the New Encyclopaedia Britannica/Vol. 6/Micropaedia/Ready Reference/P. 623-624, Flavius Josephus (whose original name was Joseph Ben Matthias, but that's a story in itself) was born around the year 37/38 A.D. (A.D., anno domini, "so many years after his coming" and B.C., "before Christ.") According to this reference book, Josephus was loathed by the Jews as a turncoat and traitor. In regard to Josephus' book titled "The Antiquities of the Jews" the encyclopaedia states, "Historically, the coverage is patchy and shows the fatigue of the author then in his middle 50's." It goes on to say, "As a historian, Josephus shares the faults of most ancient writers: his analyses are superficial, his chronology faulty, his facts exaggerated, his speeches contrived" and that personally, "Josephus was vain, callous and self-seeking. There was not a shred of heroism in his character and for his toadyism he well deserved the scorn heaped upon him by his countrymen."
If, as you say, you prefer your fiction modern, I would suggest you not read any more of Josephus. And incidentally, how do you know that he is real? Have you ever met him?
Theresa M. Jarvela
Broadcast school meetings
The Dispatch has recently published a series of articles on the state of school facilities in District 181, followed by coverage of the school board's plan to construct and renovate facilities. The plan proposed by the board has tremendous ramifications for our learners and community. It is hoped that each citizen in the district will invest time and effort to educate himself or herself on this important issue in time to raise issues, concerns or support before the plan is put on the ballot.
Broadcasting school board meetings would be an excellent way for citizens to become better informed. We are fortunate to live in a community where televising public meetings is possible at low or no additional cost to the taxpayers, due to the availability of grants and public access television. Our school district already has facilities appropriate for broadcasting.
It is hoped that the school board will take advantage of this additional way to inform the public. Televising meetings is an opportunity for those with work, family or other commitments that do not allow for in-person attendance at meetings to still have the benefit of first hand observation. Our citizenry and schools can only benefit from such access.
President, Brainerd Lakes Area
League of Women Voters
Be good neighbors
Melanie Benjamin's recent accusations of racism, that were reported, are extremely disappointing. When she was elected there was a great hope a more forthcoming, responsible and mature approach would be adopted by the new tribal administration in terms of dealing with the concerns of neighbors.
Good neighbors are honest and forthcoming with each other. Most of the people who reside within the boundaries of the "old" reservation are not Band members. I believe these people really do want to be good neighbors. An assurance to these folks from Ms. Benjamin that the tribal government has no intention, now or ever, of exerting any kind of government jurisdiction over them and/or their property go a long way toward improving relations, especially as the Band's land base increases.
In her recent letter to Band members Melanie stated, "The Band has no criminal jurisdiction over non-Indians." I wish she had also included "civil jurisdiction" in that statement. Not to have included it makes it conspicuous by its absence. And to have left it out makes one suspicious that Ms. Benjamin was not totally forthcoming in the overall message she was attempting to convey.
Let us get beyond rumor and suspicion, items the tribal leadership accuses its critics of promoting because of racial motives. The tribal leadership can help in this process. Melanie should shift gears, talk to her non-Indian neighbors, and state categorically that the tribal government will never, under any circumstances, exercise jurisdiction of any kind over anyone who does not have the right to vote in Band government.
Please let us hear it. Please let us be good neighbors.
This letter responds to "Struck with Wonder,"1/8/02, that stated, "there is a growing concern about that leap of faith which cannot allow for the reasoned morality of other religions including the atheist."
What does "allow for reasoned morality" mean? Is the killing of teen-agers by other teen-agers at Columbine H.S. "reasoned morality" that is to be allowed? No, it is based on hate. Is the use of jumbo jets loaded with fuel as bombs to kill thousands of innocent people "reasoned morality" to be allowed? No, it is based on hate. Is the firemen and policemen who sacrificed their lives to help others "reasoned morality" to be allowed? Yes, it is based upon love for one's neighbor. Is the murder of over 100 million people during the last century, in the name of atheism, by socialist/communists Hitler, Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro, Pol Pot, and others, "reasoned morality" that is to be allowed? No, it is based upon the delusion of superiority and no regard for human life. "Post modern" thinkers have forgotten (or rejected) a basic truth of logic and reasoning. If the reasoning process is based upon false assumptions, the end result will be faulty. They have assumed relativistic right or wrong, good or bad, no absolute truth, and no such thing as sin. They end up with faulty conclusions that sometimes are socially harmful or absurd or show a lack of common sense.
The Moslems have reinforced what the Christians have been proclaiming for decades. This nations major media (TV, movies, music, news, magazines, soap opera heroes, and some politicians) most often project us as morally and ethically corrupt. This behavior is the result of the institution of secular humanism, over the last 50 or so years, as the national code for morality and ethics.
Ralph E. Kant
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