Speak Out 2/7/06

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Freedom of speech

I SAW Cindy Sheehan was arrested for wearing a shirt with an anti-war message in the nation's Capitol. Are we still in America? Don't people have a right to speak out? I don't believe in the war either, and I would expect if I wanted to wear a shirt that said I was against the war, I could walk around and say that.

Writing bad checks

HOW CAN a company write bad checks to its employees without repercussions? When you write a bad check, you have to pay a penalty and could be prosecuted. Where are the working person's rights? What about our bills?

Saving lives

THE WORLD of drug addiction is never a pretty picture, but if that picture can save others from going down the same path, isn't it worth it?

Network was right

I DON'T think NBC was wrong in stopping the airing of "The Book of Daniel." I appreciate what the network did. True Christians would not watch this trash, nor would they watch the movie "Brokeback Mountain." Thank you, NBC.

We're like sheep

DECADES AGO psychoanalyst Eric Fromm wrote "Escape From Freedom." In it, he posited that when push comes to shove, humans will opt for security over freedom every time. The American public generally accepts President Bush's illegal domestic spy program even though such Republican senators as Arlen Specter deem the program illegal. If President Bush were to pull a "Seven Days in May" and tell the American people that security interests demanded that he serve another term even though prohibited by the Constitution, we would be, with some exceptions, good sheep.

Act of decency

GOD BLESS the woman who found my purse at Wal-Mart in a shopping cart. With heartfelt thanks I can say I witnessed old-fashioned decency.

Punishing a child

I READ in the police reports that an 8-year-old boy was cited into juvenile court for attempted assault and possession of prohibited weapons. I find it troubling when our police department cites a boy into the system. Whatever happened to a good old-fashioned swat on the behind?

Housing for visitors

CENTRAL HIGH School will be hosts to delegates for a state convention of student councils in March. It is a great opportunity and important for students and families to be involved, but CHS Student Senate sponsors have gone too far in forcing members to house students. A letter to the students contained this statement: "If you do not find enough housing, they will be staying with you whether you feel (or your parents feel) you can house or not." Those opening their homes to these students must provide two meals and transportation to and from school. Not every student lives in a large home or has means to provide transportation or families that can afford to feed extra mouths. My student has contacted neighbors, relatives and friends. Because they were unwilling to be hosts, we have been blackmailed into having far more students then we can practically care for. We will do it to keep our student in the student senate.

Paying the dues

WHY DO Southeast Missourians vote for Republicans? It's so embarrassing. Do they even know the agenda of the GOP? Residents of Southeast Missouri are hard-working, middle-class Americans but hardly wealthy. The Republican Party is all about rewarding the wealthy and sticking the bill to middle-class America. Republicans are cutting programs middle-class Missourians use most, like public education funding, student loans, farm subsidies and Medicaid. Southeast Missourians are voting to cut their own benefits. Why? Wake up, Southeast Missourians. You aren't members of the GOP Country Club. You pay the dues, but you don't get the benefits.

Airport addition

CONGRATULATIONS TO all those who worked to bring military recognition to the Cape Girardeau Regional Airport. The Skyhawk will be a nice addition and a worthy sight as one passes through the area. Perhaps the next addition might be a display inside the terminal showcasing the original purpose for the airport in the 1930s and 1940s so all can see as they wait or arrive for their flight. Good job.

Making a mess

THERE ARE comments that the State of the Union address was a good one and that President Bush had many good ideas. However, he left out an important detail: How he plans on paying for those ideas. The surplus has evaporated. The cost of the Iraq war is past $400 billion. And Republicans refuse to budge on tax cuts. This is how the Bush White House operates: Talk a big game, then do little other than make a big mess.

Seeds of destruction

THE PALESTINIAN election proves the correctness of Socrates' observation that every form of government (including democracy) contains the seeds of its own destruction.

Uncomfortable churches

HAVING VISITED a few local churches, I am dismayed. Some of the larger churches seem to be nothing but entertainment -- or worse, a glitzy, hourlong infomercial for Jesus. They have more social programs than religious content. I am uncomfortable with those churches that believe God is a Republican, and it seems I hear the conservative political agenda more frequently than the Bible. There are also churches that borrow the war motif, only instead of being at war against hate, injustice and poverty, they spout war-like rhetoric against liberals and homosexuals. But there is hope. I found a small church where people know my name and a relationship with Jesus as Lord and Savior is more important than fancy buildings and having a rock band.

At least get a job

GETTING YOUR driver's license is a privilege. If teenagers can't graduate from high school or get a GED, I don't think they deserve the privilege of getting a driver's license until they have a full-time job.

Humane treatment

I RECENTLY visited the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri. The staff was so sweet, and the animals were so well taken care of. Everyone should consider donating money and time to the facility since it is a not-for-profit organization. If you would like to adopt a pet, that is a great place to consider.

Not all the same

TO THE woman acknowledging the existence of racism in Cape: As a white woman I am embarrassed. I am sorry you and you family are exposed to this and for the pain it causes. Ignorance abounds. Please do not judge us all as racists. I will do my part to continue to educate.

Riverfest music

I DON'T have a new name for this year's music festival, but I do have an idea. Bring back Riverfest and have the music festival at the same time with the stages set up as usual in their usual spots. More people will come to Riverfest for the crafts, and the kids will have their music. You can still have different types of music. I guess I did have a name: Riverfest Music Festival.

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