Speak Out A 10/02/01
Tuesday, October 2, 2001
Lots of construction
TO THE person who asked SEMO to build dorms: Have you driven down Henderson lately? That is all that Dr. Ken Dobbins does: build things. If you have missed all the construction at SEMO the last few years, you either never come to campus or are stuck in a faculty office with a view of the river.
Music for the mind
I WOULD like to respond to a couple of comments. The first was about telling Kansas City and St. Louis to butt out of the River Campus situation. I find it very disturbing that anyone would say we don't need something that would promote music and the arts in this area, which has a very strong and diverse musical and artistic heritage. There are some people in this area who have a little something called culture and good taste and would like to hear some music that requires some actual thought to enjoy. The other comment was the remark about the college students taking up all the parking and turning New Madrid back to a two-lane street. Is it really that difficult to drive between parked cars on a nice wide street? Without the university and the students, this town would languish as nothing more than a halfway marker between Memphis and St. Louis. There are just way too many people with their minds and ideas stuck in the 1950s.
TOM EDWARDS' eloquent letter was sobering in its accurate and inescapable conclusion that the war on terrorism will never end. It wasn't completely clear to me whether Edwards is an optimist who thinks the war will be successful in at least deterring terrorism and, therefore, worth pursuing, or a fatalistic who thinks the only sensible course of action is to contact the terrorists and ask, "What are your terms?"
I GENERALLY agree with David Limbaugh's inspiring call to arms and adamant insistence that we must maintain our will and be committed to staying the course in combating terrorism. However, in case readers were left with the wrong impression, it needs to be pointed out that opposition to the coming war or the widening of it or to taking the necessary steps to increase security will come more from the isolationist right than the internationalist left.
No innocent deaths
KILLING INNOCENT Middle Easterners in the war against terrorism is wrong. Do you think they all know and support each other? Making that explanation would be like believing everyone knows and supports each other in Missouri. So President Bush better keep listening to Secretary of State Colin Powell by going with the Special Ops. They're the only ones who will beat these enemies.
LIBERALISM HAS not disappeared as a Speak Out caller who seemed not to understand its principles said. In fact, during the coming war on terrorism liberals will take the lead in urging the likes of sometimes dovish Secretary of State Colin Powell to pursue the anti-terrorist campaign all over the world with a single-minded commitment unseen since Caesar conquered Gaul.
Back to griping
I SEE that President Bush has been successful, at least with the people who find it sport to submit daily Speak Out comments. You have resumed your regularly scheduled program -- gripe, moan, groan -- about anything and everything. Let us remember that we are still in the midst of our national tragedy. Are your complaints worthy? Good thing you don't live in New York.
WILLIAM E. Samuels of Columbia, Mo., has called for a permanent policy prohibiting emigration to the United States from virtually all developing nations. Some of the other things Samuels' sinister letter said or implied are too reprehensible to repeat. Samuels makes xenophobes seem like model advocates of the melting pot.
THE TYPICAL American cares little for Libertarian or other verbal tirades expressing concerns about a loss of liberty during this difficult time. Joe Six Pack will sensibly opt for security every time and has no patience for Libertarian whining about the need for what most believe is an excess of liberty. This explains why Libertarians will be forever relegated to minority-party status.
Wrapped up in flag
LET'S HAVE a contest. Of the following right-wing radio ranters and ravers, which one will be most successful in wrapping himself in the American flag during this tragic time: Neal Bortz, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity or Michael Reagan. My money is on Hannity. He's the new kid on the block. Bortz's language is patriotic sounding but ultimately facile. Rush's stratospheric ratings mean he has no need to resort to excessive flag waving. Reagan has the best and most macho militaristic background music but his (and Bortz's) libertarian leanings make them suspect as to their commitment to the cause of creating a gigantic and ongoing government military machine to combat international terrorism.
IF ANYONE can write a good letter, Ken McManaman can. He raised the ultimate question in his recent gem. McManaman minced no words in wondering if we have the will to risk our lives in order to wipe out terrorism. I think we do, though I disagree with McManaman's inference that the day will come when terrorism is completely obliterated. Terrorism has a long history and will continue into the future forever, though fight it we must.