Speak Out

Wednesday, August 7, 2002

Humbling poem

FOR ALL the people calling Speak Out on the topic of who's Christian and who isn't: I have a little poem I'd like to recite for you. It helps to keep me humble.

I dreamed death came to me one night

And heaven's gates flew open wide.

With kindly grace St. Peter came

And ushered me inside.

There, to my astonishment,

Were friends I had known on Earth.

Some I had labeled as unfit,

And some of little worth.

Indignant words flew to my lips,

Words I could not set free,

For every face showed stunned surprise --

No one expected me.

Tickets are unfair

I HAVE been reading all of the Speak Out comments about the Cape Girardeau police handing out speeding tickets. What a waste of time and money. I think it stinks that when I'm doing 37 mph in a 30-mph zone they're right there to stop me. However, when my car was broken into and people used my stolen credit card all over town, they didn't have the resources to help find the criminal. When my vacationing neighbor's home alarm went off in the night they were too busy to get there.

Press jingoism

IN THE late 19th century, the Hearst newspaper chain stirred up war fever with its incorrect "Remember the Maine!" assertion that the Spanish had blown up the U.S. battleship Maine. In the mid-1960s the best and brightest in the press and in Congress too quickly bought into LBJ's explanation of the Gulf of Tonkin incident and gave the president a blank check to get us more deeply involved in what became the Vietnam quagmire. And now, a columnist comes along and writes that a decision to invade Iraq is a "no brainer" and the sooner the better. Thus, future historians will likely say that jingoism in the press was taken to its highest possible level by David Limbaugh.

It's effective

PRESIDENT BUSH: If the reason for the very public and high-profile portrayal of corrupt CEOs being made to take the perp walk in handcuffs was done in part to convince us that you're serious about cracking down on corporate crime, then I want you to know it's working.

Obey the limits

TO THE individuals who complain about police officers giving tickets: If you weren't speeding, then they wouldn't have to give you a ticket. They are just doing their job and trying to keep speeders from causing an accident. Those speed-limit signs are put there for a reason. Give the officers a break.

Overused redundancy

I WISH Speak Out callers would quit wasting space by using redundancies like "Republican hypocrisy."

Paying the freight

THIS COMMENT is for the people who believe that the tractor-trailer companies should pay for the highways. My husband drives a truck, and that belief is backed by pure ignorance. Everything you buy is brought to you by trucks. If everyone were self-sufficient and could make everything they needed to survive, there would be no trucks on the roads tearing up the highways. God forbid the store doesn't have something that you want. In that case, the trucker could not get there fast enough to satisfy you. Even if the trucking companies were made to pay for the highways, you would be paying for it anyway in a roundabout way. The carriers would have to raise their freight charges, which would cause the stores to raise their prices on the things that you buy. So does it really matter?

Voting privacy

I'VE BEEN receiving calls from automated services. Sometimes they answer me when I pick up the phone. Sometimes they don't. They're not there. They're dialing in and not talking to you, and they're asking you how you'll vote. I thought it was unconstitutional to ask someone to reveal how he's voting. It isn't right to treat the voters in our county this way.

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