published Friday, January 18th, 2013

Where's the rest of the story? and other letters to the editors

Where's the rest of the story?

Here are things not discussed in the articles on Sunday's Perspective Section:

No link between games, violence: Article failed to mention William Spengler was a convicted felon, served only 17 years for killing his grandmother. Why was he out on the street?

The freedom to be left alone: Good article that Mr. Pitts has written, but he fails to mention the names were of legal gun owners. The Journal News would show some true "investigative reporting" if they published the names of the illegal gun owners in the local counties.

The market and Mother Nature: Another tired article from Mr. Friedman. If he wanted to do something about carbon emissions, he would call for only one overseas flight per person per year. Think of the billions of tons of carbon eliminated. What is Mr. Friedman's carbon footprint?

Immigration ripe for reform: The editorial says the administration has targeted removal of "undocumented immigrants" who are arrested for crimes. Since it is a crime to enter the country illegally, does that mean all are being deported? What about an article on the one million plus who enter legally, and numerous programs which allow legal immigration.

JACK CALLAHAN, Cleveland, Tenn.


GOP lifeline could be nearby

The current Republican Party seems to be struggling to stay afloat in an ever-changing sea of issues, reaching for a lifeline. There is one.

While the party's factions squabble among themselves, the secularists grow stronger in their influence. As they continue to change the fabric of our nation, in ways never originally intended, the United States of America grows weaker.

Who will speak the truth? Who will print the truth of what Washington, Jefferson, Adams and others said about the founding of this nation? Who has the courage to speak against the American Civil Liberties Union? Who will call for a repudiation of the 1947 Supreme Court ruling in Everson v. the Board of Education, where the erroneous "separation of church and state" was born?

Who will have the fortitude, because you will be ridiculed, to say what tens of millions of Americans feel in their hearts: "We as a nation have abandoned God."

Nationally I haven't a clue, but locally are there some promising prospects? Could it be House Speaker Beth Harwell, Rep. Kevin Brooks or perhaps former Tennessee GOP chairwoman Robin Smith that grabs the lifeline for America?

DAVID DEVILLE, Cleveland, Tenn.


Same lawmakers mean same results

The voters just re-elected 95 percent of the 10 percent approved Congress. Nice work, guys! Now we are heading toward the so-called "fiscal cliff." One writer wrote, our budget is the same as our debt. The national debt represents the money that Congress has spent through the years to keep our country going. By not raising the debt ceiling, we are saying to those we hired for services that we are not going to pay you.

Due to out-of-control spending by our Congress, we have repeatedly had to raise the debt ceiling. Keeping the same budget we have now, the debt ceiling would keep rising. There are many ways to cut billions in spending. Cutting Social Security and Medicare should be last on this list, but most politicians try to scare us into thinking this should be first. Money is separately put into these programs by hard-working taxpayers. Our inept representatives never mention money wasted on foreign aid, supporting able-bodied people on welfare, and billions more on wasteful government projects. If we keep re-electing these same tired politicians, we can't complain about our debt.

JACK PINE, Dunlap, Tenn.


Belgian Merckx best cyclist ever

A friend wanted me to settle a bet. Is Lance Armstrong considered the best cyclist of all time? No! Armstrong is a great cyclist, but not the best. He, his handlers and sponsors were brilliant in building some of the most capable teams in the history of cycling. They hired the best cyclist in the world (some champions themselves) to pull him along, and chase down his opponents.

It is true Armstrong has seven Tour de France wins, but that was virtually the only race he competed in. The best cyclist of all time is a Belgian named Eddy Merckx, who competed from 1965 to 1978. Nicknamed the "Cannibal," Merckx won the Tour de France only five times, but he also won the Tour of Italy and Spain many times. Merckx raced everything. He amassed a total of 528 professional wins to Armstrong's 25. In 1972 he set the "Hour Record," a benchmark in cycling greatness. Merckx set the record at 49.431 km, or 30.7 miles in one hour, which wasn't broken for 28 years. Armstrong never even attempted the "Hour Record." Is Armstrong the best? No, just the richest.

FRANK DANIEL, Signal Mountain


Quick-fix gun ban won't work

Since the expiration of the last federal gun ban, opponents of the legislation claim that its expiration has seen little if any increase in crime.

Reports submitted to the Department of Justice and the National Institute of Justice found that should the assault weapons ban be renewed, its effects on gun violence would likely be negligible and perhaps too small for reliable measurement, because rifles in general, including "assault weapons," are rarely used in gun crimes.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found "insufficient evidence to determine the effectiveness of any of the firearms laws reviewed for preventing violence."

The 2010 edition of the book "More Guns, Less Crime" by John Lott provided the first vetted research on the 2004 end to the federal assault weapon ban. In general, no correlation between the sunset of the weapons ban and violent crime since the end of the ban was found.

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." -- Albert Einstein. While railing against the rising tide of overt abhorrent deviants, people and politicians look for short-term quick-fixes like gun bans instead of looking to their own doorstep and address a tragic national lack of parenting presence and skills.

DAVID D. FIHN SR., Hixson, Tenn.


Football coach's pay over the top

Are teachers, policemen, firemen, ministers, counselors for the most part overpaid for their work? Of course not. Then why is Nick "Super" Saban, head Alabama football coach, "underpaid" at $5.48 million per year as your headline story in the Sunday, Jan. 6, newspaper suggests? Come on, America, what kind of values are these that we are teaching our most precious resource: our children? We pay one man more money to coach students in a game fraught with violence than we do men and women to teach, protect, counsel and minister to our children on a daily basis?

Don't kid or delude yourselves any longer: America's violence problems don't begin and end with guns or even violent movies and video games, but rather it begins with the age-old glorification of naked human aggression in the form of violent "games" like football.

What is America's love affair with football really all about? Besides big money, it is, in part, about violence and violent aggression to millions of fans, and just watch how quickly they will line up to deny it! In my opinion, in the words of Shakespeare," They "doth protest too much!" I believe that paying any coach $5.48 million a year for coaching football is over the top and not the kind of values that we need to be teaching our children.

DAVID BURNETT, Monteagle, Tenn.

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daytonsdarwin said...

"Who will have the fortitude, because you will be ridiculed, to say what tens of millions of Americans feel in their hearts: "We as a nation have abandoned God."

Just as we've abandoned slavery, belief in fire-breathing dragons and a moon made of green cheese, and bleeding as a medical cure.

It's time to place supernatural deities in the dust bin of superstitions and fairy-tales where murderous gods hold no sway in human progress.

Any candidate calling for a imaginary psychopathic deity to appear as America's salvation will not get my support. That disqualifies the three politicos you mentioned as intelligent, rational, and scientific minds to govern a modern world.

January 18, 2013 at 8:51 a.m.
Livn4life said...

Jack Pine; YOU NAILED IT MY FRIEND. One isty bisty problem: that is the people who re-elect these deadbeats, no matter which of the parties involved, will swear and declare, it is not their representative who is continuing the trend downward by overspending and wanting to overtax. So the band plays the same old tune and the Merry-Go-round, Not So Merrily, continues to go round and round and round. Finally, There is absolutely NO ONE on the horizon to give any inkling of hope they can step up and be an agent of change, real change so badly needed in federal politics. Darwin of Dayton...is it not time for us all to devolve back to the caves from which we allegedly came? Heck it may be time to go back to that primordal sludge we began in and arbitrarily became the superior creatures(oh my gosh, I qualified humankind)we have become. For me, that is as much an imaginary psychopathic approach requiring as much, if not more faith than to believe in that deity you make fun of. Why do I say that? There is no proof of evolution. There is no real proof of a lot of science we have bought into in the postmodern world simply because it is labeled science. If you were to look truly objectively at history, you would discover that many persons of faith acknowledge science as well and have been part of developing the scientific approach. But no, you merely label as objectionable and ignorant, anything that does not jibe with your positions. As for America's salvation, well in the scope of biblical history, the United States has no real part in the story but then there I go off on an imaginary psychopathic pursuit of believing in an antequated book some call the Bible. You, you go on and disbelieve, it's your right, it's your privilege. But to bally-hoo those who have legitimately contributed to the good of humankind, some never asking for any acknowledgment, some sacrificing their very lives to help others; well that is a little over the edge. Guess you are just overly darwinized. Maybe that gives you a right to ridicule others. I can only hope there comes a time when you find true meaning in life aside from the worship of life itself.

January 18, 2013 at 10:26 a.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

There is no meaning to life; there's just life and the meaning people give to it through experience.

The Bible is an ancient book of re-hashed myths, full of gore, murder, rape, revenge, slavery, and worship of paranoid and delusional deities.

I have no problems with what people freely do in their homes and churches, but to promote the Bible as science, reason, and an intelligent way to live is lunacy.

You say, "there is no proof of evolution?" You've proved my point. You're welcome to your lunacy, but it has no place in public schools, government, and science.

Excellent article on why Not to raise your kids with "God." It works for adults as well.

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-910282?hpt=hp_c3

January 18, 2013 at 10:55 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

Who has the courage to speak against the American Civil Liberties Union? Who will call for a repudiation of the 1947 Supreme Court ruling in Everson v. the Board of Education, where the erroneous "separation of church and state" was born?

The ACLU is the best protector of religious freedom in this country. The actions that re-established the separation of church and state with respect to public schools was necessary; although the original case did not refer to religious activities in school (it was about tax-supported reimbursement of parents for transportation to parochial schools) later cases dealt with the up until then unchallenged problem of school staff leading sectarian prayers. Parents whose religious beliefs were different from that of the majority (and likely the school staff) were able to control the religious education of their children.

The ACLU helps those of the minority protect themselves (via the constitution) from the will of the majority. Public school teachers have no business leading school children in any religious activity. This is in NO WAY "taking God out of school". If God exists, He's there.

January 18, 2013 at 11:51 a.m.
Easy123 said...

If anyone would like to read ignorance in print, feast your eyes:

"is it not time for us all to devolve back to the caves from which we allegedly came? Heck it may be time to go back to that primordal sludge we began in and arbitrarily became the superior creatures(oh my gosh, I qualified humankind)we have become. For me, that is as much an imaginary psychopathic approach requiring as much, if not more faith than to believe in that deity you make fun of. Why do I say that? There is no proof of evolution. There is no real proof of a lot of science we have bought into in the postmodern world simply because it is labeled science. If you were to look truly objectively at history, you would discover that many persons of faith acknowledge science as well and have been part of developing the scientific approach. But no, you merely label as objectionable and ignorant, anything that does not jibe with your positions."

That is blatant ignorance. Absolutely and utterly ignorant on every level. Those statements do not deserve a rebuttal. Any thinking person, any serious person should view you as a fool from this point on. You have discredited yourself entirely with this post.

January 18, 2013 at 3:16 p.m.
Easy123 said...

L4L,

*"but then there I go off on an imaginary psychopathic pursuit of believing in an antequated book some call the Bible."

At least you've identified the problem.

"But to bally-hoo those who have legitimately contributed to the good of humankind, some never asking for any acknowledgment, some sacrificing their very lives to help others; well that is a little over the edge."

Religion had nothing to do with anyone contributing to the good of humankind. Anyone that did anything good or kind in the name of their god didn't do it legitimately. They did it to please their god or because their god told them to. That isn't sincere or moral. Religion was our first attempt at explaining things. We have science and philosophy now. Religion has been irrelevant for nearly 1,500 years.

"Guess you are just overly darwinized."

Or maybe we can just think for ourselves and we don't need a book to tell us what is right and wrong. Maybe you're just ignorant and delusional.

"Maybe that gives you a right to ridicule others."

Everyone has that right. Ridiculing religion and the religious shouldn't be taboo. If you can't handle the heat, get out of the kitchen.

"I can only hope there comes a time when you find true meaning in life aside from the worship of life itself."

Life is all we know for certain that we have. I'd rather "worship" life, nature, the earth, the cosmos, science, physics, biology, evolution, etc. than your wishful thinking. You find awe and wonder in a burning bush, a man coming back from the dead, "miracles"; myths. I find awe and wonder in our universe, our planet, plants, animals, nature, other human beings; reality.

January 18, 2013 at 3:26 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

"Connecticut's alleged cross-dressing meth priest reportedly liked sex in rectory"

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/01/18/connecticut-cross-dressing-meth-priest-reportedly-liked-sex-in-rectory/

It seems the priest liked sex in other places too!

Thank goodness he's a Christian!

January 18, 2013 at 3:31 p.m.
Easy123 said...

daytonsdarwin,

Most "Christians" that I know tend to discredit Catholics as not really "Christian". Have you experienced that?

It's always fun to watch religion get Hitchslapped.

January 18, 2013 at 3:39 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Easy123 said...

daytonsdarwin,

Most "Christians" that I know tend to discredit Catholics as not really "Christian". Have you experienced that?

Yes. That was the teachings in the churches I attended as a kid. Catholics fell into the same group as Jews, blacks, and foreigners. Godless heathens like myself, evolutionaries and scientists like Darwin, Huxley, and Einstein, writers like Vonnegut, Twain, and Ingersoll and musicians like Nat King Cole, Louie Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, and Elvis Presley were condemned as cohorts of Satan.

At least I was in good company.

January 18, 2013 at 3:50 p.m.
Easy123 said...

daytonsdarwin,

I was taught to demonize more broad topics like Rock and Roll music, Science books, anything involving sex (especially scantily clad women and pornography), tattoos and drugs (cigarettes and alcohol fell into this classification), and money. You could find all that in a typical Sunday sermon in my former church and school.

January 18, 2013 at 4:10 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Easy wrote; "You could find all that in a typical Sunday sermon in my former church and school."

You could find all that in the cars of the churchgoers at my church. Thankfully, most of the church members were decent people for whom church was a social gathering rather than an Inquisition and religious propaganda goosestep.

I have good memories of many of those church members, who put living among humanity above the blind worship of folk tales. It was actually several church members, who disagreed with the official church position of a literal creation that prompted my own search for reason and science as explanations of life, not ancient myths as reality.

This was when religion was a private matter, before the religious right-wingers made it into a political platform and test of patriotism and the extreme fundamentalism present in Christianity today.

January 18, 2013 at 4:36 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

It was also a conservative church I attended, not a fundamentalist church. There was no snake-handling, speaking in tongues, faith healing, writhing on the floor, drinking of poisons, stigmata, preachers with jets, preacher's wives with pink hair, and child preachers ala Majoe Gortner. Neither was there the money-driven "Prosperity Gospel, jumbo TV's, Virgin Marys on toast, phony miracles, and book burnings of Sagan, Darwin, and National Geographic.

While there was a belief in Jesus and God, the Golden Rule was the greatest good, and I can still accept that today. Of course the Golden Rule was put forth centuries before Jesus.

But dogmatic, irrational beliefs led by idiotic dictatorial pastors and preachers has made Christian fundamentalism what it is today — a throwback into ignorant, anti-science and anti-intellectual thought deserving no respect as a backwards and ultimately life-destroying proposition.

January 18, 2013 at 5:13 p.m.
raygunz said...
January 19, 2013 at 12:07 a.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Thanks for the link, raygunz. Even though I went to a conservative church as a kid, my parents always allowed me to have my own thoughts, question what I was taught, form my own opinions, and they both encouraged my learning in science and history without limitations.

They were good people who happened to be in a Christian religious social setting, not Good Christians who swallowed the dogma above reason. I called them "Golden Rule" Christians. That's the reason we always got along so well.

That's also the reason I can get along with "Golden Rule" Jews, Catholics, Pagans, Christians, Atheists, Agnostics,Buddhists, Taoists, and just about any sect that practices reason, a personal code of responsibility and justice, and a scientific appreciation for the mysteries of life as opposed to a hide-bound, literal Bible, Jehovah rage-induced dogma.

January 19, 2013 at 9:22 a.m.
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