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presidential candidates — Romney’s speech lacked tolerance
Instead of the myopic luster displayed in the Tribune editorial, “Romney earns high marks“ (Our View, Dec. 10), it would have been preferable to show some balance for the true impact of a Romney presidency on our democracy.
Regrettably, the author left out the most offensive part of the speech. Contrary to the statement, the Republican presidential candidate did not “reassure the public, similar to John F. Kennedy’s remarks.”
Mitt Romney didn’t seem to care much about the general “public,” but he did try to defend his faith to a narrow, selected group of evangelical Christians. While claiming to support the founding fathers’ principles guaranteeing religious freedom, Romney’s vision of a Christian America leaves no room for the non-observant and non-Christians.
He would be president of a few. With statements like “Freedom requires religion, just as religion requires freedom… Freedom and religion endure together, or perish alone,” Romney’s speech was intended to prove to the evangelical right that he believes America is a Christian nation.
John F. Kennedy made it clear that his religion was irrelevant when confronting issues that face our country. We are neither a theocracy nor a Christian nation; we are a secular nation which was founded, as Kennedy affirmed as “absolute,” upon the principles of the separation of church and state.
It is disturbing to hear the Republican candidates discuss their personal religious beliefs as a requirement for the presidency. These are private affairs and of no concern of ours. But it does matter if they enter the public domain. Haven’t we had enough already with the man sitting in the White House whose actions, he said, were inspired by God?
Richardson deserves more attention
Ignore all the publicity about Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee. Do yourself and your country a favor and learn about former congressman Bill Richardson’s qualifications, experience, and character. Though much is made of his Hispanic descent, don’t make the mistake of assuming this is what defines the man. His stand on the immigration issue is one of common sense with comprehensive reforms and controls to secure our borders and our ports that would provide for an effective and humane immigration policy, which he has implemented to great effect as a two-time governor of New Mexico.
Richardson’s background in diplomacy has enabled him to successfully go head-to-head with some of the world’s toughest characters — Saddam Hussein, North Korean generals, Burmese military leaders, Sudanese President al-Bashir and Fidel Castro — to name a few. While he was ambassador to the United Nations, presidents, secretaries of state, and prime ministers soon came to know Richardson as the go-to guy for tough hostage negotiations. He successfully negotiated the release of hostages from North Korea and from Iraq during Hussein’s regime. He knows the Middle East, and he has proven diplomacy can work there.
He has been nominated five times for the Nobel Peace Prize, with the most recent nomination in the fall of 2007. He would go a long way in restoring the global reputation of the United States.
You will find his views on all the serious issues — the Iraq war, health care, the environment (he is a former energy secretary), women’s issues, civil rights and more — on his Web site at www.richardsonforpresident.com. It is vitally important that you inform yourself about this dynamic and distinguished leader.
Illegal immigration — Work permits are a better answer
I live around the corner from the demonstrations at M.D. Pruitt’s Home Furnishings, and every Saturday my family hears the shouting through loudspeakers as these two factions protest. Here’s my suggestion to solve this whole “illegal immigration” problem: Instead of building a fence, let’s issue work permits to every person entering through a legal port of entry. There would be a short background check and fingerprinting. But if those didn’t show the applicant to be a felon, this permit would entitle the holder to any job he or she could get. The permit number would be used in lieu of a Social Security number for tax withholding purposes.
The catch? Every three years the work permit would need to be renewed, and in order to do so the holder would have to prove a proficiency in the English language. Also, the permits would never be a conduit to permanent residency “green cards” or citizenship. The only conduit to immigrant status would be proper application through the current consulate channels.
Then we could use the money saved to help improve our economy, and the people coming in to work at these jobs would be legally contributing to our society.
Shopping carts — Rolling to higher prices
I can’t remain quiet any longer. I take an almost daily walk of just over a mile in the Stapley Drive and Southern Avenue area. I am appalled at the number of shopping carts I have seen along the way. Just this morning, I saw five carts that belong to Wal-Mart. During the past several months, I have seen carts owned by Food City, PetSmart, Bashas,’ Rancho Grande, etc. These carts have to cost at least $250 apiece.
I don’t know what makes people think that they have the right to remove the property of a business from that business’s location. To me it’s pure and simple, it’s stealing.
Wal-Mart advertises “Always Low Prices.” Perhaps the prices could be even lower if people were not stealing their property. A couple of times I reported to Wal-Mart that there were a certain number of shopping carts of theirs at such and such location. It seems as though they couldn’t care less, because I see the same carts day after day, and sometimes some additional ones.
Anyway, I had to get this off my chest. OK, those of you who are stealing shopping carts, cease and desist. Consumer prices may just go down a little.
Arden A. Rowley
Chandler City council — You knew what you were getting into
An open letter to Chandler City Council members:
Each and every one of you actively campaigned to be elected to the City Council to serve the people of our community. We believed it was in our best interest, not yours, to have you as a council member.
This is a part-time position, and I believe all of you hold a full-time job, or own your own business. That’s where you should be getting your benefits, raises and cost of living from.
This is our tax money that you are willing to spend without our vote of approval. We are in a lengthy time of a slowing economy. Our local property and shopping tax-based income are being drastically cut, and we will have less shared income from the state.
This is the time to save money and cut expenses and prepare to maintain services and our employees’ jobs to continue to serve the community that you fought so hard to be elected to.
I ask you to reconsider your request for an increase in pay at this time.