January 6, 1995 in City

Letters To The Editor



Some take violent extemism lightly

There’s nothing like “close to home” to make me sit up and take notice. The latest attack on abortion clinics in the Northeast is frightening, but the fear is greatly escalated by the attitude of one of our local protesters. Kristina Murphy said the violence is “bothersome” to the pro-life movement.

Bothersome! It must surely have been a poor choice of words. Could anyone who refers to themselves as “ministries” relegate such mindless devastation to “bothersome?”

In my mind, it has come to the point where the whole movement has become a hysterical deviation from the original intent. I totally reject the active protesters along with those who support them.

Marilyn Walters Spokane

Sanity, legal resolution needed

The recent murder of workers in the abortion clinics is extremely reprehensible. There is no excuse for this killing.

Unfortunately, there will be more. You have a group of people who are becoming more frustrated at what they see as wholesale murder of babies. The mere fact that the Supreme Court has ruled abortion legal makes no difference. They see the law as illegal, as John Brown thought the Dred Scott case decision returning runaway slaves to their former masters was illegal.

We are in a period of escalation. The radicals see themselves like firemen who run into a burning house to save a baby. They are quite willing to sacrifice themselves to save many.

I believe we will see a dramatic upswing in violence at and against abortion clinics and the people who work there. Historically, that is what has happened under similar circumstances. I hope I am wrong.

The issue needs to be settled in a sane manner through the courts or legislature. Let’s have some sanity, please. Lee Orsborn Spokane

Harsher laws toughen opposition

Although we may be saddened by the death of two clinic workers in Massachusetts (“Gunman kills two at abortion clinics,” Dec. 31), a deeper look at this issue reveals the following:

Our laws increasingly punish persons opposed to abortion. While most opponents of abortion practice their beliefs legally, some choose not to, perhaps out of frustration and a sense of powerlessness.

Sad to say, but the more stringent anti-abortion protest law becomes, the more violent some protester’s actions become as a consequence.

Perhaps these people would not feel that they have to take lives in order to save lives if they did not feel totally alienated and unable to “legally” act in defense of unborn children. This is not said to condone their actions, only to allow us to appreciate why perhaps these murders increasingly occur. Bob Spaulding Post Falls


Rise of selfishness hurts us all

What would our founding fathers say if they could see how the country they so painstakingly created is being undermined, maligned, cheated and destroyed by its own citizenry?

By politicians who continue to waste money they know we don’t have and who, despite our huge national debt, voted themselves large salary increases and fantastic retirement pensions.

By businessmen who charge their own government ridiculous prices for everything from toilet seats to ships and planes, then try to weasel out of paying income tax on the huge profits.

By manufacturers who produce their products in other countries because of cheap labor, thereby contributing to our huge balance of trade deficit and loss of U.S. jobs.

By many formerly honest, patriotic working people who see our politicians and businessmen enriching themselves at the expense of their own country and reason if these people can get away with things like that, then they might as well cheat on their income tax returns.

Uncle Sam is probably being bamboozled in many ways. When one considers all the thoughtless acts being committed against Uncle Sam, it becomes clear why the words “patriot,” “patriotic” and “patriotism” are seldom heard any more.

What isn’t understandable is how it’s possible for modern, well-educated people to not see that their thoughtless acts are helping to destroy their own country and, in turn, their own affluent lifestyles.

Thank God that Uncle Sam does have some honest, patriotic politicians, businessmen and working men and women left who do care about his well-being. Rudy Mahler Spokane

Good workers get past low pay

Allow me to respond to the Golden Pen letter from Kathy Fiessinger (Jan. 2):

Ms. Fiessinger’s opinion represents exactly what is wrong with our country today: lack of accountability. Excusing poor customer service by the fact that a person is paid minimum wage is not right. Low pay does not justify rudeness and indifference. It is, in fact, this attitude that will assure a lifelong career of minimum wage jobs.

Ms. Fiessinger is correct that you do find an occasional gem amongst those minimum wage employees. But it is they who will soon be elevated to a position of responsibility, not in spite of their bad attitude because “they are busy, they are overworked and underpaid,” but because they focus on doing a good job.

These people knew what the positions paid when they applied for them and their scale, good or bad, does not excuse their poor service. Whether or not your employer is a discount store or a specialty shop, it is the chosen duty of a customer service representative to serve customers. It is only through performing your current job well that you will grow in your career.

Please keep in mind that it is attitude, not aptitude, that determines altitude. Kim Cooper, president American Sales College, Spokane

So, we should bribe the help?

I was happy I read Kathie Fiessinger’s Dec. 21 letter, “You get what you pay for.” Now when I go to a store, I’ll slip the salesperson a few extra bucks so they’ll be nice to me and give me good service. I didn’t realize I had to pay extra for this type of service.

I agree clerks in stores may be overworked and underpaid. But since when is this the customer’s fault?

Ninety percent of all working people feel the same way but does this give us cause to treat each other poorly?

I sure hope the hard-working, underpaid but courteous clerks don’t read her letter. They may think they’ve been doing it wrong all these years. Roger Saterfiel Hayden, Idaho


Britt enhances Opinion page

Thanks to columnist Donna Britt for her review of “Little Women” (Dec. 30). She is a bright addition to the editorial page.

Some of your readers may not know that the origin of the admonition, “Do not let the sun go down on your anger” is not author Louisa May Alcott, but rather the Bible. Ephesians 4:26 says, “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.”

Donna Britt speaks with unusual wisdom and we hope to see her often on the editorial page. Lois Kieffaber Colbert

Enough about lackluster eatery

I have read too many Frank Bartel columns promoting a “Red Lobster” in Spokane not to respond.

I have traveled quite often for my work and have eaten at many Red Lobster restaurants.

First, I must ask, has Frank ever eaten at a Red Lobster? If he has, I’m sure he would not promote or rave about the cuisine. Quite frankly, Red Lobster is no more than a restaurant trying to pass itself off as a fine-dining place, charging high prices for frozen fish prepared in a mediocre way.

These sit-down-and-pay-more formula restaurants are invading our society. They bombard the airwaves with their advertising and Spokane feels left out. Rob Rickard Spokane

Wrong to do stories about the accused

It seems to me that Dr. Greg Nail is going to be tried and judged in the paper before he even gets a chance to his constitutional right to have his day in court, in front of his peers and in a court system that is sworn to protect his rights.

To publish any of the gory details before that time is irresponsible to say the least. Why is it acceptable to trash the reputation of a perfectly decent and wonderful person without publishing the name of the other parties in the situation, along with all the other dirty laundry that must also accompany this sad and painful story? Isn’t the proper place to air out all the evidence and details the courtroom, not the newspaper? Aren’t you trying to sensationalize this story the way the media have the Simpson case?

I don’t believe that this kind of reporting supports the public’s right to know but rather is calculated to sell papers. We, the public, have no right and no need to know the evidence in this case before all the details are laid out in court and before Dr. Nail has been given his right to present his defense.

This kind of reporting can be described as tabloid reporting and should have no place in our town. Shame on you! Sherrie Hendricks Spokane


We must outlaw high-tech bullets

“Killer bullets to hit streets” - as if we don’t have enough to worry about with our high crime rate as it is now, we will have to contend with the fact that criminals will soon have a very effective killing weapon, the new non-metal handgun bullet that penetrates bulletproof vests.

Realizing ours is a country of free enterprise and that anyone can market anything to make a buck, as long as the item is legal, something of this nature is going too far.

Don’t you think our police officers face enough danger as things are now, without adding the certainty of death should they become the target of one of these bullets? It is stupid and naive to think these bullets will not end up in the hands of criminals.

We must act now, contacting our lawmakers to make the sale of these bullets illegal. For David Keen, chief executive of Signature Products Corp. and the inventor of Rhino-Ammo, to say these bullets will be great for a homeowner’s protection doesn’t cut it. S.O. Wells Spokane

Decision was meaningful to all

Doug Floyd commended the Idaho Supreme Court for refusing to dodge the controversial issues in my recent legal appeal. I likewise applaud the court’s commitment to justice.

I do, however, take exception to Mr. Floyd’s statement, “the ruling doesn’t mean much for the Bonner County School District and fired principal Steve Johnson.”

To the contrary, the ruling means a great deal to me.

This decision is a significant step in providing fair and impartial hearings in due process procedures. While it is true the court decided my individual case was moot, it nonetheless reaffirmed the importance of constitutional guarantees. That is a very meaningful victory for all of us. Steve Johnson Sagle, Idaho


DARE makes things worse

“Let’s fund DARE and any similar program that has a reasonable chance of getting the message across,” says drug warrior William D. Kelley in a recent guest column. He also admits that it’s hard to measure the benefit derived from DARE.

DARE teaches children about “bongs,” an illegal drug pipe, in the fifth grade. I learned about bongs five grades older, by falling into bad company.

Three generations ago, we had a failed war on alcohol. Since then, we’ve almost eliminated the three-martini lunch, the workplace drinker and the town drunk. We’ve taken cigarettes off the TV screen, out of the workplace and out of many homes.

How? Not by uniformed policemen lecturing children in classrooms! Rather, by a careful use of the power of government and society to “legislate morality.” By making the tobacco/alcohol abuser an outcast. By reinforcing a social stigma, we made more progress than any police program ever did.

I learned about bongs from people I knew were doing wrong. When a DARE officer “teaches,” he desensitizes children and allows them easier entry into the criminal underworld. How? By giving them the language of crime in a clinical, nonjudgmental setting.

In a world in which juvenile crime has become a scourge so terrible that we have police assigned to schools, is DARE the answer? Or should we try returning morals and discipline to the classroom?

Let our schools return to their original job - the forming of young citizens of good character. Have our police return to the apprehending of criminals. Donald F. Morgan Post Falls

Christmas help meant a lot

I am a college-educated, minority woman who just faced her second Christmas on public assistance.

I have been sincerely trying since my baby was born in late January 1994 to find decent employment. I had to take advantage of some programs so my children could have a little bit of Christmas. Hopefully, by Christmas time next year I will be able to give rather than receive.

I would like to express our thanks to the many volunteers who give their time by staffing these programs and to the many hundreds more who give from their hearts so people like me can have a Christmas. From the Salvation Army and Toys for Tots to the Valley Food Bank, the Christmas Bureau, etc. - thank you. You have given hope to some to know the true meaning of Christmas.

God bless each and every one of you. Brenda Moore Spokane

Pope a man for all time

The media’s bigoted assault on Christians continues with the Review’s publishing of an anti-Catholic cartoon ridiculing Pope John Paul. The cartoon characterized the Pope as “behind the times” for some of the Catholic Church’s teachings. This cartoon reveals contempt for the Holy Father’s honor as “Man of the Year” by Time Magazine.

Pope John Paul is appropriately honored as “Man of the Year.” His leadership helped end totalitarianism abroad and helps to stem the tide of worldwide decadence. He successfully defended underdeveloped countries against the arrogance and excesses of rich countries by stopping the United States’ imposition of an international abortion mandate which tied foreign aid to compliance with the U.S. abortion agenda.

This pope is loved by Catholics and non-Catholics and his office is revered because he teaches moral absolutes amidst rampant moral relativism. He offers wisdom while others offer cynicism.

He embraces the dignity of everyone while respect for life flounders. He calls us to duty while rights disconnect from responsibilities. He extols love and sharing while hate and greed are celebrated.

He counsels restraint while liberty is seen as license. He advises forgiveness when revenge is the norm. He speaks the truth while sin is denied. He courageously stands for his convictions while many elites are phobic about religion.

He is proudly countercultural when Catholic-bashing is in vogue. He stands fast when others attack the church for being “out of step.”

Christians expect scorn but at least Roman soldiers didn’t pretend to be unbiased.

Congratulations, Holy Father! Cindy Omlin Mead

Correct basic Christian teachings

I was happy to see someone write in and clarify that Christmas is actually a pagan holiday. I fear that wellmeaning, misinformed, conservative Christians, like political liberals, believe they have all the answers to our society’s problems.

Yet, these problems could be partially the fruit of incorrect religious teachings; orthodox Christian teachings which did not come out of the early, firstcentury church but were brought in as the church mixed with paganism. Looking briefly at some of these teachings, one notes:

1. The unholy trinity doctrine does not support submissiveness.

2. The idea that God tortures wicked people forever in a fiery hell does not support the idea of mercy and justice.

3. The concept that the devil is an ethereal entity ruling the earth undermines God’s authority and breeds contempt for all authority.

If we, as Christians, can restore, teach and live the truth in our basic teachings, I think we can positively impact our society. Donald D. Guenther Newport, Wash.

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