Letters: Good Tithings, Lujan Grisham, Witness, War Crimes, Papa Rulz!

Good Tithings

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When I got my first job, I brought home my first paycheck and proudly showed it to my parents. The amount of money was less than what I had counted—that is, number of hours times my hourly rate. With doleful eyes, I asked my father why deductions were taken out of my pay. My father smiled at me and explained that we each pitch in to pay for the police, fire department, schools, highways, bridges, and to help feed and care for the disabled, the poor, the old, and those who are too sick to take care of themselves. He said we all chip in to do this so that America can be a great country.

I held my head up high and felt proud to be a contributing member of our society. I am proud to do my part to make our country a better place in which to live. We all pay our part to make our country strong and fair and right and good.

My dad was a Chippewa Indian. After he told me about this, I learned how the agents would withhold commodities from families who dared to conduct Indian ceremonies. Of course, it never worked because the Indian people would all share whatever they had with each other. If they had little, then they all had little; if they had more, then they all had more. I learned.

I am proud to be an American who has contributed to our country, sharing what I had with others. Helping others.

Jesus Christ said if we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, care for the poor, the widows, the sick, the lonely, if we do this to the least of these, we do it to Him. And He promised us rewards.

Shared sacrifice is righteous and good on so many levels that it baffles the mind that anyone would try to avoid paying their share. Cayman Islands or foreign shores cannot avoid the eyes of our Lord when we meet Him. Even atheists I have known believe in sharing with the poor. Even if there are welfare cheats, they are rare, I assure you. So what anyway? They will pay for their wrongs some day in some way. How do I know? Because the Bible says, “There is perfect justice with God,” in both the Old and New Testaments. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked; whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” And, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay,” sayeth the Lord. I know we must have mercy on others because if we have no mercy on others, then God will have no mercy on us. Let us all, even the rich, pay our share.

Letters: Endorsement Disappointment Endorsement Disappointment

I would like to express my deep shock, regret and disappointment with the manner in which you decided to endorse Michelle Lujan-Grisham for the District 1 Congressional race [Feature, “Primary Election Guide,” May 17-23]. To clarify, I acknowledge that you certainly have the right to endorse any candidate you choose for any position, even someone like Ms. Lujan-Grisham, who has consistently been a moderate, rather conventional Democrat. However, let us be frank, to call her a "progressive" was way off mark.

One glaring example of the
Alibi’s failure in this matter was taking at face value that Lujan-Grisham is both "a fan of the Affordable Care Act" as well as "supports a single-payer system"—a mutually exclusive assertion which is at best naive and at worst downright deceptive. Not only did Ms. Lujan-Grisham, in her role in both the Johnson and Richardson administrations, actively support the debacle of the managed-care takeover of our Medicaid system, but she (unlike Eric Griego) has never been active in the single-payer movement. Her website does not even mention a position on health care. As well, in the recent debate, Lujan-Grisham did not say a word about single-payer, while Griego (who garnered no mention at all in the Alibi of his long-term support of single payer!) actively acknowledged his prominent campaign platform of "Medicare for All." As a physician who has been involved in the struggle for universal health care for almost 25 years (the last 15 in New Mexico), I can assure you that you could have easily discovered that this was not an accurate portrayal of her position. In fact, the contrast between these two candidates very much reminds me of Sen. Ted Kennedy’s characterization of his position on women’s reproductive rights vs. Mitt Romney’s as (paraphrased) Kennedy’s being for choice vs. Romney’s being for multiple choice!

One might be able to understand Ms. Lujan-Grisham’s desire to be all things for all people, but one would hope that the
Alibi would have used the due diligence required of good journalism to not buy this hook, line and sinker. Unfortunately, I will no longer feel confident relying on the Alibi for objective analysis nor refer others for this purpose. Further, I believe you owe both Sen. Griego, the only real progressive in this race, and your readership a sincere apology for this misinformed and seriously misleading action on your part.

Letters: Witness Against War Witness Against War

Again, you guys nailed it. Your opinion piece by Alex Limkin about Chuck Hosking [From the Foxhole, “Preach the Gospel Always,” May 31-June 6] was great. Not only was it an insightful essay about one man’s stand against the American war machine, but it also tells of that man’s lifelong witness of peace and humble simplicity for the well being of others.

Thank you, Alex Limkin, for unashamedly highlighting that it’s Chuck’s faith that keeps him strong and guides him forth, empowering him to maintain this enduring vigil.

Even if Chuck didn’t go to my church—the Albuquerque Mennonite Church—I would still celebrate this weekly periodical showing the true goodness of Christianity in the belly of the empire (also reminding folks of Christianity’s historical witness against war, and for racial equality through the example of Chuck’s life). Thanks again and God bless you.

Letters: War Crimes War Crimes

[Re: News Feature, “The Unspoken Battlefield,” May 17-23] Good lord, how can our servicemen do this to the women who volunteer to serve our country? The rapists should be brought up on charges immediately, no matter how long ago. What a shame that women have to undergo this treatment. Where are the senior officers? Are they scared of losing their jobs? Is this America?

Letters: Take A Bow, Papa Take A Bow, Papa

Given all the bad news we are barraged with about the sad state of education in New Mexico, I was very happy to hear one school right here in Albuquerque has been rated as one of the top schools in this state. The Public Academy for Performing Arts, known simply as PAPA, has been given a B letter grade by the New Mexico Public Education Department. The website greatschools.org has given PAPA an 8 out of 10 score. U.S. News ranked PAPA fifth best high school in New Mexico with a silver medal rating. The graduation rate is 72 to 100 percent.

I believe the reasons for this high ranking are many. First, the school is able to effectively combine academics with the arts. A modern society has art at the center of its culture. The school believes art is an integral part of the human experience. Dance, music, singing, painting, film production and theater are part of who we are. They have proven that you can have arts in the schools without losing on the academics. This can be attributed to the staff at the school. The teachers are dedicated. Parental backing also has a strong presence there. The students feel good about what they can accomplish with great encouragement from the staff.

This is a great school. Education in New Mexico can learn a great deal about what is effective in giving our kids a fighting edge in this world. We need to use PAPA as the premier example of what makes schooling good in this state.

Letters should be sent with the writer’s name, address and daytime phone number via email to letters@alibi.com. They can also be faxed to (505) 256-9651. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, and may be published in any medium; we regret that owing to the volume of correspondence we cannot reply to every letter. Word count limit for letters is 300 words.

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