Marshmallow Shrapnel

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[RE: The Real Side, “John Dendahl, Suicide Bomber,” July 6-12]

Jim Scarantino frets that John Dendahl’s campaign attacks on Bill Richardson are intended to “spread carnage” and cripple Richardson’s chances on a national ticket. Reality check here—if Richardson can’t shrug off the pea-shooter dings from a minor-leaguer like Dendahl, what’s Bill going to do when the big-league assassins on the national level get him in their sights? These are the attack dogs who brought down decorated Vietnam vets like John Kerry and John McCain before him. Richardson will be taking flak from them that’ll make Dendahl’s “bombs” look like marshmallows.

Our governor should be grateful for any cream-puff “shrapnel” that Dendahl can serve up. It’ll be good batting practice for when he has to face bean balls from the big boys.

Layers, Layers And Layers

[RE: Letters, “Heart and Soul,” July 6-12]

Greg Leichner of Placitas tried to tell us the root cause of homophobia, but I think he missed the mark by a mile. Our brains immediately categorize anyone we encounter; is he like me, or is he different? If he is like me, I will feel empathy; I will feel safe and free of anxiety. If he is different, I will feel anxious, maybe even fear. But underneath a very thin outer layer of differences (race, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, etc.), we are all very much the same. We all want less suffering, a sense of security; and we all want to be with people who know us and understand us.

Prejudice is about ignorance (in the literal sense of a lack of knowledge) and anxiety. It is not inevitable and primal, as Mr. Leichner has implied. The way to eliminate it is to gain knowledge and thereby empathy about the one who is different. With dialogue we can explore the things we share in common and discover just how very much the same we all really are. With dialogue we can break free of the cultural and religious ideas we were exposed to at a very young age, and we can begin to appreciate our humanness in all its wonderful diversity.

The Founding Deists

[RE: Letters, “Christian Nation?,” July 6-12]

Perhaps before Mr. Donald L. Adams of Rio Rancho takes the time to "dispel" someone else’s, he should spend a little time on the Internet or at the public library doing a little research. That’s all it would take to find out first of all that many of the founding fathers were deists, not Christians. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Ben Franklin, Samuel Adams, Thomas Paine, James Madison and Ethan Allen, all were well known as deists. Dig a little deeper and find that Thomas Jefferson, the actual author of the Constitution, went so far as to edit the existing Bible, removing all references to the miracles of Jesus, as well as the resurrection (my, that hardly seems the act of a good Christian). He might also have run across a copy of the Treaty of Tripoli, signed by President John Adams and the entire congress, most of whom were among the founding fathers. Article 11 of that document starts with the following statement: "As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion …" Even the quote that Mr. Adams offers as "proof,” from Ben Franklin, which as previously noted, was well known as a deist, mentions God—but not Jesus—and is ergo, not specifically a Christian statement. But with the usual hubris, displayed by so many of the more rabid members of the cult of the cross, he assumes the mention of God includes the entire dogma of Christianity. There are many who believe in God, Mr. Adams, that don’t necessarily ascribe to the beliefs of Christianity, including Jews, deists, Unitarians and agnostics (who acknowledge the possibility of God). There are other "good" books, Mr. Adams. Perhaps you might avail yourself to some of them before making such a public display of your lack of edification.

Religious Office

Donald L. Adams [Letters, “Christian Nation?,” July 6-12] attempts by referencing some historical research to justify calling America a "Christian Nation.”

Perhaps he will explain why the American Constitution, our basic legal document, does not mention Christianity and the only mention of religion is to prohibit a religious test for holding public office.

Part Of The Human Pack

[RE: Feature, “Not So Beastly,” July 6-12]

Very well written. I really applaud the points made. Too often we "take on" pets with the attitude that they are just animals, forgetting the fact that dogs specifically are pack animals, much like humans, and as such need the contact of their adopted pack. So while the humans sit back and enjoy being a part of the humans’ pack, poor pup sits outside, alone, and chained to some forsaken post. It’s no wonder to me why they make the great escape, bark into hoarseness or flip out. Wouldn’t the human do the same?

Opinions And Facts

[RE: The Real Side, “John Dendahl, Suicide Bomber,” July 6-12]

It doesn’t have anything to do with his ancestry. It has to do with the opinions of many, both Republican and Democrat, that Mr. Richardson is a political animal who is only “in it” for himself; whatever makes him look good at the moment. And apparently, the Republican Party has decided that the only way to keep Mr. Richardson out of any public office is Mr. Dendahl. Do I as a Republican agree with this?
No! And they are aware of my feelings on the matter.

As for whether President Bush tells the truth, what evidence can you, yourself, provide that he can’t due to his responsibilities to us as our President, hasn’t or won’t? Back up your attacks.

Also, opinions can’t be
wrong . They are only opinions, not facts. Not even yours. I sure hope that the Gentleman of Ideals puts in an appearance.

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