Opinion » Letters



I still believe we must prevail

I am gratified by the reaction to my opinion ("Why we must prevail in Iraq," Feb. 1), and I am grateful for the New Times editor for allowing it to be printed. That shows New Times has more editorial balance than the Tribune. It refuses to provide a "balanced" audience for the great majority of citizens in the area who support George Bush and wish for success in our efforts in the Middle East.

The nine letters in the Feb. 8 New Times edition rejecting my "opinion" confirm the fervent emotion and danger posed by Pelosi Democrats (and possibly even one Christian liberal) who are deluded by their thirst to undermine our president and the war effort in the Middle East because of their past disappointments in not electing Gore or Kerry. These expressions are sour grapes gone to fermentation yielding a wine that distorts reality and ignores the truth and the requirements for our national security!

The irony of this dialectic (this confrontation of ideas) is the fact that the president's noble objective is to place a democracy in Iraq to serve the very principle we hold dear here, where people may disagree, even when one party is definitely wrong. And I confirm by that fact, while I have a qualified respect for those who disagree with me, I believe I am right in supporting our president. We must prevail in Iraq.

Otis Page

Arroyo Grande




Don't complain about nationalism now

In reply to "Tank is an offensive reminder" (Feb. 1):

It seems that the priorities of some people in the county are swaying too much against patriotism. It has gone past the constant protesting and attempted interruptions of our nation's military operations. Now people are whining about the displaying of a tank and symbolism of wars long past?

It's easy to see that, when compared to many other countries in the world today, we are living privileged. That tank in front of the San Luis Obispo Veterans Memorial Museum has helped ensure our continued freedom. The peace and security the western world has, and most of it still enjoys, is due in part to our nation's strength and past military success. If it wasn't for that tank and many others like it we might all be speaking German right now!

To me, that tank brings to mind heroism in thought of our forefathers who fought and died for the good of our nation. It is wrong to complain about American nationalism at a time when we need it the most. The real "good fight" that "sleepy" San Luis Obispans need to worry about is remembering who and what helped give us the freedoms we all enjoy today. So, yeah: Wahoo! Let's use our brains and be thankful when we look at our big guns!

Toby Manninen





The war could have been over by now with support

I read carefully all the letters condemning Otis Page's opinion that we should win the war in Iraq (Feb. 8). Winning is something we have not done since WWII. Any real insight came in the last letter by Jim Ringley ("We have a hand in this mistake"): "If attacking Iraq was Bush's biggest mistake, perhaps voting for him was ours."

I also realized that a majority of our Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, voted for the war even Kerry, who voted for the war before he voted against it. It must be very demoralizing to our troops, our sons and daughters, to read this stuff in their hometown newspaper and read that our Democrat-controlled Congress is now trying to prevent sending more troops over to help them. I'm also sure that it must be very encouraging to the roadside bombers trying to kill them.

If we feel some guilt for our present condition, we might wonder if the war would have been over by now had it been supported at home like World War II was. As a 40-year registered Democrat, I think Bush's biggest mistake was thinking the American people at home still had the will to win.

Robert Parkhurst




Thanks for the Pink coverage

A million thanks for your article about us SLO Code Pinkers' experience as peace activists and lobbyists marching in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 27 and 29 ("Washington turns pink," Feb. 8). You delivered the message of what Code Pink is about so accurately and eloquently, as well as the job we all have to help our government go in the direction of peace and justice!

I can certainly attest to your statement that "Code Pink regularly uses humor to get attention." During the march, I carried the pink sign that read "Augmentation is for Boobs," and I got so many requests for a picture with my sign I felt like a Hollywood celebrity!

The picture in Iraq now looks pretty grim, but marching with a half a million people as we did, and knowing we are not alone, I came home with hope that together, united, and connected to the passionate conviction we all have to end this war, we can do it!

Lynne Levine

San Luis Obispo




News media offer us nothing but fluff

Anna Nicole's life-death story is sad, but to waste entire newscasts carrying it on into infinity is obsessive. I ended up turning off my TV because there were no real issues being aired.

The news media's focus on all these fluff stars like Paris, Britney, and whoever is an insult to our intelligence.

Are these the media's role models that they want our children to emulate? You wonder why your kids are dressing like whores? Here's your answer.

Are they dumbing down our society so we will go into debt buying products rather than creating ideas for a healthy America? They say that the young people don't vote unless it's for American Idol (Idiot), which is a mean-spirited show. Our people need to learn to treat each other with respect, and solve problems with diplomacy and debate.

When I turn on the news, I want real news about what's going on in the world.

Anna is the latest excuse to avoid the real issues: the Libby trial, the Iraq surge, the lying, the deceiving, and the war on the middle class. We hear nothing about Bush's and Israel's de-stabilization of the Middle East creating a breeding ground for terrorists while we feast on fluff!

Sharon Eckardt

Los Osos




I'm not the only one who likes a warm home

What is your problem, Jane Swanson? You and your group need to get a grip on reality. This country will soon be facing a power shortage. Remember the brownouts of the '70s? That is only a prelude of what is to come in the near future. How do I know this, you ask? Because I've been building power plants all over the world for more than 30 years. The United States lags far behind the rest of the world in construction. We need them, and we need them NOW!

This country hasn't built a new power plant of significant size in 20 years thanks to people like you, Jane, and your group, Mothers for Peace.

By the way, why are you protesting against Diablo Canyon Power Plant? Are you really a tree hugger group that doesn't want anything built that would hurt your pristine patch of green? Do you really want to live in a cave that's cold (no electricity), can't have a fire (pollutes the environment), and catch fish with a bamboo stick?

You need to do some research on what powers a nuke reactor, ma'am. Please go to PG&E's info center at the 101 and San Luis Bay exit. They have a wealth of info. I'd like to see how far you get with a fuel rod that's 13 feet long under your coat, out of any nuke plant. You'd be dead before you even touch it!

Frankly, I like living in a nice, warm, well-lit home, with food in the fridge. I bet other people do too!

Steve Royer

San Luis Obispo




Be a Valentine when it comes to mental health

None of us ever thinks that it will happen to us.

We bring a beautiful baby into this world and somewhere along the way from birth to the teen years and beyond, we come to realize that something just isn't right or normal with our beautiful child, and we don't know what to do or where to turn for help.

This is the predicament that some parents find themselves in when they discover that their child might be suffering from a mental illness such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, severe depression, or some other form of a brain disease. Mental illnesses can strike children and adolescents or anyone at any time.

In many cases of childhood mental illness, hindsight has been a great educator, but foresight is the best educator.

NAMISLOCO (National Alliance on Mental Illness, San Luis Obispo County) has a new program titled Parents and Teachers as Allies. This is an in-service health education program for school professionals in SLO County. The program focuses on helping school professionals and families understand the early warning signs of mental illness in children and adolescents and how best to intervene so that youth with mental health-treatment needs are linked with services.

Won't you please be our Valentine and help support this vital program with your sponsorships and donations to NAMISLOCO, P.O. Box 3158, San Luis Obispo, CA, 93403. We are an all-volunteer, tax-deductible organization.

For more information, please go to namislo.org or call 546-4040.

Naoma Wright

San Luis Obispo




These kids deserve an encore

Re: Arroyo Grande High School Theatre Department's The Abridged History of America, which played Feb. 7:

I thought I was going to a musical, on the history of American songs. (Where I got musical from on the flyer I still have not figured out.)

The play started out with the three stars running through the audience carrying an American flag singing the national anthem. Hearing that, I thought it was going to be a very "bad" musical, perhaps I may sneak out early.

But I was pleasantly surprised and totally wrong! The fast-paced, very humorous, superbly executed satire play took off like lightning.

The three stars pulled off variations on their voices, multiple role genders, and costume changes in split seconds. The hilarious script was moving so fast and the lines so current and funny that it was some time before I finally noticed the older much older gentleman next to me laughing just as hard as the kids in the audience.

I am still in awe of the three young stars' execution of the complicated lines. Their timing was impeccable. Just when you thought things were becoming more serious, they would inject a zinger and the audience would roar with laughter again.

These young stars, Jeff Williams, Sara Powers, and Peter DePaulo, pulled off a great performance.

This group of actors is very young, not particularly polished or seasoned, but just the right mix to pull off a great show. Their youth and enthusiasm is both fresh and awesome.

Jay Leno and Craig Ferguson would even enjoy seeing this performance, and I would love to see it again myself. It was so fast-paced and there was so much laughter, I am sure there was a lot that I missed.

It only played for one night but I am sure the word would spread if they decided on an encore performance and the Clark Center would be standing room only for the next showing of this fantastic performance.

Helen Saulsbury




Los Osos woes extend through the county

County residents beyond Los Osos say that they don't contribute to its sewage problem, asking, "Why should I have to help pay for it?"

For years, the county ignored regulations and common sense, permitting construction without concern for the environment. The run-off from higher-level agriculture has already polluted the drinking water wells of Morro Bay. Eminent scientist Dr. Daniel Wickham said that correlation is not causation, referring to the anti-science water board's failure to acknowledge that higher nitrates were due to an earlier global warming when Los Osos and Morro Bay were underwater, covered by sea grass. The board's statistical analysis wasn't sufficient for their draconian actions.

The entire country is paying already. Federal and state clean water laws mandate cleanups everywhere in the nation. The front page article in The Washington Post on Jan. 29 said that the doomed 2010 target of the cleanup of the Chesapeake Bay was on the order of $28 billion (or, as the article said, "enough for six aircraft carriers").

A beleaguered group of 45 from Los Osos is already paying the price for the political and bureaucratic bungling of government. That should be remembered by others in this county.

Norman Risch

Los Osos

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