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A new and holy vision

To the Editor:

Our release from the El Paso County Jail and the dismissal of felony charges reflects again the attempt to keep the wall of secrecy surrounding the U.S. Space Command and the complicit aerospace corporations.

In this time of de-escalation of worldwide conflict and disarmament treaties, the U.S. Space Command Nerve Center forges ahead, keeping concealed the billions of dollars in present and future budgets and total force planning for militarization and weaponization of outer space.

We leave Colorado Springs committing ourselves to:

unmasking the whole plan of dominance and exploitation of space

continuing the "hammering of swords into plowshares"

joining the Oct. 7 International Day of Protest and Actions against Star Wars.

We will continue to preach the good news that God is our only true security, that "nonviolence or nonexistence" is essential for future generations, that our sisters and brothers make up the entire world and should never be targeted as enemy, that we must learn stewardship for God's creation, not the destruction of it.

We pray and invite police, military, court and jail personnel, Pentagon and corporate employees and all peoples to join us in this new and holy vision for 2020 and beyond.

-- Sr. Elizabeth Walters IHM
Sr. Jackie Hudson OP
Sr. Anne Montgomery RSCJ
Sr. Ardeth Platte OP
Sr. Carol Gilbert OP


Biblical disagreement

To the Editor:

Is there no end to the deception and revisionism of the liberal left? The recent Your Turn editorial by Catherine Beckman (Sept. 14) proves this point. The title was "Biblical jabberwocky supports anti-homosexual stance." The real, and more honest, byline should have read, "Anti-biblical jabberwocky supports pro-homosexual stance."

The biting irony is when Ms. Beckman (with a "theology" degree) says, "The problem I have is not with interpreting scripture literally, but with those who are selectively literal in their interpretation." And then, she proceeds to be sarcastically selective in her scriptural presentation in trying to discredit those who reject homosexual behavior.

Catherine, the Bible nowhere endorses or promotes homosexual behavior. On the other hand, both the Old and New Testaments do speak out against homosexuality and sodomy. You said homosexuality in the Bible is "contradictory and problematic." On the contrary, sexual orientation is made quite clear by Moses, Jesus, and the Apostle Paul -- and that is, one man -- one woman (a monogamous, heterosexual relationship). This teaching, that is so confusing to you, is over 4,000 years old and accepted by most Jews and Christians (and Muslims)!

Listen, Ms. Beckman, the "Christians who protest gay pride" are not the oppressors of society that you so profess. In fact, the militant, gay movement (2 to 3 percent of the population) is striving toward forced affirmation of their lifestyle onto society. Truly the tail is wagging the dog!

Finally, Ms. Beckman said, "Did we grow as human beings and make decisions by what we've learned from the sciences?" Obviously not! Catherine states that for some Boy Scouts their homosexuality is "at the very core of their being." Baloney! There is no scientific proof that homosexuality is genetic -- it is not inborn. But, science does teach us that the majority of AIDS/HIV in the United States comes from homosexual behavior. Only a liberal in denial would believe the "jabberwocky" of Catherine Beckman's editorial.

-- Rev. Tom Pedigo
American Family Association of Colorado
Colorado Springs


Slower than United Airlines

To the Editor:

After waiting several years for an air show to hit Colorado, I eagerly scooped up my five-year-old for the 20-minute drive to Peterson Air Force Base last weekend. By the time I hit Powers and Drennan, the traffic was at a 5 mph stop and go. It took over two hours to reach the parking area from that point, before making a one-plus mile walk in the heat and crowds to reach the show area. We were both near dehydration by the time we hit the lines for a drink, each of which was at least 50 people long, and a good half-hour wait. By the time we got our sodas, it was time to turn right around and make the drive home, without having seen any of the show, either air, or static display. Forget the half-hour wait for a stop at the porta-potty on the way out ... at that point, I was tired of waiting for anything.

What a huge (and angering) disappointment! From talking with others, it seems that this event was not quite the ooh-and-ahh experience that the Gazette, in their Sunday coverage, played it off to be.

Sure, they expected 50,000 to 100,000 visitors, and wound up with 150,000. But it would have been a huge public service (and a good show of military readiness) to roll in more porta-potties, more potable water trucks, and have someone at Powers and Drennan with a sign that read "Traffic delay to show: 2 hours" when they saw the crowds growing out of control.

-- Ivy Mitchell
Colorado Springs


Democracy in absentia

To the Editor:

It's amazing how things crop up together sometimes. It's almost like one of those "good news/bad news" jokes.

First, the Independent beautifully demonstrated my top two campaign points with Cara DeGette's article "Bad Boys," aptly subtitled "Whatcha gonna do if they come for you?" (August 31). Ms. DeGette has done a marvelous job of documenting one incident which, when taken together with the thousands of others, shows powerfully why we absolutely must 1) end the insane drug war, and 2) demilitarize, and retake control of, the police.

The abuse of innocent people like Harry Singleton and Camile Sackey, blithely justified by "our" police, will go on until legislative changes are made to stop them from writing their own rules. Obviously, the key change that must be made is to yank the rug of drug prohibition out from under their feet, so that their fundamental excuse for military raids on private homes is simply no longer available. Nothing less will end the reign of terror, and that is why I give those two things the highest priority, even above the need to reduce taxes and the financial size of government.

How can this go on? Well, on Page 8, I was invited to "Get Involved" and see "democracy in action" at a Sept. 12 candidates debate sponsored by the political science department up at CU. But despite the appeal for "all the candidates decid[ing] to show up," I had only to read the second sentence to see that "local Democratic and Republican office seekers" were the only ones invited to participate.

Read the campaign literature of the local Democratic and Republican office seekers, and you will find that they don't even want to talk about the insane violence, or the obscene expense, of their drug war policies. The status quo is just fine with them.

I doubt that the status quo is now OK with Mssrs. Singleton or Sackey, or the others abused by the CSPD shock troops on June 16. But if they went to CU for some democracy in action, they found nobody proposing to lift a finger to help them or anyone else. However, there really is someone on their side and willing to talk about this critical issue that the establishment politicians would prefer to sweep under the rug -- someone the CU poli. sci. folks don't consider worthy of being invited to participate.

-- Patrick L. Lilly
Libertarian candidate for state Senate district 12
Colorado Springs


The future of homework

To the Editor:

You've got to be kidding me. Homework is bad? (Your Turn, "Why Homework Is Bad For Kids," Sept. 7) Since when? As far as I am concerned, the kids these days are turning into wimps! It's more important for the egotistical parents to see their little darling on a football field or some other activity far removed from the rigors of the classroom than studying.

My son went through one of the worst school systems in this area -- Widefield. I have absolutely no respect for District 3, even four years later. Whenever he would come home from school -- high school -- I'd ask him about homework. Homework? Not there. Zip, none. His so-called teachers didn't consider it necessary. In one of the District 3's infamous conferences I finally blew up and told the whole bunch point-blank, "There better be some homework coming home with him starting today!" Their response was, "Well, we don't do that." The argument finally spilled into the superintendent's office. It got to the point in a successive meeting that the teachers finally brought Dr. Hachell Jr., to chair the meeting.

Now my son wants to go to college. But due to the failure of the teachers at that time, he is totally unprepared for the higher expectations of the college he wants to attend. The professors do not have the time to fill in the blanks left by a less-than-adequate school system and teachers who failed to assure the kids who may not be the academic "brains" that they will someday get it together and want a college level education.

Homework prepares them for the rigors of college. I've seen some of the students' work from even Colorado College and I was disillusioned at the poor level of work. The upshot of all this is, the teachers think they're doing the students a favor by giving them only enough to meet whatever ambiguous standards they go by. It appears it's more important for Junior and Missy to play after school than it is to do homework and turn in assignments on time. This is a result of lousy school standards and the low standards the teachers have for themselves; they do not give the students high enough standards to want to achieve better grades.

Educational standards have dipped into the swamp of oblivion. I've asked kids questions that center on subjects they should be taught in school; they claim they "are not taught that." Small wonder. Time is wasted on activities that have no bearing on school at all. And half of these kids cannot write two lines of anything without losing concentration.

Homework picks up the slack. If it's not done there, then where do you suggest they learn? Forget the classroom. The teachers are shoving that envelope on down the line to someone else. Mom and Pop maybe? Not there. This is the dumbing down of America's kids. Mom and Pop would rather see the kids playing some sport. This is our future? Who are you kidding? Not here!

-- H.E. Dinsen
Colorado Springs

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