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Thursday, July 28, 2005 11:08 pm

Letters to the editor

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We welcome letters, but please include your full name, address and a daytime telephone number. We edit all letters for libel, length and clarity.

Send letters to: Letters, Illinois Times. P.O. Box 5256. Springfield, Illinois 62705. Fax: (217) 753-3958. E-mail: editor@illinoistimes.com

AGAINST TAX BREAKS TO WEALTHY

Nice job on the Wal-Mart piece explaining how vast its wealth is — the 29th-richest country [Kera Abraham, “Going green,” July 21]! When you put it like that, then it makes sense to really hold them to the fire for thwarting a citizen’s right to form a union, paying poverty-level wages, and treating women like slaves. Whatever happened to that right to form a union, anyway?

In regards to [Wal-Mart’s plan] to protect a wildlife refuge for every concrete sprawl they throw up, it puts me in mind of the tax breaks that have recently drained our social-service system. It is so cute, the way Springfieldians share their tax breaks: We are just hoping that the people with all the power and money do the right thing, but it is kind of like hoping someone who owns a gun will use it responsibly. There is no guarantee that if you give someone a pile of money, they will make sure worthy causes will be supported and maintained.

Anne Logue
Springfield

NO WONDER WE’RE BEWILDERED

The recent Supreme Court decisions regarding separation of church and state have confused the issue further. It would be impossible to discuss the divergent opinions regarding this issue in a letter. Suffice it to say the court’s varied, and often confusing, interpretations of that part of the First Amendment have most American citizens shaking their heads in bewilderment.

Various polls show that approximately 86 percent of Americans believe in God. Therefore, why is there such a controversy about the display of the Ten Commandments?

When attempting to interpret the intent of our country’s forefathers regarding separation of church and state, the decisions by the Supreme Court seem hypocritical. The building that houses the U.S. Supreme Court has, near the top of the building, several figures; one is Moses, and he is holding the Ten Commandments. The doors of the courtroom of the Supreme Court have the Ten Commandments engraved on the lower portion of each door. On the wall above where the Supreme Court judges sit is a display of the Ten Commandments. There are Bible verses etched in stone on federal buildings and monuments throughout Washington, D.C.

James Madison stated, “We have staked the whole of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.”

Thomas Jefferson worried that the courts would overstep their authority and instead of interpreting the law would begin making law. He feared the “rule of a few over many.”

We are a nation in which the majority of its citizens believe in God. Are we now to do away with all public display and proclamation of the majority’s religious belief because a few are offended? Considering the recent Supreme Court decisions regarding separation of church and state, are we now to believe the previous justices’ interpretation was wrong?

Thomas Jefferson’s fear is becoming a reality as a result of not only the court’s separation of church and state decisions but many other decisions that negate and limit the constitutional rights of American citizens. Now one and soon two justices will be appointed to the Supreme Court. The individuals selected will either be instrumental in returning the court to its basic goal of strictly interpreting the Constitution or they will join the other justices in exceeding their constitutional authority by making law rather than judging the constitutionality of existing laws.

We pray God will not only bless America, but save her.

John D. Kolaz
Springfield

THE END IS STILL COMING

The U.S. Supreme Court made a judgment to throw out the Ten Commandments in a courthouse in 2005!

The God of Israel won’t be mocked. The reason that most of the United States is in a drought and earthquakes are happening in 2005 is the wrath and judgment of the God of Israel against the United States. The God of Israel made the U.S. Supreme Court and out of their ignorance of the law; not allowing God’s Ten Commandments in the courthouses will destroy the moral law of the land!

In the next two years, if the U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of man instead of God, the people of the United States will suffer the most since the birth of our nation. There will be financial, physical, spiritual, moral, and natural disasters suffered in the United States, valley-of-dry-bones land! The God of Israel is warning us in the weather changes and birth pangs of planet Earth’s natural disasters, moaning and groaning for the Supreme Court’s stupidity!

May the God of Israel have mercy on the United States of America!

George Culley
Pinckneyville

THREE LITTLE WORDS

There are three little words that are continually overlooked in the fetal-stem-cell debate: It doesn’t work.

The fetal-stem-cell groups have floated all kinds of hopeful come-ons to get government grants because they can’t raise private money to fund their research. Why not? It’s simple: No results. Fetal-stem-cell research has not produced one cure or therapy to date, not even in lab rats.

The private sector wants to see invested capital producing useful results. Governments, on the other hand, are notorious for not caring about end products. All that seems to matter to them is that they can be seen as doing something, taking action, making a stand. Results don’t matter because nobody checks.

My advice to Gov. Rod Blagojevich is to stop wasting our money on bankrupt research just so you can look good.

Dennis Driscoll
Round Lake

GOVERNOR BYPASSES THE LEGISLATURE

Gov. Rod Blagojevich has shocked me again. He has signed an executive order authorizing the use of Illinois tax dollars to pay for experimentation — excuse me, “research” — on human embryos. He has authorized $10 million for embryonic stem-cell experimentation and human cloning. Attempts to pass legislation to fund embryonic stem-cell “research” have failed to pass the Democratic-controlled General Assembly the last two sessions. So he just signed an executive order and went around the General Assembly.

Is this a pattern? Well, it might seem so. I was stunned when Blagojevich ignored Illinois law and ordered pharmacists to dispense the morning-after pill. This was unbelievably disrespectful of the ethical beliefs held by many pharmacists. It is hard to imagine a governor who is so callous that he would force a person to choose between leaving his job (and this state) or dispensing megadoses of female hormones that might kill a new embryo.

Blagojevich is bypassing the legislative process in the General Assembly. This smells like the work of a dictator instead of a governor!

Holly Rich
Quincy

JUDGING JOHN ROBERTS

The American people, along with their senators, should support President George W. Bush in his nomination of Judge John Roberts for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court not just because the president says so but also because Roberts is a worthy and valid candidate.  Study up on this man and see why he deserves our support. I believe he holds the same principles and morals as I. I respect someone who not only believes that way but chooses to stand up for what he believes in. He has my support. Let others know he has yours!

Lauren Hughes
Charleston

“DO NOTHING NOW, COMPLAIN LATER”

Why do the historic do-gooders wait to get excited only after a building is in shambles and on the destroy list?  If they would just direct their efforts sooner, but I guess their philosophy is “do nothing now, but complain later.”  It’s not their time, effort or money, and they sure don’t have much — if any — of a record in actually accomplishing what they espouse.

F. N. Ross
Rochester

EVOLUTION AND SEX EDUCATION

How can some people can argue that Intelligent Design ought to be taught in our schools (“in the interest of getting all the facts out there and letting the students decide what to believe”), but then take exactly the opposite argument about “teaching all the facts” of family planning and birth control (“that’s a topic best left for the family to teach”).  If “all the facts” are beneficial and productive for one purpose, they’re equally beneficial for the other.

Tim Slack
Newburgh, Ind.

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