Steve Schuck, a rich, strong Colorado Springs conservative and the man he endorsed for the state Senate, Ed Jones, together endorsed school vouchers. Mr. Schuck, by using his personal money, and Mr. Jones, in his first act, submitted a bill to approve school vouchers for the state of Colorado.
It now seems that the conservatives have shown a concern for the poor by offering low-income students school vouchers. This may be something new for conservatives. What may come next? Low-cost housing? Health insurance, Head Start, better-paying jobs, affirmative action?
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the largest Hispanic organization in America with over 700 chapters, has been addressing these and other issues for many years. LULAC doesn't endorse or believe that school vouchers can solve the problems in education as it is today. If we are to meet the goals set by the president that "all children can learn and not one child left behind," we must fund and have equality in education. Private schools are selective in recruiting students. If the student becomes a problem, they are dropped and sent to the public school.
I am inviting Mr. Schuck, Sen. Jones and other legislators to join LULAC, to help eradicate poverty and racial discrimination from our society. I will send applications to Mr. Schuck and Sen. Jones. Applications are available by calling 227-9605 or by fax: 227-9984.
-- Angelo A. Christopher
LULAC, Chapter 3006
Good Lord! I have just read and reread Robert Scheer's Your Turn guest column ("A History Erased") in your April 17-23 edition.
The man has no talent for either ideas or words. His perception of reality is nearly as distorted as his attempts at metaphor and analogy. If you insist on giving him space in future editions I suggest his column be labeled "Sheer Ignorance!"
-- Jim Rogers
God is talking
I read your paper on occasion for the amusement of it. The lack of fact and wisdom the left demonstrates on most issues reassures me that real people, who clearly understand right from wrong, are the majority in Colorado Springs as well as the entire USA. This has been proven by the elections of George Bush, Bill Owens and more recently, Lionel Rivera.
This must be very irritating to your readers who truly believe that their "views" are indeed the right ones for all of mankind.
I would like to introduce to your paper as well as its readers on the left a useful word: Humility. I know you all know what it means, but apparently it is not an attribute you possess.
Which prompts me to ask your paper and its readers this question: When will you, the left, finally admit you are wrong about Iraq? A country is free from an evil dictator. Liberated by a God-fearing man who has demonstrated outstanding leadership and genuine humanity.
Huh-oh, I mentioned God. That surely made some of you gasp in horror. Good versus evil has been with us since the dawn of man. Good always wins in the end so why not use our victory in Iraq to finally get on the winning side? Protesting the war did not work nor do I think it will ever work when evil needs to be defeated. And by the sounds of all the honking in response to the pro-American rally on the corner of Platte and Nevada today, the "Good" side still has the upper hand.
Here is a bold prediction for 2004: Our President, George W. Bush will be re-elected. Hopefully, the Republicans will continue to have the majority over Congress for years to come. Moral America has clearly spoken in recent past elections and will continue to do so, God willing, for years to come.
Huh-oh, there's that "God" word again.
-- Ron Miller
What makes a great nation
I just wanted to express my concern about the March 4th vote by our United States Congress to include 'under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance.
The original Pledge purposely did not contain reference to any religion with good reason; the composers of that pledge were following the rule of law so clearly stated in the separation of church and state.
In case you all don't remember, the words "under God" were not added to the Pledge of Allegiance until 1953. It is imperative we all understand that this was a time when our nation was being terrorized by the historically shameful hearings of Joe McCarthy; a time when fear, not sudden religious conversion, drove our politicians to try and assure their constituents that they were true Americans, and not the dreaded Communists Sen. McCarthy was so publicly and protractedly pursuing.
Once again, our politicians are in the grip of this same paralyzing fear. Fear that they will be perceived as un-American if they don't put God above the law. Fear that they will not be re-elected if they don't appear to be "born again" Christians.
The separation of church and state is the only thing that makes this a truly great nation. The freedom to choose remains our only defense against the ignorance, bigotry and nearsighted self-interest of our nation's leaders, both in the past, the present and certainly the future.
-- W. Dean Morgan
Cruising for Christ
The other night I was very surprised to find myself driving past a car that was decked out almost like a police cruiser, complete with "City of Colorado Springs" on the side, and "CHAPLAIN" painted on the back. What? The city employs chaplains to run around and preach the gospel?
A few phone calls to the city clarified some points. The chaplain program is one of many volunteer programs under the Police Department and the chaplains are just that -- volunteers. I was told that they represent a variety of Christian denominations, including Catholic, Baptist, Methodist and Latter Day Saints. While this seems to not be very representative of the world's religions, they are volunteers so I can assume that imams, rabbis, witches and Satanists will be equally welcome in the program. I encourage any such folk to volunteer.
But who pays for the cruiser they drive around in? The Police Department does. Er, I mean the taxpayer does.
I'm not a resident of Colorado Springs, although I spend enough sales tax dollars there that I'm bothered by the fact that public money funds a religious program. I think the Constitution had something to say about that. But with all the violations of the First Amendment being pursued by our popular commander in chief, who would notice this little drop in the bucket?
I encourage the city, and government at all levels, to respect the fact that freedom of religion applies to people of all religions, and those with no religion as well. This means that public dollars should not support religious activity of any kind.
Anyway, if God is everywhere, why do these people need a car?
-- Larry Rossi
Sticking it to the citizens
A proposed toll road in eastern Colorado Springs is being discussed much sooner than I would have expected. Here are some thoughts:
1. It's being compared to E470 in Denver, which costs about $10 in tolls to travel, end to end. I guess that's how growth pays its own way, huh? Can't stick the city or the state with that tab, so we'll stick it to the citizens (who always end up paying in the end, anyway).
2. Some think it may be premature, but, since we're apparently in a big hurry to hit the 1 million population mark, it will become necessary! Imagine, that tollway could end up being in the center of town by 2040! Fact is, this town is far from being ready to plop down $10 a trip on a tollway, but one of the smartest things we could do is to go ahead and acquire the right of way for such a road now. We don't have to start construction for 10 years, but wouldn't it be intelligent to set aside the land and thus avoid future condemnation and NIMBY problems? It would be a first for this region. If we were really farsighted we would include right of way for a subway system.
3. I find it interesting our new mayor got elected focusing on improving Drennan Road. How many trips a month does the average Springs resident make down Drennan? The real, immediate need is Constitution and Woodmen -- for the citizens. Drennan Road is a boondoggle for business, a boom for the construction, development and real-estate trades. The clerks, secretaries and accountants in town won't be getting raises because of this. It won't be one penny in their pocket, but it will be a long, slow drain on their pocketbooks, just like the tollway will eventually be. We will pay. More commerce does not necessarily mean more prosperity for the average citizen. If the HBA wants to build a freeway, let 'em. If they want to widen Drennan Road, let 'em. Let's not do it for them.
-- Dave Gardner