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Back to the future

Besides pushing his religion on us, Rick Santorum is guilty of adding to one of the most serious world problems, over-population. Seven kids, all home-schooled by his wife, which, in my opinion, is the cruelest thing to do to a child. Can you imagine protecting them from meeting new friends with different backgrounds and getting a glimpse of how the world works?

There is an art in teaching that is learned in college. How many times have you read of successful people who give credit to a wonderful teacher?

Santorum is such a throwback with his belief that global warming is a hoax and evolution is not true. I am avoiding mentioning that he wants to legislate women's health and welfare. We cannot even think of electing him president.

— Colleene Johnson

Colorado Springs

Truth is out

Adele M. Stan's excellent article ("The GOP's war on women," cover story, Feb. 16) shows the influence of the Roman Catholic Church and how its true target of birth control — not merely "abortion," which was chosen as the wedge issue — has been revealed.

Many Catholics in Congress decry the free furnishing of contraceptives, claiming they are being made to pay for something that offends their religious beliefs.

Well, I have news for them — I don't like paying the property taxes of all their churches when I don't agree with those religious beliefs! Maybe it's time to start a "religious freedom" movement ourselves, to free us from this outdated tax exemption of church property.

Now the Republican candidates are joining the Catholics against birth control, saying that sex without the goal of procreation is wrong. This kind of thinking reduces humans to the level of animals, since many animals procreate by having sex only while in estrus. Humans have evolved beyond that, enjoying sex outside of fertile periods, and psychologists show that this enhances our lives.

Republicans can't seem to understand that free birth control benefits all society by helping families avoid unwanted pregnancies, resulting in fewer families on welfare. Perhaps Republicans don't want to reduce those numbers too much, because then their big donors (the top wealthy class that they don't want to raise taxes on) won't have the advantage of cheap labor.

So Republicans promote the antiquated view of the Catholic Church — which, by the way, the church voted on back in the '60s. Too bad contraception lost! They, and evangelical organizations like Quiverfull, can't seem to comprehend that a world population of over 7 billion threatens the future of our fragile planet.

— Janet Brazill

Colorado Springs

Leave women alone

My name is Miriam and I have a vagina. Because it makes me female, I have the right to use it when I want, how I want, and with whom I want as long as no one gets hurt. I do not have the right to tell you all what to do with your penises, unless you are harming someone.

If you had a uterus, perhaps you could make a decision about birth control and abortion on a personal level. But what if I tried to regulate your sex life, your food intake, the television you watch, the books you read, and what you are or are not allowed to do with your life?

I am a singer, teacher, actor, mother, friend, wife, woman. I don't pretend I know how to balance a national budget when I can barely balance my own. I have no idea how to handle world leaders, make foreign policy, create jobs in our country, keep terrorism off our soil, even figure out our tax brackets so the ridiculously rich and ridiculously poor are closer together, and I certainly don't know how to solve world peace.

This is why I vote for some of you. Most of us know how to regulate our bodies, bedrooms, and religious freedoms.

Perhaps it's time to concentrate on the reasons we voted you into office. We are, after all, paying you to do this, and I'm not seeing any progress.

So stop fighting like preschoolers on the playground (an insult to my preschooler) and start doing your jobs. Otherwise the Constitution will be null and void, women and people of color will lose all rights, and we will be a communist country.

Grow up. Work together instead of divided. If you worked at the CIA (or hell, even Microsoft) you'd be fired by now for going rogue. Cut the crap, leave my body out of it, and do your damn job.

— Miriam Roth Ballard

Colorado Springs

 

Self-induced fate

Doug Bruce is not a victim, injured party, nor sufferer, but rather the perpetrator — nay, instigator and mastermind — in this entire sordid episode ("Been down before," News, Feb. 16).

If it wasn't for his arrogance, conceit, superciliousness, disdain and unbridled pride — remember the old adage, "pride goeth before the fall," which is true — Mr. Bruce would not be in jail! He is also a fool, considering the advice of Abraham Lincoln: "A man who represents himself has a fool as a client"!

Mr. Bruce has put the state of Colorado in the same place his former henchmen and fellow southern Californians have put California with their misguided, foolish, ill-advised and injudicious action with TABOR and the myriad of "propositions" they have inflicted upon Californians! Perhaps he can get some advice from his old buddy, and bribe-taker, former SoCal congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham, as to behavior in jail!

Here come the feds, here come the feds...

— James M. Hesser

Colorado Springs

Call it trafficking

Wow! I just read the ad (Feb. 16, p. 48) regarding Benny's Tavern hosting a "Pimp & Ho Party," which I'm certain was a riotously fun time. Does anybody else perceive celebrating human trafficking as being just a tad sick? Or even wrong? To me, it's as if they were hosting a "child-sex night" at the parish hall.

Pimpin' & hoin' seem to not even fit into the Mardi Gras themes of cross-dressing and gay tease. Pimpin & hoin' need to be identified for what they are: human trafficking ... not something to be proud of. Or am I missing something?

— Bernadette Young

Colorado Springs

Wins and losses

Analyzing implies that one looks at the whole picture, positives and negatives. Larimore Nicholl ("Analyzing Obama," Letters, Feb. 16) presents a skewed picture of Barack Obama's accomplishments.

Nicholl says that Obama "stopped an economic free-fall." At best, Obama slowed it down; the jury is still out regarding Obama's economic "turnaround." This is especially alarming since the national debt is totally out of control.

The health care bill Obama signed lacked its anchor point, the public option, an important item on which Obama capitulated to the Republicans. Additionally, it is quite likely that the entire bill will be ruled unconstitutional.

The START Treaty to reduce nukes does not apply to North Korea, Pakistan, India, Israel, and soon-to-have-nukes Iran. President Obama stopped the Iraq war much too soon; Iraq is in turmoil, and it is in the process of becoming a full-fledged client of Iran. "Syria is burning," while the United States is on the sidelines.

President Obama did take care of Osama bin Laden — applause and kudos for that! Kudos are also in order for the Supreme Court appointments.

The "missing mittens" in Nicholl's little story of the drowning kid include: looming war with Iran, Russia not living up to treaties, North Korea building a serious nuclear arsenal, and the fact that those who Obama's policies "freed" from dictators, i.e., Libya, Tunisia and Egypt, are in the process of adopting Sharia law, totally contrary to everything (women's rights, individual freedoms, freedom of religion, etc.) that America stands for.

On balance, there were positives in Obama's first three years, but there were also many negatives, and many unresolved issues.

Obama was clearly not the total and great success that Nicholl tries to make him, but it is also true that President Obama's administration did have positive as well as negative accomplishments.

— Dan Goor

Colorado Springs

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Post-caucus thought

Before Colorado's Republican caucuses, my phone was inundated with recorded messages for a week telling me how to vote. Simultaneously, Republicans view themselves as strong, self-reliant, fiercely independent patriots who have pulled themselves up by their bootstraps.

If they all have these wonderful characteristics, please tell me why these expensive messages are needed to hound me?

A paradox!

— Dr. Dale L. Kemmerer

Colorado Springs

Mr. Anti-Everything

I contacted U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn's offices to ask him to support extension of the production tax credit for wind energy.

Every member of the Colorado delegation signed a letter in support except Doug Lamborn. Our representative is the last holdout against increased diversity and jobs in the Colorado economy.

The person answering the phone at his Colorado Springs district office said, "We don't really handle policy questions here — that is all handled in Washington."

Really, Doug? What kind of representative government is this?

— Lisa Tormoen Hickey

Colorado Springs

Misguided rhetoric

Poor Phil Stahl ("Halt the Galt," Letters, Feb. 9) — he can't seem to stop vomiting socialism and phony altruism. Thank God he wasn't around during the era of the Wright Brothers and Henry Ford, or we'd all still be traveling in wagon trains and on horseback and milking cows in our backyard.

Phil, put progress, individual ingenuity and freedom in your lexicon, and wake up, kid — you're in a stupor!

— Joan Christensen

Fountain

Killer within

Colorado has the sixth-highest rate of suicide in the nation: 867 Coloradans died by suicide in 2010. The largest number of suicides is among men of working age, 35 to 54. These men are sons, husbands, fathers, wage-earners.

Suicide is the second-leading cause of death among young people, 10 to 34. Men over 75 are at highest risk. A death by suicide affects the entire community; it has a profound impact on family and friends, and the workplace, and results in an untold loss of productivity.

State House Bill 1140, sponsored by Rep. Matt Jones and Sen. Linda Newell, will help prevent suicide. If passed, it will ask hospitals to provide information about suicide (risk factors, signs, and sources of help) to family and friends to whom a suicidal person is being discharged.

The Office of Suicide Prevention would work with hospitals to develop appropriate materials. Suicidal persons who go to the hospital are often those who have attempted suicide, and these individuals are at serious risk. Any effort that gets information into the hands of those closest to suicidal persons will help save lives.

Please contact the members of the Health and Environment Committee and ask them to support HB 1140. Together, we can save lives in Colorado. Learn more at suicidepreventioncolorado.org.

— Barbara Mettler

Spanish Peaks Mental Health

Pueblo

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