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Ted Cruz, Planned Parenthood shootings, ceo salaries, and more 

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Cruz vs. Rushmore

Months ago Sen. Ted Cruz was dismissed as an "insane buffoon" who would never be a serious candidate. He had gained worldwide infamy for his immaturity and self-promotion in his 2013 Obamacare filibuster.

Now we see he is a smart, smooth operator gaining momentum. I fear him because he opposes American values of our historical heroes such as those on Mount Rushmore. He opposes separation of church and state, a principle supported firmly by all four on Rushmore.

On the campaign trail he has advocated a Christian theocracy. He opposes Teddy Roosevelt's protection of our natural heritage as he openly advocates discarding the EPA and selling public lands.

I'm a registered Independent voter who hopes our choices move beyond Cruz.

— David Eckert

Colorado Springs

Let's not forget

I have to write because my anger and frustration demand it. No one I talk to or listen to on the radio — not President Obama or any of those Republican candidates — has mentioned the terrible domestic terrorism event at Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs. All attention has swiveled to foreign jihadists.

I have heard no tallies that show that the domestic blend far outweighs the Islamic ones in number and frequency. Is it because it would draw attention to the need for gun reform?

Maybe people are more comfortable looking outside their borders for blame.

I live in New York City. When I bring up the subject of what happened at Planned Parenthood, people at first don't remember it at all. Then when I remind them, they dismiss it.

To me, this attack on women's rights has perhaps far more repercussions than the Islamic attack at San Bernardino. Recently in the news, a woman tried to abort a very late-term pregnancy, using a coat hanger to abort the fetus.

She was taken to the hospital where the damaged infant was born. She is being charged with homicide. The incidents similar to this are too many to list.

Women's clinics are being threatened, shut down, bombed, and women entering clinics are being harassed by "pro-lifers." Recently, I remembered Bill Baird, a man who proselytized for contraception decades before it was accepted.

What I am hoping for is big discussions on this issue. This affects individuals, families and the culture as a whole. Is there any way we can begin to talk about this and not be eclipsed by the "officially" acceptable conversation? I would appreciate any responses.

— Judy Samuels

New York

Young and old

John Hazlehurst's well-intentioned piece missed the boat on several levels ("No Council for old men," cover story, Dec. 16). First, he compared the so-called "young" City Council in 1901 to the mostly old (and white) Council of today. Um, John, the average life expectancy in 1901 was 47.6 years. Those aldermen were looking death in the eye. Certainly, they were not the young men John describes — quite the contrary. They were the old men of the day.

Today's City Council, which John describes as "typically white, male and over 60" also misses the boat. The average life expectancy for males in 2015 is more than 78, while women (listen up, Jill Gaebler!) may expect to reach 81 or so. I wouldn't describe today's Council as all spring chickens, but they're not as over-the-hill as in 1901.

"So, what can you do?" if you want to get elected to Council. Absolutely, run for office! Ideally, you will be humble (not just "appear to be"). Do your homework, study issues, work your butt off.

John is on target when he says join a service club. I would also find a church where you can learn more about humility. But don't do this to get better known. Lastly, pay your dues. Try to get appointed to one of the committees in government. Allow people to get to know you.

We do need younger people in all levels of government, but we mustn't forget the older people in office have been around a long time. They didn't just come out of the woodwork. I place public service — including police and firefighters — on the same level as teachers and clergy. It is a calling, and a high one at that.

— Jere Joiner

Colorado Springs

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