Email letters, July 24, 2012
Henson-Koenig family extends sincere thanks to all ‘guardian angels’
The family of Andrea Henson-Koenig would like to thank all of the “guardian angels” that came to her rescue on Saturday morning. No one ever expects a tire to blow on his or her vehicle, especially that early in the day while transporting five children, getting excited for a softball game.
But it happened in a flash, and her excursion went out of control. Immediately, there were heroes stopping to lend a helping hand, administering first aid to my sweet daughter and her babies. Phone calls were made so quickly to obtain first responders, and started going to family and friends to get hold of all the people that needed to be contacted.
I would like to say a big thank-you to all the emergency personnel that responded, the ambulance crews who took three of the kids to Meeker and two to Rifle and the Flight for Life crew out of New Mexico that came to the scene to get Andrea to get her to St. Mary’s so quickly. Thank you to the ER nurses, and doctors who took good care of all the kids in Meeker and Rifle, and a big thank-you to the trauma center at St. Mary’s for taking care of this wonderful daughter of mine. She is a wonderful mommy to her three children and her three stepchildren.
Everyone, your help brought this family back together before the day’s end to hug each other and be safely home.
Thank you so much, Ed Koenig, for running and getting the kids all new car seats and new booster seats. They are not cheap, especially when you are buying that many at one time. Thanks for being there for your nieces and nephews!
And a huge and wonderful thank-you goes out to Tirae Koenig. Two of these injured children are yours, but yet you took over, took charge of all the kids so that CJ and Andrea’s family could go to her and we didn’t have to worry so much about the babies. You and your mom are great! You’re such a great friend to Andrea and it’s great how your family is merged with hers, and how that the two of you can say “OUR kids” together!
Yes, it was very scary for all for a while, but there are no broken bones, and, it seems, no internal injuries. Only one child got stitches, and Andrea has staples and stitches, but she did not have to stay at the hospital. Thank you once again, everyone, and a huge thank-you to those who are coming to her aid in the days to come as she heals to help the kids get to and from all their busy activities.
Media glorification of sick acts just brings on more of them
On Sunday, July 22, The Daily Sentinel editorial page editor explored the ideas of “how to respond to senseless horror.” Could stronger gun laws have prevented the shootings at the movie theater in Aurora? By regulation of video games? By screening “loners”? Or possibly by something the media never explores — the love affair between the media and mass murderers/assassins?
When something important happens, it makes the front page. But if you are a dysfunctional individual with a twisted need for attention, it pays big to do something atrocious. You’re guaranteed the entire front page (and then some).
The media will tell the rest of us more about you than they do about the celebrities they shove down our throats. We will know your middle name, where you went to school and what your grade school friends thought about you three years ago. We’ll see your school yearbook photos; we’ll know all your interests and hobbies. We’ll know all about you. Even the BBC and other worldwide media will tell us every detail about your pathetic life.
We will understand that you are pathetic and cowardly, in spite of the media telling us how brilliant you are, what a clever genius you are. Your victims will get a small paragraph (since, after all, they are mere props in yours and the media’s eyes), and every miniscule detail of your life (including your smug, proud mug shot) will serve as an advertisement for those who will follow in your footsteps. Did something great? Three paragraphs on page eight. Did something sick and twisted? Round-the-clock full coverage.
And after showing (advertising) what it takes to get nonstop attention, then the same media that glorifies your sickness will seek to blame society instead of you, clamor for every word that passes or has passed your lips, and call for more laws for the rest of us. Then we can all get back to pretending we don’t understand what the problem is.
More needy people now will receive health services earlier on
I was disappointed by the lack of discussion after reading Marcia Neal’s letter to the editor regarding the Affordable Care Act printed July 15.
There is some obvious stacking of disinformation in her anti universal health care statements including that the U.S. has the best medical care in the world (actually ranking 37th by the World Health Organization), that bigger paychecks make better doctors (no real quid pro quo here) and that universal health care is making “the rest of the world” go broke.
In fact it’s the U.S. that’s going broke without universal health care. Scare tactics about the lack of “quality healthcare” with universal health care can be disputed by the numbers across the world, if you care to look. There are important truths that should move us as citizens and voters to look beyond the bias and rhetoric of some of the so-called “news” media with regard to the Affordable Care Act.
As we prepare for the elections this year, remember that health care in this nation is too important for it to be an issue of the right vs. left. It’s not us vs. them. It’s just “us.” We all pay one way or another with our present system. It’s been said over and over, a major contributor to government debt is the explosive rise in health care costs.
When people don’t have insurance, they hope the problem goes away until they’re forced to choose the emergency room for medical care, making their care much more expensive, their problem much more severe (and even more expensive) and the health outcomes worse, meaning we in the U.S. pay around twice as much for poorer care.
These last few years have seen our family’s health insurance costs go up and our benefits go down. We are already paying for other people’s health insurance, and if you have insurance, so are you. The Affordable Healthcare Act mandate makes it so that all who can pay will pay—one way or another.
It ensures that people who can afford health insurance will have to pay for it, instead of the insured paying higher and higher premiums for everyone who fails to get insurance regardless of his or her need.
We’re lucky here. Neal is correct about that. The Marillac Clinic is a wonderful organization for people in need. Isn’t it nice to know that with the Affordable Healthcare Act everyone in our great nation will be lucky enough to have access to medical care and that our healthcare costs will go down at the same time? Rest assured, I will rejoice.
I will rejoice that the college student with a tumor spreading across her chest won’t have to be a full time student while being a full time cancer patient to continue medical care. I will rejoice that the man who got laid off with no insurance can go to the doctor for medication instead of having a heart attack. I will rejoice that the woman with a lump in her breast can have the lump removed instead of a malignant tumor. And when it saves us all a lot of money, I’ll rejoice about that.
More infringements of Second Amendment rights won’t help
On gun control, I read and hear on the already captured local TV news that the triggerman (Joker) in Aurora surrendered without significant resistance. Why? I suppose because he did not want to get shot. It takes an armed response to answer an armed assault. Ask any of the cops that responded to the call July 20.
More laws will not make America any safer. They will empower an already oppressive state. “The shedding of innocent blood defiles the land. And the shed blood of Jesus Christ is greater than that blood shed by Abel” are concepts reflected in the Sacred Writ.
Noah Webster was right when he published in 1833 that there are two powers only sufficient to control men and secure the rights of individuals and a peaceable administration. These are the combined force of religion and law, and the force or fear of the bayonet.” (These sentiments were reflected in a speech before the Massachusetts Bible Society on May 28, 1849, by Robert Charles Winthrop.)
The fact that we have chosen a president who has said, “We are no longer a Christian nation, if we ever were,” suggests not only his ignorance but also our own beguiling.
More restrictions or more infringements upon our Second Amendment rights will never make us safer from evil men like the “joker” or those who helped him. Only a restoration of four American Foundations can.
“Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind….” reflects much more than fundamental law but law that reflected a sermon preached May 10, 1787, by Elizur Goodrich.
As it is written if the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do? It is not Christianity that has divided this nation but the neglect of it. It is not Christianity that led to and allowed the unspeakable evil on July 20 but the neglect of my people.
As President Lincoln said in his March 1863 proclamation of a National Day of Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer, “Intoxicated with unbroken success we have become … too proud to pray to the God that made us.”
ROBERT JAMES BURKHOLDER
Federal education funds come with strings attached
School buildings are being readied for the 2012-13 school year, personnel openings are being filled or have been filled despite serious budget restraints, but otherwise, all seems quiet on the education scene.
But that isn’t the situation at the federal level. The U.S. Department of Education has been busy with its $77 billion annual budget.
President Barack Obama and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan are continually evolving a grand design for all the nation’s school districts. These plans and policies, if implemented fully, will cause another huge governmental intrusion into the lives of citizens and students, with no positive effect whatsoever.
The education of our young people is constitutionally the responsibility of the states, not the federal government. Obama and Duncan apparently believe, incorrectly, that responsibility is theirs alone to direct all educational policies in the land.
Such arrogance and narcissism on their part are abhorrent. They have no interest in the welfare of teachers and students. They do have an insatiable lust for power in Washington, and they believe there is no better place to further that drive than in our schools and in the minds of students.
School district policies are to originate at the local level through our elected school board, with support and funding locally and from the state. These policies include curriculum content, textbooks and selection of other learning materials. These policies direct professional staff to implement what is to occur in each school and classroom.
The U.S. Department of Education says it should be the other way around. We citizens send the department billions, and then it determines what should be taught. It dangles funds to force states and local school districts to do its bidding on things such as curriculum content, testing and more.
This summer, our local board of education finalized a budget for 2012-13 for a total of $154 million. This reflected a budget reduction of $5.76 million. This reduction was added to previous cuts, now totaling $34.4 million.
Taxpayers in our county must become very familiar of the sources of the district’s revenue, because with money (funding) comes control.
Increasing gun control a misguided response to killings
May I first express my sympathy to the families of those killed and wounded in Aurora last week, and to Tom Mauser of Colorado Ceasefire for the loss of his son at Columbine. Words fail to even begin to be able to assuage the pain and loss suffered. I will not insult you by saying “I know your pain” when I do not.
Just so you know where I’m coming from, I am not a hunter, but spent 12 years in the U.S. Army. I haven’t fired a gun in three years and have no desire to do so. I am just an average American citizen who cares only about the personal protection of my family and property. I am not a wild-eyed firebrand who has guns everywhere, and am not a member of the NRA. I understand that the weapons possessed by law enforcement are for their protection, not mine.
How terribly sad that those of us who understand the debate over gun control know full well, as do those in your camp, that attempting to tear the Second Amendment out of the Constitution will never solve the problem.
When will you wake up and smell the coffee? A free society will never tolerate demands to relinquish its weapons. The day President Obama signs the UN treaty to regulate (read that as confiscate) the personal firearms of Americans to “promote peace and safety” will be the day the second American Civil War begins.
I have no idea as to how many people have been murdered or maimed by knives, but would bet the number is very high. Why no “knife control” demands? How about booze? It has killed millions more Americans than guns ever will, including all our wars, but Prohibition was repealed because Americans were thirsty for the devil’s brew.
I won’t bother you with all the statistics about how often guns are used to prevent events like what happened in Aurora because you really don’t care. If just one person with a concealed-carry permit had been in that theater last Friday, the only fatality might have been James Holmes. The misguided humanism of anti-gunners only exacerbates the problem, and cannot stop anyone bent on murder. On that note, history is quite clear.
A book a few years back had the title “More Guns - Less Crime,” and fully documented that contention statistically. The hysterical rhetoric of those bent on seeing America become just another slave state conveniently ignores the facts.
How ironic that someone with the name “Mauser” would be at the forefront of a movement to take the guns of the lawful. It is no secret that criminals will always find a way to get a weapon. The father of Rachel Scott, also a Columbine victim, understood this when he refused to condemn the NRA (the favorite anti-gun demon) when speaking before Congress. He knew it was the dark hearts of men like Klybold, Harris, and Holmes that are the core of the problem, and that attacking our Constitution is doomed to failure.
Executing the pig because he saw the fox ravage the henhouse is both shortsighted and nonsensical, and it only guarantees that the fox will be back for more. Let’s work the problem, people.
Seeing red over green
So it’s finally come to this: GREEN. Green this, green that, green everywhere, cars, shopping bags, even light bulbs. “Culture rot” is all around now and “we gotta do something! Fast!”
Fear not! Green will save us. Seems like too little, too late, doesn’t it? We should have seen signs of the pending “culture rot” decades ago.
Now all the things we once thought were good, such as plastic and gasoline, aren’t, and give us unintended consequences, morphing into “culture rot.” Thanks to the magic of TV, video games and fast food we now have runaway obesity, heart disease and cancer. We’ve culture-rotted ourselves out of walking, climbing, exercise of any kind and home cooking.
If there’s a bottom in this barrel, we’ve almost hit it. Gutter morals, broken families, pornography, sexual preferences, video violence, atheism and the list goes on. “Culture rot.” And now that society is like it is, we’re working on wrecking the finest health care system in the world.
There was a time when God wasn’t banned in America, men still married women before having kids, work was expected, patriotism wasn’t shameful and people could read, write and do arithmetic without computers. But, that’s old-fashioned. We have “green” now.