Speak up before the very worst

can happen in our great world

Editor:

Thank you so much for running Robert Koehler’s column “Give Peace a Chance” in Wednesday, April 10’s paper. He questions the 80 percent approval rating for this terrible indiscriminate war on terrorism. From what we read, from what we hear when talking to people, we, too, question these figures.

Surely there are many, many people who know that it is wrong for us to be bombing innocent people and threatening to use nuclear weapons. Surely we know that this will not stop terrorism β€” will, in fact, encourage it.

What is needed is for people of conscience to speak out. We all need to talk with friends, neighbors, co-workers β€” write and call politicians. Let everyone know that it is not un-American to advocate for peace. As Koehler said, “We must do it now, not later β€” now, before the concept of endless war gains unstoppable momentum; now, before we go to war with Iraq; now, before the Third World is thoroughly dehumanized as our enemy; now, before we use nuclear weapons.” Now, today, we must speak up.

Debbie Christensen

Michel Richard

Los Lunas

Get to real root of problem

Editor:

It’s hard to miss the myriad news of the present distress in the Catholic church. As it did several years ago, the recent accusations of sexual misconduct and alleged coverups have led many to push for the lifting of the marriage ban for the Catholic priesthood. Some have rightfully pointed out that this would not necessarily solve the problem. As one priest in Albuquerque put it, “These are deeply flawed human persons …” (U.S. News & World Report, April 1, 2002).

As terrible and tragic as these accusations are, finding ways to deal with them would not get to the real root of the problems in the Catholic church. The bedrock of the church’s waywardness is its lack of respect for God’s word. Consider the compulsory ban on marriage: The Bible calls it a “doctrine of demons.” (1 Tim. 4: 1-3).

… The church elevates tradition not on an equal level with Scripture but actually exalts it over God’s world. Jesus condemned such in Mark 7:6-8: “This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far away from me. But in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men. Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.”

It is not my desire to slam the Catholic Church, but to remind people of what should be the basis for all we do religiously: the world of God.

The Catholic Church will most likely survive this latest barrage of immortality within its ranks and probably at a high financial price, but the Bible says that the survival of all such institutions will be temporary. In the words of Jesus, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant shall be uprooted.” (Matt. 15:13). The only way to get to the root of all sin is to go to the Bible and obey it.

Zeke Flores

Rio Grande Valley

Church of Christ

Belen

Small vehicle is better

Editor:

As I was leaving the county courthouse, I could not help but notice the vehicles assigned to the assessor. The two vehicles β€” a Chevy Blazer and a Suburban (incidentally, one of the most expensive SUVs on the market) β€” are for the use of the assessor’s office. Why, when our county is cutting hours of the employees that can least afford a pay cut, is the county buying a vehicle that can cost in excess of $40,000?

That same funding could have been used to keep some employees on full work weeks. What we need is a small vehicle pool that can supply a vehicle during working hours for any county employee that requires one to perform his or her duties.

The county spending practices need a complete overhaul and should be run the same way as the average family runs its budget. First, the absolute necessities, and, if there are any funds left over, perhaps some spending on not-so-necessary items.

Finally, can anyone explain the need for a vehicle as high priced as the Suburban for any county function? Perhaps it is time for our commissioners to not only publish the budget but ask for input from the taxpaying citizens on future purchases.

James Taylor

Los Lunas

Plant would use our water

Editor:

In the April 13 edition of the Bulletin, in the Streetalk section, you asked people in Belen and Jarales, “What are you doing to prepare for the drought?”

I live in Rio Communities. I have no lawn grass to water. My outside water use is limited to fruit and shade trees and some flowers. However, my efforts and those of all my neighbors will be made pointless by the proposed gas turbine electrical power plant to be built in Rio Communities.

This plant is to take 32 million gallons of drinking water each year directly from our wells and evaporate it to produce electricity that is not needed in New Mexico, which exports two-thirds of our electrical generation.

That water is enough to supply 224 new homes at the current usage. That amounts to 10 percent of our entire system. We saved it so that others can come to enjoy our valley, their children can have water to drink and they might grow a tree.

Why should we continue to try to conserve water when the result is that what we save is available to be taken by a merchant power company and sent to California to power their air conditioners, leaving the pollution here in return?

Joseph Rizzo

Rio Communities

Both sides now, please!

Editor:

Bravo! The opinion articles in the April 10 News-Bulletin were stimulating, to say the least.

Mr. Robert Koehler’s article on the Middle East and Mr. Rodney Nelson’s article ad-dressed the same issue from opposing points of view.

Whether deliberate or not, the positioning of the articles was an added treat. You offered a more liberal point of view on the left half of the paper. Directly across, on the right half of the paper, was a more conservative opinion. What a concept! Opposing points of view side by side.

As one who appreciates balanced reporting, I want to thank you. Keep it up!

Deborah Tucker

Los Lunas

Volunteer to save bosque

Editor:

There should be a civilian pool of men for emergency brush and bosque fires. I make this commitment β€” I will see Chief Lito Chavez about it on Monday.

I am not afraid of fire or smoke. I am really good with a shovel. I have good work gloves and vests.

The fire department has been really good to me. It is always a pleasure to visit Chief Lito.

They once brought me a big box of food one Christmas. I told them that I did not need it, that there were people that came here with nothing but the shirts on their backs.

The bosque belongs to you, the bosque belongs to me. We must protect it.

Martin Frank Kirtley

Los Lunas

Q: What do you think about a power plant being built in the county?

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The Valencia County News-Bulletin is a locally owned and operated community newspaper, dedicated to serving Valencia County since 1910 through the highest journalistic and professional business standards. The VCNB is published weekly on Thursdays, including holidays both in print and online.