News From Terre Haute, Indiana

July 8, 2013

READERS' FORUM: July 8, 2013


The Tribune-Star

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Guv should set aside prejudices

I address the following comments to Gov. Mike Pence:

Your education is sadly lacking. Marriage has not always been between a man and woman; in classical Greece, marriage between men was honored. In imperial Rome, wife-swapping and marriage were good career and political moves. Pre-colonial Africa recognized woman marriage, and Native Americans approved of berdache marriage. (Yes, please, research this).

In the United States, there is no such thing as a “traditional” marriage any longer. Divorce based on fault, coverture, forced gender roles, procreation laws (sodomy, fornication, adultery) and immunity for spousal rape have fallen by the wayside. “Traditional” families do not exist any longer. Surely you are not ignorant of single-parent, blended and bi-racial families.

Do not even try to use the Bible or Jesus’ teachings as authority for support of man/woman marriage or rejection of same-sex relationships.  Even Judeo-Christian biblical scholars are cautionary about interpretations of biblical sexual mandates. American mainstream religion abhors polygamy, but the Old Testament treated it as normal and it is an acceptable form of marriage in other cultures. Jesus never said anything directly about being gay; rather, he taught tolerance of all minorities and befriended and was respectful of a woman who most devotees believed to have been a prostitute (which in and of itself is seriously questionable).

If your administration did an honest opinion poll, I think you would find that the majority of your constituency does not believe it is the state’s “duty and obligation” to “define and administer marriage as [it] sees fit.” Such a statement (made by you) implies the state has the authority to dictate all aspects of my life; who I marry, how many children I have, what my role is inside the marriage, etc. — which I resoundingly reject as an appropriate governmental function. Likewise, you do not have the right to impose your personal prejudices on the voting public.

Marriage is not the “glue that holds families and societies together.” What holds families and societies together are modes of production and reproduction, domestic and political life and belief systems (religion, music, art). In other words, it is the totality of a culture that holds families and societies together. Humankind has been around for hundreds of thousands of years and still thrives in spite of the narrow-minded attitude that LBGTs are deviants and that marriage can be defined only one way.

Aside from the economic benefits to couples and the state when marriage is just marriage between two people regardless of gender (yes, please, research this, too), what all this boils down to, Governor, is fairness and equality. How is it that we allow pedophiles, murderers, rapists and all kinds of other criminals to marry when their behavior is considered “deviant” but insist that LBGTs cannot marry when their only “crime” is being differently sexually oriented? Why is it acceptable to extend a civil liberty like marriage to a child molester but not to two men or two women who love and are devoted to one another? Do you not see the incongruity in such a position?

One can only hope that you will set your personal prejudices aside, do your homework and realize that marriage between same-sex individuals is not going to bring about the end of civilization as we know it.

— Ann Carlisle

Terre Haute

Relocating Bell game sad news

Shock — a sick and sad feeling in the pit of my stomach — is how I felt the other morning when reading the headline that the tradition of the big North/South football game was being changed and moved to alternating between the schools. This comes both from the view of a South alum and mother of a South football player.

I understand the need for funds both for the athletic department and the school overall. However, I do not feel the information given in the article proved that increase in concession sales could make up for the decrease in ticket sales. How can either school possibly hold the capacity that Memorial Stadium seats? I attended every game from ’90-’93 as a student and a majority of the games in the past 20 years. The excitement of seeing friends and now sons run onto that field in what is the most anticipated game of every year can not be matched.

The Battle for the Bell starts being thought about as soon as the battle ends every year. The winner dreams of holding on and the loser plans for better plays. I looked forward to it every year but for the better part of the past 16 years I have looked forward to and dreamt about by own son being a part of this tradition. He has also looked forward to being able to play that one big game under the lights at Memorial Stadium.  

As sad as I was seeing the headline, it didn’t compare the look of disappointment I saw on my son’s face when he realized that his first opportunity as a South Brave to pad up and possibly play in the big game at the stadium would now be played on the North side and even sadder to realize his senior Bell Battle would also be played across town. I know if I feel this way I cannot be alone

Playing at the stadium equalized things. No player was home or away. The game was/is a way for the whole town to come together and support our schools. It doesn’t matter what school you support, this game was exciting and a tradition that can’t be matched. I know in a few years the kids will be used to the new traditions and it will still be exciting, but for the next four years it will be hard to digest the change both for parents and players whose dreams have been altered for the sake of making money.

Money doesn’t seem so important when you see that sad look on your child’s face.

— Margaret Brooks

Terre Haute

Other spots still have cheaper gas

These were the regular unleaded gas prices on a trip via U.S. 40, Terre Haute to Indy, on July 1:

One station in Plainfield: $2.98.

Most stations in Plainfield: $3.08.

Brazil: $3.55.

Seelyville: $3.47.

Indiana 46 and Margaret Avenue: $3.35.

Most stations in Terre Haute: $3.38.

Range: 57 cents, high to low.

These are vultures, arbitrarily picking our bleached bones clean. Why do they do this to us? Because they can. And it stinks.

— Ron Marsh

Terre Haute