News From Terre Haute, Indiana

March 31, 2013

Readers’ Forum: March 31, 2013

Special to the Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Thanks to all who

supported prom

The Wyndmoor Retirement Community held its second annual prom on March 22.

This event was open to anyone 55-plus — after all, why should the teenagers have all of the fun?

It was a wonderful success and there are so many people to thank.

First of all, thank you to everyone who came out to dance or simply to enjoy the wonderful music. The Fabulous 40’s Sixteen Piece Band did an absolutely fantastic job.

Thank you to WTWO and WTHI for their coverage. A sister station of WTWO in Portland, Ore., picked the story up.

I cannot begin to tell you how proud I am of the staff of The Wyndmoor. They pulled together as a team and provided our residents and the community with a five-star event. A huge “thank you” goes out to them.

And finally I would like to congratulate our prom king Nelson Eddy and prom queen Janelle Olds. They were such wonderful royalty.

Thank you again to everyone who made The Wyndmoor prom such an enjoyable event.

— Beth Clark

Executive Director

Wyndmoor Retirement



What goes around

comes around

Let ’em eat cake!

For we history buffs, this attitude that the current president has almost parallels another couple from the past. With the country circling the drain, this guy is spending our money like a drunken sailor.

What really takes the cake is poverty is at an all-time high, yet his solution is to take another vacation to study the problem.

History seems to be repeating itself.

— Thomas Woodbury

Terre Haute

The cost of

not completing

a college degree

Indiana has one of the most generous college financial aid systems in the country, spending more than $280 million on need-based grants and scholarships in the past year alone. Unfortunately, the hard truth is that far too many Hoosiers start college and never finish, and most do not graduate on time.

Graduating on time is especially important for students receiving state financial aid because their tuition support runs out after four years. Yet, only half of students receiving state aid today are taking enough courses to finish in four years, and more than half never graduate at all.  

To remedy this problem, proposed legislation under House Bill 1348 would link financial aid to student progress, encouraging and rewarding full-time students who complete the minimum number of courses (30 credits per year) required to graduate on time. HB 1348 would also provide Indiana college students with semester-by-semester degree maps that clearly outline the specific courses they need to graduate.

At the Indiana Commission for Higher Education, we are driven by a sense of urgency to increase college completion and student success. In a state that currently ranks 40th nationally in the number of adults with education beyond high school, we simply cannot afford to be satisfied with the status quo. Increasing education attainment is a shared responsibility, one that must be owned jointly by our state, Indiana colleges and Hoosier students themselves.

That’s why our Commission has asked the Indiana General Assembly to increase funding for Indiana colleges and student financial aid in the next state budget. It’s also why we’re calling on our colleges to rein in unsustainable tuition increases and asking Hoosier students to make smarter choices about how they finance and plan their path to a college degree.

Indiana students aren’t well served by the promise of college access without completion, and taxpayers have a right to expect a better return on their investment. Anything less would be a disservice to students, their families and our state.

— Teresa Lubbers

Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education

The ironies of

how we spend

According to recent news articles the government spent a half million dollars for Vice President Biden’s one-night stay in Paris, France, and is giving a $45 million grant to a foundering Indian casino.

Makes you wonder why the government has that much money to blow but can’t open up the White House for tours.

— William Cochran


Marriage remains

traditional bond

Marriage is a traditional bond between a man and a woman through which children are welcomed and commitment to family is founded. Hollywood activists, armed with lots of money and with a liberal press at their side, have been pushing for gay rights for years.

I am actually in favor of most rights being granted and protected for gays and lesbians. They should have the right to be protected from harassment, persecution, and should not be treated any differently in the workplace. I draw the line at marriage, however, particularly with regard to the sacrament of marriage.

It’s ironic that movie stars support what has become known as “marriage equality” when most Hollywood marriages rarely last, and their duration can often be measured in mere months, and sometimes only days. To most observers marriage in Tinseltown seems to be some kind of joke or insignificant ceremony, haphazardly agreed to with questionable motives.

A famous couple, with broods of children they have assumed and call their family, are considering getting married, but hesitate because they are hoping for “marriage equality’ throughout the states. This couple met when each was already “married” to another, and developed a relationship that used to be called adultery. That term, and the stigma that it once carried, has been relegated to near obscurity by liberal forces, along with the emotion of shame.

Our self-proclaimed Christian president recently stated that he supports same-sex marriage. What Christian Church does he belong to again? Though I am not a theologian, most Christian Churches that I am aware of are adamantly against redefining marriage as any union other than the covenant between a man and a woman.

This belief is not arbitrary and is clearly based on the biological fact that in order to have children, a man and a woman are required. Belief in God is not necessary. Belief in nature is irrefutable.

Please don’t bombard me or this editorial page about how two women or two men can effectively or successfully raise children. I am not writing to dispute that, just as I know that many heterosexual couples are woefully ill-equipped to raise children. Bad parents are bad parents, no matter their orientation. That is not the issue here.

To me “marriage equality” is rooted in the economic benefits of survivorship and worker benefits — civil unions provide that legal relationship without redefining the bond between a man and a woman that for centuries has been called marriage.

— Douglas Elia

Terre Haute

Don’t be confused

over gun control

For your information, Ms. Shirley Thomas, it is true that the Constitution guarantees us to own weapons. So when you write, please get it right. You should not be confused, this administration is wanting to take our weapons, look at the direction they are taking, pages right out of Hitler’s handbook, if you know your history. You should know that gun registration is followed by gun confiscation. That is the way of all the dictators throughout history. To enslave the people, disarm them, therefore taking control of them.

For your information, the Constitution and the NRA and the tea party help are our only defense from a government who wants to enslave and disarm us. Your percentage numbers are all wrong, just follow the polls and see that 91 percent want the federal government to enforce the laws we have on the books, not pass more.

No, we don’t think troops are going to round anybody up, but the way the Democratic nuts in Washington are going, they will pick up the registered guns, because they will know where they are. If Obama and his crony Democrats get their way, the communistic U.N. will have control of our guns and our children. This you would know if you would dig in and see what is going on. The U.N. needs to be kicked out of our country and not given any more of our money.

You are so very wrong to think we are a minority. We are the majority. You are right, given the path this administration has taken. We have no faith in this government. You can register your gun, so they will know where to come and get them. Then you will be defenseless, unable to protect your family. I will keep mine.

More than 90 percent of America feels the way I do.  Just look at the millions of men and women who are buying guns for self-protection, because we all know the police cannot protect us. There can be no compromise when it comes to taking any of our gun rights that our founding fathers gave us.

To me, Ms. Thomas, you do not sound like a stupid lady, just a confused lady. To me, this letter sounds so good, I am going to send it to our congressmen and women and send it registered to ask it to be read to Congress, and I hope other writers do the same.

May God bless America and you and yours.

— Howard E. Pennell

Terre Haute

Tragic ironies

pervade history

About Dr. Khwaja Hasan’s promiscuous charge of bigotry against critics of Islam’s holy books and Prophet, let me say I recall no blanket condemnation of Muslims, those who comprise about one-fifth of the Earth’s  population. It would indeed be bigotry to condemn those who condemn violence in the name of religion. It would also be bigotry to condemn those vast millions who know little about the history of Islam. This surely applies to people of other faiths as well.

Nor does it seem to qualify as bigotry to scrutinize the negatives of Islam any more than it’s bigotry to expose the Inquisitions, witch burnings, holy wars of Christendom, and the inflammatory rhetoric that incited them.

There are books aplenty by the faithful in which we find statements extolling Muhammad as “the perfect man.” Contrary to the efforts of a coalition of 57 Muslim members of the U.N. to criminalize disparagement of the Prophet of Islam, historians are neither bigots nor blasphemers when they dare to reveal less than exemplary actions and words of that man or any other religious leaders, such as Martin Luther, Joseph Smith, Dalai Lama, Billy Graham, the popes, etc. Because of the treasured value of free speech in the Western democracies, we even allow for ridicule or satire, no matter how wretched or tasteless, of Christ, Krishna, Buddha, Moses, etc.

The tragic irony of history is that the evil done in the name of God and religion seems no less than the good done in their name. Blind faith ranks second to none as a cause for the worst brutalities and bloodshed throughout history.

For the positives of faith, I suggest a DVD documentary available in the library. “In God’s Name: Wisdom From The World’s Great Spiritual Leaders” is an impressive compendium of apologetics by leaders of 12 prominent religions. The world just might be a little bit better if this collection were shown in schools and colleges everywhere.

— Saul Rosenthal

Terre Haute

High praise for

Union’s care

I broke my hip the last Thursday in August of 2012. I was transported to Union Hospital. Dr. Stephen Fern did my surgery on a Friday and on the following Tuesday I was moved to fourth-floor rehab.

In the event something happens again that involves my bones, I will suggest that Dr. Fern do the surgery and I will request the fourth-floor rehab.

The nurses on the fourth-floor rehab were great. Some of their services were done out of the love.

— Wanda Eaton


Assessing the

Bible’s relevance

In her March 9 column, the Joy Lady (Verna Davis) talked about classic stories with morals and relevance in the Bible, such as; “Do Unto Others”; “Let the Little Children Come Unto me”, etc. However, we all know there are some contradictory verses, such as: “Slay those Who do Not Bow Down Before me”; “I Come Not to Bring Peace, but the sword”; Or that it was OK to kill and rape the neighboring kingdoms of Israel and take their property during the time of Moses, etc.

So it might be fun to see if there is a computer program to give positive 10 points for the good moral teachings, such as: “In as much as you did it to the least of these, you did it for me.” And give 10 negative points for stories such as: “Noah lived to be 950 years old after the genocidal flood where God killed all the ‘bad’ inhabitants of the world, including infants and unborn children,” (since this is not a very pro-life story). And then have the computer weigh out the positive and negative points and see which one prevails? Or could it possibly be a wash? Somebody would probably get a doctorate for that analysis.  

Of course, there might be some disagreement on the assignment of points, such as: the story of Abraham and his son Isaac who was born when Abraham was 100 years old. One side might say that this is a great teaching which shows Abraham’s total obedience to divine revelation: that he must sacrifice his son. So one side would say that this is a moral high ground, and we should give 10 points to this story.

Then there would be the opposing view of those who happened upon a scene with the son, Isaac, tied up on an altar, with Abraham about to plunge a knife in his chest. So, those with this view would immediately have Abraham arrested for child endangerment and put the child in protective custody. Then they would be very glad to give this story a minus 7 points, at least. Which is astounding considering that: Abraham is the founding father of the three great Abrahamic religions.  

Then there might be negative points given for the verses which justified slavery and the burning of witches. Then there would be positive points for verses inspiring the world to give food aid to the starving people of Africa. Then there would be negative points for the verses inspiring African Nations to sentence people to death for forbidden acts, etc., etc., continuing with good and bad points.

We are so interested in ancient life, that we spend billions of dollars to see if Mars had water or bacteria, but we don’t have widespread agreement as to how much influence the ancient Bible should have on modern society. And we don’t even know how much of the Bible was altered or omitted before it became fixed in form. Most people don’t have time to read a 300-page book, analyzing the relevance of the Bible to today’s affairs. We have our favorite verses and teachings which reinforce what we already “know” and we skip over the “wrath of God” passages.

So, do we continue to justify and believe that everything in the Bible is morally true and relevant to today’s society? Or do we analyze and ask how much of this ancient book coincides with what we now know, according to modern ethics and science, and then decide which parts to keep and which to not keep.

Thomas Jefferson did this by literally cutting out passages of his Bible, known as the Jefferson Bible. Maybe someday we’ll have a modern computerized “Jefferson-style” Bible. And to those who say that everything in the Old Testament must be intact so that prophesies can be fulfilled in the New Testament, I wonder if we really need to concern ourselves with that, 2,000 years after the fact.  

And a final thought, maybe we’re already editing the Bible by ignoring the verses which don’t appeal to us. Or we don’t even know what the verses are, since we never read it, but we’re sure they’re true and relevant today.

— Bill Cain

Terre Haute

Is your head

buried in sand?

In response to the letter by Shirley Thomas I want to point out several easily verifiable facts. She stated that 91 percent of the American people wanted stricter background checks and that she believes in gun registration and limiting the number of bullets in a magazine.

Every time, repeat every time, countries had gun registration, they have ended up with gun confiscation. Take your head out of the sand and read a history book, if you can still find one that hasn’t been “liberalized.” Einstein said that the definition of insanity was to do the same thing over and over, and expect a different result.

Ms. Thomas stated that she is not afraid of our government and likes to quote numbers that make me wonder where she got them since facts don’t back up her claims. But that is simply a standard ploy used by the liberals that comes right out of the Saul Alinsky handbook, “Rules for Radicals”, which states that you must first demonize your opponent and then exaggerate claims — the purpose being  to put your opponent on the defensive refuting your claims and unable to point out the real agenda.

One  of our esteemed congressional leaders, Charlie Rangel, just said that millions of children had been killed with assault weapons when the truth, backed up by the FBI crime statistics, prove that more people are killed by hammers than assault rifles.

You say you are not afraid of your government. Maybe you should be, or at least take your head out of the sand long enough to question it. The Department of Homeland Security has graduated its first class of 231 Homeland Youth, designed specifically as a full-time, paid, standing army of armed FEMA youth across the country. Remember, it was President Obama who said that “we need a national security force, that is just as powerful, just as strong and just as well funded as the military.” He also said they would report directly to the president. Those are facts. Remember the Hitler Youth? See any similarities yet?

More FACTS: DHS has purchased over 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition, so far, much of it hollow points for its 55,000 armed agents. The U.S. military is not allowed to use hollow points, so who is Homeland Security going to shoot? You don’t need expensive hollow points for target practice. They have also purchased 2,717 armored fighting vehicles and 7,000 select fire “personal defense weapons” (better known as M-16s or AR-15s). These are the same weapons they don’t want citizens to possess.

Let’s put this in perspective: 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition is enough to fight the Iraq war for 20 years and enough to shoot every American man, woman and child five times. It’s 28,000 tons or the equivalent of three Navy guided missile destroyers. It’s almost 30,000 target practice rounds per armed agent and of course the more expensive hollow point ammunition is not used for target practice.

You stated that you didn’t think “U.S. troops would march down Wabash and put people in re-education camps.” Remember those 110,000 Japanese-American citizens in 1941? I’ll bet they didn’t think it would happen either. Ask yourself why the company Kellogg, Brown and Root is soliciting support teams for FEMA camps and why the Army has issued a 326 page manual for Internment and Resettlement Operations.

Our elected officials use the Constitution as White House toilet paper while doing anything they feel like.

An 85-year-old Austrian woman, Kitty Werthman, recently wrote about her life under Hitler. Quote: I believe that I am an eyewitness to history. I cannot tell you that Hitler took Austria by tanks and guns; it would distort history. We elected him by a landslide — 98 percent of the vote. I’ve never read that in any American publications. Everyone thinks that Hitler just rolled in with his tanks and took Austria by force.

It is also a fact that during WWII, Japanese General Yamamoto said he would never invade the United States because there would be a gun behind every tree. Remember, that it is the Second Amendment that protects the First Amendment.

— Frank Grochowski