Letters to the editor for March 9

Can't do anything about global warming

After reading conflicting global warming reports, I researched the subject and learned SUVs, incandescent light bulbs, inexpensive imported clothing, especially cheap shoes that have to be replaced often and imported roses cause our global weather woes. I wish it were that simple.

Catastrophic weather changes are cyclical. In 8000 B.C., the seas began rising along with long-term melting of Antarctic ice sheets while, at the same time, North American glaciers were receding. Glacier melt flooding took place in several regions.

Then there was the Little Ice Age that began to abate in the 13th century. Starting in 1315, warming caused three years of torrential rain in Europe and ushered in unpredictable northern European weather that lasted until the 19th century.

Solar activity, volcanic emissions, ocean current, variations of the orbit of the Earth and its distance from the sun cause global warming. The population is only a contributing factor. Antarctica, often cited by alarmists as a predictor of global warming, is the size of the United States and Mexico combined with only 100 weather stations, which makes it virtually impossible to get accurate climate predictions except for the Antarctic peninsula that is warmed by westerly winds.

If we are entering an era of serious global warming, from what I've read, there's not a thing Al Gore and the rest of the earth's population can do to stop it. If you enjoy worrying, global warming can be followed by global cooling and more ice ages.

Mildred Kavanaugh, Lacey

It's up to society to work its way upriver

Our congregation came upon 28 individuals who washed ashore after floundering in a mighty river. We let them set up Camp Quixote II. It would have been cruel to push them off and watch them be swept back into the current.

But it would be naive and stupid to fail to ask what these individuals were doing in the river. How did they fall in, or who pushed them? These are the big questions. As a church, as a town, state and nation, we must walk upriver to find some answers.

Our congregation is a temporary sanctuary for Camp Quixote. What else can we do? How do we challenge community leaders to do their part? Things like develop decent affordable housing. How can the city do its part, then walk upriver to pressure the state to stop throwing people in the river by throwing them off welfare? How can the state better fund DSHS so they can provide - rather than deny - the services people so desperately need. Then how can state government work its way upriver to the federal government to ask why they are making such harsh federal regulations and cutting funds to social service programs and why, ultimately, we as a nation are funding war over life?

The story does not end. The federal government walks upriver - and who do they find? Us, the citizenry. We are at the headwaters, and it is within our capacity to be engaged and to ask and answer the tough questions.

Tyra Lindquist, Olympia

City officials insult their constituents

I was shocked, dismayed and disgusted at the comments the Olympia City Council made that parks are more valued than highway interchanges. Do these elected officials really have the public's best interests in mind when they say a park is more valued than a gridlocked interchanged? I say NO.

Developers and the city of Olympia establish these mega-bucks houses they pack next to each other and then go away and leave local landowners to deal with there lack of vision for the so-valued parks. The true interests of the public are education, health care and highway projects that should be mandatory with development anywhere.

Taking someone's land is clearly wrong when a city cannot take responsibility for its lack of leadership.

Barb Anderson, Olympia

Democrats' solution to health care won't work

The saying "be careful what you wish for" has been around forever; however, voters never seem to learn. The liberals want a national health care plan patterned after the British and Canadian plans.

Should we be saddled with such a fiasco you had better be young and healthy or wealthy enough to shop for care out of country. Both plans are a disaster with long waits even for serious illnesses. Britain is even considering not covering the elderly. Just go away somewhere and die quietly.

If you think Medicaid and Medicare are costing too much, it is nothing compared with what universal health care will cost. It's said you can't escape death and taxes. Well, be prepared for both.

A Democrat Congress was voted in; they will want to cut the military at a time when we need them the most. I wonder how old these people are. Don't they know of or remember what happened in Vietnam and Cambodia when we ran? Three million, four million dead there and now they want the same for Iraq.

The liberals climb on their high horse and try to claim the high ground. Well they are moral cowards, willing to condemn millions to death for political gains. My writing skills may be wanting, but my memory still works. We would have saved tens of millions of lives had we not ignored Hitler and imperial Japan in the 1930s.

Don DeVore, Tenino

Sidewalk ordinance is too harsh

The sidewalk ordinance states that no person can sit, lie down, sell things, or panhandle between the hours of 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. within six feet of a building downtown. That's great for business owners, but where are they are going to move to? They are going to migrate to the west side and Lacey. Once there, the same actions will continue. If this ordinance intends to be foolproof, a first step could be providing them with a place to go despite their age and gender. This would cut the migration rate down to a much smaller number.

As far as the punishments arranged for those who violate the rules, they're absurd. A person who fails to follow the guidelines can be charged with a misdemeanor, serve 90 days in jail, or pay up to $1,000 in fines. Receiving a misdemeanor for sitting on a sidewalk is too big of a consequence. When it comes to 90 days in jail, it isn't as arbitrary as the misdemeanor, but correct me if I'm wrong in saying that jail time will just cost us money. Furthermore, to pay the fines, they will panhandle in some other part of our community?

The penalties for this crime will hurt us more than help. A more suitable penalty would be a ticket and/or community service; at least this would benefit our community. This way, if some chose to continue with the actions a higher punishment would be in order. This ordinance needs to be revised.

Tamara Budde, Olympia

No military justification for invasion of Iraq

I write in response to Keith Weaver's letter about military personnel being demoralized by protests.

I have a different perspective to share. Instead of protests being a source of demoralization, I would argue with Weaver that it is the actions of the U.S. government in Iraq that are demoralizing.

The conduct of the invasion, as well as that of the occupation, of Iraq by the U.S. military contravene domestic and international laws. Coercing soldiers to fight in an illegal and immoral military action is demoralizing. It is especially demoralizing considering that it is a war of choice. There was no military justification for the invasion of Iraq - it has been shown that the pre-invasion intelligence justifications were fraudulent.

I have a duty, as a citizen, to oppose the actions of my government when I understand those actions to be illegal. Protest is part of that opposition. How is that demoralizing? I think that protest is democratic.

Truthfully, it is not protests that demoralize. It is violence, and especially unnecessary violence, that is demoralizing.

Robert Whitlock, Olympia

Protesters should thank those in uniform

Once again, shame on The Olympian. I'm beginning to think that the newspaper and TJ Johnson have a deal going. Why does the paper put bold print and large pictures in about these misguided folks who want to protest the military shipments, but only a note or small blurb about something patriotic? I too do not agree with this war, but I TOTALLY support and stand with the men and women who are over there.

The supplies going over help to keep our troops alive and add the smallest amount of comfort for them to do something that these misguided folks could not/would not do. There is a group called the Patriot Guards who keep the other misguided folks away from the military funerals and maybe we should start a group that does the same for these brave troops going overseas. I would gladly stand with American flag in hand to let those troops see and know that we do support THEM as individuals.

I would not block them or destroy property that does not belong to me. These protesters should be thanking the men/women of the armed forces for giving them the freedom to protest without fear of death. They should be going to our elected officials instead of showing our military this disrespect. God Bless our military!

Laura Thorsell, Lacey