Letters to the editor for April 26, 2013

Disappointed by comments

To the Editor:

As a Catholic, I was disappointed to learn of the comments made by former School Board Member John Hoffman who is now our state senator.

On Oct. 22, 2012, Sen. Hoffman requested the removal of Bryan Lindquist from the Anti-Bullying Task Force because of Lindquist’s association with the Parents Action League and his beliefs about homosexuality.

Senator Hoffman commented, “Point of information…I want to speak out in opposition of the appointment of Bryan Lindquist to the Anti-Bullying Task Force.

“Mr. Lindquist, representing the Parent Action League, has repeatedly spoken out against affirming all students and does not support the current policy.

“Mr. Lindquist has publicly stated that LGBT individuals suffer from a disorder.

“This kind of language and sentiment has no place on this task force and does not represent the views of the vast majority of residents that I am talking to within the Anoka-Hennepin School District, and it certainly doesn’t represent the needs and rights of all students.

“The time for this debate is over, and the debate on this policy is over. I ask that Mr. Lindquist be removed from the task force and another member appointed.”

By what authority does Sen. Hoffman feel he can shut down the debate on this issue? Is it because he disagrees with Mr. Lindquist’s religious views and the people he associates with?

Bryan Lindquist is a Catholic. In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, homosexual acts are described as “intrinsically disordered” and are “contrary to the natural law.”

The Catechism clearly states, “Under no circumstances can they be approved.” The authority for this is the Bible.

If Sen. Hoffman thinks the debate is over, does that mean he believes that the Catholic Church should be silenced as well?

Last time I looked, the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States still guarantees freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and the right to assemble.

Our Constitution is the authority that establishes these important freedoms for everyone —not just for those with whom we agree.

Pat Schreifels
Coon Rapids

Struggling with obesity

To the Editor:

During the past 21 years while I have practiced family medicine in Anoka and Elk River more of my patients have been struggling with obesity.

Making nutritious food more affordable than high calorie, low nutrient choices would help citizens maintain a healthy weight.

Safe, accessible places for physical activity such as a local community gym, would give my patients a healthy opportunity for social engagement and exercise.

I support the Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP) because it makes my patients healthier.

Medicine alone can’t alter the obesity trend. We need community environments that support health.

And even though it doesn’t show up on the ledgers this year, it will definitely pay off in the long run.

Lynne Steiner, MD

RiverWay Anoka Clinic

Education guidelines

To the Editor:

Star Tribune front page headline on April 10 proclaimed, “Climate, evolution top science standards.”

The article described new education guidelines, indicating that due to added time spent on this new emphasis, for some high schools “…traditional classes like biology and chemistry may disappear entirely….”

In decades of engineering, sales and management experience in dozens of countries I have used physics, chemistry, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and various other sciences each day.

But I have never been asked a question – on this continent or any other – related to using evolution or its principles to understand or solve problems in business, ethics, design, safety, operation, or any other aspect of providing highly complex, world-class products.

We will condemn our economy (and the job prospects of our youth) to a low and non-competitive mediocrity if we overemphasize evolution at the expense of chemistry and the other traditional sciences which allow us to build the cars, planes, trains, ships, surgical robots, electric grids, electronics, iPhones, and iPads which enhance each moment of our lives.

George Anderson

Thanks from food shelf

To the Editor:

ACBC Food Shelf wants to thank the many Minnesota FoodShare donors.

This year’s totals were 30,876 pounds of food and $68,519. It’s good to know these generous contributions will receive a percentage match this summer from Minnesota FoodShare.

According to Second Harvest, ACBC’s grocery store, each $1 is worth $8 at their food bank.

Last year ACBC volunteers served a record 10,088 families and distributed over one million pounds of food.

None of this service would be possible without the help of our generous community.

We would also like to thank Mark Muellenbach and James Smith for organizing the 20th anniversary of Bowl-A-Rama.

This March FoodShare event raised $10,920 this year and surpassed their goal to reach $200,000 for ACBC.

The day was a lot of fun and we would like to thank all the participants.

Jerri Loughry
ACBC Food Shelf director

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