Letters to the Editor for June 6, 2014

Fun money lessons for first graders

To the Editor:

We are writing to tell you about the United Educators Credit Union in Coon Rapids. We are learning how to count money and make change. EUCU brought a fun store to Sand Creek for three days.

First grade students were able to spend 50 cents on toys donated by the credit union. The coolest part was the math market.
Also we were able to purchase items from the “donation station.”

Drinks and snacks from the “donation station” were donated to Hope4Youth in Anoka. Sand Creek first grade students wish to thank EUCU for the really fun experience.

Lila Epp
First grader
Sand Creek Elementary

Buckle up, its the law

Chances are you have noticed extra law enforcement on our roads and “Click It or Ticket” messages on TV and radio. The effort and the messages certainly raise awareness about seatbelts and their use, but there is a deeper reason for the campaign. Quite simply, there are far too many preventable fatalities and life-altering injuries occurring on Minnesota roads.

In the past five years alone, 587 people died and 9,739 were injured as a result of not wearing seat belts – that’s more than 41 percent of all motor vehicle occupant fatalities.

In my 32 years in law enforcement, I heard the excuses:

• “Not buckling up only affects me.” Unfortunately, an unbelted motorist can be tossed around the vehicle, striking others. An unbelted driver can fly out of reach of the steering wheel and lose control of the vehicle. Crashes, deaths and injuries attributed to unbelted motorists cost taxpayers millions of dollars.

• “I’m a safe driver.” You may be, but what about other drivers who share the road with you? A seat belt keeps you in the vehicle’s designed protective space and allows for deployed air bags to work properly.

• “I don’t need to buckle up in the back seat.” Not true. Minnesota’s seat belt law requires drivers and passengers in all seating positions to be buckled up or in the correct child restraint.

Behind every statistic is a person. And every single person who has died on our roads has left behind loved ones. This is why we are committed to doing all we can to prevent needless deaths on our roadways.

Buckle up – it’s the law and it’s your best defense in case of a crash.

Mona Dohman
Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Public Safety

No proof Jefferson was a deist

To the Editor:

In Bob Koch’s May 23 letter I was happy to read that he agrees the phrase “separation of church and state” is not in the U.S. Constitution. We also agree that the founders never intended to establish a “State sanctioned religion” and, in fact, avoided using denominational language. However, I disagree with his last statement: “The founders were not Christians, but mostly Deists. Read ‘The Jefferson Bible’ for more proof.”

Any portrayal of our founding fathers as ‘mostly Deists’ is inaccurate. Alexander Hamilton was no deist. He worked with Rev. James Bayard to form the Christian Constitutional Society to spread two things Hamilton said made America great: Christianity and a Constitution formed under Christianity.

George Washington was an open promoter of Christianity. In his speech on May 12, 1779 he told the assembly that what children needed to learn “above all” was the “religion of Jesus Christ.”

Deists? Consider these signers of the Constitution: Charles Pinckney and John Langdon, founders of the American Bible Society.

James McHenry, founder of the Baltimore Bible Society.  Abraham Baldwin, chaplain in the Revolution. Roger Sherman, William Samuel Johnson, John Dickinson, and Jacob Broom, theological writers. Rufus King, helped found a Bible society for Anglicans.

The list goes on, and does not include the vast number of evangelical Christians who signed the Declaration or who helped frame the Bill of Rights.

The “Jefferson Bible?” Jefferson cut and pasted sections of the teachings of Jesus from the New Testament in chronological order.

Jefferson himself said his intent was not for it to be a “Bible” but to be a primer on Christian morality for the Indians. As president, Jefferson signed a treaty to provide Christian missionaries – at government expense – to the Kaskaskia Indians.

Jefferson himself stated, “Of all the systems of morality, ancient or modern, which have come under my observation, none appear to me so pure as that of Jesus.” He also said, “I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus.”

There’s no proof that Jefferson was a deist, and most other founders didn’t even come close.

Barb Anderson

Handlers of religious right unchallenged from within

To the Editor:

The Republican Party now has basically two contingents. Those dedicated to massive profits and those who demand that society conform to their religious doctrines. How can God and Mammon possibly be close allies?

Ms. Barb Anderson’s claim (April 14, False claims about church and state) that the country was intended to be Christian is easily falsified by the first three words of the Constitution: “We the people….” Authority comes from the people, not God. It’s an explicit rejection of her assertion. Spin control from pseudo-historians cannot change this. Her interest in restricting our freedom of conscience is merely wishful thinking.

Her anti-gay Regnerus study didn’t actually examine kids raised by gays. Its conclusions were fraudulent and have been disowned by the scientific community and the courts.

In other words, the party’s twin goals can be achieved when conservative Christians unquestioningly accept lies from their leaders.
They’re ripe for cash-oriented manipulation.

The Republican party is heavily influenced by the fossil fuel industry. They stand to lose trillions of dollars if the world goes green. Bible passage are therefore twisted to “prove” that human-caused climate change is impossible and the Bible-based crew falls obediently into line. Their claim to be bible-based is routinely subverted by manufactured biblical support for the most ruthless form of capitalism. Silly charges are accepted that the vast majority of climate researchers are perpetrating an unprecedented global hoax. Proof? Innuendo is sufficient.

Conservative Christians provide the votes to block climate change mitigation.  Even as we watch the climate deteriorate year-by-year, (April was the hottest one in history) and even as we watch the casualties increase each year, the handlers of the religious right remain unchallenged from within. Koch brother’s profits skyrocket and our own Ms. Bachmann praises them as great Americans.
God and Mammon.  Truly, a deadly partnership.

Rod Kuehn

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