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Keep church and state separate
The one-page ad in the July 4 Bee, “One Nation Under God,” quotes several patriots who helped create the United States of America. That’s good.
The ad’s sponsor won the 2014 Burwell v Hobby Lobby case decided by SCOTUS, allowing them not to pay for birth control for their employees. This atavistic idea clearly derives from religious beliefs. The ad states we should “lay Christ in the bottom as the only foundation for all sound knowledge and learning.” And, “Why may not the Bible, and especially the New Testament, without note or comment be read and taught as divine revelation in…even government-run schools?”
In the Bible, Jesus never said women should be denied ways of controlling their birthing. Burwell v Hobby Lobby is another case eroding the principal of separation of church and state. The ad doesn’t mention that George Washington and John Adams were more deist than theist. Hence they built us a democracy, not a theocracy.
There are still those today who rationalize biblical slavery, claiming it allows but benignly regulates slavery.
Lord help us if SCOTUS, with a third Trump appointee, gets a case about slavery.
Richard Anderson, Modesto
On Rapinoe and Kaepernick
Re “Rapinoe hurts the fight for gender equity” (Page 2B, July 7): The title alone indicates that Mark Thiessen has a specific agenda: evangelical, white, male, Republican.
Thiessen is clearly not a world class athlete as are Rapinoe and Kaepernick. Those athletes are both American, not Russian. In spite of Trump and Republican and Christians we all still have the right to speak our minds and demonstrate peacefully. Thiessen is speaking for himself and his ilk, which is his prerogative. He is entitled to his free speech even if he is, in my free speech and humble opinion, being idiotic!
The U.S. women’s soccer team won their fourth championship. The women will be paid $90,000 each, whereas the men would have been paid $500,000 each.
Ken Garst, Turlock
Pride for Trump’s Fourth parade
I watched on television as our President Trump celebrated Independence Day as it should be celebrated. The speech he gave was a reminder of our history and how many Americans went to great lengths to help people all over the world to keep America free.
Many of us older citizens, when we were children, knew all the words to the armed forces songs. The Army, the Navy, the Marines, the Air Force and the Coast Guard with their flyovers and their song being played was so great to see and hear. The finale of the program was another wonderful vision, with the Blue Angels flyover and the playing of God Bless America. Truly a wonderful salute to America.
Patricia Landucci, Modesto
Presidential missteps in North Korea
Re “Where was important news?” (Letters, July 5): A letter on July 5 complained that The Bee put an important Trump article on page 5 about our president being the first to enter North Korea. I say they did him a favor by downplaying it. Every other president was smart enough to know that a visit would just wrongly promote one of the worst world leaders, someone who starves and kills his own people. I doubt Trump knows that he insulted Kim on his second visit.
Since Trump was elected, Korea has dramatically improved its nuclear capabilities and developed its first ICBMs. If Trump could get a deal with Korea as good as Obama’s deal with Iran, he would jump at it, not realizing what he had done. Obviously, Kim is playing Trump for the fool he is.
Bob Gould, Groveland
Food security at MJC pantry
In Modesto, food security is an issue that a majority of us are unaware of. At Modesto Junior College, we are able to see this first-hand in our community.
To combat this rising issue, the MJC Food Pantry has been collecting food and toiletries to distribute to those in need. The food pantry started with just one person wanting to give back. One of the leading figures in the food pantry organization, Jonathan, enlightened us on how community members and students could assist. He said, “Just contact the health services department and say you want to volunteer your time.” According to Jonathan, the food pantry’s main obstacle is to expand this organization with more nonprofit organizations. He wants more people to be aware that such an organization exists to aid those who are in need and suffer from food insecurity.
To contact the food pantry at MJC, email health services at email@example.com.
Craig Valdez, Ripon
Outrage at CSU surplus
Where are the questions from students, parents, California state politicians and of course the media? Cal State University stashes away a surplus of $1.5 billion in outside accounts and there is little to no follow up from any of them, especially the press? All Californians should know all the where’s and why’s of stashing these dollars outside the state treasury. This CSU chancellor is covering up a scheme, while his cohorts were involved in raising tuition and lobbying legislators for yet more monies. Department heads need to roll, up to and including UC President Janet Napolitano, if any of them knew of these hidden slush funds.
Larry Dovichi, Modesto
Editor’s note: In a July 3 Modesto Bee, opinion page column, CSU Chancellor Timothy White said information about the surplus has always been available to the public and to state legislators. The issue has nothing to do with the UC system or Napolitano.
Harris, Biden and busing
Issues debated during this critical Democratic primary must be placed in proper context. Resorting to gotcha moments — 30-second surprise attacks from one candidate to another — does nothing to inform voters and clarify critical policy positions. In fact, if Democrats “eat their own,” they will hand Donald Trump a second term as president.
Case in point: Kamala Harris did not have to score big during the first debate when she attacked Joe Biden’s record on busing. Her inauthentic charge was simplistic and contrived, not at all nuanced, and a mischaracterization of the busing controversy at the time. What the exchange on the debate stage missed was the fact that only 4% of whites and 9% of blacks nationwide supported mandatory busing at the time. In fact, Senator Biden was in step with the majority of parents and, in particular, with his constituents in Delaware. He did not oppose voluntary busing and worked to combat “redlining,” the practice that kept black families from integrating neighborhoods, thus keeping schools de facto segregated.
Marie Collins, San Pedro
Beware when buying homes
If you are getting ready to buy a house, be it your first home or your 10th, take time to research the history of this big investment, especially if it has been remodeled within the past year. Do your due diligence and find out if a permit was pulled on the work. Also, take a look at original construction prints, if available, and compare them to the building’s current configuration.
In this day and age of flipping houses, far too many that are hiding a financial screwing are sold to unsuspecting buyers. Don’t get stuck holding the bag for some jerk who, for the almighty dollar, had to get in and out as fast as possible because he or she didn’t have a clue. Two friends of mine, both disabled Army vets, just found out the hard way.
Fred Berfle, Modesto