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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung: Saturday, September 16, 2000 - Page 6

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   New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - September 16, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas                                Page 6A HERALDZEITUNO Saturday September OPINIONS FORUM LETTERS NliW HERALDZEITUNG New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852 New Braunfels Herald was founded 1890 The two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958 Doug Toney Editor and Publisher Margaret Edmonson Managing Editor Michael Gary News Editor KUDOS In this great land of ours I am reminded daily that freedom is not free On Aug 3 2000 a young law enforcement officer paid the high est price for that freedom in a tragic encounter with an armed motorist While performing his duty enforcing highway safety for the people of Texas DPS Trooper Randy Vetter was shot in the head forever shatter ing the lives of his family and friends In this great land of ours I also am reminded daily that kindness and compassion are not lost or forgotten values As I learned of this terrible catastrophe I rushed to my daughters side I saw how an entire state experienced shock horror and then immediately mobilized in an over whelming effort to save my soninlaws life For all their professional care and dedication I would like to extend a special thanks to the fol lowing groups and organizations Brackenridge Hospital Staff and ICU All central Texas law enforcement members and Victims Services personnel who stood by our sides at the hospital and the funeral All of the ministers who helped counsel us during our disbelief and grief The restaurants stores and individuals who graciously donated food Doubletree Hotel for providing us a place to stay The many organizations and individuals that have helped to raise money for the Vetter family The individuals who donated blood in Raadys name and The news media who allowed our family to grieve in private while tactfully presenting this story to the public A very special and heartfelt thanks to the DPS family of Randys fel low officers who throughout this horrible ordeal provided a multitude of services for our physical mental and spiritual comfort I am especially grateful to the townspeople of New Braunfels for their tribute to Randy Their generosity and kindness touched our hearts Their display of blue ribbons and American flags throughout the town expressed a respect for their slain native son with the dignity he deserved I sincerely appreciate all the cards telephone calls floral arrange ments meals prayers and other expressions of sympathy In this great land of ours I am reminded daily that our freedom of religion is one which we cherish It is this freedom which will provide the faith neces sary to endure the pain grief anger and terrible sense of loss which Randys wife Cynthia and his young son Robert will experience for the rest of their lives Carrie Amsden Corpus Christ TODAY IN HISTORY BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS On Sept 16 1940 President Franklin Roosevelt signed into law the Selective Training and Service Act which set up the first peace time military draft in history On this date In 1630 the Massachusetts vil lage of Shawmut changed its name to Boston In 1638 Frances King Louis XIV was born In 1810 Mexico began its revolt against Spanish rule In 1893 hundreds of thousands of settlers swarmed onto a section of land in Oklahoma known as the Cherokee In 1919 the American Legion was incorporated by an act of Congress In 1940 Samuel T Raybum of Texas was elected speaker of the House of Representatives In 1966 the Metropolitan Opera opened its new opera house at New Yorks Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts In 1974 President Ford announced a conditional amnesty program for Vietnam War deserters and draftevaders LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Driving off tourists will increase our taxes Dear Editor Kathleen Krueger needs to be congratulat ed on her job she did with her petition drive However a few facts seem to have been left out Mrs Krueger is a wellinformed politician who has spent more time inside the beltway in Washington than in the city limits of New Braunfels She and her husband had not even voted in an election here in New Braunfels since 1996 She realizes that to win an election you need to garner the sup port of the voters who are 65 years old and over This group has the highest voter turnout of any age group and tends to be the swing vote in most city elections One thing to remember about the 65 and older group is that their property taxes are frozen Members of Mrs Kruegers group have stated they want to cut tourism by 40 per cent To cut tourism this much will cause an enormous loss for the city The only way then to make up the loss will be to raise property taxes Whether we like it or not the tourists that float our rivers also spend money in our hotels restaurants and stores They will argue that in time the families will come back We all know once the taxes go up they will never come back down The city will have to raise our taxes maybe as much as several thousand dollars per year to offset the economic loss of tourism Since Mrs Kruegers husband is a member of the 65 and older group she will not see her taxes raised So remember when your tax bill comes do not blame the city for the tax increase Mrs Krueger and her group brought upon us I have floated the Comal River for more than 30 years and have not seen the kind of behavior that has been described this year I do however believe we have a problem on our rivers that needs to be addressed but making criminals out of otherwise lawabid ing citizens is not the answer Each individ ual should be held accountable for own actions We have enough laws to cover the unacceptable behavior that occurs on the rivers without adding more Strict enforce ment of our current laws is a better solution The city and the river outfitters should work together to find ways to fund the enforce ment of our current laws People who use the river should pay for the enforcement not the citizens of New Braunfels To Councilwoman Watson and former Mayor Fraser a simple stop sign prohibiting alcohol will not do the trick as you have suggested If the troublemakers do not obey the current laws why will a sign keep them from taking alcohol on the river It will be our own fault if we do not get involved now WRITE EM Call your city council representatives and let them know we need to find other ways to combat the problems on our rivers besides a giant tax increase for the citizens of New Braunfels Fred Meyer New Braunfels We will pay the price for our waste Dear Editor What has become of todays society the blatant disregard for the natural resources such as fuel and water I dont care What about me The price of gas keeps rising so that it takes more money to fuel my SUV They make those things because that is what people want to buy I do not mean that in a good way I was listening to a radio station doing lis tener calls on the watering ban How do they know how deep the Edwards Aquifer is Well the Trinity Aquifer wells are pumping mud so what do you think The golf courses and businesses water Why cant I Are we prepared to pay the price the real price the end result and the total bill Just when you think you might not live to see it think again Your children definitely will David W Pitman New Braunfels SENATORS Phil Gramm RCollege Station Room 370 Russell Senate Office Building Washington 20510 202 2242934 Fax 202 2282856 404 E Ramsey Road San Antonio TX 78216 Kay Bailey Hutchison RDallas Room 284 Russell Senate Office Building Washington 20510 202 2245922 Fax 202 2240776 8023 Vantage Drive Suite 460 San Antonio TX 78230 CONGRESSMEN Lamar Smith RSan Antonio Room 2231 Rayburn House Office Building Washington 20515 202 2254236 11 GONE Loop410 Suite 640 San Antonio TX 78209 210 8215024 Giro D Rodriguez DSan Antonio Room 323 Cannon House Office Building Washington 20515 202 2251640 1313 Military Suite 115 San Antonio TX 78214 Fax 210 9276222 Banned Books Week challenges parents to weigh First Amendment Heres a little quiz to start off your Saturday morning 1 What do the books Wheres Waldo by Martin Hanford and Private Parts by Howard Stern have in com mon 2 What do the books The Dead Zone by Stephen King and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain have in common 3 What does the series of books Goosebumps by Stine have in common with Sex by Madonna Those who have seen the list The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of probably know the answer to these questions The American Library Association Office for Intellectual Freedom released the list this week as a precursor to Banned Books Week Sept 2330 During the past decade chal lenges of books were reported to the Office for Intellectual Freedom Of those t related to sexually explicit MARGARET EDMONSON related to offensive lan related to material considered unsuited to age 773 related to occult themes or pro moting the occult or 620 related to violent content 497 related to homosexual themes and 397 related to religious viewpoints This past year the popular Harry Potter series penned by Rowling was the most frequently challenged because it delves into wizardry and magic According to ALA most of the books on the most frequently challenged list were not banned from library book shelves A challenge refers to an attempt to ban or restrict materials based upon the objections of a person or group the ALA explains Fortunately that does not happen here often In fact New Braunfels librarian Vickie Hocker reports that she has not had such challenges in her 16 years at Dittlinger Memorial Library and now at New Braunfels Public Library Occasionally well have someone find something in the childrens collec tion that they suggest we might want to move to another Hocker said Many of the books appearing on the ALAs most challenged list sound like books that were assigned for high school reading lists Hocker said Parents might have objected to the content and did not want their children to read those books Thats quite understandable I know I dont want my 8yearold reading Private and Im not sure I would want her to read it when she is 18 However would 1 deign to tell her school librarian that I want the book removed the librarys shelves I hope not I would like to think that I wouldnt because I believe in the First Amendment and the right to express ones views or ideas even if I disagree or find them tasteless My job is to make it clear to my child what my beliefs are and what I expect of her My job is not to dictate what other students in her school or community can or cannot read If a teacher assigns a book that con tains violent or sexually explicit content I would want to understand the context of the book and why it was assigned Would I tell the teacher I dont want my child to read that book I dont think so Would I tell my daughter not to read that book My first instinct would be to do that very thing but my rational response would be to let her read the book and make her own decisions I always have the 00M9 with her I have the right to tell her what I think I always have the right to be her mother Do I have the right to tell her what she can read I think I do right now but somewhere down the line I will have to let her make her own decisions about that I cannot be with her 24 hours a day seven days a week I cannot always pro tect her from television movies videos etc I will have to trust her ability to stand by her beliefs and do the right thing The answers to our quiz 1 Wheres Waldo and Private Parts rank in the lower 50 of the 100 most challenged books at 87 and 86 respectively 2 The Dead Zone and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer also rank in the 80s at 82 and 83 respectively 3 Goosebumps and Sex were in the top 20 of most challenged books Goosebumps came in at 15 Sex came in at 18 witoyoui chijdjen this weekend Margaret Edmonson is the managing editor of the   

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