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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 17, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Page 6A — HkralD-ZeituNG — TTiursday, April 17, 2003Forum Contact Managing Editor Gary E. Maitland 625-9144, ext. 220 New Bu \i si Ki.s Herald-Zeitung New Braunfels Zeitung was founded IH.52; New Braunfels Herald was founded 189(1 The two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958. Doug Toney, Editor and Publisher Gary E. Maitland, Managing Editor (830) 625-9144 Kudos The New Braunfels Art league is pleased and proud to report that our recent Fast Draw auction brought in $4,095 for Hope? Hospice of New Braunfels. Hope Hospice received the full amount given in the auction, fund-raiser and donations. It is a wonderful organization, and it’s a pleasure tx) help further their end of life, palliative, bereavement and youth programs. We are grateful for the paintings created by the 11 wonderful, gifted artists and for the food and gift certificates provided by equally wonderful restaurants and businesses. Our deepest gratitude is extended to Librado’s Mexican Restaurant, Schwab Sausage House and Barbeque, Adobe Cafe, Rudy’s Country Store and Bar-B-Q, Dougs Barbeque, Huisache Grill, Mr. Gatti’s, Pizza Hut-South Seguin, Albertson’s, H F B and Wal-Mart. We knew artists are very generous, as well as gifted, and the following artists proved it. They created some wonderful paintings in one hour, matted and, or framed them and offered them for auction. They are Linda Bateman, Angie Banta Brown, Virginia Carruth, Vie Dunn-Harr, Sage Gibson, Myra Knapp, Julie McCollum, Anne McCoy, Coe Savage, Barry Shadrock and John Siddell. Glenda Deal provided two pots and Edward Reichert donated a pointing for the auction, also. A big thank you to all who attended the fast draw and bid on the paintings. This was an exciting addition tx) our watercolor month activities. Came Lee Allbntton, chair Watercolor Month and Fast Draw New BraunfelsToday In History By The Associated Press Today i.s Thursday, April 17, the 107th day of 2OOT There are 258 days left in tin* year. Today’s history highlight: On April 17, 1961, about 1,500 CIA-trained Cuban exiles launched the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in a failed attempt to overthrow the govern merit of Fidel Castro, In 1492, a contract was signed by Christopher Columbus and a representative of Spain’s King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, giving Columbus a commission to seek a westward ocean passage to Asia. In 1524, Giovanni da Verrazano reached present -day New York harborPolicy In 1790, American statesman Benjamin Franklin, 84, died in Philadelphia. In 1861, the Virginia State Convention voted to secede from the Union. In 1941, Yugoslavia surrendered to Germany in World War II. In 1964, Ford Motor Co. unveiled its new ‘‘Mustang.’ Iii 1969, a jury in Los Angeles convicted Sirhan Sirhan of assassinating Sen. Robert F. Kennedy. In 1969, Czechoslovak Communist Party chairman Alexander Dubcek was deposed. In 1970, the astronauts of Apollo 13 splashed down safely in the Pacific, four days after a ruptured oxygen tank crippled their spacecraft. The Herald-Zeitung encourages the submission of letters. Letters must be 250 words or fewer, and the Herald-Zeitung reserves the right to edit all submissions. An address and telephone number, which are not for publication, must be included so authorship can be conli rmed. Mail letters to: Letters to the bidi tor do the Herald-Zeitung P.O. Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131-1328 Fax: (830) 606-3413 e mail: [email protected] Pastor’s column can’t pass without a response The article by Rev. Tim Judkins in the March 29 issue cannot be allowed to stand without a response. Does Rev. Judkins not realize that the headline on his article. “Believers behave the same in Baghdad, utterly destroys the thrust of his argument? The first two paragraphs of his article can be accepted as good Christian doctrine. The third paragraph reveals immediately, however, the bias that guides his interpretation of the New Testament and of the teachings and life of Jesus. By referring to Iraqis as “terrorists” and those who are attacking them as “patriots," t he direction of his discourse is made clear. The full text of John 19:11, on which Rev. Judkins relies to immunize civil governments against protests by those who do not agree with their policies i.s as follows: “You would have no flowerElmo L. Fischer Guest Column over me unless it had been given you from above; therefore he who delivered me to you has the greater sin.” If one accepts Rev. Judkins’ interpretation of this passage of Scripture, then Adolf Hitler in the* 1930s and 1940s was empowered by God and those who resisted that power, including some in my own family, should have “sought citizenship elsewhere.” Does Rev. Judkins not know that a great many people t ried to do just that? Some succeeded, hut millions found their new citizenship in Nazi gas chambers. As for Iraq, if the authority of the United States government is derived from God, so. too, is that of Iraq. When Letters To The Editor Time to listen, respond to citizens This is an open letter to the New Braunfels City Council: When will you start listening to and responding to the wants and needs of the citizens of New Braunfels concerning our streets? We have been waiting, sometimes not very patiently, for till of you to accept the responsibility of your offices and work together to fix our streets, and yet very little is getting done I drive Walnut Avenue daily, and it Is getting worse and worse. You have been heating Walnut Avenue to death for at least IO years that I am aware of and still nothing is being done, except that we are putting patches on patches. Much has been said about all of the citizen petitions in the past few years. But what are we to do if our questions and concerns fall on deaf ears! Do you not understand that the resistance to a new (’ivic (’enter or even remodeling our existing one, partly stems from the* fact that our infrastructure iscrum- we encourage the cit izens of Iraq to give aid and comfort to an invading enemy, are we not enticing them to rebel against God? Who can believe in a God who would allow a great and powerful nation to attack a much smaller and weaker one. to destroy its cities and to kill its people, when the civil authorities of both nations have been empowered by God? If God would favor one nation over the other, which I do not believe, would He not favor the victim over the aggressor? Rev. Judkins makes the point that submission tx) civil government is “the crux of Christian citizenship,’’ and that those who protest what they believe to be wrong policies of their government are, therefore, un-Christian. I have no problem using the word “submission” so long as it is used tx* mean submission to God. Neither do billions of people around bling, and we as citizens see very little, if anything, that you as a council are doing to fix our streets? Much is also said about the fact that our visitors pay a lot of our expenses and for many of the improvements to our city facilities. We are truly blessed to have them visit our city and we appreciate them, however, those visitors do not live here day in and day out, and do not watch our streets crumbling and damaging our cars, with nothing being done. Citizen petitions are (he direct result of our city gov- the world, including even some who are Christians. Ti more than a billion Muslims, submission to God is at the very heart of their faith. Indeed the name of their faith, Islam, can be translated as “submission.” Is Rev. Judkins suggesting that we will he better Christians if we embrace Islam? There are other issues in Rev. Judkins’ article which I would like tx) address. Suffice tx) say, his gratuitous slap at “contemporary Christianity,” by which I assume he means the older (christian denomination, further clarifies his theological leanings. To me, “contemporary Christianity” means looking tx) the life and teachings of Christ for guidance as contemporary people try to find sxdutions to contemporary problems and conditions. (Klmo Ij. Fischer is a New ftrau n f els resider11.) eminent not effectively addressing and correcting problems which the citizens feel are important. I understand that economic development is important to our survival as a growing city, hut if you as our elected officials do not address the wants and needs of our cit izens in a timely manner, we will never have a united council that can effectively meet the challenges that face our city now and into the future. Thank you for your time. Jim Beath New BraunfelsCancer kills notable work of freedom fighter AUSTIN Patrick Wiseman, lawyer, teacher, freedom-fig liter, died of cancer at 49. Wiseman argued the 2106 case 2106 is the criminal statute that makes it illegal to hi* gay in Texas first iii federal court, where he won, and then before tin* Fifth Circuit, where he lost. When the day comes in this country (and it will) when the law no longer discriminates because of sexual orientation, Wiseman’s tireless work and the force of Ills arguments will be at the foundation of that expansion of liberty and justice for all. When Wiseman was just a baby lawyer, two years out of the Urn versify of Houston Liw School, the American Civil Liberties Union of Houston hired hun as its only paid counsel. It is estimated that he filed between 300 and 400 lawsuits against the Houston Police Depart ment during the next few years. For those of you wile have for gotten what tin* HPI) was like under the reign of Herman Short, there was reportedly a Klan unit operating out of police headquarters. Abuse of minority citizensMolly Ivins was common In one of the more famous cases, six Houston cops threw a suspect named Joe Campos 'Forres into Buffalo Bayou: he drowned. Houston cops commonly carried throw-down guns. A throw-down gun, children, is an unmarked gun that a cop can place next the body if fie has shot an unarmed suspect, thus claiming the guy drew on him. It took a fair amount of courage to take on Houston cops in those days. Of course, Wiseman had all the amenities, resources and high salary that go along with being a civil liberties lawyer. Sissy Farenthold, who ran twice for governor in the early ’70s, got hundreds of letters from people in Texas prisons alleging an astonishing variety of mistreatment. Because she was so busy speak ing and politicking, she turned the letters over to Wiseman. She reports in awe: “He never said no. He always followed up.” After seven years of private practice in Houston, much of it devoted to civil liberties law, Wiseman came to Austin as chief of the State and County Affairs <Mfice of the attorney general. At the time, the state of Texas was getting sued from pillar to post for mistreatment of the mentally ill and mentally retarded. Phil Durst, who handled the cases, recalls them as the most hopeless projects imaginable: “You’d just show up and get yelled at because the Legislature wouldn’t spend any money.’ Wiseman volunteered to go along on many of those cases, and when Durst asked him why he would volunteer for these no-hopers, Wiseman replied, “Oh, I just like a good fight.” Durst said: “Patrick s legacy affects the day-to-day lives of all Texans. His cases on free speech, the powers of government and rights of the little guy are unequaled among Texas lawyers.” ■ Wiseman forced Texas A&M University, of which he was a graduate, to accept a student gay-rights organization in 1982. Wiseman never cared much for arbitrary authority, so his relationship with his alma mater was slightly ambivalent. However, he rooted for the Aggies football team all his days. ■ Another case forced public-achool districts to mainstream handicapped children. ■ He forced Texas Southern University to allow demonstrations by Iranian students in 1981. ■ Ut* forced government agencies to allow workers to express their views publicly, even if the views are controversial — a great win for freedom of speech. And there were many, many others, some narrow and technical cases on legal procedure, others as vast as the Bill of Rights. Among lawyers who worked with him, Wiseman was a renowned teacher with a special gift for inspiring young lawyers to public service. But talking to Wiseman’s children James and Clare and his nieces and nephews has reminded me of how little one knows of a person from the public record. Wiseman loved dogs and children almost ixjually, hut it was a golden I xib named lh who always got to ride shotgun in the car. This caused Wiseman to go off to court many a time smelling strongly of dog and with a generous dusting of Lab hairs on his blue suit, adding a certain je ne sais quoi tx) the cause of civil liberty. Wiseman was famous for whipping up enormous and delicious weekend breakfasts, always leaving the kitchen in shambles. He loved the outdoors and fearlessly volunteered to take six or eight kids at a time on camping trips. He was a big man with a great baritone voice, and he would sing along with anyone from Willie Nelson to six little girls. He was endlessly patient with children, as might he expected of a man with a “Question Authority” bumper sticker on his car. He believed iii beer, the Constitution and the dignity of all human beings. He was learned and fair and a lot of fun to be with (Molly loins is u syndicated columnist.) ;