New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 2, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
4 ■ Herafd-Zerturtg ■ Thursday. Fab. 2.1995
I To talk with Managing Editor Mark Lyon about he Opinion page caw 525-9144. ext. 21
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'The media protray people as evil: Blacks are oil. Latins are evil. Whites are oil. But we're all human beings."
— Me a*" e Pas^y-Thomas soc ai worker. 1994
More than 2,000 animals were destroyed in New Braunfels in ’94
Anyone who owns a dog or a cat know s how special these animals can be. They are loyal and dependable friends who bring lose and companionship into their owners’ lives every day.
But along w ith the benefits of pet ow nership come responsibilities. Responsibilities that too many New Braunfels pet owners are ignoring.
In 1994. 1.356 dogs were brought to the Human Society animal shelter. Of those. 214 found new homes and 203 were reclaimed by their owners. That leaves 938 dogs that were euthanized.
Cats brought to the shelter fared even worse. 1,241 cats were brought into the shelter. One hundred and seven were adopted. 20 were reclaimed by owners and 1.124 were destroyed.
Ask yourself right now if all of your pets are spayed or neutered. If they are not. then you are pan of this totally presentable problem. The procedure is safe and relatively inex-pensise. And it is pan of responsible pet ow nership. So is keeping your animal fenced or on a leash.
Many people think that if they bring a litter of kittens or puppies into the shelter they will be adopted. Sadly, that is often not the case. Worse, others simply abandon litters of animals along the side of the road. They often end up with a worse fate, starving to death, being hit by a car, or shot by a rancher protecting his flock.
It would be wonderful if the animal shelter did not have to put a single animal to sleep in 1995. That won t happen, but if people would simply spay or neuter their pets, those figures of destroyed animals would begin to drop.
For all the joy animals bring into our lives, it is a shame to repay them the way we do.
(Railer Croteau is city' editor of the Herald-Zeitung.)
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Editor and Publisher..........................................................David Sultens
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City Editor ........... Roger Croteau
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pt is i masiik Send address changes to the Het* brum/eh Herald Zeiiunn. P O Drawer 311328. New Biaunlels. Tx. 78131-1328Arab culture unfolds during trip
Each da\ we are becoming more and more absorbed N the culture of the people we are visiting in the United .Arab Emirates. It is such a polite society. and so gracious. We are even able to use effectively a few Arabic phrases like: hello. Salaamalaikum. which literally means “peace be upon you*’; thank you. shookran; and you're welcome. Ahlan wa Suhlan. Many aspects of the society continue to impress everyone in our delegation. High on the list is their respect for the aged, their devotion to their children, and their commitment to the same God that Jews and Christians worship.
The Ministry of Health administers a program that would be the envy of President Clinton and the Congress. Every citizen of the United Arab Emirates has free health care. Texas has a strong connection lo their health care program as several Emi-ratis have studied at Baylor and M D. Anderson Hospital in Houston.
One professor in our group asked w hether AIDS was a health problem. We were told candidly that a few cases of AIDS existed. Most were the result of contaminated blood from transfusions. All AIDS patients are given the best treatment possible to make their lives comfortable. Psychological and physical treatment is provided.
When asked to comment about an AIDS preven-uon program, the Minister stated that their native population did not include a significant number of high risk individuals. He added that any individual who was coming to the U.A.E. for more than 48 hours automatically is required to take an HIV test. If the results are positive, the individual is sent home. “We do not leave the door open for AIDS." he said.
At lunch we are instructed to change into comfortable clothes and get ready for an early afternoon surprise. The van then femes us to the airport where a Lockheed C-130 transport plane piloted by Emirate Air Force officers is whirring its engines while waiting for us on the tarmac. For most of the delegation an unbelievable event lies ahead.
As we walk up the cargo ramp and enter the bowels of this military workhorse, we are more than a little jittery. Everywhere we look there are hoses,
straps, gauges, knobs and strange-looking machinery.
When the pikx cranks up the engine, the old bird begins to shudder and shake as we taxi down the run-way Soon. Abu Dhabi is stretching out like a giant map below us. .As we bank to the nght. the cobalt Nae w aters of the .Arabian Gulf unfold below us. Offshore oil platforms and tanker loading facilities appear out of nowhere and just as quickly disappear. One half of the U.A.E.’s immense oil reserv es are located offshore.
Our destination is the island of Sir Ban Yas in the southwestern comer of the Gulf. Here, we have the opportunity to view Shaikh Zayed’s commitment to wildlife. As we tour the island w e spot emus, llamas, onyx, giraffes, several different kinds of gazelles, and a wide selection of birds. The entire island is a wildlife sanctuary, and the international wildlife community gives the project high marks.
On the flight back to Abu Dhabi, the captain allows three of us at a time into the cockpit to take pictures. As the plane descends into Abu Dhabi the pilot makes a pass over the city. The sun is low on the horizon, casting a soft light over a building architect’s paradise that has a magical appearance below us. The one phrase that pops into my mind is, "It doesn’t get much better than this, boys!"
Friday morning finds us one hundred miles up the coastline in the city of Dubai. On the streets and main banks and commercial establishments is the economic heartbeat of the U.A.E.’s booming private sector. Energy pumps through its streets like a major power surge. Practically everywhere one looks, construction is evident.
Singapore, Hong Kong. Rotterdam, get out of the way, here comes Dubai. No one challenges Dubai as the major commercial center in the Gulf. Ships, trade merchants...Dubai has been humming along for as long as anyone can remember. As in days old, the dhow sailboats sail out of Dubai bound for markets in Iran, Pakistan, India, and East Africa.
We visit a place called "The Creek,” where the dhows are still an active part of the U.A.E. trade picture. The dhow harbor is crammed with ships carrying every possible type of freight imaginable. A small boat carries its passengers to the harbor side where a cornucopia of culture unfolds. The passengers’ faces are like snowflakes; no two are alike. We see black faces from Africa, white faces from the Islamic republics of the former Soviet Union, the tan faces of Pakistanis, Indians, Egyptians, Filipinos, Syrians, and many more.
Bartering is going on everywhere. There is constant
motion. A cacophony of voices fill the air shouting "How much for this?", “Too much!”, and, “Sold, congratulations!” all at the same time, in several different languages. Women with solid gold teeth sell blankets from Uzbekistan, Somali sailors tell stories of the hardships in their homeland, Indian Sikhs with turbans return our gaze, and I am asked if I want to sell my camera. This place is alive!
The next day we visit the Jebel AU Free Zone. The Dubai government gambled on a big bet. They drew to an inside straight and won. What they did was nothing short of phenomenal. They built the largest man-made port in the world. Along with the Great Wall of China, the port is one of the two man-made objects which can be seen from space with the naked eye.
This was no small task. First, sand had to be dredged. They moved enough sand to build a wall 3 feet wide by 5 1/2 feet high that would circle the globe. When they finished, it was, and still is, possible to turn an aircraft carrier around in the basin without changing gears. Today, more than 750 companies operate in the Free Zone, including Coleman, one of New Braunfels’ top industries.
Our last day in the United Arab Emirates takes us to the east coast and the shores of the Gulf of Oman in the Emirate of Fujairah. Fujairah provides the U.A.E. with a deep water port that eliminates the necessity of passing through the Strait of Hormuz.
Upon visiting the Fujairah Museum an unexpected treat occurs. A busload of second grade boys arrives at the museum with their teacher The children are absolutely beautiful with sparkling dark eyes and infectious grins. Already they are studying English and are eager to try out their new language. I ask them, “How are you?’ and a resounding chorus of “We are fine!" echoes back. After showing them photos of my family, they disappear into the museum. I miss my family.
We have now been in the United Arab Emirates for nine days. Tomorrow, we leave for Oman. Many of our stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims have been erased; a thousand new ideas are bouncing around in our brains. Yet the consensus of the group is unanimous. We have come to love the people and the country of the United Arab Emirates. This concludes the four-part series on the U.A.E. In two days, I will begin to share my observations from Oman.
(This is the fourth in a series of articles written by Southwest Texas State University Professor Byron Augustin on a recent Middle Ease trip.)
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Clinton’s Mexico move reflects new strategy
WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing ertxling support in Congress for his proposed $40 billion Mexican loan-guarantee plan, President Clinton decided lo cut his losses and go it alone with a plan not requiring congressional action
For a president long tormented by criticism for being unfocused and indecisive, it was a step the White House could hold up as a sign of action — and which leaders of Congress of both parties could greet with a sigh of relief
His move — bypassing Congress completely — was the first example of an emerging White House strategy under which the president intends to make wider use of his executive authority in dead-end confrontations with Congress.
Clinton crafted the Mexican aid package from a combination of executive orders and by persuading the International Monetary Fund and other international lenders to up their slakes
And while the action provoked congressional criticism — some accused him of panicking, others complained he was misusing a fund designed to defend the dollar — his critics had no
immediate vehicle for stopping the president's plan.
For the most part, congressional leaders seemed lo be filled with gratitude that Clinton had taken the pressure off them lo act.
And Clinton was able to avoid what would have been a bruising battle, par-Uvularly with members of his own party who overwhelmingly opposed the Mexican rescue plan.
“It raises the question of why didn t he do it earlier But it also shows leadership, which was badly needed The president was able to force political points," said Lawrence Chtmenne, an economic consultant who follows trade issues
Chimerine and some other economists raised concerns that the new Clinton package puts more U.S. tax dollars at risk than would have the original loan-guurantee package
But Clinton showed he was able to move — even at a time when his clout on Capitol Hill has never been lower.
His decision to act decisively was a good tonic for a While House still
numbed by the November Republican landslide and overshadowed by the energy and the activity of the newly empowered Republican majority on the Hill.
Clinton "went through all the proper steps of trying lo involve the (congressional) leadership," said Sen. Christopher Dodd. D-Conn , the new chairman of the Democratic National Committee "We in my view dropped the ball in not responding to that call.”
This time Clinton was able to pick up the ball and run with it.
Even so, there are limits to how often he can govern through execuuve fiat — and how much he can accomplish.
And the steps he took carried some risk and controversy, especially that of encumbering the U S. Exchange Stabilization Fund by up to $20 billion to help Mexico. Thai’s the 60-year-old fund used by Treasury lo defend the U S dollar at limes of currency instability. Never before has it been used lo shore up a foreign currency.
And the move did nothing to keep Clinton’s harshest critics from keeping up their attack
"There’s no doubt that Clinton’s
going lo look bold. But so did Jesse James," said conservative commentator Pat Buchanan, a 1992 GOP presidential contender, calling the action a "backdoor raid on the American taxpayers"
But his move won the support of two Republican leaders, House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole, both of whom had previously accused Clinton of a lack of leadership on the issue
"We believe that the risks of inaction vastly exceed any risks associated w ith this action," Gingrich, Dole, House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt and Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle said in a rare joint statement lute Tuesday. "We fully support this effort and we will work to ensure that its purposes are met."
And that enabled Secretary of Slate Warren Christopher to crow: "'lins is one of those moments of executive leadership.... So (lie president did what presidents often have to do — take die responsibility for protecting American interests "