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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 7, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas i agt 4 — Herald-Zettljng — Tuesday, June 7, 2005 FORUM Other Viewpoints Controlling meth labs a rural security issue The Hays (Kart.) Daily News, on changes in homeland security: The federal government should allow local law enforcement to decide how best to use federal dollars.... The singular-minded politicians and bureaucrats in Washington surely don’t know what battles are being fought in the heartland. One of them — a big one — is methamphetamine manufacturing and trafficking. It is a far bigger problem than terrorism. Yet the Bush administration wants to gut grants to fight meth in the interest of putting more money into homeland security. That is a big mistake. The homeland security hysteria has Washington sending hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to every little rural... county, to be used for such items as protective equipment for hazardous and biological materials, materials to disarm explosives, surveillance supplies, barriers, sensors, video systems, medical supplies and incident response vehicles.... While a random terrorist bombing in a sleepy Midwestern community is not out of the realm of possibility, it is something of a fantasy. The scourge of meth, however is, here and now, a real problem. Deficit reduction and homeland defense both can be accomplished. Target homeland defense to the places that most are at risk.... Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Tuesday, lune 7, the 158th day of 2005. There are 207 days left in the year. Today’s I lighlight in I listory: On lune 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia proposed to the Continental Congress a resolution calling for a Declaration of Independence. On this date: In 1753, Britain's King George II gave his assent to an Act of Parliament establishing the British Museum. In 1769, frontiersman Daniel Boone first began to explore the present-day Bluegrass State. In 1864, Abraham Lincoln was nominated for another term as president at his party's convention in Baltimore. In 1929, the sovereign state ofVatican City came into existence as copies of die Lateran Treaty were exchanged in Rome. In 1948, the Communists completed their takeover of Czechoslovakia with the resignation of President Eduard Benes. In 1972, the musical “Grease" opened on Broadway. In 1981, Israeli military planes destroyed a nuclear power plant in Iraq, a facility the Israelis charged could have been used to make nuclear weapons. In 1998, in a crime that shocked the nation, lames Byrd Jr., a 49-year-old black man, was dragged to his death behind a pickup truck in Jasper. (Two white men were later sentenced to death for the crime: a third received life in prison.) LETTERS POLICY ■ Letters must be 250 words or less. ■The Herald-Zeitung reserves the right to edit all submissions. ■ Guest columns should be 500 words or less and must be accompanied by a photo. ■ Address and telephone number must be included so authorship can be confirmed. Mail letters to: Letters to Editor do Herald-Zeitung RO. Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131-1328 Fax them to: (830) 606-3413 e-mail them to: news@herald- Herald-Zeitung Serving New Braunfels and Coma/ County since 1852. 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. mmtmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm Managing Editor Gary E. Maitland Editor and Publisher Doug Toney Circulation Director Jeff Fowler Advertising Director Neice Bell News Editor David Rupkalvis ■    rn.    | COM ? AS YOU CAN SEE MISTER MOCKLER, VIE ARE POOR, BUT VIE HAVE INTERNET lA/Jce/L. WWW.cag I GUESTCOLUMN Make your summer a good memory, not a bad nightmare Summer... it evokes all kinds of images in our mind. We might think of camping, tubing, swimming, going to Schlitterbahn or to the coast. We live in a community that embraces summer activity. We hear the sound of water, smell the sunscreen and see all the sunburned residents and tourists everywhere. If you look into the crowds of people on Liberty Street and on Gruene Bridge, you can see people of all ages and from all walks of life. There is camaraderie among strangers who are less than 20 feet from each other’s campsite or who are riding in a shutde together with their tubes and ice chests. We see friendships start and relationships bond quickly when everyone is here for the party. At the crisis center, we are often called by law enforcement or the hospital to help a victim of sexual assault in the summer. Many times the victim is a visitor from another town. Some barely remember the assault because of the alcohol and/or drugs that they’ve ingested. Others remember every horrible moment, beginning when the perpetrator came into the tent, bathroom, boat, etc. In the State of Texas it is against the law to have sex with someone when they do not give, or are unable to give, their consent. Being under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol is a time when someone is unable to give their consent, ac cording to the law. Many unassuming people don’t have this fact in their mind and think its OK to “push the envelope” with someone else. It is not OK and this behavior can get that person on a Web site for registered sex offenders for the rest of their life. Summer used to be seen as a time to “let loose" because we were on vacation. We can still have fun, but we can’t assume that everyone around us is safe, or that we can take advantage of strangers that we may never see again. In our homes, we at least have the right to refuse someone entrance. In public areas, you are at the mercy of the environment. Be aware of your surroundings, stay with safe people, and don’t over indulge in alcohol. Make your summer a good memory, not a bad nightmare. For information on sexual assault and family violence issues, call the Crisis Center of Comal County at 620-7520, or I -800-434-8013. COREEN SCHMIDT Coreen Schmidt is pretention educator for the Crisis Center of Comal County. Letters to the Editor Legislature fails to do its job Once again the state legislature has failed at its job. For over a year, the Legislature has been trying to fund our school systems and has failed time and time again. The state leadership has shown a gross inability to forge agreements necessary for the future of our state. Next year is an election year and we need to give careful consideration to who we are sending to Austin. Our children and our state depend on it. Luny Horton New Braunfels Rangers softball team are heroes Although the Smithson Valley Rangers softball team’s season was brought to a halt by a fine O’Connor team (especially its pitcher!), I commend these young ladies and their coaches on an excellent season. Coaches Wayne and Usa Daigle and Nathan Braun are three of the finest coaches I have ever known. They promote character and first-class behavior, no matter how the season might go. They, like the girls, are competitive, yet those lessons for life exceed any score on the board. It has been exciting to watch this team in action — more than that, it has been fun, and that is something very much needed in competitive sports these days. Thank you, Rangers. You are our heroes! Betty Hendrick San Antonio HOW TO CONTACT United States Government PRESIDENT ■ George W. Bush 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D C. 20500 SENATE ■ Kay Bailey Hutchison Russell Senate Office Building Room 284 Washington, D C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-5922 Fax: (202) 224-0776 Web: (Send e-mails through Web sit*.) SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 145 Duncan Drive, Suite 120 San Antonio 78226 Telephone: (210) 340-2885 Fax: (210) 349-6753 ■ John Cornyn Russell Senate Hart Room 517 Washington, D.C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-2934 Fax: (202) 228-2856 Web: (Send e-mails through Web site.) AUSTIN OFFICE: 221 West Sixth St., Suite 1530 Austin 78701 Telephone: (512) 469-6034 Fax: (512) 469 6020 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 600 Navarro, Suite 210 San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 224 7485 Fax: (210) 224-8569 CONGRESSMAN ■ Lamar Smith Rayburn House Office Building Room 2184 Washington, D C. 20515 Telephone: (202) 225 4236 Fax: (202) 225-8628 Web address: (Send e-mails through Web site.) SAN ANTONIO OFFICE 1100 NE Loop 410, Suite 640 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 821-5024 Fax: (210) 821-5947 ■ Henry Cuellar 1404 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D C. 20515 Telephone: (202) 225-1640 Fax: (202) 225-1641 Web address: http://www. SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 1149 E. Commerce St., Suite 210 San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 271-2851 Fax: (210) 277-6671 SAN MARCOS OFFICE: 111 E. San Antonio, Suite 205 San Marcos 78666 Telephone: (512) 392 2364 Fax: (512) 392-2834 GOVERNOR £" HOW TO CONTACT Texas Government ■ Rick Perry State Capitol, Room 2S.1 RO. Box 12428 Austin 78711 Telephone: (800) 843-5789 Fax: (512) 463-1849 STATE HOUSE ■ Carter Casteel 254 E. Mill St. New Braunfels 78130 Telephone: (830) 627-0215 Toll Free: (866) 687 4961 Fax: (830) 627-8895 E-mail address: carter.casteel fl5 STATE SENATE ■ Jeff Wentworth 1250 NE Loop 410, Suite 720 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 826-7800 Fax: (210) 826 0571 E-mail address: jeff.Wentworth a'senate.state.tx.usPeople who claim there is no God intend to play God CHARLEYREESE Charley Reese is a columnist for King Features Syndicate. You can write to him at PO. Box 2446, Orlando, Fla. 32802. Christopher I litchens, the British writer who has fallen in love with American neoconservatives, recently said this about people of faith: “I can’t stand anyone who believes in God, who invokes the divinity, or who is a person of faith. I mean, that to me is a horrible, repulsive thing.” Well, it doesn’t really matter what the old-left, born-again neoconservatives think. I cite the quotation, from a radio interview in the United Kingdom, to set the stage for the point that atheism and Darwinism are matters of faith, not scientific fact. They are rationalizations for another form of secular faith: materialism. It is impossible to prove there is no God, just as it has so far been impossible to prove that life began as a single cell in some primordial pond. If either of these beliefs was just a matter of reason and science, then the people who hold it would feel no hostility against those who disagree with them. But, as my example shows, they are hostile to peo ple who disagree with them. The atheist-Darwinist-materialist acts exactly like the religious zealots he professes to scorn. He is evangelical, dogmatic and tends to view people who disagree with him as either idiots or enemies. It seems that humans are incapable of living without faith. They just have different gods. Intelligent design is a far more plausible theory than the belief that life in all its incredible profusion and complexity is a mere accident. There is no fossil evidence of any species ever becoming another species. What the fossil records show is exactly what mankind has seen since we learned to write: Some species die out. Some don’t. Occasionally, some genetic mutation will cause a slight change in some life form, but never to the extent of creating a new form of life. The fact that one occasionally sees an albino squirrel does not mean that all of squirreldom will become white. The war between materialists and people of faith has gone on for millennia. It is going on today. There are very important philosophical differences between the two camps. The materialist believes he has no responsibility to take care of others. That’s why Darwinism and its survi-val-of-the-fittest claim were seized upon by the materialists as a perfect rationalization of their selfishness. People of faith, however, feel a (kxi-given responsibility to help their fellow human beings. Every tyranny has been materialistic, though some tyrannies are frequently disguised with a false altruistic covering. As we have seen in communist countries both past and present, the reality contradicts theory. The reality is rule by an oligarchy that enslaves the population. As George Orwell so perceptively saw, everybody is equal, but some are more equal than others. In the Soviet Union, the aristocracy was replaced by the Communist Party leadership, and the top communist acted with the same absolutism as the czars of old. The communist czars, however, were a million times more murderous than the old czars. Today, the selfish materialists have trotted out another god — the free market. The market, these people claim, if left free will always make rational economic decisions. Once again, reality con tradicts theory. Unregulated capitalism will make the rich extremely rich and the poor extremely poor. “Rational" and “moral" are two different and unrelated things. In the unregulated early days of capitalism, industrialism created hellish conditions tor the working men and women. The capitalist, unless constrained by religious faith or, in the absence of that, government regu lation, can be as ruthless and brutal as any commissar. It may be rational to close a factory in America and move it to a country where desperate people will work for pennies, but it darn sure isn’t moral. Keep in mind the bet as expressed by the French genius Blaise Pascal: lf you bet there is no God and you win, you win nothing, but if you lose, you lose everything. If you bet there is a God and you win, you win everything, and if you lose, you lose nothing. Rationally speaking, God is the best bet. I prefer to live in a country of people of faith rather than in a country of people like Christopher I litchens. People who claim there is no God intend to play God themselves, with us as their subjects. ;