New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 13, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
Dave Kraacr, General Manager Robert Johnson, Editor
Washington TodaySpeakeseven more acid-tongued
WASHINGTON (AP) - Presidential spokesman I^rry Speakes’ primary function sometimes seems to be to hold the White House press corps at bay.
Speakes often exercises an acid tongue during his occasionally frustrating give-and-take with reporters at two regular daily briefings, but he has become even more testy in recent weeks. For evidence, look at Tuesday, a more or less routine news day at the White House.
While reviewing President Reagan’s effort to win congressional approval of aid to Nicaraguan rebels, Speakes volunteered: “We find it interesting to note that we’re asking for around $27 million over parts of two fiscal years, and we found that (Nicaraguan leader Daniel) Ortega, on his sweep of the Soviet Union and their satellite countries, returned with $393 million in promises, including $202 million from the Soviet Union.”
A reporter asked if the White House spokesman meant to equate the financing of
an entire country with the financing of the Contra rebels.
“We’re equating the willingness of Congress to support freedom fighters in
Central America against a dictatorship which has gone to the Soviet Union and made a fairly large haul of cash,” Speakes replied.
When another reporter sought to return to Speakes’ customary rundown of the day’s schedule, the spokesman said, “I’m coming to all that; I can’t get to it. People rose to the defense of the Nicaraguans, and I had to spend time.”
One of the reporters in the briefing room demanded an apology, since the spokesman had raised the issue on his own initiative and no one had spoken in defense of the San-dinista regime.
“Sorry, you can’t have it,” Speakes snapped. He went on to discuss the schedule.
Irater in the same question-and-answer session, a reporter raised a question to which he has been seeking an answer for several days.
Quoting President Reagan as telling audiences in recent speeches that he had received “a mountain” of mail, “a tidal wave” of letters and telegrams in support of his plan to overhaul the tax system, the reporter asked, “How many letters make a tidal wave, how many build a mountain?”
“Well,” Speakes said when asked for details, “there are about 40,000 letters that are on hand, unopened, in the mail room of the White House. Whether they all pertain to taxes I would doubt.”
The spokesman said that was not an unusual number but claimed Reagan receives more mail than any other president.
“We could not give you an accurate count because we simply are not up to date in opening the mail,” he said.
A few minutes later, Speakes tired of answering questions about how and when Reagan made his decision to continue abiding by the SALT ll treaty, inaccurate reports of which were widely published in the days before the White House announced the
president’s position on Monday.
“Look, I’ve been down here about 20 minutes,” Speakes said. "We’re not going to say any more on this. If you want to beat the dead horse, you can,...
And he discussed it no further.President urged to press reduced deficit
WASHINGTON (AP) - As President Reagan prepared to embark on another speaking trip for tax simplification, conservative Republicans were urging him to couple his tax pitch with a stepped-up campaign for reduction of the federal deficit.
Members of the Senate Steering Committee, an unofficial organization of GOP conservatives, met with Reagan on the eve of today’s speech in Bloomfield, N.J., that the White House said would be devoted entirely to taxes.
“I think he has become so very much involved in the debate over the simplified tax
bill that he had temporarily set aside the budget agenda, and I think he, in reponse to our request, pulled the budget very much back to the front of the stove,” said Sen. James McClure, R-Idaho, chairman of tin committee.
“We suggested stepping up the tempo, putting on the pressure,” McClure said. “After all, Congress is responsible for the budget deficit; the president is not, the Congress is.”
In speeches in seven states in the past two weeks, Reagan has pushed for his plan to simplify the federal tax structure, coupling that theme at times with pleas for support for Nicaraguan rebels, a constitutional amendment dealing with school prayer and a full accounting of Americans missing in action in Vietnam.
He has made little reference, however, to his campaign to reduce the federal deficit by cutting expenditures for many federal programs.
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Change adds up for animal shelter
Heroism close to home
By TOM LOEFFLER U S Rep.. Diet 21
In the State of the Union Address last January, President Reagan spoke stirringly of America’s heroes who “soothe our sorrow, heal our wounds, calm our fears and share our joys,” reminding us what it truly means to be Americans.
That uniquely American sprint of commitment, compassion and “can do” attitude is nowhere more evident than in the story of Dr. Preston Darby of San Angelo.
Dr. Darby, an internist rn private practice in San Angelo, recently traveled to Afghanistan — at his own risk and expense — as a member of the International Medical Corps to treat the casualties of Soviet aggression in Afghanistan.
In performing his medical duties and establishing two medical clinics in rebel-held areas, Dr. Darby traveled with forces led by the legendary Freedom Fighter,
Commander Ahmed Shah Massoud.
After traveling with the freedom fighters for three months, Dr. Darby has returned to the United States to report on the conditions he witnessed in Afghanistan and to seek U.S. humanitarian and security assistance for the rebels.
He visited with me in my Washington office last week and related to me the appalling situation he witnessed during his travels with Massoud.
Afghanistan, the target of Soviet takeover since the 1979 invasion, is now threatened by famine and starvation, a direct result of the “scorched earth” tactics being employed by the Society invders. Systematic starvation, by burning crops, destroying villages and livestock and wrecking century-old irrigation systems, is being carried out by the Soviets in order to disrupt the civilian population and force the rebels out of their strongholds.
Dr. Darby told me that the people of Afghanistan are in desperate need of basic medical supplies and attention, and that many are dying from whooping cough, measles and dysentery because there is no medicine available even to treat these and other basic diseases.
Joining the U.S.-based Committee for a Free Afghanistan, Dr. Darby translated his concern into action. He traveled to Washington to relate to members of Congress and the Administration the desperate need for increased U.S. assistance to the people of Afghanistan.
I support Dr. Darby’s position on increased aid to Afghanistan, and commend his efforts on behalf of this noble cause of freedom. It is a trait and tradition uniquely American to see tragedies in faraway places — fighting in Beirut, starvation in Africa — and respond, both individually and as a nation.
I would like to remind our longtime residents, and perhaps inform some of our newer ones of the situation we had up until the last few years since the existence of the Humane Society shelter. Our animal “shelter" was a deplorable facility located at the Fairgrounds. There were many strays running the streets, sometimes in packs, turning over garbage cans and endangering the health and even lives of everyone, especially children.
After heaing all the publicity about our treatment of unwanted animals lately, I decided to visit the shelter and ask questions. I found a very clean, well-run place. I found dedicated, caring people who do not relish the job of putting animals to sleep. They did explain that it is done in the most humane way possible.
The sad thing is that if each pet owner was responsible enough to spay or neuter his-her animals, this would not be necessary. Many of us spend rn one evening the greater part of the cost of this once in a lifetime (for the pet) expense.
But since this ideal situation does not exist, the people at the shelter are faced with with litter after litter of unwanted kittens and puppies, as well as dogs and cats of all ages that no one wants, either.
These animals are housed, fed, watered and cleaned up after at an annual cost of many thousands of dollars, which are hard to come by. The major funding comes through memberships and donations.
If we contributed the change we find in our pockets it would all add up, so come on, New Braunfels — let’s dig down and help to solve our excess animal problem in the most humane way possible so we can continue to be proud of our lovely, clean city where the living is truly good.
Thank you, Marion Sanchez
Performance brilliant New Braunfels proud
An event at the Seele Parish House on Sunday afternoon should have been attended by evfery music lover in the area. I am speaking of the absolutely brilliant performance of
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Miss Maria Luisa De I^a Cerda, flutist.
She was accompanied by a no less able musician, Mrs. Charles Howard Jones, pianist. Together, their performance will remain in the memory of those who were in the audience, as one of the most brilliant, enjoyable and altogether satisfying cultural events this town has been offered in many a moon.
Miss De l<a Cerda is a New Braunfels native. She grew up among us, and how excessively proud we are to claim her as our own.
Sincerely, Emogene Grill
Pro-Life group wants mothers to be aware
I have been a nurse and childbirth educator in New Braunfels for ll years. My primary nursing experience has been in obstetrics. I have had the privilege of sharing in the labor and delivery experience with many young mothers as well as the joy of helping many young couples and single mothers prepare for the birth of their children using the l^a Maze techniques.
For many years, I personally took the pro-choice stand feeling as many do that a mother has a right to her own body and the mother’s right takes precedence over baby’s. However, the past four months I have felt compelled to educate myself concerning the abortion controversy. I was shocked when I found it is legal for a mother to have an abortion any time before delivery, even as late as nme months gestation. More to my surprise was the fact that many mothers seek abortions in their first trimester because this is when their babies are “just a product of conception or blob of tissue.” Not so! As early as four weeks gestation, fetal heart tones can be heard and at six weeks, researchers have been able to detect brain waves on the developing baby. Sort of unusual, don’t you think, for a blob of tissue?
More and more, I began to evaluate my previous feelings on this issue. I considered the fact that as a nurse my responsibility is to preserve life as well as promote the mental and physical well-being of both patients, the mother and the innocent fetus. Yes, a mother has a right to her own body, but what about the rights of the baby (that separate individual body within the mother)? Our current abortion laws state that as long as the baby’s residence is within the womb, baby has no rights. As much as we all value our own lives, why are so many wiling to take the lives within them? Are we not thankful for our own parents decision to keep us? What the loss of that life will mean we may never know but one can only wonder.
I-ast month during Life ’85 at the Civic Center, I had the opportunity to view two non-confrontational films on abortion, “Assignment life” and
“Silent Scream.” AFter attending the Christian Pro life meetings for four months, and especially after seeing “Silent Scream,” I am unable to remain pro-choice. I am convinced that my stand must be pro-life in the fullest sense.
Through my nursing and teaching experiences I am aware that many mothers have made the decision to abort their babies only to regret it later. Many of them would have received more information about the risks of undergoing a tonsillotomy than they received before undergoing an abortion. In many instances only after the procedure was complete did the mothers become fully aware of the mental and physical ramifications of abortion. Several mothers have said, “I went to the clinic, found out I was pregnant, and had an abortion before I realized what was really going on.” The after-the-fact statement is usually, “if I had known what I know now, I wouldn’t have done what I did.” My concern is not only for the innocent babies but also for these women who have been victimized by abortion and have to live with the consequences many of them never knew existed. They suffer much mental and physical distress because of this. W.E.B.A. (Women Exploited by Abortion) which is a nationwide nonprofit organization has countless documented testimonies of the above information. Many of you readers may personally know what I ain talking about. Through this group, your voice can still be heard and you may have the opportunity to spare someone else the anquish you have suffered. This too is part of the prolife movement.
My appeal to everyone reading this letter is to become informed and base your decision on factual information. Many people, including abortionists themselves, who have learned all the facts have become pro-life as a result. Many couples want to adopt and are forced to wait for many years due to the shortage of babies. Some of those who are waiting were previously victimized by abortion. Let us join together and give these babies the right to life we all value ourselves. Let us give these mothers who have been or could be victims of abortion the peace in life we all strive for.
If you want your eyes and heart! opened, join together with the Coma County Christian Pro-Life Foun elation and be a part of the solution.
Anyone needing further in formation or guidance, feel free ti call 625-0775. The next meeting wil be June 13 at 7 p.m. at Dittlingei Memoiial Library.
Sincerely Shirley Anne Burget