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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 14, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas age 4 A — Herald-Zeitung — Saturday, May 14,2005 FORUM ■MBB Other Viewpoints National sex offender registry is needed Chicago Tribune, on tracking predators: Some recent stories of kidnapping and murder have exposed gaps in Megan’s Law, which requires the 50 states to register sex offenders and make information on them available to the public. The measure, named after Megan Kanka of New Jersey, who was raped and murdered in 1994 at age 7, leaves the details of enforcement to the states. The burden to register belongs to the offenders and, when they move out of state, so does the burden to register again in their new state. Problems can arise when residents and police are not alerted to an offender who is new or who has returned to the community.... Public registries have provided an effective compromise between the desire of ex-offenders to get on with their lives and the need of their neighbors to be alerted to potential risks.... Other states have similar laws and provide Internet access to their registries. Nevertheless, each state maintains its own list and standards. A national standard and registry would make it tougher for a sex offender to escape the law’s grasp hy traveling to a new locale. Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Saturday, May 14, the 134th day of2005. There are 231 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: Fifty years ago, on May 14,1955, representatives from eight Communist bloc countries, including the Soviet Union, formed the Warsaw Pact in Poland. (The pact was dissolved in July 1991.) On this date: In 1804, the Ix‘wis and Clark expedition to explore the Louisiana Territory left St. Louis. In 1904, the First Olympic games to be held in the United States opened in St. Louis, as part of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition. In 1942, the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps was established. In 1948 (based on current-era calendar), the independent state of Israel was proclaimed in Tel Aviv. In 1964, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev joined United Arab Republic President Camel Abdel Nasser in setting off charges, diverting the Nile River from the site of the Aswan I Ugh Dam project. In 1973, the United States launched Skylab I, its first manned space station. In 1975, U.S. forces raided the Cambodian island of Koh Tang and recaptured the American merchant ship “Mayaguez.” All 40 crew members were released safely by Cambodia, but some 40 U.S. servicemen were killed in the military operation. In 1998, singer-actor Frank Sinatra died at a Los Angeles hospital at age 82. 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. Herald-Zeitung Serving New Braunfels and Comal 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. Managing Editor Gary E. Maitland Editor and Publisher DougTonoy Circulation Director Jeff Fowler Advertising Director Neice Boll Operations Director Vilma Linoreo News Editor David Rupkalvia Pre-emption could be required to halt outside nuclear threats 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- For 60 years now we’ve had nuclear weapons; we were the first, and we used them on Japan very effectively. The starting pistol for the nuclear arms race between the U.S. and the USSR sounded shortly afterward. Newsreels of mushroom clouds and yellow bomb shelter signs served as constant reminders that we always stood at the precipice of disaster. For decades, we rattled missiles with the Russians as doomsday scenarios dominated the imagination of the world. Over time, some of our allies and Cold War enemies became radioactive. At the risk of trusting our intelligence services and the media, we have learned that the nuclear arms club has expanded to include India, Pakistan, Britain, France, China, Israel and an undetermined number of former Soviet satellite states, like Georgia. Other nations have sought the nukes. Iraq and Libya proved to be paper tigers with fictional programs, and now Iran and North Korea are deliberately leaving the impression that they will soon be joining the elite. Though the reasons may seem obvious, it does not hurt to reflect upon why nations want the nukes. Offensively or defensively, first strike or not, they are designed to kill large numbers of people and destroy natural and inanimate objects rendering the blasted areas uninhabitable and unusable for decades. They have no constructive purpose! Fortunately, the nations possessing the weapons have thus far exercised restraint. But, what if nations full of zealots and lunatics, or minions possessed and enslaved by crazy leaders, get their hands on nukes? So far, we have only tried bribery, diplomacy and reason with the wild-eyed Ayatollahs of Iran J.T. Woodall isafree- and the midget madman of North Korea. We have failed miserably in Iran for more than 25 years and for more than half a century with the North Koreans. These two rogue nations know that we are engaged in war in two theaters now, and it appears that they are preparing to go beyond brinkmanship this time. They will develop nukes, and they will use them. Or, they will surreptitiously hand them lance writer. over to renegades to do their dirty work for them. Bush is right. We cannot let these two cesspools of hate for Israel and America join the club. How can they be stopped? Certainly we cannot invade either country like we have done in Iraq. We lack the resources, and neither would be a pushover like Saddam’s Iraq. Perhaps the Israelis demonstrated the correct strategy long ago with surgical air strikes against Iraq’s early attempts to develop nukes. We are told that neither Iran nor North Korea has delivery systems for weaponry to harm America — now. Perhaps it is time for us to use some of our tactical nuclear arsenal for surgical strikes of our own before they do. For decades, we have had small nuclear weapons that can be shot from cannons. Surely, we could adapt some of them for small nuclear strikes on their nuclear development facilities to stem the tide of this threat to world survival. Who’s going to stop us anyhow? Eventually, the issue will come to military confrontation. If pre-emption is ever appropriate, this may be the moment. United States jpppfff 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 site.) 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 addreea: (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 how re colmar Texas Government GOVERNOR ■ Rick Perry State Capitol, Room 2S.1 P.O. 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 WHILE IN AUSTIN: RO. Box 2910 Austin 78768-2190 Telephone: (512) 463-0325 Fax: (512) 473-9920 E-mail address: [email protected] tx us STATE SENATE ■ Jeff Wentworth 1250 NE Loop 410, Suite 720 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 826-7800 Fax: (210) 826-0571 WHILE IN AUSTIN: Telephone: (512) 463-0125 Fax: (512) 463-7794 E-mail address: jeff. Wentworth @ senate, ■ Judith Zaffirini RO. Box 627 Laredo 78042-0627Texas Observer has always hewed hard to the truth MOLLY IVINS Molly Ivin is a columnist for Creators Syndicate. She abo does occasional commentary for National Public Radio and the McNeil/Lehrer program. AUSTIN — In a world in which about 18 guys own every media outlet in the country, and in which about half the outlets are doing stories about the IO Best Places for Barbecued Sushi, my journalistic alma mater has been a breath of fresh air. Not to mention courage and highly unusual memo-*4- ties. I think of my years at The Texas Observer, 1970 to 1976, the way some folks think of their college years: a happy, golden time, full of sunshine and laughter and beer. No one who has ever worked for the Observer made much money at it, but we never thought money was particularly important at the Observer. We liked to root for the good guys and nail the bad guys. Nailed quite a few of them, too — ask Ben Barnes. Lyndon B. Johnson used to cuss “those Observer boys’’ somethin’ awful — even when the boys were girls. Think of almost any Texas writer you've heard of in the last 50 years, and you’ll find that almost every one of them either worked for or wrote for the Observer: Ronnie Dugger, Willie Morris, J. Frank Dobie, Billy Lee Brammmer, Larry Goodwyn, Larry L King, Larry McMurtry, Jim Flightower, etc. We never had any money, so we used to travel the state on a sort of underground railroad. Clif Olafson, our beloved business manager, would provide us with a list of subscribers in whatever direction we were headed. Come sundown, wed stop and call the nearest subscriber. The invariable response was: “From the Observer? Gosh, can you come over for a beer, can you stay for dinner, can you stay the night?” And they’d call the other two liberals in town, and the four of us would have a whale of a party. I’ve spent more nights on the sofas of public school teachers, union organizers, civil rights workers, nuns, preachers, public defenders, environmental activists, pacifists, liberal legislators and people who just generally care about Texas than I can possibly remember. That’s why I know this state is filii of heroes. We were so poor at the Observer that Clif used to sleep under the Addresso-graph. I stole pencils from the governor’s office. (They said “State of Texas” and had the seal on ’em — very nice pencils.) We got some of our best stories because that's where our cars happened to break down. In addition to crusading for truth, justice and the American way, Observer editors tend to have an unseemly amount of fun. Ijet's face it: The great state has a large loony streak, and it has always been the delight of the Observer to chronicle the more ludicrous aspects of life in the Lone Star. The time two Republicanesses duked it out at a meeting of the state Republican Executive Committee remains my all-time favorite bout — even better than the last all-House duke-out in the Lege, when our elected representatives threw chairs and chili dogs at one another while a barbershop quartet sang "I Have A Dream, Dear.” That was the duke-out that caused them to ban food on the floor of the House. Larry Goodwyn, a former editor and the great historian of the populist movement, once called the Observer the finest graduate school of journalism in America. That's because the Observer’s standards were set by its founding editor, Ronnie Dugger. Dugger is both committed to social justice and the most incurably fair reporter I ever knew. I’m not claiming that all the succeeding editors have lived up to Dugger’s standards, but he sure set 'em high. The Observer changes a bit as it goes from editor to editor. Some have been a little doctrinaire, some (like moi) relished the comedy more, while others emphasized the arts. Hightower’s Observer was like a loaf of that whole-grain bread; you knew it was good for you. But the meat and potatoes of the magazine has always been Texas politics. The incumbent editor, Lou DuBose, is bilingual and has more good stuff on Mexico and South Texas than you can get anywhere else. Our state will become majority-minori-ty in just a few short years, and Chicanos will be the dominant group. You think you’re reading anything now that’s getting you ready for what that will be like? Tty The Texas Observer. What you won t find in the Observer is stories tailored for yuppies, the famous “upscale reader” so loved by advertisers. The Observer doesn’t do IO Best Barbecue Joints, IO Best Ice Cream Parlors, IO Best Places to Buy This, That or the Other. The Observer won’t teach you how to be a consumer. It’s not in business to make more money for its advertisers. This is what the Observer claims as its goal: “We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of human-kind as the foundation of democracy, we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the human spirit.” ;