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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - November 11, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas Page 4A — Herald-Zeitung — Friday, November ll, 2005 FORUM Our Opinion Manager hopefuls face slate of issues A strong leader must be found among the candidates for New Braunfels city manager as the city continues to grow. S; L/i even applicants are in .the running to become 'the next city manager for New Braunfels. It’s vital that one of them have the skills to help lead this city as it treads down the some-times-uneasy path of growth. Apparently the list of candidates, which we hope will be made public soon, is full of quality applicants. And it should — this burgeoning city should attract some of the best public servants in the state. And as with any growing city comes an ever-expanding list of issues that need to be addressed by a strong city manager who can rally the city council behind his or her leadership. City council will conduct face-to-face interviews during the first week of December, and the candidates have been asked to make a 10-minute presentation to council about the city’s drainage issues. The city manager candidates will find out much about New Braunfels through their research for the presentation. But theres more than this city’s drainage problems that await action from the new city manager. Besides the drainage dilemma, here are a few issues that city manager candidates should get on their radar screens as they strive for this important post: ■ The constant need for road repairs as swarms of traffic overload outdated streets and highways: ■ Balancing economic development and protecting this area’s character and history: ■ Revitalization of the city’s west side: ■ Impact fees for new developments; and ■ The planning and building of a new civic center We look forward to learning more about those who would like to help lead our fair city, and we look forward to hearing their views on the issues facing New Braunfels. Other Viewpoints The Dallas Morning News, on the France riots: When some members of the black urban underclass began looting in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, many French commentators sniffed that America was reaping its reward for failing to deal with chronic poverty. Well. It might be tempting to view the destruction wrought across France by thuggish young men nearly all ethnic minorities, many from Arab and African immigrant background, as comeuppance. That would be wrong. France’s agony is not only pitiable on its face, but also a profound threat to American interests. The roots of this uprising defy simple explanation, but basically involve the country’s inability to assimilate those with non-European backgrounds. The French melting pot is now' boiling over, and though the rioters are not apparently religious, many articulate their rage in the language of radical Islam. 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 c/o 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 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 Jeremy Pafford Editor and Publisher Doug Toney Circulation Director Jeff Fowler Advertising Director Neice Bell Business Manager Valerie Shields News Editor David Rupkalvis ■■■■■MNM Letters to the Editor Community’s talented youth aren’t just on the football field I know football is king in our little town, but last night I had the opportunity to watch another team of hard-working, good-spirited, talented teens. I went to New Braunfels liigh School to see their rendition of “Lend Me a Tenor.’’ These kids, led by Jenny Lowe, had just spent much of the prior week and weekend working hard to create and participate in the Haunted House at the Seekatz Opera House. Then they went on to treat audiences to two nighttime performances of this very witty show. It is clear they love what they do. The show was a very wonderful comedy, but the tragedy was that there were so few audience members to see these great kids. As a community, I think it would serve us well to remember that the talent we’re grooming isn’t just on the football field. Stephanie Richardson New Braunfels Several questions about signage in city, county need answers Mr. Toney, you wrote an editorial about a message received from a reader who recently had a delightful, billboard-free drive in Arizona. In the editorial you stated, “Billboards and commercial signage are polluting the beauty of our community’’ Nothing is more glaringly obvious in New Braunfels and Comal County than the excess of offensive signs, which result from a lack of a sensible sign ordinance. New Braunfels has much to be proud of, but it has a wretched record preserving its natural beauty. Some questions that city and county leaders should answer: ■Why must we have endless visual blight along Texas 46 from Seguin with mile after mile of disgusting, obtrusive billboards? ■Why are we forced to endure gigantic eyesores posing as billboards within the city that do nothing but give New Braunfels a tawdry, cheap appearance? ■Why must we tolerate those dreadful temporary signs that have multiple garish colors, spindly legs and do nothing but offend the eye and repel potential customers? ■Why haven’t our leaders passed a sensible signage ordinance that restores and preserves our natural beauty? Mr. Toney, your reader was correct about what made her drive in Arizona so enjoyable. I’ve also enjoyed the eye-catching ambiance of towns in Arizona where they have sensible signage ordinances. I agree with her comment, “What a beautiful town New Braunfels would be!” — especially without repugnant billboards and signs. John JC Landry, DDS New Braunfels Are the lives lost in Iraq war just names on a screen? I sat and watched as the names scrolled by, The only question to be answered is, “Why?” Why have 2,000 lives been lost, And what will be the final cost? Not cost in dollars, but cost of lives? Every day a family grieves and cries. It’s sad to say, they are just names on a screen, Why are we so detached, disconnected and mean? The pain is not so intense when you do not think, And a face and a name you do not link. I am so ashamed of what we’ve done, Taking away someone’s daughter and someone’s son. A tear fell as I watched those names go by, Why did we go to war on such a shameful lie? Those names on the screen are people to me, What will it take for no more names to see? Barbara Stoker Luckett New Braunfels Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Friday, Nov. 11, the 315th day of 2005. There are 50 days left in the year. This is Veterans Day in the U.S., Remembrance Day in Canada. Today’s Highlight in History: On Nov. 11,1918, fighting in World War I came to an end with the signing of an armistice between the Allies and Germany. On this date: In 1831, former slave Nat Turner, who’d led a violent insurrection, was executed in Jerusalem, Va. In 1921, President Harding dedicated the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery. In 1942, during World War II, Germany completed its occupation of France. In 1966, Gemini 12 blasted off from Cape Kennedy, Fla., with astronauts James A. Lovell and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin Jr. aboard. In 1984, the Rev. Martin Luther King Sr. — father of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. — died in Atlanta at age 84. 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 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 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: SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 1149 E. Commerce St., Suite 210 San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 271-2851 Fax: (210) 277-6671 HOW TO CONTACT Te xds Government MWmm GOVERNOR ■ 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 E-mail address: [email protected] STATE SENATE ■ Jeff Wentworth 1250 NE Loop 410, Suite 720 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 826-7800 WHILE IN AUSTIN: Telephone: (512) 463-0125 E-mail address: jeff. Wentworth ■ Judith Zaffirini RO. Box 627 Laredo 78042-0627 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 12702Toepperwein Road #214 San Antonio 78233 Telephone: (210) 657-0095 Fax: (210) 657-0262President could unite nation around a sensible border control policy dickmorris Dick Morris was an adviser to Bill Clinton for 20 years. President Bush seems impaled on the false choice of appealing to the Hispanic vote or enforcing laws against illegal immigration. Politically, legally and morally there is no conflict — and there is a great deal of synergy — among these objectives. Bush, searching for a way to recapture the national agenda, needs to seize this issue and make it his own. A full and reasoned program will galvanize national support and unite the nation behind tough measures to enforce our laws and maximize opportunities for those who already live here legally. Bush needs to: ■ Back the fence. Walls work. Just as the Israelis whose West Bank fence keeps terrorists out and has reduced terrorist attacks inside Israel to a fraction of their former number and intensity. Good fences make good neighbors, and the United States should act to regularize the traffic of immigrants into the country by the kind of border control that only a well positioned fence can offer. This is no Great Wall of China seeking futilely to keep out the rest of the world. It would be a modem, high-tech affair, spotting breaches and relaying the information to highly mobile border guard units to plug them up. ■ Establish a legal guest-worker program. Nobody can deny the manifest need of Americans — both individuals and businesses — for the work that currently illegal immigrants provide. They would not be coming if they did not have access to jobs, and there would be no work if there were no demand. Bush’s current program for legal guest workers is a good one and should be adopted in the context of broader immigration reform. But the plan should include a track to citizenship for these workers, providing certain criteria — such as English fluency, English literacy and no arrest record — to let them earn the right to become American citizens. A guest-worker program will end the leper colony within our borders of disenfranchised, invisible illegals who have no rights and no responsibilities. ■ Prosecute visa overstays. Half of the people who live here illegally entered the United States with legal visas and overstayed them. All 19 of the Sept. 11 hijackers came here under the law and then stayed on after their visas had expired (or should have been revoked because they did not attend school, having entered on student visas). That we cannot rid our country of these illegal immigrants is hard to understand. We have their names, photos, fingerprints, addresses and phone numbers, but we do not deport them. The main reason for their immunity is the lack of deportation judges and courts and the inadequate number of holding cells for detainees. Of die 160,000 people the United States arrested as illegal immigrants last year, 120,000 were released, without bail, back onto our streets. We need a massive expansion of judicial infrastructure to cope with the problems of illegal visa overstays. President Clinton helped to lower the crime rate by doubling the prison space under his 1994 anti-crime bill. We need a commitment of similar magnitude. ■ Regularize cash shipments home. A vital form of foreign aid for Mexico and Central America is the remittances sent each week by illegal immigrants to their families back home. Last year, Mexican men working here sent $11 billion to their wives and children — the second leading source of foreign-currency earnings after oil for the nation. We need to regularize this flow of cash anc provide immigrants with security, bank accounts and low-cost ways to send money home. Combating illegal immigration need noi smack of racism. It is important to all American citizens — Latinos and Anglos — and is in the national interest. But it is also in our interest to allow immigrants to come and settle here legally. Immigration is keeping America young and vital. If not for the annual flow of 3 million people — about half legal and half illegal — we would be much like the nations of Europe, losing population and watching their populations age. But we cannot afford the current chaotic flow of immigrants over a theoretical border. We need to enforce the law and make it fair. ;