After viewing the Obsession video that came with Sept. 14 edition of The Blade, I feel a deep sadness. This film offers plenty of reasons for people to fear and be hostile to Arabs without offering any practical solutions to our foreign policy dilemmas.
If we want to dismantle the message of religious extremism (in all the Abrahamic faiths), it cannot be done by simply showing stylized clips of angry Muslims burning American flags. Certainly, the film pretends to acknowledge peace-loving Muslims, but only gives their voices one-tenth of the air time it spends displaying graphic images of bloody victims and the rants of a radical minority.
The solution to our seeming impasse with Islamic extremists must come through educating ourselves about the complexities of U.S. and British foreign policies that have fomented this tension in the Middle East since the end of the Ottoman Empire after World War I. The solution is not to create more fear, but to offer opportunities for dialogue and understanding.
The conflation of radical Islam with Nazism is erroneous at best, counterproductive at worst. My fervent hope is that viewers will have the common sense to realize that this so-called documentary is merely a re-hash of the same message of xenophobia from the conservative right that has kept a failed administration in the White House for eight long years, our troops in harm s way, and our defense industry flush with lucrative contracts for weapons we don t need.
The Rev. Martin Otto Zimmann
DVD reveals threat from radical Islam
Thank you for the courageous decision to distribute the Obsession: Radical Islam s War Against the West DVD with the The Blade on Sept. 14. The vast majority of Muslims in our communities are peaceful and productive members of our society who reject the hateful propaganda depicted in this film. It is important for all Americans to be informed about the real threat radical Islam poses to Western civilization.
As our memories of the horror of Sept. 11, 2001, begin to fade, it is imperative that we become educated as to the agenda of those who preach Death to America and seek to dominate the world through jihad. Our love of democracy and freedom must be stronger than our fear of terrorists or our desire to be politically correct. The future of our children is indeed at stake.
Equinox is reminder to replace batteries
Fire safety officials warn that the batteries in smoke detectors should be replaced every six months. In the past, it was suggested that this be done when clocks were set forward or back as Daylight Saving Time began and ended. But the government extended DST, which no longer covers a six month period.
I therefore suggest that we adopt the Vernal and Autumnal equinoxes the two days of the year when the day and night time hours are the same length as the new dates for replacing smoke detector batteries. The equinoxes occur six months apart and are listed on many calendars and in all almanacs. They are also announced by all TV weather forecasters, so the dates could be made readily available to the public. Best of all, the equinoxes cannot be altered by any meddling of the government.
I see the city of Sylvania recently created a new school zone, complete with flashing lights and signs, for the new mosque in the former Cathedral of Praise building. I found it curious since I attended school for 12 years in the same facility when it was Cathedral Christian Academy and in all that time there was not even so much as a speed bump installed.
I guess in this new age of political correctness we must bend over backwards not to offend minority groups but excuse me if I don t I now have a backache.
Use local hospitals when care is there
State law requires EMS to transport trauma victims to the nearest qualified trauma center. This has greatly improved outcomes associated with traumas. Why don t we require the same level of care to children with specific, known birth defects?
Recently, a mom underwent an emergency C-section and, immediately following delivery, the doctor noticed an opening on the baby s back. It was spina bifida, a birth defect where the baby is born with the spinal cord exposed, not covered by bone and skin. Spina bifida is the most common permanently disabling birth defect in the United States; open defects occur in one of every 800 births. This condition requires immediate surgery by a pediatric neurosurgeon specializing in spinal cord problems in children.
The baby was transported from the community hospital where she was born to a hospital in Toledo, but that hospital did not have the type of specialist needed for her surgery. Rather than taking this baby to a nearby hospital with the specialized care needed for spina bifida, she was moved to Cleveland, two hours away.
Is this the best care we can provide for children and families, to move a baby 110 miles when the care is available within five minutes? As a pediatrician from this area, I know this is not an isolated incident. I call on our health-care and legislative leaders to work together to resolve this health-care issue.
Sherri Thomas, M.D.
Gas station charged for credit purchases
Regarding a recent letter writer s concern about gas prices and credit cards: Credit card companies charge 2 percent to 3 percent or more per transaction. This cuts into the profits of the gas station. In the case of the letter writer s preferred gas station, it appears it has passed this fee onto the consumer wishing to use a card over paying cash.
If you want to use the card, you will have to pay the fee. Paying in cash removes the fee of the credit card company. It is simple business economics. Higher fees, fuel surcharges, and taxes will always be passed on to the consumer.
Is message that GOP is soulless, immoral?
One of the songs played at the Republican convention, Barracuda by Heart, is about soulless music industry executives. They were particularly soulless to women.
Is a pregnant unwed 17-year-old daughter a role model? Is it OK for adolescents to have premarital sex as long as they don t have an abortion? What happened to abstinence until marriage? Wasn t that a Christian Republican moral value?
Sarah Palin compared herself to a pit bull. A pit bull is a vicious fighting dog. Drug dealers have been known to use them for protection. People who were just walking down the street have been attacked by pit bulls. And even owners of pit bulls have been attacked by their own dogs. Pit bulls have no loyalty and can t be trusted. If I was a hockey mom, I would be insulted to be compared to a pit bull with lipstick.
Is it the GOP s message that they are soulless, immoral, and untrustworthy?
Catty columnists left on backyard fence
To The Blade editors, Marilou Johanek, Maureen Dowd, Gloria Steinem, Peggy Noonan, Gail Collins, Rosa Brooks, et al Crash. I thought I heard the sound of shattering glass.
No, it is just the sound of the cats left sitting on the backyard fence.
Barack Obama disses John McCain. Mr. McCain disses Mr. Obama. I listen. I think. I decide.
I have decided that they are both right. They are both wrong for leadership of our nation. I shall vote for one of the alternative candidates.