Chris Bateman, The Union Democrat

Please step down

To the editor:

In regards to the recall of the Big Oak Flat-Groveland School Board: I would like to thank all of the Groveland community for its support. You have really stepped up to the plate and helped the kids of your local community.

I am a senior at Tioga High, where our school has been terribly interrupted this year. We have lost teachers, programs and school morale. We are headed in the right direction, though. We are headed uphill.

I would ask that the board members step down immediately, knowing that they are being recalled and all of the signatures have gone through. We have asked as a community months ago that you step down. But you, as a board, decided that you were doing a great job and wouldn't dare resign.

Well, you made the community put in some tiring hours to stand for what was right and wrong. Right will prevail and new members will correct what has been so badly bruised. So, please, we are urging you as students here at Tioga to please step down. It is obvious you won't be here for long, so please step down and quit making these terrible decisions. We cannot afford any more losses here at Tioga.

Jake Olson


What's true, false

To the editor:

This letter is in response to Mr. Reed's letter ("Bible and Marriage," Dec. 31):

It grieves me that Mr. Reed is so angry about the Proposition 8 results. We don't have to agree, but shouldn't we be respectful of one another's right to choose?

The issue is not about political and religious correctness. The issue is about what is true and what is false. Although I appreciate being alerted to what Newsweek says the Bible - and Jesus' teachings - says about marriage, I encourage Mr. Reed to go to the scriptures and let Jesus speak for himself. (How about all of us making this our New Year's Resolution?)

Let's not create Jesus in our preferred image, but let's let him be who he declares himself to be - the truth, the savior of the world he made, and, therefore, the final say on what is right and wrong. Let's let his word say what it means and mean what it says.

We must remember Jesus - the spotless, sinless Son of God - died for our sins, and yes, among these sins is the sexually immoral grouping of adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, incest, lust, rape, bestiality and pornography. If there was no sin, there would be no need for Jesus to die.

Would there? Ask him, "Jesus, what sins and whose sins did you die for?"

When Jesus returns to establish his government on the earth, what will he say to those who have rejected this ultimate expression of his love?

T.Y. Atkins


Do the math

To the editor:

I enjoyed the letter written by the public service employee (Damon Norvell, Jan. 2) regarding the "3 percent at 30," and very much agree with some of it. I'm sure we all appreciate the work that our public service employees do, but the point of my letter has to do with affordability. Experts on the subject, and there are many who have studied and written about it, continue to testify that we simply cannot afford this plan.

No private company could ever survive with such a plan. Most states have nothing close to this generous retirement package. Does anyone read the papers? Our state is in a financial mess and this is one of the reasons.

I would just ask anyone to do the math. Here is a likely scenario: A person on this plan goes to work in his early 20s, stays 30 years, and retires when he is in his early 50s, then lives another 30 years until his early 80s. We are saying to that person, "Come and work for us, and when you retire, we'll give you one extra paid day for every day you have worked for us." Does this make sense to anyone?

Gene Patterson