Union Democrat staff

Promoting agenda

To the editor:

I would like to address John Buckley's Nov. 24 letter about TuCare.

Upset that the folks who want to protect private property rights are taking a nonprofit page from your playbook? Heart broke when a large private property owner and employer in Calaveras and Tuolumne County jumped on the carbon credits bandwagon?

Sorry John, how many jobs have you saved in the last 15 years? How many did you make? Or should I ask, how many have you stopped, how many local families have you wrecked - folks that you worked with, grew up with? In the name of health and environmental safety, what have you really done but line your pocket and promote your own agenda.

I'd like to say more, but my guess is most can fill in any blanks I may have left out.

Re: Tony Gheno's Nov. 23 letter regarding the size of the Knight Fire. I would like to remind Mr. Gheno of another fire in a steep canyon, the Tuolumne fire. To armchair the suppression of the Knight incident shows lack of understanding. The first fire fighters on scene did an outstanding job of keeping life and property safe from the advancing flames. The next management team had to keep its firefighters safe, still keep the property safe and put the fire out.

I hate to state the obvious, but maybe whoever started the Knight Fire should just turn himself in or tattle on whoever did it. The bottom line is, if the fire had never started, it would not have needed to be put out.

Jo Ann Nelson


Burnt offerings

To the editor:

In a recent letter, a Columbia writer (Mark Jonas, Dec. 3) stated that he and his male colleagues had been making "synchronized burnt offerings" every weekend for years. I don't question his sincerity, but burnt offerings were no longer required when the old Mosaic Law was nailed to the cross of Christ.

God gave the Mosaic Law to the Israelite nation only, not to gentile nations. (Exodus 20:1 and following) In Exodus 29:38-46, God commanded the Israelites to offer burnt offerings "day-by-day continually throughout your generations". Again, this was only to the nation of Israel (the Jews).

Many centuries later, when Christ comes, God would give a different law ("a better covenant") to all nations, both Jew and Gentile. (Hebrews 8: verses 6 and 13, Matthew 28:19).

The purpose of the Mosaic Law was to bring us up to the time of Christ (Galatians 3:19-25). In the New Testament book of Ephesians, Colossians, and Hebrews, the Mosaic Law is referred to as being "abolished," "removed," "obsolete," and "nailed to the cross."

Therefore, the practice of burnt offerings is abolished. God does not command it in the new covenant, the Christian doctrine.

God does teach Christians to offer such sacrifices as praise, thanksgiving, doing good, helping the poor, loving our neighbor, etc. (Hebrews 13: 15-16).

Burnt sacrifices and the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sin. The blood of Christ can and does.

Gene Henry


Fabulous feast

To the editor:

Thank you for your fine article announcing the 27th annual Victorian Feast last Friday, Dec. 18.

I am pleased to announce the event was a great success thanks to the generous efforts of this community, especially the donated talents of some of the finest musicians in the county. Gail Johnson kept her incredible record intact, having played masterful piano at every feast. Peggy Reza and Douglas Johnson led the Blue Shoes Auxiliary Orchestra in memorable fashion, and saved the day by providing an electric piano for Gail when that very morning we realized the City Hotel's upright was gone. Touting his new Christmas CD of original family style songs, Alex "Muddy Barnes" Smith made Santa music swing, accompanied by bassist John Kikugawa and shoebox drummer Gerry Morgan.

The hotel was resplendent with revelers dressed to the nines and tables creaked under the weight of the sumptuous fare offered by all. Even the doors of the adjoining What Cheer Saloon were opened to the public for the first time in six months. And, for the first time in 150 years, it became a cookie bar!

A debt of gratitude to the local State Park staff for their kindness and for keeping Columbia respectable under dire conditions, and special kudos to the local businesses and friends who made this feast possible - especially to Robert Lippert, John and Jeanne Hand, Mike Keene and numerous townspeople.

What a great community we share. Let's hope our policymakers in Sacramento soon realize this living Gold Rush town of the past deserves their support to have a future.

R.D. Haratani


Failure of imagination

To the editor

The escalation of troops to bring peace to Afghanistan is a failure of imagination. It's time to think of solutions beyond war. Winning hearts and minds is what we must do. It's time to stop listening to the war mongers.

Victoria Hartman

El Portal