Union Democrat staff

Fire recovery needs progressive ideas

To the Editor:

After the Rim Fire, rather than trying to dispense with planning for the future, Rep. McClintock could have proposed legislation for emergency funding, so that appropriate studies and projects could be done in a timely manner, within the existing laws and regulations. This could expedite the salvage logging and could also help to protect the forest and our stake in its future. Instead, he sponsored legislation to log in Yosemite National Park. This kind of Tea-toady thinking certainly deserves ridicule, and we certainly deserve better representation.

Please note that a Tea-toady is someone who abstains from even a whiff of progressive thought while following a rigid ideology to curry favor with wealthy donors, right wing think tanks, and talk radio fanatics. It's a new word, maybe it will catch on.

John Watson


Disappointed in church's politics

To the Editor:

I am a disappointed Catholic. I feel one of the most Christian actions of our country is an attempt at parity between the rich, the poor and the middle class. A step toward that goal of justice and fairness for all Americans is the Affordable Care Act which covers all in sickness and health with no strings attached. The negative Catholic bishops are doing all in their power to obstruct the law.

As a Catholic, the God I believe in has given me the gift of free will and the power to make responsible moral choices. Rather than respecting our freedom to choose, the bishops are into coercion and control. They disrespect our dignity and our ability to choose between good and evil according to our conscience in the law of the land.

Rather than give to God what is God's and to Caesar what is Caesar's, they have taken a political stance in lieu of helping the poor. It sends a confusing message to Catholics. The God I believe in says the greater good is the 40 million poor Americans who will benefit and enjoy help in obtaining medical insurance. All Catholics have been well indoctrinated in an appreciation of the value of life and man's dignity.

The key issues which they use against affordable insurance for all are contraception and abortion, which the bishops feel are not adequately covered to insure religious freedom for Catholics. Besides forgetting their audience is a variation of Christian and other beliefs, they forget we all have freedom of choice to choose the morally higher ground. The bishops now want to control how everyone chooses morality.

Tom Besmer

Angels Camp