Wednesday January 16, 2013

Just my opinion Editor of the Reformer:

Well, it’s the first month of a new year and after reading the Jan. 9 edition of the Reformer, I might as well state my opinion.

The column written by Richard Davis was an amazing piece to read. It is completely "dead nut" on the substance he refers to. Being a person with chronic pains, you can totally respect his opinion.

In response to Jacqueline Brook’s opinion: It is true that the event in Newtown was a tremendous tragedy. But you can’t figure out or control what goes on in another person’s mind; mental health issues are worldwide. Remember that you choose to live in America, where regardless of the government, Congress, etc., one person cannot make a difference in your opinion. Don’t take it out on your own country. If you’d like to make a stand to protect people in Yemen, then move there. Don’t take it out on our country’s defense department, or the NRA. Their actions are completely suitable for the given circumstances.

Margaret Newton’s Letter: How many mass slaughters have there been in Vermont? I know of a couple incidents that have occurred where a homeowner has deterred break-ins, or physical harm due to the fact they were armed, and ready to protect what they’ve worked for. You can blame people all day long, but to impose conditions on a group like the NRA ... really, they didn’t commit this catastrophe.

Bob Kane,

Hinsdale, N.H., Jan. 9

Speaking of guns and bans

Editor of the Reformer:

A ban on the sale of assault weapons would be good. A ban on the sale of votes by Congress would be better.

Byron Stookey,

Brattleboro, Jan. 14

Chickens coming
home to roost

Editor of the Reformer:

News that some Americans might not want to know is that America tripled its arms sales to the rest of the world in 2011, selling $66.3 billion worth of products designed to kill. That amount represents 77.7 percent of the total world arms sales, followed by Russia at 6 percent and China at 3 percent.

Yes, we are the world leader in supplying the rest of the world with arms designed for the sole purpose of killing human beings. Does that upset most people? Probably not, because those weapons are being used elsewhere. Or are they?

While the rest of the world is killing each other in wars with weapons supplied by us, we here in America are killing each other, with weapons supplied by, yup, us. And now, we are finally upset with the irresponsible manufacture and sale of weapons of mass destruction. The chickens have come home to roost. Children, teachers, worshippers, shoppers, students, movie goers ... nobody is safe anymore, because we have allowed our country to become the wild, wild west. Insanity. There are 18 gun-related deaths every day in America -- 576 and counting since the massacre in Newtown, Conn.

It is irresponsible to hear Wayne LaPierre, executive Vice President of the NRA, tell us the only solution for all the gun violence is to have more guns, all the while blaming everyone else while accepting no responsibility for the level of violence in this country. More insanity. He mentioned that the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. Who is who? Will everybody wear a hat labeled bad or good? Will the bad guys figure that out and start wearing a good guy hat? More insanity.

There is a very scary "undertoad" (a John Irving term) in this country, tearing us away from a basic respect for human life, and instead, causing us to live in a state of fear and societal warfare.

LaPierre does not speak for most members of the NRA, at least not the members I know (except one). He is out of touch with humanity and I object to his attempt to militarize our population, and the dehumanization of "we the people." I would also like to suggest that he join the military, if he has not already been a member, and volunteer for combat. And take his friends. They are helping to create a violent world and they should reap their just rewards. And while they are in a combat zone, take note of the drones flying overhead, spying and killing, sometimes operated indiscriminately by an assassin a half world away. Learn about those drones because they could be the next big thing here in their good old U.S.A. Insanity.

Jeffrey Scott,

Spofford, N.H., Jan. 15

The library is open

Editor of the Reformer:

In response to the article "Rockingham Library renovation on hold" (Jan. 9), we are writing to inform the public that the Rockingham Library is open during construction, and despite the delay in the renovation project, library services are ongoing, uninterrupted.

On most days, you will find the library is a hub of activity with public computers, free wireless internet, and people working or reading on every available surface. The library conducts a brisk business circulating books, DVDs, eBooks and audiobooks. Regular youth programs include storytimes and game nights. Programs for adults include technology classes, writing workshops, knitting groups, and lectures. Whether your needs are tax forms, an afterschool destination, or expert help, the library is still your place to turn to.

We look forward to the completion of the library’s renovation, and are working with the town of Rockingham towards this end. In the meantime, the library is open Monday through Saturday. On behalf of the library staff and Board of Trustees, we appreciate everyone’s patience, and encourage you to stop by and visit the library, or the library’s website at www.rockinghamlibrary.org, or Facebook page, and sign up for the library’s email newsletter to keep in touch.

Celina Houlne,

Library Director, Rockingham Free Public Library,

Bellows Falls, Jan. 14

Fukushima, up close
and personal

Editor of the Reformer:

On Tuesday evening, Jan. 22, at 7 p.m., in the Centre Congregational Church at 193 Main Street in Brattleboro, Chiho Kaneko, a resident of Hartland, will talk and show color photographs from her recent trip to Fukushima, Japan, site of the catastrophic nuclear power plant meltdowns that followed the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

Since the early days following the meltdowns, there has been little or no press coverage in the U.S. of the ongoing crisis being experienced by the people in the Fukushima area and, to some extent, throughout Japan and the world. Fortunately, we now have an opportunity to get a personal, eye witness report about what’s going on there from Chiho Kaneko, a deeply compassionate and very articulate woman who was born and raised in Japan and, besides being a professional artist and musician, works as a columnist for a Japanese daily newspaper.

Ms. Kaneko’s talk, which is sponsored by the Safe & Green Campaign, will focus on the ongoing impact of the crisis on families, communities, and the environment in areas surrounding the stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi reactors. It will also include a discussion of the plight of workers involved in radioactive decontamination efforts; testimonies of people who have evacuated from the town where the reactors are located; what the Japanese media is reporting concerning the crisis; and the tireless efforts of Japanese citizens to seek justice and reparations, address the social and political failures that led to the crisis, and bring about a nuclear-free future for their country.

Please don’t miss this important and eye-opening presentation. Admission is free and refreshments will be available.

Randy Kehler,

Colrain, Mass., Jan. 14