12/4 Letters to the editor

Editor’s note: Bernardo Baca refers to a newspaper story promotion that referenced zoo animals and jail inmates being watched and fed on Thanksgiving.

Paper’s zoo animal reference insensitive
A recent inference that inmates are equal to the animals at the zoo is an outrage! I am very offended and cannot believe that you could be so shallow and insincere to not even consider the feelings of not only us inmates but also our loved ones at home.

Classifying inmates with beasts of burden or just plain burdens is how your comment made us feel.

Contrary to popular belief, many of us “watched and fed” do possess the ability not only to write but read as well. Only a few of us inmates have been tried and convicted and those of us who have would relish the opportunity to rectify and redeem our past mistakes. Without the possibility of redemption, rehabilitation cannot and will not be achieved.

Worse than a slap in the face, the next time you decide to insult our integrity as well as our virtues, please allow us the opportunity to speak on our own behalf. We are not proud of what we have done nor do we condone anyone who breaks the law — we are only human.

You should check to see how many inmates currently subscribe to your newspaper. I am pretty sure we beat the spider monkeys hands down!

I feel an apology or, at the least, an explanation is in order.

Bernardo Beau Baca III

Best solution for Iraq is to leave now
The president’s political free-fall comes with a growing consensus that Iraq is a monumental mistake that will haunt us as much or more than Vietnam. So now the talk is turning to the circumstances of withdrawal.

So far the emerging idea is that we can’t just cut and run, having invested so much blood and treasure; we must train the Iraqis to handle their own security. But I think the reality of the situation does not support that ideal, and that in fact the best thing to do is to get out now.

Point: There is going to be civil conflict in Iraq with or without us; it’s out of our hands.

Point: Most, although not all of the armed insurgency is directed at us, which means that when we leave, most of the insurgency will evaporate, leaving a fledgling democracy free to innovate within the norms of their culture, not ours. It will indeed be messy, but far fewer innocent people will die in the streets every day.

But of course it’s unlikely this will happen. Why? Because the timetable for withdrawal is in my view not particularly based on who suffers and dies, but the completion of the dozen-plus permanent American military bases along the oil supply lines. Being built, by the way by Haliburton and others who should be rebuilding the Iraqi infrastructure.

But it’s their country. Their oil. By what right can we do this?

And of course, what part of “stop this insanity” don’t we understand?

Kirby Rowan