Letters to the editor (08/25/12)


New ‘stop and frisk’ laws are being passed
Some states have passed “stop and frisk” laws. Others are contemplating doing so.
Early statistics indicate that the majority of those stopped are ethnic minority males. Fifty-four percent of African-Americans, 33 percent are Hispanic, and only 9 percent are white. Is this racial profiling?
Of course not. Popular opinion holds that it is self evident that white males are not genetically programed to look suspicious. That is why only 9 percent of males stopped are white, or off-white.

Tomás Garcia

Backpacks for Children project was a success
Each year at this time, hundreds of families are preparing their children for the (new school year). New clothes, shoes, backpacks and a list of school supplies are needed for each child.
For many in our community, the needs are overwhelming, and some parents will struggle to meet even the most basic needs for their children. Fortunately, there are organizations and individuals who are willing to give aid in this area to see that children can go to school with the very things they need.
Backpacks for Children, is a community service project that provides students from within the Belen school district in grades K-6 with backpacks and school supplies. Backpacks for Children held its third backpack and school supply giveaway at Anna Becker Park in Belen, on Saturday, Aug. 4.
Some 200 backpacks were filled with school supplies and given out to children at an event, which also included games and crafts, a rope bridge, and a jumper. Members from the Belen Fire Department were on hand to spray the children with water, cooling them off from the heat. Food and drinks were also given out.
Children and parents left the park not only with backpacks filled with supplies, but with the knowledge that there are many in our community who were willing to see that their basic needs had been met.
This project could not have been possible without the efforts of several groups and individuals. We would like to thank the following organizations for their generous support: Abundant Life Christian Center, Calvary Chapel Rio Grande Valley, Christian Faith Chapel, First Baptist Church of Belen, New Life Fellowship, Belen Fire Department, Boy Scout Troop 110, Belen VFW Post 2387, HomeSmart, Belen Lowes Supermarket, Belen Walmart and  Belen Walgreens.
We would also like to thank all of the individuals who contributed money, and school supplies, and the numerous volunteers who gave of their time on Saturday to help with the backpack distribution.  Mostly, we give thanks to the Lord, our God. For it is by Him that all of this was possible, from the planning stage up to the last backpack given away.
It is the vision of the Backpacks for Children Committee that many children receive what they need to be able to start their school year confidently and happily.  Because of the joint effort of many, this vision was realized.  We are already planning for next year, and are looking at ways to increase the number of backpacks and supplies that we can give to the children in our community.

Lori Griego, Charlette Thomas  and Theresa Carbajal
Backpacks for Children Committee
President Obama has done a lot
Let us take a look at President Obama’s accomplishments for just over three years.
He passed CHIP to give health care to children that needed it. He appointed two women to the Supreme Court.
He passed the stimulus that saved the country from a depression that would have made the Great Depression look like child’s play. He ended the misguided war in Iraq.
He brought about the end of two despots in Egypt and Libya without sacrificing a single American life. He saved the auto industry and all industries that rely on the auto industry from bankruptcy.
He is cleaning up loose nuclear material all over the world that can be used by terrorists.  He gave insurance to those with pre-existing conditions. He got rid of limits on health coverage. He provided insurance for young adults to age 26 to stay on their parents’ health insurance plans.
He killed Osama bin Laden and many more high ranking al-Qaeda leaders. He made loans and grants for college students easier and cheaper to get. He has started Wall Street reform.
He is helping veterans with medical needs and with a new GI Bill. He is keeping Iran isolated. He is slowly getting rid of No Child Left Behind, the biggest educational travesty in the history of this country.
He passed a new Start Treaty to limit nuclear weaponry. He passed credit card reform. He put pressure on BP to clean up their mess in the Gulf of Mexico. He is slowly cleaning the environment from polluters.
He is addressing childhood obesity. He has gotten rid of the hateful Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy in the military, which has allowed brave young men and women to step forward to defend their country. On top of all of this, he has a Grammy and a Nobel Peace Prize.
The president has done more for this country than all of the presidents from Nixon to Bush combined. What a great New Deal for the 21st century.
My question to the far right and tea baggers is, why can’t you support him? Which one of the above mentioned things is so hateful to the conservative ear?
There has been nothing but obstruction from you for the past three years. You have turned your back on this nation out of pure hatred for one man.
Just think how great this country could be right now if you would have supported the president with his policies that by the way are extremely moderate.
Face it, an African-American man is leading this country and doing a fantastic job and you have a hard time dealing with it.  You do not like his skin color.  You do not like the sound of his name. You demonize him to make yourselves feel superior. He is a strong family man and Christian.
It is time to look in the mirror and examine the deep roots of racism and hatred that live there.
In November, do not hand this country back to a party that is soft on terrorism and that destroyed the economy: 9/11 and the economic disaster both happened during Bush’s tenure. These two things are the historic legacy of the modern Republican Party.
Let us therefore rally behind this president and around a new Congress that will support him.  He is our best and brightest hope for this country in these troubled times.
God bless President Obama and God bless the United States of America!

Antonio A. Flores
Los Lunas