Climate change is a fact; everyone must prepare
Several years ago when I was going to graduate school in art, I did an installation titled "The Death of Nature." It mostly scared and depressed me.
Now, thinking back, it was a wake-up call to think about the web of life. Global warming is a fact and there are many things we can do about it. The animals cannot speak for themselves, so we must speak for them.
They do not like pollution of the air and water.
If there is a "tipping point" going to happen in 2015, we need to start now to avoid it. We have a moral and ethical obligation to refuse to burn more fossil fuels by perhaps not driving our cars one day a week, taking reusable bags to the grocery story, recycling, and thinking of not buying more toys, knick-knacks, and other non-sustainable products that have a large carbon footprint. (Diapers don't biodegrade for 500 years. They outlive a human being by 400 percent or more.)
If Silver City (a ghost town) uses solar energy, why can't Boise do the same? Solar, wind, and geothermal energies are there for us. Let's get going.
MARY WELTY, Boise
Friedman gets it wrong on Arab world situation
Thomas Friedman (World opinion, "Regional breakdowns pose challenges for Israel") lamented Israel's Arab neighbors were failing, leaving Israel with decades of unstable or no governments surrounding it.
He stated if Israel partnered with the current "moderate" Palestinian leadership in the West Bank, it had a chance to create a modern, economically thriving, democratic, secular state where Christians and Muslims would live side by side next to Jews. He claims there is no such example in the "Arab world."
Mr. Friedman is in error. There is such a state already existing right in the middle of the "Arab world." In the modern economically thriving democratic secular nation of Israel, Christians and Muslims already live, work, vote, and worship side by side with Jews. Israel's Jewish population (75 percent) has roots from virtually every nation in the world. Approximately 20 percent of the population is Arab and 5 percent "other." Religion-wise, 75 percent are Jewish, 17 percent Muslim, and 2 percent Christian.
So rather than Mr. Friedman putting pressure on Israel to accept the ways of the Palestinians and the "Arab world" around them, would it not make better sense to put pressure on the Arab world to accept Israel's.
DW TONY PATTERSON, Emmett
Proposed state laws trample on Constitution
Sharia (Islamic law) is misunderstood by many Americans, and attempts to legislate against its use violate the Constitution.
A law proposed in Tennessee would punish and freeze the assets of any "Sharia organization."
It declares that any ruling or precept "arising directly from 'Islamic jurisprudence' is prima facie sharia without any further evidentiary showing."
Had this bill passed, mosques and Islamic prayers, wills, banking, contracts and marriages could be outlawed. Thankfully, the law was edited so as not to violate the Constitution.
Similarly, a law passed in Kansas outlaws anything based "in whole or in part on any foreign law," that violates the Constitution. Many states are debating similar legislation. These laws are redundant, as nothing trumps the Constitution. Fears of limbs being amputated and women forced to wear veils (illegal in most Islamic countries) are unfounded.
In the U.S., Sharia (just as Judaic and Christian law) is used only in cases involving arbitration, contracts and international law (e.g. Exxon Mobile and Saudi Arabia). Americans are concerned by the ramifications these laws could have on international business, adoption, divorce, etc.
In their panicked attack on Islam, some Americans violate the Constitution and discount the loyalty of patriotic American Muslims.
JESSICA DILDINE, Meridian