There seems to have been squabbling going on this summer concerning our homeless and panhandler populations. The public is unaware of the homeless crisis and is too quick to judge. What no one is saying and what all should be aware of is that many of our homeless people are members of our U.S. military finding it difficult to adjust to civilian life again. We need to assist them.
The Boise VA works very closely with the Boise Mission, the River of Life and other entities. These organizations meet once a month to coordinate care and share assistance information. The Boise Police Department also actively helps our homeless vets find shelter and services. What can you do? Please contact the Boise VA at www.va.gov/homeless or The Boise Rescue Mission Community Outreach at www.boiserm.org. for volunteer opportunities.
If you know a veteran who is currently homeless, please urge them to call 1-877-4AID-VET.
Like Maj. Bernard Fisher, a Vietnam veteran, once said, When a man is down, you dont just leave him there. Lets not leave them behind here at home either.
SANDY MARKKULA, Meridian
As Veterans Day approaches, I would like to share the poem A Veteran Died Today (author unknown) with your reading public. The problem is that it is 457 words, and the limit here is 200. It really is a poem worth reading, so I encourage everyone to find it on Google. It will warm your heart.
ROSANN WILTSE, Boise
In a democracy, majority rules. However, many legislatures require a two-thirds majority to pass revenue bonds. That might be called Tyranny of the Minority.
There were two bond issues before voters Nov. 5, one to upgrade fire stations, and the other to provide more open space and parks. Both failed despite having a yes vote of over 60 percent. In short, the minority ruled.
Having moved to Boise only six years ago, we are continually amazed at what our city has to offer a fabulous Greenbelt, major parks along the river and numerous community parks, mountains outside town, recreation, clean air and water, and a clean city.
That did not happen by accident. Citizens of yester-year voted to make a world-class community, invariably described as one of the 10 best in America. When doing so, they understood there was a financial cost, and undertook it.
Today I have one comforting comment to the minority who voted no: If hills become overbuilt, if water quality degrades, if kids have fewer parks, if recreation venues shrink, or if your house burns down because a fire engine could not reach you in time, just remember that you saved about $13 per year in taxes.
CHAS BONNER, Boise
Thank you to the folks from Boise who recently stood against the two city- sponsored bond measures by casting no/no votes. These ballot issues left a bad taste in my mouth, as they were not worded properly.
For example, the measure for a bond issue to upgrade fire houses should have read more like, Your City Council and mayor, in recent years, have decided that their wants of a prettier city hall, water parks, new parking meters, downtown circulators, public art and more were far more important than public safety, so we put our fire houses last. Our bad! Now we have to ask you for the funding to provide the needs we should have been addressing instead.
Had I seen something like that publicly admitted, I might just have voted for it. Our City Council has a serious needs vs. wants issue. They are like a teenager, spending their entire allowance on snacks and video games. Then, lacking money to pay for decent clothes, they ask Mom and Dad for more. Our Fire Department needs to be treated better.
Kudos to the 34 (+/-) percent.
PATRICK KLOCKE, Boise
So how can incumbent Boise City Council candidates publicly state their support for the two recently defeated bond issues, then win re-election to the council? I dont get it. How dumb can the voting public be?
Why can voters not connect the dots about how quickly these elected council members want to spend taxpayers money?
There must be better financial accountability by our mayor and council.
Ask them how they can support borrowing more money for the Fire Department when they still have an empty fire station on Overland unsold and unused?
KELLY DAVIS, Boise
This past week, an excellent opinion letter warning of the dangers and insanity of Common Core (the latest federal indoctrination program) was published in several area newspapers.
The writer described this monstrous education plan, though leaving out perhaps one critical word: communist. For indeed, in the hands of the unelected (bureaucratic) reformers and profiteers, as she mentioned, that is the direction American education is being dragged.
No. 17, among the 45 Rules for Communist Takeover of a Nation, prescribes a centrally controlled (national) education system. So, what is the very deepest problem here? Answer: We, the very people who accept such unconstitutional dictates. Closest to home, Idahos Department of Education is to blame if it implements Common Core. We, the people, always have the real power, if only well recognize and use it.
You know the saying: What if they gave a war and nobody came? Well, what if conniving tyrants crafted insane indoctrination schemes, but no one bought into them?
Parents, pull your kids out of the federal system, if that is whats necessary to protect them. Lets bring education back home, under the control of independent, local school boards.
CAROL ASHER, Kamiah
Its that time of year again, when many Treasure Valley drivers take a crash course, pun intended, in how to drive in winter conditions. Here are some tips that could take the crash out of that crash course.
1. Slow down! Depending on how much snow or ice is on the road, it may be prudent to drive as much as 20 mph slower than the speed on those white signs that say Speed Limit. This will significantly shorten your stopping distance, making up for the lengthening that slick roads cause.
2. Turn on the headlights. Not so much to see other drivers, but to be seen by other drivers. Flat light, fog and falling snow all conspire with drab/snow-covered cars to make them invisible to other drivers. Turning on your headlights will make it easier for other drivers to see you, and avoid getting in your way if you are still going 5 mph over the speed limit.
Hopefully we can have fewer crashes on Idaho roads this winter.
TRAVIS BREWER, Boise
When will the people of this country start standing up to the misfits in Washington? Both parties want to be in control with their misguided thinking and tell the majority how to live, and think. We have become a nation of spineless jellyfish that allow a handful of elitists to have us live in their visionary scheme for a perfect society. Behold: Utopia. Im sure very soon, this type of once-free speech will bring the PC police with charges of sedition and insurrection! I take no stance for the left or the right. Both are corrupt and have broken our moral compass.
Readers, Im 67, and I blame my hippy generation for this quagmire of a political and social system. The greatest generation before me was not perfect, but they did not throw away their essential values. Its been said, Better to die on your feet, then to live on your knees. Just one voice!
GENE MARTIN, Emmett