Poor and sick
Support what's right with health care
There has been a great deal of discussion about health care reform.
In my opinion, much of the discussion has skirted the basic question: Is health care a commodity or a right? From my perspective it is a right.
Unfortunately, I've not seen a lot of my brother and sister clergy enter the public debate. All religions teach that God has a special concern for what my Christian tradition calls the widows, orphans and least of these. One of the most quoted portions of Scripture, Jesus separating people into sheep and goats based upon how they had treated the poor and sick, is addressed to the nations (sounds like public policy to me). An updated version might have Jesus sitting in an emergency room waiting to be treated for a disease that could have been prevented if primary care had been available.
It was not only the right thing to do to pass health care reform, in the long run, it will lower all of our costs. Putting together the right thing with the economical thing is a winner.
Rev. Jim Watkins
Behind the holiday
St. Patrick's history reveals importance
After all the hoopla it might be important to identify who St. Patrick was and why we celebrate his day. In short: He was a Celtic Brit who was captured by Irish pirates. After his escape and return to Ireland he had a spiritual vision. He became a missionary spreading Christianity in a time of paganism. He baptized thousands, established Christian communities and inspired missionaries locally and abroad. He helped "keep the light on" in the Dark Ages with his teaching.
It is reputed that he used the shamrock - a three leaf clover - as a teaching tool symbolic of the Trinity; but, unfortunately didn't cast out snakes from Ireland (there were no snakes in post-glacial Ireland).
The Irish philosophy of "enjoying each day to the fullest" with good friends makes for a great day.
William F. Ryan
Amnesty doesn't make sense for U.S.
Our Senator Graham-nesty and President Obama are teaming up to poke a stick in the eye of the American worker. They want to grant amnesty to the 12 million to 20 million illegal aliens already in the country. In return Americans would get a "promise" to "fix" the borders and a National ID card. Congress has never been serious about fixing the borders. They won't build fences, freeze hiring for the Border Patrol, and refuse to fund E-Verify long-term.
Amnesty would add millions to the number of people looking for the few jobs still around. An estimated 8 million illegals have jobs. It would make more sense to deport them and give the jobs to Americans.
Amnesty would also add millions to our welfare roles and deplete the few remaining dollars left in social programs like Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children vouchers. Amnesty, especially in this economy, does not make sense.
Michael D. Comer