October 5, 2012

Letters to the Editor

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No letters were printed this week; here are the letters from two weeks ago:

Reader wonders if history shows that Church leaders may be wrong today about some issues

In a July 13 editorial, John Fink argues that dissent and discontent among Catholics is caused by relativism.

Perhaps he should give equal attention to the effects of education. An educated public knows that, for centuries, the Catholic hierarchy tolerated and even promoted those great social evils—slavery, religious persecution and anti-Semitism.

Isn’t it possible that the hierarchy is now equally mistaken on matters like contraception and gay marriage?

- John Moore | Bloomington


Labor unions harm economic renewal, reader says

Bishop Blaire’s article in the Aug. 31 issue of The Criterion deserves comment.

Once upon a time, labor unions were necessary to help workers gain a living wage and decent working conditions. Today, however, is not that time any more. Today, unions are more interested in membership numbers than in members themselves.

Over the past year, at least four cities in California have declared bankruptcy because they could not continue paying into the outrageous pension plans forced on them by unions.

Economic renewal does not occur because of unions, but occurs when businesses, the heart of the opportunities of this country, are allowed to thrive and create jobs. That is not happening today, and unions and government interference into the business sector have contributed to our economic downturn and our broken economy.

The bishop mentions immigrants and their families being especially vulnerable. Does he mean immigrants or does he mean illegals? Those not going through proper channels when entering the United States are not immigrants. I am a granddaughter of immigrants and am offended by this.

Is the bishop aware that many union pensions are underfunded by, in some cases, as much as 40 percent or more, yet these same unions, over the past six years, have donated more than $4 billion to various Democratic Party political campaigns? Shouldn’t that money go first to see that their members’ pensions are fully funded? Shouldn’t the members have a say in what political party gets their money?

According to a report issued in September 2009, there were at that time 108 pension plans seriously underfunded—below 65-80 percent.

Is the bishop also aware that in order to cover that shortfall they are trying to force non-union workers to help cover the money under project labor agreements (PLAS)? Is this the American way?

This country became strong through the free enterprise system. We have gotten away from that, from people being held responsible for their own actions or lack thereof, and from having it be the people, not the government that sets the standards. You do not really help someone by taking from someone else what they have worked for to even the playing field. The field will never be even because all people are not the same.

- Barbara L. Maness | Vevay

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