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Everybody's Column

>City unions' demands will bankrupt Buffalo

Happy days are here again for Philip Rumore, Robert Meegan and the Buffalo city unions! Let's give them everything they want so we won't have to listen to their incessant whining about how bad they have it. Lets see, $90 million for the teachers, $40 million for the police and I'm sure the firemen will want their $40 million, too.

In a couple of years, the city will be insolvent. Then we can declare Buffalo bankrupt, dissolve it, dissolve the union contacts and have the county take over all city functions. Now's the perfect time to do this. We have a "can do" businessman as county executive instead of a "can't do" career politician.

The city and county both have control boards because the politicians almost spent us into the poor house. Where do these people think the money is going to come from for all these big raises? We have a poor city and overtaxed county residents. Since the taxpayers are financially responsible for these contracts, they should be able to vote on these contracts at election time.

Bill Stetz
Elma

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>Humanism implores personal responsibility

A recent letter, which rightfully criticized those who blame God for natural disasters and other life tragedies, rationally put the blame on the unwise decisions of humans and humanity. However, the writer then stated that calling God sadistic when such disasters strike is a completely different religion -- humanism. I would like to clarify the meaning of this word after such a woeful misuse of it.

Humanism is an ideal for living that is concerned with human beings and their values, capacities and achievements. Its origins are the cultural and intellectual movements of the Renaissance that emphasized secular concerns as a result of the study of literature, art and the civilization of ancient Greece and Rome. Although humanism can be compatible with many religious beliefs, it is certainly not a religion itself.

Contrary to the writer's inference, humanism implores personal responsibility above all else. It is not concerned with the supernatural, the idea of salvation or the afterlife. It is concerned with learning more about the world in order to solve humanity's problems, and it leaves any "God-blaming" to the religionists.

Lisa Deck Drdul
Amherst

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>Keep the pressure on state authorities

I admire the vigor with which Rep. Brian Higgins pushes New York State authorities to pay more attention to citizen needs. I think that all of the authorities need a strong watchdog to check on their actions. More power to Higgins in keeping the Thruway Authority more responsive, as he did with the Power Authority.

Norma Stevenson
Amherst

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>Robertson was wrong to endorse Giuliani

As a fundamentalist preacher, I am appalled that Pat Robertson would endorse a pro-choice candidate for president. We as Bible believers need to be united to win the White House. We need to stand behind Mike Huckabee, who is a dedicated born-again Christian and a strong social conservative. If we are not united, we will fall, and a liberal will win.

Rev. Daren Drzymala
Buffalo

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>Bishop simply doing what needs to be done

There has been much ado about the closing of certain parishes and schools. This has been accompanied by an acrimonious display of disparagement and enmity toward the bishop. Now is not the time to blame the current bishop, or for that matter any of the previous bishops.

Slowly over time, the economic structure of Western New York began to deteriorate. Now we have a new bishop who is doing what needs to be done and he is being chastised by certain lay people who are less than Christian, in my estimation. The days of Catholics flocking to their local church are no longer here.

The demographics of Western New York has been upset immensely by the socio-economic state. The old days are gone. If the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo is to survive this time of reorganization, it needs to have the lay people working furiously with their bishop to see that the souls of all the people under their care are taken care of without animosity. It is time to worship God, not bricks and mortar.

Tessie Nowicki
Blasdell

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>Evidence in DeJac case casts doubt about guilt

I read the Nov. 17 story about the Buffalo detectives who believe Lynn DeJac deserves a new trial. District Attorney Frank Clark says that the new evidence would not compel the jury to find DeJac innocent. That may be so, but the DNA found in and around Crystallynn Girard and her bedroom would definitely cast a shadow of reasonable doubt on the case.

I believe that the jury would, if not find her innocent, at the very least be unable to agree on a unanimous verdict. I hope Clark comes to his senses and admits that a new trial is in the best interest of everyone involved.

Mike Elmer
Amherst

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>Clinton ought to be voting on key issues

Hillary Clinton was re-elected as U.S. senator to represent the citizens of New York. Representing citizens of New York means voting on important U.S. Senate legislation. On Nov. 11, The News reported that Clinton did not cast her vote on a Veterans Affairs bill, a Water Resources Development bill and, perhaps most importantly, a bill to confirm Michael Mukasey as the new attorney general of the United States.

Why didn't Clinton cast her vote on these three important pieces of legislation on behalf of the citizens of New York? Was she too busy running for president in order to satisfy her own self interests?

Gary H. Bauer
Wheatfield

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>Canadians should take their garbage with them

Lately there has been a huge influx of Canadian shoppers to Niagara Falls, Buffalo and nearby cities. I am sure the store owners are grateful for the increase in business, but we are not enjoying the increase in garbage that is left in our mall and store parking lots. This presents a huge burden on lot attendants as well as shoppers, who literally run over the empty boxes and bags that are left behind after they return to their homes.

To all Canadians: Please respect our city, enjoy our shopping and take your garbage with you or dispose of it properly. I know you wouldn't want your area littered with debris.

Judith Whitehead
East Amherst

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