'Don't ask' repeal changes everything

Thank goodness the men and women in the military will no longer be called murderers, killing machines, and homophobic by the liberals/progressives.

The "don't ask, don't tell" repeal means that sensitivity training will be held in the battlefields in Afghanistan and Iraq as soon as possible so as not to discriminate against any homosexuals still in the closet.

They can come out openly and behave the way they were "born." They will no longer be "living a lie." There will also be no complaints by heterosexuals allowed in the military about the openly serving homosexuals, as that would be considered hate speech.

The new rules forced upon the military do nothing to make our military better, but it will make it more sensitive, and caring, and inclusive.

Connie Waterman

Narberth

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Didn't tell everything about teachers' pay

Your article on public school teachers' pay was certainly intended to provoke outrage toward public employees and their unions ("Teacher pay goes to head of agenda," Monday). Since when did it become in vogue to bad-mouth others because of your own tough times?

The article failed to meet an obligation to its readers to explain how long it takes teachers to get to the top of the scale, how it is impossible to move from one district to another, and the other obstacles involved in getting to that salary displayed in the first paragraph as if it were a scarlet letter.

But the thing I found most troubling in this story was the fact that the whiners have not applied for these amazing teaching positions. It sounds like a paradise. That must explain why so many teachers are bailing out of the profession. Tell your children to stay out of teaching. Get a job as a mortgage broker.

Gerard Iannelli

Haddon Heights

g.iannelli@yahoo.com

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Extended tax cuts will be costly

Most of the people who voted for Republicans in the November election will soon have painful reasons to regret it. The tax cuts they achieved are sharply slanted toward those who are wealthy and will serve to create deeper deficits and starve our treasury.

The only logical action to respond to this will be to cut costs. This will impact Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, aid to education, the military, and welfare. Those who think that America can be run to our satisfaction with minimal and insufficient taxes will learn that it cannot be done.

Martin H. Gingold

Warminster

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Extremism must have its limits

In 1964, at the Republican National Convention in San Francisco, Republican presidential candidate Barry Goldwater stated in his acceptance speech that "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice" and that "Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue." When it comes to defending freedom, liberty, and supporting the causes that I believe in, I must confess that I am an extremist. However, I am not, nor will I ever be, a fanatic.

Over the years, I have seen individuals devoted to certain causes become consumed to the point of insanity. They forgot their humanity, their manners, their civility, and their behavior. They closed their minds and hearts. All they heard is themselves, and nothing more. And, yes, some engaged in violence.

I have seen this with both the antiabortion and the abortion-rights movements. I have seen it on college campuses. I have seen it with labor unions. Extremism can be good, and is needed in every endeavor. However, extremism must always be tempered with humanity, civility, decorum, humility, and care.

Alex Pugliese

Kenilworth

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Darwin believed in a 'Creator,' too

Given the front-page rejoicing over the fifth anniversary of the Dover decision banning intelligent design from the classroom ("A legal landmark 5 years later," Monday), it struck me that supporters of the decision would surely object to the following quotation polluting the minds of innocent students:

"Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved."

The source? Charles Darwin, in The Origin of Species. Advocates of intelligent design were not seeking to say anything so bold as this in its advocacy of theism.

Bob Walton

Brookhaven

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Mental illness isn't easy to overcome

Re: "Teens helping teens to confront mental illness," Monday:

Art Carey's article rang a bell. My 14-year-old daughter has struggled daily with profound depression and anxiety for years. We have traveled down numerous roads so far in our quest to help her. Most recently, we discovered a community-based organization in Hatboro called Child and Family Focus, which works with our entire family.

Despite this wonderful service, however, and a shuffling array of medications, inpatient hospital stays, and cutting-edge therapies, her illness remains intractable, debilitating, and at times terrifying. The effort required to practice essential coping skills is frequently more than she can manage.

In my eyes, Francesca Pileggi cannot be applauded enough for launching this resource center for teens struggling with mental illness. Unlike Pileggi, far too many of us strive mightily to avoid the memory of our mentally troubled pasts.

Patricia Stafford

Hatboro