Oklahoma Gazette provides an open forum for the discussion of all points of view in its Letters to the Editor section. The Gazette reserves the right to edit letters for length and clarity. Letters can be mailed, faxed, emailed to pbacharach@okgazette. com or sent online at okgazette.com, but include a city of residence and contact number for verification
Finish what we started Oklahomans aren’t quitters.
Despite what a 30-second sound bite or “tunnelvision” information says about the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum, it needs to be finished.
In Oklahoma, we are not quitters, and just because it’s taken a long time doesn’t mean it doesn’t need to come to fruition.
Many obstacles have been thrown at it since it started as a state agency. That’s right, folks: It’s a state agency.
But it has been tossed around in the political-football arena quite a bit over the last decade. To complete this project, it was going to take federal funds, state funds, city funds and a lot of private donations.
As we all know, over the last decade, we’ve had cutbacks on federal bonds, a recession, several political changes in key positions and movement in the private-donation sector.
Even with all this, we can still make this happen by matching the $40 million of private donations with $40 million from the state of Oklahoma.
The estimated return is $325 million in the short term, economic growth in southeast Oklahoma City and a worldwide destination point for visitors from other countries.
We sometimes forget that just barely over 100 years ago, this was Indian Territory. All of the tribes have donated money and pledged collections for special showings, as some have never before been seen in public.
A Smithsonian-comparable museum and event center to honor our state and nation’s Indian heritage, combined with the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, Sam Noble Museum of Natural History — as well as the 45th Infantry Museum, National Softball Hall of Fame and Oklahoma State Firefighters’ Museum — will make Oklahoma a destination not matched by anyone.
We aren’t quitters. Let’s take this political football, take the private donations, cross the goal line and win this thing. The benefits will be enjoyed by our kids and grandchildren. The state auditor gave it a clear audit.
Tourism is our third-largest economic sector, and the legislative session ends this month. Contact your state senators and representatives and urge them to find a way to do this project.
Now is the time to show vision, leadership and tenacity — because Oklahomans aren’t quitters.
—Glen Cosper Oklahoma City
re-gifting a time capsule I was reading the article about the “Century Chest” (Life, Rachael Cervenka, “It’s about time,” May 1, Oklahoma Gazette), and I think instead of filling in the hole, the church should take pictures of what was in the first time capsule and make another.
Use the same chest since it keeps things in such good condition, add things from now and include the pictures — or maybe some of the items that were there before — and let whoever will open it in 2113 see how things have evolved in 200 years.
—Danielle Fleetwood Austin, Texas
Slippery definitions There are problems with any kind of gun control bill:
1) Mentally unstable people shouldn’t own firearms. That’s great, but who deems someone “mentally unstable”? Are you mentally unstable if you regularly meet with a psychiatrist, a counselor, your minister or pastor, or a mentor? Maybe you are mentally unstable if you are a member of Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous or any other kind of support group? Maybe you are mentally unstable if you’ve ever called a suicide hotline or gone to some other similar outlet in a low point in your life?
2) Criminals shouldn’t be able to own firearms. Again, that’s great, but who deems someone a criminal? Are you a criminal if you get arrested for unpaid parking tickets? Are you a criminal if you’re on the receiving end of a fight and police are called? You could be considered a criminal if you receive a speeding ticket, right? I mean, you broke a law! More importantly, they are criminals for a reason — they don’t obey laws! Criminals are not supposed to be able to own guns currently, but they do! If they want a firearm, they will find a way to get one. Period.
3) Owning a gun has nothing to do with hunting! We were granted the right to own firearms, as a last resort, to protect ourselves against tyranny in government. Hello? Look around. If you don’t get what is going on in our government, maybe you never will and I am wasting my breath. When we are unarmed, we become complacent and unable to protect ourselves from anything or anyone, forever. Hitler took guns away from citizens for “the greater good” as well, and I don’t think I need to go into what happened in that case.
If they take away our guns, crime is only going to go up because the criminals will always find a way to get them, and we will be left defenseless against them, even in our own homes.
—Megan Hodge Oklahoma City
Hooray for G.W. In every generation, there are men and women who, because of some outstanding attribute, have won the respect and love of their fellow men.
Our lives are richer and fuller because of George W. Bush. He, like many other outstanding men and women in our neighborhoods, our cities, our states, our nation and on our Earth, has raised the average of humanity — forever.
Best wishes to George and all of our shining knights and heroines.
—David R. Oliver Oklahoma City
The O’reilly prophecy There’s a major storm coming, the effects of which I can only imagine. Bill O’Reilly of The O’Reilly Factor has authored a book, soon to be released, dealing with the execution of Jesus Christ.
Bill has stated that he believes the Bible to be merely allegorical, not the bedrock, foundational truth many believe it to be. He says facts contained in his book, Killing Jesus, are derived not only from the Bible, but from extra-biblical accounts as well.
I would prophesy that Bill will experience a “deer in the headlights” moment when this storm engulfs him as literal Bible believers shower Bill with emails and comments that will dwarf former issues he’s dealt with. See if I’m not correct.
—Thomas L. Furlong Oklahoma City
Questioning hobby lobby In all the back and forth about Hobby Lobby and the Affordable Care Act (News, Peter Wright, ”Crossing Obamacare,” May 1, Gazette), there is one important question that I have not seen addressed: Is employment at Hobby Lobby conditional on agreement with the religious views of the owners?
If it is, then perhaps they have some justification for denial of health insurance coverage of emergency contraception (although one wonders how many other sanctimonious prescriptions their employees would have to obey).
If it is not, then their claim that their religious freedom would be violated by the ACA is nothing but a hollow pretense to religious superiority, taking the position that Hobby Lobby’s religious freedom is more important than the religious freedom of their employees.
—Dennis Weigand Edmond
Another hobby lobby question Regarding the “Crossing Obamacare” article: If Hobby Lobby is successful, will a Jewish-owned company still have to honor Christmas and Easter as
holidays? Just asking.
—John Buckley Norman
Opinions expressed on the commentary page, in letters to the editor and elsewhere in this newspaper are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ownership or management.