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Lettters March 31 

Artful thanks All of the galleries involved in downtown’s 2nd Friday Art Night want to thank you and your staff for your gracious support of our first event. We couldn’t have been more pleased with our initial effort, and we hope Art Night will continue and grow along with downtown and the River Market District. Your sponsorship was more than appreciated by everyone involved. We have long felt the downtown/River Market District needed an event to pull all of the cultural venues together. Art Night proved that by banding together we become greater than our individual galleries, and we hope people were pleasantly surprised by what they found at each of our locations. While people normally associate the downtown/River Market District with the bars and restaurants and summertime Farmer’s Market, most patrons don’t realize that we have the largest concentrated mix of art galleries in Little Rock, and, quite possibly, the state. Combined, we represent approximately 200 artists, 140 of those being Arkansas artists. We feel great anticipation going into April’s event. Debra S. Woodand seven other gallery operators Duh Regarding the estate tax, Scott M. Strauss wrote “Perhaps his wealth is simply an accident of birth and inheritance.” Well — duh. The estate tax is by definition only paid by those who inherit ‘“by accident of birth” a great deal of money. Paul Nations Little Rock There they go again The Wastewater Utility staff has done it again — picked yet another site for the future sewage treatment plant. (Maybe I’ll die of old age before this thing is built. It might be better than the alternative, which is fighting every motion to put this thing in the county.) The latest site is outside city limits. The supposed plus for this site? It’s near only 58 as opposed to 158 homes (the Ranch site); however, the initial news report neglected to add that those 58 homes are on septic systems and would not even benefit from and do not currently stress the current wastewater system. This property is also owned by Eugene Pfeifer, but it is not near his home. Wish we all had that kind of money so we could exert that kind of control. What happened to democracy? Mary K. Dornhoffer Little Rock Lincoln on bankruptcy Sen. Blanche Lincoln voted in support of the bankruptcy bill because Arkansans have no honor. To Lincoln, the 16 percent of Arkansans living below the poverty line don’t have any honor if they can’t pay their bills. Arkansas families driven into bankruptcy due to health bills have no honor. Arkansans who work at Wal-Mart with no insurance and at minimum wage, have no honor if they find they can’t meet the obligations of the credit card companies on the East Coast or in North Dakota. I worked hard this past fall at the combined campaign headquarters for Kerry, Lincoln and the crew so let me tell you who, in my opinion, has no honor. Any politicians like Lincoln and Pryor who show up and use everyday citizens to get elected and then turn their backs on the needs of the people who put them in office and vote to support corporations and businesses that eat away at the average citizen. Rev. J. Cooper Sherwood More thanks Your article “We’re here, we’re queer” stated: “One has to wonder: If only women were homosexual, would legislators and congressmen be putting up such a fuss? At any rate, they could say, rightly, that the Bible is silent on lesbianism.” I believe you may very well be right about whether our elected officials would put up much of a fuss. But I believe you may be wrong in your reading of the Bible. In one of the first paragraphs in his letter to Christians living in Rome, Paul wrote “Women no longer wanted to have sex in a natural way, and they did things with each other that were not natural. Men behaved in the same way. They stopped wanting to have sex with women and had strong desires for sex with other men” (Contemporary English Version). Paul continues to discuss greed, envy, deceit, hatred, arrogance and lack of pity. Of course, no one talks very much about greed, deceit, hatred, arrogance or a lack of pity. Steven Alan Garrett Little Rock I am straight, but several of my friends are gay. I commend your paper on airing some important issues for GLBT individuals, and for all of us as human beings. I also salute the bravery of those who chose to be “outed” in your paper. Let’s all work for the day when all people are treated with respect and dignity. LeaVonne Pulley Little Rock Cavemen The woman who wants to change the Caveman mascot of Cave City High School might be interested to learn that there is, at least, one other school with the mascot. The American Fork (Utah) High School Cavemen hold up the honor of this very nice small city, just south of Salt Lake. As in Hot Springs, it often happens that a national park is the big thing in town, an economic factor and a unifying force. American Fork is the gateway community for Timpanogos Cave National Monument. These beautiful natural caves high up in the Uinta Mountains are a major tourist attraction. I had the pleasure of spending four years as National Park Service superintendent there and had several teachers and “Cavemen” on my summer staff. Don Castleberry Little Rock Deal the cards At our house we have become fans of the Texas Hold’em poker tournaments. There is no way that this is a game of chance. The same faces appear regularly at the championship tables. If it were a game of chance these final tables would be occupied by any Tom, Dick or Harry. The champions are champions based only on their skills. And the ABC restrictions based on keeping “gambling apparatus on premises” are nonsense. In my youth I gambled with my friends for pennies based on the toss of a coin. By definition this would make all coins gambling apparatus. Certainly they don’t propose emptying barroom cash registers of all coins. Robert Retsky Hot Springs Assessing Asa About the race for Arkansas governor in 2006: Asa Hutchinson was in Temecula, Calif., my hometown, for an informal town hall meeting. This was about six months ago and at the request of Rep. Daryl Issa, who represents communities in this area. Local citizens were and still are asking for action to control the enormous number of illegal immigrants coming into our communities. At this meeting, Hutchinson, who at the time reported to the director of Homeland Security and should have had at least a few answers in hand, displayed neither leadership nor decisiveness. Asa Hutchinson’s main goal for the meeting was to figure out how best to escape the room of frustrated citizens who were annoyed with his double-talk. If you seek leadership and decisiveness, you must look elsewhere than to Mr. Hutchinson. Patricia D’Angelo Temecula, Calif. Still fighting the war Judge Bill Wilson’s column proposing to honor a Southerner-turned-Union-general in conjunction with Martin Luther King Jr. rather than Robert E. Lee produced a number of responses. They are too lengthy to reprint in full, but here are some edited excerpts. Judge Bill Wilson enumerates the high points of Federal Gen. George Thomas’ career that were nothing more than leading a massive blue-clad army on a course of death and destruction through several Southern states and against his own race and kindred, none of whom ever violated a law. And he dares to call Robert E. Lee a man of war! Robert Freeman Hot Springs There is no man I’ve ever found that was and is held in such high esteem by his enemies as Gen. Robert E. Lee. No man who knows what he is talking about can claim that General Lee ever did anything wrong. Dr. William H. Swann Marietta, Ga. It saddens me to learn Bill Wilson is a federal judge since he has so little idea what is going on. He calls Michael King, AKA “Martin Luther King,” a great champion of justice when in fact he was a sexual deviant, he conspired to commit violence before his so-called non-violent marches and he was a communist sympathizer, at the very least. I agree the two men should not share a day. It is an insult to Lee. Eddie McRae Richfield, N.C. Why would Arkansans celebrate a man who was instrumental in the deaths of many of their ancestors and turned his back on his own family to fight against them? Most Americans have a high disregard for traitors and celebrating Gen. Thomas would be akin to celebrating the life of Benedict Arnold. Dr. Arnold M. Huskins Crestview General Lee wrote that “Slavery is a moral and political evil” before the war, and did not support secession. However, when offered command of the Union Army by Francis Preston Blair, and he asked if the army would be used to invade the South and was told yes, he replied, “I can take no part in an invasion of the Southern states.” Virginia was his home. He, and most other Southerners who fought for the Confederacy, did not feel that they could help invade their homes and kill their neighbors. Rev. Helaina Hinson Burton Benson, N.C. The South did not fight for slavery but for economic issues regarding taxation. I have no problem with ridiculous articles but my biggest fear is that certain persons may even believe what you write and that causes great harm. Reinout Temmerman Oudenaarde, Belgium The real school issue I watched “Redesigning the American High School” on AETN and neither Gov. Mike Huckabee nor the Virginia governor addressed the real issue for improving schools. The real issue is putting responsibility on the student. Even the best teacher cannot make a student retain/learn the information presented. So, until the cold hard truth is accepted, students will still score poorly on tests and schools will be put on low-performance lists. Teachers know we can’t make a student learn; we can only present information to them. Students must understand why they need to learn and also understand that school is a serious undertaking and misbehavior will not be tolerated. Too many children had children and raised them haphazardly, and grandparents, who are often surrogate parents, are either too aged or frail to enforce meaningful discipline. So we get students suffering from arrested development with no idea why it is important to get an education. In the meantime teachers take inappropriate heat for a problem that they are only a small part of. Teachers have students seven hours a day; where is the parent or guardian the other 18 hours of the day? Lastly, seeing how the politicians dance around the real core issue I view the recent Huckabee television appearance as a shameless addition to his resume for a higher political office. B. Miles Little Rock
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