Readers' Hotline 9/17/12

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Magnificent sight
The vision of the great blue heron is truly a magnificent sight, whether they are on the riverbank, in the river or in the air. We often see them in Fries. But, thanks to the striking pictures so up close and personal in The Gazette by [nature columnist] Bill Dunson, I have a whole new insight and appreciation for this bird. Thank you for devoting space for this in our newspaper.
Editor’s note: We’re glad you enjoy Mr. Dunson’s work. You can find his regular column online at www.galaxgazette.com, under the “blogs” heading.

Vote for values
I would like to say something regarding voting. When a speaker ends with “God bless America,” when their values are not biblical, when someone believes in killing our babies, that’s breaking a commandment: “thou shall not kill.” Also, God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. The question remains, will God bless America? It doesn’t matter if you are Republican or Democrat. God knows how you vote individually. Are you voting values? It’s easy to know who to vote for because we are a Christian nation, right? All else will come out good because you voted right. When I was young, I watched my parents vote what would benefit them, not values. How bad. Ask yourself this question: whom would God want to run our nation? Simple isn’t it?

My brethren
Several callers seem to think that gay marriage is the only Christian issue in the upcoming election. They believe that Christians must vote for the candidate who opposes gay marriage and against the one who endorses it. It’s a bit more complex than that. Jesus was certainly aware of homosexual behavior in His world and yet He seems to have said nothing about it. He was, however, concerned about the poor and the outcasts in society. In fact, He said one’s life would be judged by how one treated the least of these, my brethren. So, one must also ask, which candidate will do more for the least of these? This is as much of a Christian concern as is sexual morality.

Gave their all
I’m calling in response to “different approach.” I am a veteran and I would just like to express that money set for that memorial is deserved and if you are a veteran, you know how the veterans were treated when they came home from Vietnam, how they were told they didn’t win the war and they didn’t have any jobs for them or anything else. Not even a “thank you” or “welcome home.” So, this memorial to the servicemen who have protected this country and gave their lives for it, that is not too much to pay for. After all, they gave it all.

Open your eyes
For the person who called in about having a good Christian man in office as our president, where have you been for the last few years? In a coma, that you can’t see what has been happening? You said you were going to pray he stays in office. I am going to pray for you that you open your eyes because you are blind.

Trim, don’t spray
Whose bright idea was it was to spray along the highways instead of trimming the brush and the weeds? Whose idea to spray chemicals that kill all this stuff? I have even seen some people’s apple trees and stuff that have been killed by this spray. It might be dangerous to people’s health, and besides, it is an eyesore. Elk Creek Parkway has always been a beautiful place, especially in the fall and now we have dead trees and everything along the roads. It was a bad idea, whoever made the decision to do this instead of the usual trimming they do along the roads.

Spend on citizens
Carroll County had a swimming pool — a very good swimming pool. The only thing it lacked was a water heater. That was when the supervisors had it. They couldn’t spend for a water heater. How many of them would tear their house down just because they had to have a water heater and rebuild? When Hillsville annexed that area and Hillsville had the swimming pool, that was a pretty good project. They had something to work with. Remember, just a water heater. Sure, anything goes down when you don’t use it. It has to have a little repair. They could have kept that swimming pool and had it fixed the first time they needed the water heater. But, they would rather not spend any money helping citizens of their community. They would rather find out ways to spend the money in hopes they can get some industry. That isn’t going to help the average citizen.

Sin is sin
About “pray about it” in the Hotline, talking about lesbians and gays and praying about them and Obama taking up for them. We need to get on our knees and pray about these people that have been married from one time to another one and didn’t stay with their very first one and she is still living. I think you are defiling your bed if you divorced your number one and went to number two. Sin is sin and let’s all get together and pray about sin.

Covered over
I’d like to know how anybody can vote for Obama — Democrat or Republican — when, in 2009, he was speaking at Georgetown University, he ordered that the picture of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ be covered up. It offended him. How can any American vote for him and end up losing their souls?
Editor’s note: The Washington Times reported in April 2009 that the White House asked that all university signs and symbols be covered at the stage where the president was to speak. “The White House wanted a simple backdrop of flags and pipe and drape for the speech, consistent with what they’ve done for other policy speeches,” the university’s press office told a reporter at the time.

Not suitable to report
This is in response for “the soup kitchen feeds the needy.” I heard when it was discussed that it was supposed to be for anyone that wanted to get together, maybe seniors that were eating alone. Not just for the ones that didn’t have food. To grab a camera, take pictures to put on the front page of the newspaper, is wrong. God knows when you do a good deed. You don’t have to advertise. And, don’t make the people participating feel bad by calling them needy.

Too expensive
To the “different approach” call, I couldn’t agree with you more. It is unsettling to know that in these harsh economic times, that $80,000 would be used for a war memorial. Yes, it is for our soldiers who defended our right of freedom and the pursuit of happiness, but these men would turn over in their graves if they knew this money could have been used for education or a jobs program that this area so desperately needs. The knowledge that a council member even suggested this and was not opposed, but backed up by the remaining members is frightening. Our fathers and grandfathers didn’t fight for recognition on a piece of stone. They fought for the ability to live, not just survive, with options and happiness that come with the freedom to make them. Eighty thousand could have changed lives, young and old. Instead, it was spent on a piece of rock. Shame on the people we voted for with trust and confidence to have the best interest of the community at heart.
Editor’s note: Sharon Plichta — who is a member of Galax City Council — and her husband, Frank, have led the effort to raise money for the memorial. They have raised $115,000 so far and at least $80,000 more is needed to complete it. Many of the donors and those soliciting donations are veterans, as are the Plichtas.