Letters to the editor: April 19, 2017


Re: April 12 article,“Senate OKs letting clerks deny same-sex marriage licenses.”

The Legislature just can’t seem to find harmony between religion and sex. Last time I checked, we still operate as a nation based on the separation of church and state. It gets messy fast when the two collide.

Case in point is religious beliefs that conflict with the law. County clerks aren’t being asked to give their blessings to anyone who chooses to marry. Their job is to push a piece of paper across the counter and follow the laws of the United States. If they were pharmacists, they would dispense contraceptives. If they were an emergency responder, they would administer mouth-to-mouth to a cross-dresser.

The Constitution rules the land, not the Bible. If performing the requirements of your job conflicts with your religion and puts you at odds with civil law, then by all means find other work. We are a democracy; we are no one’s theocracy.

LIZ MURRAY, AUSTIN

Re: April 5 article,“Senate votes to freeze tuition, end mandatory financial aid set-asides.”

Remember those $25 coupon books that contained hundreds of dollars’ worth of coupons to restaurants, theaters and other establishments? People would buy them only to find out that the restrictions made them virtually worthless.

Well, the GOP has similar “empty gifts” for today’s students: dual high school/college credits that often don’t transfer; graduate-on-time programs that don’t accommodate real life challenges; and advocating going to community college to save money, when some universities deny those students admission into certain degree programs. Need I go on?

How about a real solution for a change? And yes, folks, that means a tax increase. At the very least, students deserve the same percentage of state subsidized tuition and fees that Gov. Greg Abbott enjoyed 40 years ago at the University of Texas.

Unfortunately, having gotten his, our governor is content to keep the door closed behind him.

STEPHEN SHACKELFORD, AUSTIN

Re: April 11 letter to the editor,“Don’t let abortion issue diminish health care.”

The “3 percent abortions” from all health care services offered at Planned Parenthood has been scrutinized and it is shown as a convenient lie. The fact that Planned Parenthood turned down an offer to keep government funding if they would no longer do abortions is case enough.

They should have gladly shuttered that service to keep receiving federal funding. There are other clinics, such as TruCare, that offer free and low-cost screenings, pregnancy testing and sonograms — all the health services provided for the women you mentioned in your letter. All without loss of life. Tell me how abortions go down when they are readily accessible? And, by the way Planned Parenthood, where is your annual report for 2015-16?

ALLISON RICE, AUSTIN

Re: April 12 article,“Senate OKs letting clerks deny same-sex marriage licenses.”

The Texas Senate has voted to allow county clerks to not serve gays if homosexuality is against their religion. Why stop there? How about allowing firefighters the right to decline to put out fires at houses owned by gays? By the same logic, police officers should not be compelled to protect gay victims of crime if homosexuality is at variance with their religious beliefs.

Where does the stupidity of the Texas state government end and logic take over?

DAVID BUTLER, GEORGETOWN



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