Mail and Commentary March 14, 2012 

"Frankly, I'm shocked at the state women's issues have taken over the past few weeks/months and there is NO WAY I would vote for the party that attempts to control my life in this manner."

--AngelaEcho-Boise ("Obama Campaign Plans Big Push for Women," Citydesk, March 10, 2012)

Dear Bill Cope:

As you may recall, I have written to this publication, to you in particular, regarding your attitude toward conservatives. I have made occasional attempts to read your opinion column, especially since you took the trouble to devote an entire column to making a diatribe-filled rebuttal. Each time I read your column, it is very difficult to get the essence of your message due to a very high signal-to-noise ratio. Let's give one more try to rational discourse.

You seem to be falling all over yourself with excitement to present the findings of Gordon Hodson. Yet, if one looks at details, even with your obviously biased reporting, with a bit of logic, you can see flaws in the study. One can immediately see by the phrase "as seen by their responses to loaded test questions" there is bias. To demonstrate, one need only note that polling data comparing a president to a potential "generic opponent" will change when one places an organic candidate into the poll. Therefore, it is evident that one can manipulate questions to bias responses toward a desired answer.

Mr. Cope, your enthusiastic acceptance of this flawed study demonstrates a disturbing trend. As we can see by the dismissal of Pat Buchanan from MSNBC, there is a concerted effort to not only vilify and condemn conservative principles but to deny those who advocate them an opportunity to speak. One can almost see the wheels turning in your mind. "Conservatives are stupid so I don't have to waste my time listening to them" probably sounds in your head with a prolonged echo.

As if it wasn't obvious to casual readers, we can see that in the most disparaging language possible you repeatedly condemn any conservative person or group even when it isn't necessary. Do I need to provide examples from your own column? Ann Coulter's "meaningless avalanche of words" and "sound like a demented hag" are present. "Tea Party rabble" is another one. From your fine examples we see weekly, one cannot be a committed leftist without insulting those who do not enthusiastically accept your radical agenda.

Well, you are in severe need of something, I am just not sure what. I suggest a few things that might help. Educating yourself to the true principles of conservatism and the Tea Party would be a great place to start. Lessening the tax burden on workers and those who create jobs, eliminating burdensome federal regulations, applying solutions at the lowest level of governance possible and fiscal responsibility are base principles of the Tea Party.

Next, consider broadening your circle of friends to those whose political views are not in complete lockstep with your own. Also, it is my opinion that there are some deep-seated problems from your past which drive you to such extreme views. Please consider obtaining some professional help to purge your psyche of these traumatic memories. Counseling, medication and electroshock therapy should all be options.

Let me make you aware of a few pertinent items of personal information. I have not always been conservative; it is a philosophy that has developed over many years of study and action. My IQ did not drop 50 points because I choose to embrace conservative principles and the Constitution. I have a multi-ethnic heritage but unlike the neat "minority" boxes leftists continually try to shove me into, I am an unhyphenated American and shall remain so. Also, and most importantly, I would never become a member of your society because it is inappropriate to "make" people do anything. Unlike leftists who want an equality of outcomes, conservatives believe in equality of opportunity.

In conclusion, you might be wondering why there is such a long gap between your column and this response. Unlike leftists, who use an emotional plea followed by a call for immediate action, I waited over a week before even considering a reply to your column. Even though there were plenty of opportunities for me to do so, I resisted the urge to commit ad hominem attacks. And, since you are the one with access to the printing press, you will receive the last word. I have confidence in your ability, as you did before, to distort and misrepresent my statements followed by more insults about conservative philosophy. That does not bother me, as it reminds me of a quote only recently seen online: "If you're not getting flak, you're not over the target." --misterbee241

--Anthony R. Benson,Boise

Walker Chronicles

Speaking of Bown Crossing, I walk and jog through there and across the new bridge and up into the Foothills a lot. I was almost hit by another bicyclist riding in front of Flatbread as a grown-up rode fast down the sidewalk. With spring around the corner, why don't you write an article or series of articles on bike safety. There are bike lanes all over and they ride on the sidewalks. No warning as they come up on a runner or walker. I walk/jog a lot and am almost hit all the time. Then you could do a series on cars driving with their dogs on their lap as the driver. If the air bag deploys, their dog will be killed on their lap. Walking as much as I do, I am blown away by the dogs on laps and cellphone use by drivers. Then a bicycle comes up behind me without warning and almost takes me out. When I do get hit, I'm going to either sue the bike rider and/or beat the heck out of him.

--Terry Hunter,Boise

Anti Co-Op?

I can't help but notice as of the last several months, all the bad publicity you've been giving the Boise Co-Op. It surprises me that with all the corporate competition coming in that you would go out of your way to tarnish the name of a local business in such a way. News is news, but invading the private life of a man who was hired to fill a position, that was tacky and comparable to National Inquirer. And now ragging on them for their changes in donation policies--you really made them out to be terrible people. Do you really think a well loved local business such as the co-op would go out of their way to harm their community? No. And would it kill you guys to say something nice about this well loved local business, who needs support from its community during times of transition and in the face of corporate monsters Whole Foods? Apparently. Think Boise First? Stop trashing local businesses.

--Kelly Seedorf, Boise

Abort SB 1349

Why conservatives should oppose Idaho Senate Bill 1349 mandating pre-abortion ultrasound:

1. SB 1349 is an individual mandate: government dictates an individual purchase of health care, even when the patient does not want it or need it.

2. SB 1349 is more invasive than TSA full-body scans and pat-downs. It requires women to disrobe, at least from the waist down, and submit to inspection of their private parts.

3. SB 1349 makes criminals of doctors and nurses if they fail to present proper papers to the government documenting the forced ultrasound. This sounds like Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union.

4. SB 1349 is wasteful: It mandates the purchase of medical services that are not wanted and not medically needed.

5. SB 1349 is fraudulent: Its Statement of Purpose says it's merely to provide information but its real purpose is to use the power of government to harass and intimidate, and force the author's religious agenda on all Idahoans.

--Paul D. Rolig,Boise

A few thoughts about Senate Bill 1349, the so called ultrasound abortion bill. The women that I know are completely capable of making decisions about child bearing and their health without the State of Idaho weighing in. The women that I know are capable of considering all of the factors of having sex, of getting pregnant, of raising a family. I am sure that they think of these matters in ways that men do not. They are capable of consulting their partners, their mothers, their dads, their support system to make a good decision. In no way do they need the State of Idaho involved to make that decision.

You see, it is about trust, it is about having faith in individuals, it is about having faith in women. It is also about freedom. Freedom is indeed about trusting people to make their own choices. That level of trust is a conservative value. Allowing people the freedom to make their own choices is a core American value, it is an Idaho value.

As men, we can and do influence the women in our lives. We do that as husbands, dads, brothers. And amazingly, the women that I know listen. They listen, they share with each other in ways that are deep and meaningful, and they make good decisions.

SB 1349 is a slap in the face of our partners, of the women and men in Idaho. I am absolutely sure that my family, my loved ones are capable of choosing for themselves the right thing to do. Capable of that decision without the State of Idaho imposing its opinion on us. It is that simple. We can choose and we do not need the help of a bunch of politicians to make a good choice. The women of Idaho can make the right choice without unknown politicians helping them. If they need help, they know where to get it. Trust them.

I urge you to vote no on SB 1349. Instead, focus your energies on improving our economy. Keep your eye on that ball.

: --Bill Amaya,Hailey

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