Mail April 2-8, 2008 

Get a spine, council

My father, a smoker, died of lung cancer on March 16, 2008, at the age of 66. Now I am disgusted to read that the Boise City Council will not support a smoking ban in Boise bars (BW, News, "City Council: Puff Away," March 26, 2008). These so-called community "leaders" need to look at the facts and stop with their pathetic excuses. Cigarettes are nothing more than coffin nails, and it is time for the people of this country to stand up and fight the tobacco companies that manufacture this addictive poison. It is time we put our foot down and say that smoking is an unacceptable and intolerable form of suicide.

The Boise City Council should be sending a united message to the young people of our community that aren't yet hooked on those revolting cancer sticks. Instead, the Boise City Council is burying their heads in the sand and claiming that Boise bars will suffer economically. Really? Maybe the Boise City Council should take a closer look at the statistics in California and New York since the ban of bar-smoking. And anyway, "economic impact" is really just a way of saying "we desperately need the smoker's money to sustain our economy."

Boise City Council: Shame on you. Stand up for your beliefs and stop cowering in the corner because you are afraid you will lose a few votes. Think of the young people who need your leadership.

On behalf of my father, I look forward to the day I can have a drink in a smoke-free bar in Boise. I hope that day comes soon.

—Kristi Brumley, Star

Cope's The Nut

Bill must think all sane people believe as he does (BW, Opinion, Cope, "Taking Another Stab At," March 26, 2008). Are the rest of us insane? His article indicates myself, many elected officials, hunters and virtually any person that owns a gun is an insane law-breaker. Also, just who is it that tries to "impress us with their horrible, absurd ideas of ways to impress us with their firearms studliness." Does he mean that guns are used to enhance male performance—like Viagra, or are they symbolic of something else?

I see no reference for his 60,000 Americans being shot last year and can't help but question how many of the killed were unarmed sheep as he might want all of us to be. Bill, you might also want to see how many of these deaths were caused by armed, law-bidding U.S. citizens vs. criminals and "undocumented" workers, their kids or the gangs they belong to. You might also want to understand the effects of drugs on those numbers and quit picking on the drinkers. (Drinking is legal, you know.)

Bill, criminals don't have legal guns. You and the people that agree with you are in fact the nuts in this country. If you were to win, the United States would become not unlike a slaughterhouse where the cows (people) are led in and killed without any means to fight back. Do you think that the United States would even be, if our founders were as nuts as you? You need to think some about the fact that if we were not free, if we were in fact as disarmed as you want us to be, just how long would you still have the freedom to write your insane articles? About the first time you insulted the wrong person, you would be digging ditches if you lived through it. Be thankful for guns. They enable you to continue.

—Chris Jones, Boise

Just Another Bigot

Apparently, Cope is not aware that in Idaho it is legal to carry concealed weapons, including firearms, in bars. It has been that way for quite some time. Perhaps Cope would like to provide the statistics on how that has been a disaster? Or better yet, answer just one question: Can you demonstrate one time or place, throughout all history, where the average person was made safer by restricting access to handheld weapons?

Until that question can be answered in the affirmative, editorials like this should be given all the "respect" of some KKK member ranting about blacks eating at the same restaurant as whites and Jews controlling the world. All appearances are that Bill Cope is just another bigot who has no concern for the truth and has an unfounded bias against gun owners.

—Joe Huffman, north-central Idaho, via online

Guilty as Charged

I myself am a gun-toting, Tennessee redneck so I must say, I resemble that remark. However, (as usual) this armchair, gun-grabbing reporter doesn't have his facts straight. If I'm not mistaken, the recent gun legislation, which would allow law-abiding, concealed-carry permit holders into places that serve alcohol, was referring to establishments that earn the majority of their revenue through food sales. These places also, (just so happen) to serve alcohol. The proposed law's intention was to make it possible for a man and his family to patronize these establishments for a nice meal, without having to give up his right to protect that family, should an armed robber decide to come in and terrorize the place. It would still remain illegal to consume alcohol, while carrying your weapon. So why should I have to go disarmed in public when all I want is a pleasant dinner out, with my wife?

As usual people who would attempt to take away your Constitutional rights have to rely on grade-school tactics like name calling, (when the facts of the situation simply don't square, with their ill-conceived notions). Whatever happened to fair and balanced reporting...or checking one's facts first, before the so-called journalist spews forth his bile? It just makes you look incompetent.

—Zulu Cowboy,

online

No Thanks, Sali

On March 12, 2008, the U.S. House failed to pass HR 5563, the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education act. The Act would have created several new programs, including 1) a summer service program for middle- and high-school students, 2) a Silver Scholarship Program to provide $1,000 educational grants to people age 55 and over who volunteer at least 600 hours a year, and 3) a "reserve corps" of AmeriCorps alumni to help during national emergencies. Rep. Sali joined 139 other Republicans to vote no with the minority. The bill lost by one vote. Comments are not needed to describe the harm that Rep. Sali inflicted on America with his vote.

—Dick Artley, Grangeville

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