As a regular reader of the Arkansas Times, I am in agreement with your editorials perhaps nine out of ten times. However, I have a number of objections to the editorial regarding the religious makeup of the Supreme Court.
First of all, your statement that the Catholic hierarchy rejects the separation of church and state can only be described as a stretch. You appear to be equating the abolition of abortion and support of public money to religious schools to the establishment of a state religion. While the Catholic Church has obviously been quite vocal in its belief that abortion should be illegal, I don't recall seeing much public advocacy among its hierarchy regarding funding its schools with public money. As one of those non-devout Catholics you mention in the editorial, I do not agree with the Church's public stance on abortion, but I also do not regard its stance as a rejection of the principle of separation of church and state.
Secondly, I am quite stunned that you believe a “Jewish seat” has been reserved on the Supreme Court. While it is true that there are currently two Jews on the court, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer, I don't recall either of their seats being reserved for them as Jews. If there is indeed a “Jewish seat” on the court, then what happened to that seat between 1969, when Abe Fortas resigned from the court, and 1993, when Ginsburg joined the court? This is the sort of nonsense I would expect from the Washington Times, not the Arkansas Times.
Finally, let me just say that I am extremely disappointed that the Arkansas Times, which I consider a competent voice of liberalism in an otherwise conservative state, would even publish such an editorial. After I read the editorial, I thought that maybe I had been taken back in time 50 years. There's not much difference between complaining about the number of Catholics on the Supreme Court in 2009 and wondering whether John Kennedy would take his orders from the Pope in 1960. In fact, this entire editorial could have been a reprint of something written during the 1960 presidential campaign.
Thomas G. May
North Little Rock
There he goes again
Assmunch (aka Bob Lancaster) is still favoring derogatory female words (whore-hopping) to describe a male politician unless, of course, he is saying the politician is a homosexual — in that case he is referring to a sleazy male who whore-hops around on pay-for-sex males.
Ask him to please clarify if he is referring to a man or woman in this instance.
I have a good job backed by a good union contract. But it wasn't always this way.
A few years ago, I worked for a contractor for low-voltage communications systems, i.e. nurse call systems, audio systems, etc. We had a union because the company wanted one, so it could bid on speci?c contracts with the VA Hospital. When the contracts ended, management got rid of the union.
Afterwards, some employees were forced out or left on their own because they didn't like how things had changed. At one point, I learned that a project I was assigned was a “wage scale” project. At the time we were not being paid according to the prevailing scale or compensated as required for travel expenses. When I brought this to the owner's attention, he was angry at me for bringing it up. My helper and I decided to begin looking for employment elsewhere.
Being a part of CWA is one of the highlights of my life, and I am proud today to be president of my local. I wish all workers who want to join a union had the chance I had. But unless the Employee Free Choice Act becomes law, most workers will never have the opportunity — not without daily harassment and threats from their bosses, and even the risk of being fired for standing up for their rights. That is not just unfair, it's un-American.
As a person who has grown up with parents in the union and a brother in the union, I am appalled by the mob-style of media tricks. We must reform the current system for how workers form a union because I have witnessed the positiveness of unions.
The principles of the Employee Free Choice Act are to allow the workers, not their employers, to choose how and when to form a union; enforce real penalties for employers who break the law, and ensure those who have chosen a union can actually secure a contract through neutral arbitrators. This bill will not eliminate secret ballot elections.
Passing the Employee Free Choice Act will provide better, more secure jobs, putting money back into our communities and in our pockets. I urge Sen. Lincoln and Sen. Pryor to support the basic principles as stated above. This will definitely get our economy working again.
We, as working people, need to push this for our generation and future generations. Don't let the corporations scare you with those commercials you see on television, they are not true.