Gay Marriage, Catholic Bishops and Children; Afghanistan; More Latino Politics; Google Books + Freelance Settlements; North Beach Library’s Disabled Access …

by on September 30, 2009

To the Editor:

Re: your coverage on Maine Question 1, I wrote a comment to a news article in the Bangor Daily News about Maine’s Catholic Bishop Malone’s antigay statement, in support of Marriage Equality and challenging the his ignorance about human sexuality and the Bible.

“Same-sex marriage is a dangerous sociological experiment that many of us believe will have negative consequences for society as a whole,” said [Bishop] Malone in the message, according to the Bangor Daily News. “Children need the love of a mother and a father.”

This statement is cruel and untrue. People against Marriage Equality do not base their public statements on facts either from science or the Bible. It is a repeat of the time the Vatican was condemning Galileo, because they insisted that Galileo was going against the bible that it is the sun that revolves around the Earth.

Children need people who are honest and truthful. Children are not safe around people who publicly speak out against Marriage Equality, because in truth these people have had no formal study in human sexuality or the Bible and yet they without any intellectual thought speak out and harm innocent people. This is irresponsible adult behavior, which is harmful for children to witness. This has been proven to have “negative consequences” for children, consult developmental psychology.

With all due respect, it is without a question that Bishop Malone would not be able to pass graduate course exams on human sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender identity or biblical studies. Prove me wrong!!!

And if Bishop Malone cannot pass these exams today, than before God he needs to publically retract what he said against Marriage Equality. If not, then Bishop Malone needs to go back to the seminary to study moral theology.

The best for well-being and safety of all children would be if people against Marriage Equality spent their money to academically study human sexuality, sexual orientation, gender identity and the bible. This is what children need the truth. People speaking out on such life and death issues should not speak out of ignorance and fear, thus spreading hatred and violence that indiscriminately is severely harmful to all children.

The truth will set you free – not ignorance and fear.

Father Marty Kurylowicz

To the Editor:

Former President Jimmy Carter, who has monitored elections around the world, stated that “Hamid Karzai has stolen the recent [Afghan] election.” Because of widespread fraud allegations, an election recount is presently being conducted. At a minimum, President Obama should not make any decision on sending more troops to Afghanistan until a new Afghan government is in place. If the new Afghan election is again a corrupt Karzai government, then you cannot ask the American people to sacrifice more American lives and billions of dollars to support for a corrupt government.

Americans are already turning against the war in Afghanistan. A recent USA TODAY/Gallup Poll shows, 50% of all Americans, and six in 10 Democrats, oppose sending more troops to Afghanistan.

What kind of “surge” is contemplated? if the soldiers are going to maintain order and to reach out to the people in an accommodating way, that’s one thing. If the soldiers are going in there to greatly escalate our military attacks, then I think that would be a mistake.

We are not winning the War in Afghanistan and at what cost? The War (2001-present) has cost the lives of 830 Americans due to hostile and non-hostile actions in the War in Afghanistan and the cost exceeds $227 billion. In addition, the War has caused the deaths of thousands of Afghan civilians directly from insurgent and foreign military action, as well as the deaths of possibly tens of thousands of Afghan civilians indirectly as a consequence of displacement, starvation, disease, exposure, lack of medical treatment, crime and lawlessness resulting from the war.

I am not optimistic that Afghanistan will ever become a functioning government. Thus, a “surge” is unlikely to result in a sustainable military victory. It is time to cut our losses.

Ralph E. Stone
San Francisco

To the Editor:

Excellent picture of where Latino are on the USA radar: INVISIBLE. Whose fault is this? Ours. For allowing this to happen. We need to start becoming the “squeeky wheel.”

Jose Armas

To the Editor:

Gee, it’s deja vu all over again. Maybe because Irvin Muchnick and I agree so often, I think he is brilliant. Licensing agencies ARE the only sufficient solution. When I drafted the statement of the National Writers Union on orphan works, that was its principal point. I think I might have added that failure to register a new work with a licensing agency could prevent the rightsholder from claiming damages for infringement, but (a) how would that jibe with international IP agreements and (b) that sort of requirement couldn’t be imposed on past works. So what is the solution for past works? Maybe, once registries are in place, a five-year period during which rightsholders can register their past works and no one may use them without agreement. Then, the new regime kicks in.

Mike Bradley

Dear Mr. Planthold:

Your article lumps all preservationists as anti-ADA compliant people. I disagree whole-heartedly with your review. The Appleton-Wolfard Libraries are a non-continuous district representative of a time when libraries were made more democratic, open, light, landscaped, and accessible as a system to all. They all have accessibility issues, but when ADA compliance RUINS a building, its concept, or its features, it is important to look at alternatives to what is proposed.

The SF Planning Dept. issued a Cat-Ex. on all the libraries which was inappropriate without preservationist input. Likewise you would be opposed if your view was not presented as a person concerned with ADA compliance, many preservationists were concerned about how little preservation, or sustainable adaptive re-use was included in the proposed demolitions and additions. In the Merced branch addition, a staff room, ADA compliant bathrooms, and a shifted entry design that ruins a simple low-scaled design is a concern, when options are not explored.

A large new library facility built across 19th avenue on perhaps the Stonestown site, would have been an excellent option to provide much more improved ADA access, and amenities, the current plans if you have looked carefully appear to include many more “pinch” points in terms of circulation and huge increases in stacks in the Merced branch that will prohibit proper circulation for wheel-chair users.

There is sometimes a need to build a NEW facility off-site over the packing in of ADA or other issues in a small scale library. There is a need to adequately address the FUTURE population size in terms of the number of future users as well. Which primarily will NOT be only ADA users.

Preservation is the sustainable adaptive re-use of buildings, and ADA compliance is about giving equal access to ALL portions of facilities built. The work being done by the BLIP program touts its efficient use of bond money for seismic and ADA compliance, yet it is obvious that the process circumvented true preservation and sustainable goals of AB-093 and our cities green ordinance. As an architect, I am 100% for disabled access, but at Merced the circulation desk cannot even see the entrance to the restrooms, or main entry, and as an architect that is inappropriate design, poorly reviewed, and inadequately takes into account the needs of back-room services, and ADA compliance over all other issues.

When the Merced branch is finished, we should go look at it together, and when you find the design satisfactory to your use, you can than help donate the money needed for the future library needed for the proposed increased population that the city envisions for district 7 in that neighborhood. In less than a few years, the money spent will be deemed wasted due to the inadequate review, and improper spending on ADA compliance that ruined a possible landmark library. I would have preferred that you gain a full new accessible facility than a half-baked re-working …

Aaron Goodman

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