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Community Forum: Nation should take steps to limit warfare
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Last week, Trevor Thomas wrote a piece in The Times that states in its first paragraph that the war in Iraq was both just and necessary. He makes his case for just war by using scriptural precedents of violence and invoking the founders.

The column ends bizarrely with a quote from C.S. Lewis stating that it is our Christian obligation to think well of our enemies even as we destroy them, as if God's intention is for us to love our neighbor, especially as we bash his brains in!

The ongoing conflict in Iraq was presented to the American people on three bases, which have all been thoroughly discredited. The true motive for the war seems closer to profiteering. As far as I can tell, the only Americans to gain from this conflict have been suppliers of the U.S. military and contractors paid to rebuild infrastructure.

I applaud the two senators who have followed in Harry Truman's footsteps to organize hearings in 2009 which promise to shed light on the scope of the enormous fraud perpetrated upon us.

The evil done has been great. Military personnel have been asked to bear enormous burden, serving three and four combat tours, for we have not seen fit to be bothered with a draft. Distracted authorities have left our economy open to collapse. Innocent civilians in foreign lands have been massacred, and a hostile nation, Iran, has gained greater supremacy in the Middle East.

War is never the clear-cut moral affair that some would have us believe and it is rarely renewing to the spirit. Warfare is a morally degrading, materially depriving and mind-numbing endeavor that should be reserved for instances where the lives of Americans are eminently threatened and defendable.

To avoid future presidential adventures we must take three simple steps. We must first agree to combat terrorism with ruthless police work at home and in cooperation with foreign allies. War, in all places at all times, is as ridiculous as it is unfeasible.

It must also be illegal for former holders of public office to accept money from companies engaged in the sale of weapons or military supplies. This would lessen pay-for-play influence on strategic decisions, i.e., give us this war and you'll have a great salary when you get out of government. It is now standard to funnel such influence through corporate board positions or salaries from "think tanks."

Most importantly our military budget must be drastically reduced. The most notable founders of our country had a healthy distaste for foreign war, which American Christians have staunchly upheld for most of our history. Professional armies have a way of protecting their purse. With such lavish funding for the generals, how are we to pay for our socialist welfare system of Social Security and Medicare, not to mention the debt being currently mounted on our shoulders to hold the industrial system upright?

Just or unjust as it may be, we can no longer afford to experiment with world domination by force.

Jessie L. Corn
Gainesville

US must stand up for right against evil
On Nov. 19, The Times carried one of the best written letters that I have read in a long time. The heading was: "Judges were reason for vote against Obama," written by Bethel Midgett.

I read the letter several times because it was just that good. To me, it let us know that someone still cares. And it also let us know that all Americans aren't satisfied with the direction that our nation is headed today.

Yes, we really need to change the direction in which we are traveling. I think if we really changed our way of living, many other things would automatically change.

I have wanted to write on this issue since the election, but for several reasons I have held my piece. I waited to see if anyone felt as bad as I did when there are so many people who know that America's need is not more sin, but help from a leader who is willing to go against some of this that we already have. An evil nation or society cannot fare well without the help of our creator. We cannot serve him well if we continue to legalize evil.

It has been 35 long years that killing unborn babies has been legal and no one has been able to stop it. It seems very unlikely that we will get any help from our next president since he has promised to keep it legal to continue to kill them before birth.

I don't see how we, as a nation, can expect anything good to come our way when we continue to go contrary to what is morally right, according to God's word. There are things that we must follow to keep in line with what is right. The time could come that we could become serious and want God to help us to stop the evil things surrounding us, but he could turn a deaf ear, as many are doing to him today. We know what is right, but many of us are just as deaf as nonbelievers when it comes to doing what is right.

Without the help of so-called believers or Christians who are shallow with no root, it would be impossible for wrong to succeed as it is doing. In many cases, many people who attend church regularly don't have what it takes to know when the church should not participate in a certain thing, especially if it is wrong or will produce bad fruit.

Many may have fallen prey in the last election not really knowing a Christian's responsibility, or the responsibility of any good well-meaning person.

Jesse Jenkins
Gainesville

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