Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
Thursday, May 30, 2013
If you love America, don’t trash it
I read with interest the article about the decline in the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Adopt-A-Highway Program (“Adopt-A-Highway: Left on the roadside,” May 19 new story).
I am part of a group that maintains an overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Roanoke as part of the Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Adopt-An-Overlook program.
It’s no secret that the national parks are in trouble, and I am glad to volunteer so staff can concentrate on major repairs.
The baffling part is why the public thinks highways and overlooks are one big, open-air garbage dump for their use?
We pick up innumerable bottles and cans, cigarette butts, bags and wrappers — even TV remotes, small appliances and all kinds of personal items. We see willful damage, too, including signs ripped out and tossed away.
We wouldn’t need these programs if citizens — who proclaim how much they love their country — would simply bag their garbage and toss in a garbage can. Better yet, recycle bottles and cans (which is what we do with the ones we pick up).
And why damage our parks for entertainment?
I am happy to give my time, but I’ll be happier when it is not needed.
Letting Jackson off the hook for bigotry
I was disgusted by the editorial “Contempt is not a Christian value” (May 24). The editorial downplays as “fair enough” some of the most overt bigotry by any recent candidate for Virginia office, as though Jackson’s faith — which reaps him votes — absolves him of wrongdoing and of any expectation of an apology.
Yet it expects him to apologize to other Christians for speaking in their name. Evidently Christians are the true victims of Christian homophobia.
Atheists are routinely accused of paving the way for Stalinism.
That’s an absurd accusation, but I certainly don’t mind condemning church-burnings (not to mention mass executions of Christians) when someone imagines I would support them.
Nor do I pretend that these acts victimize me or other atheists.
All decent Christians have the option of leaving the church and renouncing the label if they are unwilling to defend it from this kind of abuse. It’s on them if they do neither.
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