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Dear Editor,

There is much discussion about who is or is not a patriot.

Webster’s Dictionary defines patriot as a person who loves, supports, and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion.



It defines defend as, 1. to ward off attack from: Guard against assault or injury. 2. to maintain by argument, evidence, etc.

Most of us regard our servicemen and women as patriots, but what about those of us who have not served. Can we be patriots?



Fifty-six men signed the Declaration of Independence. Sixteen served in the Continental Army, the remaining in various non-military functions, i.e. fund-raising, securing commodities and armaments, maintaining public support, running the provisional government, etc.

I haven’t served in the armed forces but deem myself patriot. Altruistic commitments by military personnel help secure our liberties, but when the governed exercise their patriotic duty by weighing facts and voicing opinions, a synergetic atmosphere for conflict resolution emerges.

America may go to war, possibly alone, to arrest global terrorism, maintain homeland security, free the oppressed, and protect vital interests.

Saddam sponsors world terrorism by financing suicide bombings and threatens our security through proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and delivery systems. He is a conscienceless tyrant who crushes his subjects at will.

Our vital interests include fostering access to a reliable energy source to the economic benefit of all Iraqi peoples.

Regime change now seems preferable to dire confrontation in the future. Differing and opposing views, however, should not be branded as unpatriotic.

Henry Nordsiek

Glenwood Springs

Dear Editor:

In 1996, the IRS began issuing Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers to illegal immigrants as a way to encourage compliance with tax laws, since they are not eligible to receive a Social Security card (of course many are obtained illegally).

As of October 2002, over 5.5 million ITINs had been issued. But only 1.5 million tax returns were actually filed using the number. This suggests that the ITIN is being used as an ID card to obtain driver’s licenses, bank accounts, and government services, not to file tax returns. Ms. Patricia Gutierrez, who says she prepares taxes for these illegals, says “they are trying their best to stay within the laws of the United States.”

I submit that is an impossibility since, No. 1, the ITIN is only issued to illegals, as is the Matricular Consular card. No. 2, how can you try to stay within the law when you broke the law getting here? An oxymoron if I ever saw one.

Why do Americans continue to absorb 600,000 illegals each year (approaching 9 million here now)? When will they say enough? Who knows.

Perhaps when our social services divisions are broke. Perhaps when we are forced to speak a foreign language in every state west of the Rockies just to buy a hamburger.

What can we do? Well for starters, the next time you’re given a Matricular Card or ITIN for ID, pick up the phone, call the INS. The person giving you that card is a here illegally and therefore a criminal.

Bob Anderson

Glenwood Springs

Dear Editor,

The American public cannot continue to suckle the milk of racism, death, and destruction that we are being fed daily by the government-censored media, which is manipulating and paralyzing our society with mortal fear.

President Bush has said that he hears our protests, but they will have no effect on his resolve. In a society, “of the people, by the people, for the people” – that is the wrong answer!

This is not “Father Knows Best.” We are not his children. He is not responsible for us, but responsible to us. This is revolution!

For too long we have lived in a society where rebels have become outcasts, idealism has become unpatriotic, and capitalism has become our God.

The Bush administration is forcing a foreign policy of wholesale murder of a nation and its people down my throat, against my will!

America was born of rebellion. Our response to President Bush must ring with the spirit of our revolutionary forefathers. Not the kind of revolution that is fought with “weapons of mass destruction,” but the kind that is born from clarity of conscience.

Hemingway wrote: “Any man’s death diminishes me because I am involved in mankind.”

What is our country involved in? Where are our current leaders leading us?

As a theater artist, I believe in the power of human beings to create alternative realities. I dream of a world where the best and noblest traits are unlocked from the human soul; where understanding replaces ignorance; compassion replaces tyranny; and where there is liberty and justice for ALL!

Kathryn Preston

Carbondale


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