The Planet is only printing letters from locals regarding the ruling on the Marine Recruitment Station. Some of these letters were sent prior to the Feb. 12 City Council meeting and thus do not reflect the council’s most recent ruling.
Signed letters from non-locals and letters addressed to third parties will be published on our website. Unsigned letters will not be published.
Imagine...Life Without Freedom
Welcome to My America, Land of the Free and Home of the Brave. Thank you to the recruiters who signed on the service men & women who are protecting this great land. Thank you also to all of the veterans, past, present, & future for defending my freedoms. Thank you Code Pink & Berkeley City Council for drawing world attention to protesting. That is your United States Constitutional right. If only God and our politicians could write PEACE into the United States Constitution with legal binding effect on all nations, then, and only then, will the Price of Freedom be Truly Free.
When you Berkeley ladies drive, walk or gather in public places without a male escort, imagine looking over your shoulder waiting for the rape posse to attack. Imagine looking out the small hole of your burka knowing that you lost your freedom because you did not support the Military. When you cast your vote for your next politician, imagine looking into the barrel of a rifle waiting to end your short life here in America. And to all you Berkeley men & women, with all the religions here in America, imagine only being able to worship Allah because if you don’t, you will surely be beheaded! Your castles are no longer protected and are now owned by the rulers. You have no privacy, no rights, no money, and no ability to defend yourselves. When that big national disaster hits & your homes are destroyed, who is coming to save you, the Marines, the Army, the National Guard? Oooops, you forgot you ran them out of your city. Thomas Jefferson said “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” Now Berkeley, you can be ignorant all you want, but are you ready to pay the price with the loss of your freedom?
Now, I don’t care if ya support the War On Terror or any subsequent wars to follow, you better support the Military, or you won’t have any Freedoms at all. The Price of Freedom is Written on The Wall…
Kathy L. Varner
Flat Rock, North Carolina
I have concluded that a large portion of the population of Berkley, California is either irrational or extremely selfish. For those not up on the situation in Berkeley let me state a quick summary. Several groups have taken to having demonstrations in front of the local Marine Recruiting Center. The city’s town council response has been to give demonstrators special parking privileges and passing resolutions against the Recruiting Center. Therefore, this situation has led me to my conclusion. Moreover, these are my arguments for those conclusions.
Some of the demonstrators claim to be anti-war. I have no problem with that, but if they are anti-war why are they demonstrating in front of a recruiting office. You just as well demonstrate in front of the post office because recruiters have as much to do with policy as do postal people, or for that matter you and I. Even the Joint Chiefs of Staff serve only as advisors. It is Congress and the administration set policy. Therefore, it would make more since to demonstrate in front of Speaker of the House’s, Nancy Pelosi, office. Which I believe is just down the road.
Other demonstrators appear to be against the recruiters themselves. They state that they lie to prospective recruits but they offer no proof. Further, they generalize that if one recruiter lies then all recruiters lie, which is the same, rational that people use to say all Catholics are drunks, all Jews are greedy, or all Muslims are terrorists. This group also complains that the Marine Corp spends billions of dollars on propaganda, sometimes know as advertising. The tobacco, alcohol, and auto industries also spend billions of dollars in propaganda and any one of these cause far more death, injury, and pain than do the Marines. So why not protest at their local tobacco store, bar, or used car dealer?
These two groups will claim that they are not anti-military. However, the fact is that their actions are more against the military than they are against the war says different. Being anti-military is probably the most irrational thing of all. Consider there is not a nation in the world, at least to my knowledge, that does not have some sort of military institution. This includes democracies and dictatorships. It includes communist, socialist, and capitalist countries, and everything in between. Even Vatican City has the Swiss Guard. So why shouldn’t we?
We have looked at three different rationales for the actions in Berkeley but as you can see they actually not rational at all. However, there is a possible fourth reason for the demonstration and it is very rational. It is pure and simple selfishness.
Both demonstrators and council members when confronted about the situation claim they are not anti-military. Therefore, if they are not anti-military but they do want the recruiting office closed that only leaves one option open. They do not mind if other young men and women sign up but their young people are not to be given that opportunity. That is to say, the youth of New York and Los Angeles can serve. As can the youth of Miami, St. Louis, Houston, Denver and even Gillette, Wyoming. However, the youth of Berkeley, California are above all that.
John F. Kennedy once said, "my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you -- ask what you can do for your country." Perhaps, the people of Berkley need to reassess their situation and decide whether they are Americans or not.
Rodger L. Solomon
No need for Comedy Shows, just watch Berkeley toot its tiny horn. Two thousand letters for the Council’s edict on the Marines, twenty-four thousand letters against. That would make Berkeley’s City Council a sickly guppy in the ocean of life.
The nationally reported antics in Berkeley over the USMC recruiting station re-enforced the opinion of lots of ordinary Americans that the city is full of a bunch of foolish people. We know better than that. Berkeley has a superb university and is one of the intellectual centers of the nation. I have friends and in-laws who are graduates of that superb university. They certainly are not foolish people.
I was in Viet Nam. I went there from Travis Air Force base in California. I joined the anti-war movement after coming back. I was in California working for Senator McCarthy's campaign when Bobby Kennedy was murdered. I stood in the Berkeley library and watched student riots in the streets outside. I was in Haight-Ashbury and saw the lives being ruined by the first methamphetamine epidemic. I was in the farm fields of the central valley and saw the exploitation of the farm workers first hand.
But I also was amazed to see Berkeley women who'd had multiple abortions calling returning soldiers 'baby killers'.
My son-in-law served in Afghanistan and Iraq. He is now a deputy sheriff in Sacramento County. His family emigrated from Cambodia. That is, the few of them who survived. Most were murdered in Pol Pot's death camps. Just like your recently passed great legislator, Tom Lantos, my son-in-law has a high-voltage heightened sensitivity to the power of evil in this world based on very personal experience. He was profoundly offended by the recent actions of the Berkeley City Council.
And you know what? Even I, who was against the Viet Nam war and am against the Iraq war, was profoundly offended by the City. Without our military and police forces, what protection do we have from the forces of evil? The Marines didn't start the war in Iraq. That was done by a bunch of inept politicians. Remember that 9/11 did happen, and that we are in a long-term war whether we want to be or not. You should thank God that there are still enough patriotic Americans to be willing to serve in the military. Nobody expects there to be many of them coming from Berkeley. But Berkeley sure as heck expects to be protected by police and military forces.
To all of the political activists in Berkeley. For God's sake, there are holocausts going on all through Africa at this very minute. Do something really constructive and get involved in some way with that--at the very least do something to help feed the millions of refugees. Or try to help in some way to heal the lives of the hundreds of thousands of rape victims.
Berkeley activist. Hone your sense of perspective. Get relevant. Get moving.
Cochise County, Arizona
Retired U.S. federal officer