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Letters to The Tribune already show quick mixed reaction to completing the 10-year mission to eliminate Osama bin Laden. Celebrating success in taking out the head and symbol of al-Qaida (the base); bewailing the taking of human life, presumably including the taking of some three-thousand on our sovereign territory; fearing that cutting off the base will simply grow a new base; praising the president for finally pulling the trigger on a weapon created and refined before he was empowered to do so.
When the posturing over “unity” subsides, the government will have to return to thinking about rescue of an economy that has already run 13 trillion dollars down the road to failure. Some may then remember bin Laden’s 2004 video message restating his original mission statement, “We will continue our policy of bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy.”
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The long-term goal
Most realize the death of bin Laden will, mostly likely, have a negligible affect on our fight against terrorism. In our euphoria over his death, we should take a hard look at this past decade. Al-Qaida is most remembered for the destruction on 9/11. However, keep in mind that the long-term goal is the destruction of our country!
To that end, the attacks of 9/11 succeeded way beyond their wildest dreams. Our government took the bait and started wars based on lies and deceit instead of strategy and planning. We have paid the price. Funneling trillions of dollars into these wars has left our infrastructure in poor shape and will continue contributing to our debt.
Instead of investing in education and energy, we spent the future chasing nonexistent weapons of mass destruction and connections between Saddam and al-Qaida. Any progress against terrorism was made in spite of these wars, not because of them.
Until the USA changes its knee-jerk policies, we will decline as a world power and lose our ability as a force to do good in this troubled world. Ironically, this is exactly the terrorist goal.
San Luis Obispo
An unworthy story
Regarding the front page article in the May 4 paper on bin Laden being unarmed, neither were the thousands in the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001, and the subsequent tens of thousands of civilians in the years afterward.
This blatant attempt to set up the Navy SEALs as the fall guys should not be on the front page, and neither is it worthy of reporting on given the facts of history. This is sensationalism at its worst.
A sad closure
Members of the Altrusa Club of San Luis Obispo are very sad to see the closing of The Novel Experience bookshop.
The Altrusa has sponsored an annual essay writing contest at Hawthorne Elementary School since 1994. The Novel Experience provided the gift certificates, given as prizes, at a discount enabling us to give prizes to more students. In 2010, we presented 83 gift certificates to students. The students are always thrilled to be able to buy a book that will always be their own.
Goodbye, Novel Experience. We will miss you and appreciate your generosity over the past 16 years.
Literacy Project Chair, Altrusa Club of San Luis Obispo
Victims, not criminals
Just weeks ago, five members of Soroptimist International of San Luis Obispo attended a conference where a seminar and keynote speaker shared the same information featured on the Voices page of the April 27 Tribune.
Nicholas D. Kristof provided the same information given to more than 200 Soroptimist members: We are criminalizing young teenage girls, most who have left a very bad situation only to find themselves in a far worse life. These young girls should be considered child abuse victims, not criminals.
More than 1.6 million American children run away each year, and one in three of the female runaways will be recruited by a pimp within 48 hours of leaving home. Young, unhappy teens are easy to manipulate and control. This is an American tragedy, not just an international one. Human trafficking happens to children of families from all walks of life, income levels and races. We need to educate ourselves, update our laws and support services to decriminalize the victims and stop this abuse of our children, especially young girls.
President, Soroptimist International of San Luis Obispo
Regarding your recent stories: Why, in 2011, is it not immediately obvious to all Americans — black, white or any other ethnicity — that such things as the birther movement and the Arroyo Grande cross-burning are motivated by racism?
Diane W. Mayfield