Godless intolerance no help for the homeless

Many people have problems with compassion and tolerance ("Homeless shelter failed, so let's try bus tickets," Dec. 13). These problems become obvious when they talk about the homeless.

God is loving, compassionate and tolerant to all. When these people discuss homelessness they are not living God.

God does not pick and choose who deserves compassion and tolerance. Many people think they speak for God and choose who deserves compassion and tolerance.

God is spiritual and our petty human beliefs have nothing to do with God. God is loving, kind, compassionate and tolerant, and material wealth means nothing to God.

If a homeless person lives God, that person is more worthy of God than those who judge the homeless. If we are truly living spiritual reflections of God, then our task is to learn how to reflect the attributes of God and serve God, not judge our fellows.

Miriam Felt, Crescent City

Christ's birth shows why to help homeless

Like many fellow Del Norters, my heart was warmed by the story "Secret Santa's Big Gift," Dec. 13. I would like to thank that kind individual for her generous gift to our community. You touched us all.

With my next breath, I'd like to condemn the sentiments of Jack Brown, who wrote the Dec. 13 letter to the editor "Homeless shelter failed, so let's try bus tickets."

It has been galling me all day that such a person pretends to speak for all of us, claiming to express what others "don't have the nerve to say." Not so.

This community embraces hard work and grit, but it also embraces charity. We understand that many people have come on hard economic times. We know it could happen to us.

It is Christmas and a good time to remember the story of a child who was born in a stable for want of a home. I wonder what he would think of your bus ticket idea, Mr. Brown. Mr. Brown says, "just let them stay at your house." He doesn't seem to get it - they're already there.

For many, many Del Norters are right now hosting friends and family who cannot afford a home. A friend of mine who cleans houses just told me she's taken in an entire family, bless her heart.

While we all may find it challenging at times to work up sympathy for 20-something panhandlers who look for all the world like they could do a good day's work, we have to remind ourselves that while some homeless people look healthy and hale, they often suffer mental illnesses and crippling addictions. And most of the homeless people in our community are invisible to us because they're not begging - they are children, members of the working poor, and veterans.

Going beyond shelters and finding permanent homes for them is really the best solution. Not only is it more humane, but it will save our community a great deal of money in the long run, especially on health-care costs. That homeless boy born in a stable more than 2,000 years ago once said, "Whatever you do for the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you do for me."

When I have uncharitable thoughts, Mr. Brown, as I am now having toward you, I try to keep that in mind.

Ruth Rhodes, Crescent City

There's no long-term fix for homelessness

The timeless call for solutions for the homeless will never end ("Homeless shelter concept," Dec. 11).

There is no solution! No amount of private or public funding or actions will solve it. California alone has 133,000 homeless with $5.5 billion in "public aid" and it only gets worse.

The homeless result from physical illness or injury; disabilities, unemployment or underemployment; developmental disorders and mental illnesses; lifestyle ideological conflicts, sexual, physical and emotional abuse; parental ideology conflicts, and many other reasons not easily defined.

Money and shelters help few of the problems long range. If you choose to help, provide guidance to where to get help. Point out local help offices (HUD) and charities. Help fill out job or assistance applications.

Responding to "begging" signs encourages and prolongs that activity. Suggesting that local businesses donate money, materials or services is well meaning but shifts responsibility away from taxpayer-funded servicespaidto solve problems with our tax money.

Bob Douglas, Smith River

Too many mean people; teach our kids manners

Why are people so mean? Why do people pretend to be your friend, when in fact they are not? They are fake.

For those of you who know me, know that I am as real as they come. I don't play games. If I like you or not I will tell you.

I was raised to be a good friend and treat others as I would like to be treated. Why have people drifted away from this well-taught manner?

I just want to thank the parents out there that instill this great trait into their children, and for those of you who don't, you should really try. Thank you for your time.

Lisa Camarena, Crescent City

Landslide raises questionof building a bypass

With this latest landslide on U.S. Highway 101 ("It comes with the territory," Dec. 8), I am wondering if it may take us closer to getting a bypass?

If anyone knows history they would recall how part of the road slid out many years ago and lives were lost. This of course happened at a section of 101 that every year is being fixed. The ground is sinking and the cliff is wearing away.

Now this latest slide close to Crescent City did not hurt anyone, yet it could of if anyone had been there at the right time.

Old growth trees will fall down. Redwood trees not having a deep root system are susceptible to falling down before other trees, right? Then of course we have the widow maker, which could happen anytime in a bad storm.

The bypass going south has made a big difference for us travelers who live in Klamath and Crescent City who need to get from here to there, sometimes in a hurry. If the tourists do wish to drive slower than we are used to, we do have an easier route now other than Prairie Creek.

Trees are a renewable resource. Trees are beautiful to look at and so on and so on. But people cannot be replaced. The road is getting worse in so many places that we need to get a bypass away from the weak points.

Living in Klamath or Crescent City could mean being cut off from each other if we have more trees falling or even the road sliding down again. And again, to think of the people that lost their life as their car went down off of 101 scares me. Does anyone else see the sinking road that is being fixed every year?

Nancy Del Ponte, Klamath

House candidate: Thanks for votes

Now that the vote count is final, I take this opportunity to thank the 82,000 voters who placed their confidence in me as a candidate for Congress in the 2nd District.

I promised that I would be conservative fiscally and moderate on all social issues, that I would call for smaller federal government leaving more for private sector economic recovery and job creation. I prefer less spending, lower taxes and less regulation; however the electorate chose to support my opponent who, in contrast, offered more of the same: more free stuff and expanded dependency on government.

As to the future, I and my supporters need to act as loyal opposition in the years ahead. For the most part I and fellow conservatives will watch with vigilance the difficult votes which will further define the liberal victor in this race.

Finally, and I trust this will not come to pass, if liberals have their way the next four years will mirror FDR's 1937 through 1941, when he increased taxes during a weak recovery and so pushed this nation into four more years of recession.

In conclusion, we thank Jared Huffman for agreeing to appear in five debates during the campaign, and he should know that he will continue to have our attention over the next months and years ahead.

Dan Roberts, San Francisco

Editor's note: Because of redistricting, Del Norte County moves from the 1st to the 2nd Congressional District next month.