Robert Herold's commentary, "The Last Big Issue" (11/4/04), on the position of the Religious Right in George W. Bush's re-election raises an issue he fails to address, namely that if John Kerry had been elected he would be thanking a number of other notable organized groups: Fee-Hungry Lawyers, the Disgusting Hollywood Clique, and assorted Disgruntled Billionaires.
Herold apparently thinks that the influence of people of faith is somehow dangerous for the republic, and that they will somehow exert an inimical pressure on Bush's presidency. I for one prefer to see the influence of faith acted out in our policies than the sensibilities of the power blocs favoring Kerry getting the upper hand.
As for the issue of divisiveness, is this country more divided after an election in which the winner won 51 percent to 48 percent of the popular vote and a commanding majority of the electoral votes, or when Clinton was elected with 48 percent? It seems Democrats likes to cry "divisiveness" when they lose. They need to figure out why they are losing.
John A. Peterson
Skaggs' Other Career
I served as Sgt. Erik Skaggs' commanding officer during an 11-month combat tour in the Middle East. Erik and I worked together each day: We withstood the same long hours, endured the same godforsaken heat, slept in the same wind and dust-battered tents, and pursued the same al Qaeda terrorists. Erik's sense of honor, devotion to duty and ability to build relationships with foreign and U.S. government officials greatly contributed to our success. Erik was instrumental in stopping an al Qaeda cell targeting innocent civilians in East Africa. Erik's influence earned numerous accolades from officials of numerous U.S. agencies, general officers and subordinates alike. Simply put, Erik's actions saved lives.
My 12 years in the Army has brought me face-to-face with hundreds of high-quality men and women of Erik's rank. None of these individuals touched Erik's leadership, innovative thinking ability and character.
I read the two Spokesman-Review pieces pertaining to Erik Skaggs and emphatically disagree with their premise. Terms like duty, honor and selflessness epitomize the Erik I served with. I know he will perform to the same high standard at his new job and wish him the best.