Readers Write (Dec. 8): Mandela, Southwest LRT, Obamacare, accused priests, veterans

  • Updated: December 7, 2013 - 4:52 PM

None of today’s ‘leaders’ comes close to matching him as a uniting force of good.

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MANDELA

We desperately need more just like him

One can’t help notice the stark difference between the life and career of Nelson Mandela and those of our elected political officials. While Mandela did the impossible by bringing black and white together in South Africa, our nation remains deeply racially divided and, in fact, one could make a case that the right wing is conducting a form of economic and political genocide against blacks and the other poor who vote against them by slashing life-giving food stamp assistance and the U.S. Supreme Court decimating the Voting Rights Act of 1965, among other nefarious acts.

No one in national political office today nor those seeking it has even a glimmer of the brilliance of Mandela’s unifying leadership. And none of them will be mourned as Mandela is by the thousands gathering at his house to sing and cry and pray for their “greatest son,” as President Zuma describes him. I hope young people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds will study Mandela’s life and will try to emulate him. Emergence of such a unifying national leader, son or daughter, cannot come too soon.

WILLARD B. SHAPIRA, Roseville

• • •

There was Jesus Christ and there was Abraham Lincoln, and then there was Nelson Mandela.

LUKE MASS, Edina

SOUTHWEST LIGHT RAIL

Protecting privilege instead of transit for all

Your story on the privileges afforded the folks on Park Lane by the Park Board at Cedar Lake strikes a nerve. Like the neighbor quoted in the story, I pay my property taxes and maintain the public space in front of my house. When do I get my exclusive lakeshore access, private dock, free buoy for my boat and park space for my boat trailer? All of which neighbors receive with silent knowledge and approval of the Park Board.

Now these privileged few want to block an important regional transportation facility proposed to be located on an existing transportation corridor. Only when the public speaks out will this private monopoly on regionally funded facilities end.

TIM BROWN, Minneapolis

OBAMACARE

On contraception, whose values matter?

Your editorial disagreed with a company’s desire to challenge the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage (“Religion as a sword in the ACA debate,” Dec. 1).

When a law intrudes on religious freedom, the law is wrong — not the company. Business owners Stuart Lind and Tom Janas each started their respective companies to provide jobs for people. When a person agrees to work for that company, they agree to abide by the company’s rules and guidelines.

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