Letters for May 8, 2014

Dirty secrets

Re “The organic food lie” (Feature story, Feb. 13):

In my opinion, it is necessary to genetically modify many of the fruits and vegetables we eat today. Along with the debate on the growing population and the need for more food and larger portions, much of the food you believe to be organic has already been modified. Have you ever gone to your local organic market or a Whole Foods and thought the corn you were serving with dinner was a healthy, organic portion for your family? Healthy: yes, non-modified organic: no. Corn wouldn’t exist today without the genetic modification of maize. A large portion of crops would die without stress modifications, or modifications made for security against pests. These modifications aren’t designed to harm us, they’re designed to aide the prosperity of the crops and the prosperity of our ever-growing population.

Taylor Seghesio


Believe nothing

Re “Why give up a good story?” (Upfront, May 1):

Ah, but what shall we believe? In my personal opinion, Harry Reid has the hand of the press, and I find it hard to believe the propaganda that is fed to us by the Democratic supporting press.

Christine Cederwood


Women and children first

Re “The battle of Bunkerville” (Let Freedom Ring, April 24):

My dad used to say, “You can tell a lot about a guy by the company he keeps, and who he looks up to.” You folks at the RN&R hired Brendan Trainor, a man who apparently perceives the severely racist welfare rancher Cliven Bundy to be a true American hero.

My daddy would definitely tell us that says a lot about you. As for Bundy’s refusal to pay the ridiculously low grazing fee of $1.35 per month per cow/calf pair, while becoming a millionaire in the process, is that what Trainor views as a model citizen? Yep, that’s right, folks, Bundy’s pals are willing to line their womenfolk up in the front of the shooting gallery against the U.S. government as human shields over a measley $8.10 per animal annual fee that most ranchers pay. That grazing fee has nothing to do with the tortoise. Is that what Trainor considers a true American value? They all seem like a bunch of misogynistic playground bully cowards to me. And Trainor looks up to these people?

Trainor might want to read up on how George Washingon squashed the Bundys of his day in the so-called “Whiskey Rebellion.” These chumps, who had the audacity to tar and feather federal tax collectors over a few gallons of whiskey, were rounded up swiftly by the real, government supervised U.S. militia, which is a very different thing than the violent, government hating anarchist fools that Trainor and his ilk call “militia” these days. At least one of these Whiskey rebels was hanged by the neck until dead, at the order of our first president.

But here’s the real rub: If any one of you had the extremely modest investigative skill set necessary to fact check Brendan’s perpetration of the thoroughly debunked but oft repeated myth that Harry and Rory Reid are in cahoots with a shadowy Chinese solar electric company who intend to build a plant on the very public land Bundy has been mooching off of, you’d have found that there is no such deal. The Chinese company gave up on trying to build any solar plant in southern Nevada a couple of years ago. Look it up on Snopes. It’s a blatant falsehood. But either the modest eighth grade skill set of fact checking apparently eludes you, which would indicate serious journalistic incompetence, or Trainor knows full well that the wild claims about the “spooky, shadowy Chinese solar electric company” and the Reids are blatantly incorrect and he is willfully perpetrating a lie, which you allowed him to publish. So, which is it? Are you incompetent, or are you willful liars, abetting the felonious, treasonous cause of a racist, wealthy, bloodthirsty, anarchist welfare rancher? Because those are the only two options here. How can you even look at yourselves in the mirror?

Chris Rosamond

Truckee, Calif.

Editor’s note: We look at ourselves with pride. Trainor wrote, “News reports surfaced that the real reason for wanting to force Southern Nevada’s last cattle rancher off the land his family has worked for a century was not grazing fees or tortoises but a sweetheart deal involving Reid’s son Rory and Chinese solar energy developers who covet Bundy’s land.” We included links to some of the news stories that surfaced. He made no claim that the Fox News story was true, and deciding what information to include in an argument is part of rhetoric, which Trainor as a columnist, a writer of opinion, is entitled to do. When the RN&R starts censoring mainstream opinion because we don’t like the opinion, its rhetorical underpinnings or its citations, we become that thing we hate. The marketplace of ideas requires the circulation of ideas we don’t agree with, if only to give others a chance to debunk them.

Gee, our old Lasalle ran great

Re “Sparks cartoonist mourns Archie” (Upfront, April 24):

Did Brian Crane understand that Archie’s death is taking place in a comic book that tells serious stories of Archie’s future as an adult? Or that the series has already been canceled, and this is happening in the final issue? It’s more likely that the intent is to bring the story to a definite conclusion than that they’re trying to “prop up” a series that’s already been canceled. The main Archie Comics titles will still go on telling “funny” stories of the teenaged Riverdale gang.

Bob Buethe

Merrick, New York

What about our rights?

Re “The battle of Bunkerville” (Let Freedom Ring, April 24):

What were the constitutional rights denied to Bundy? None. Not a single one. He has had all his due process, over 20 years worth, at great expense to taxpayers. He lost in court, more than once, and never complied with subsequent orders. If his case had a shred of merit, it might have made its way to the Supreme Court, where Scalia could have used it to redefine public property. … Have the protesters been denied constitutional rights? Hardly. No one was denied his First Amendment rights to free speech or peaceable assembly. Some of that free speech included criminal threats and sedition. No one stopped their assembly, which obstructed and was anything but peaceful. Civil disobedience does not involve guns. Bringing guns to a protest is a threat of violence. When you bring guns it’s called “insurrection,” which is mentioned in the Constitution. If the guns at Bunkerville had any connection to the Second Amendment, they would have been in the hands of our state militia, under officers appointed by the governor, ready to help the president “to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions.”

Here are some constitutional principles which actually were violated. First, the federal government is explicitly empowered to manage US Territory, per Article IV, Section 3. That was thwarted. Second, there is no provision for private citizens to form armed gangs to resist federal court orders. Third, and most importantly, the whole point of the Constitution is to guarantee each state the right to a representative form of government, and freedom from domestic violence or invasion. That’s Article IV, Section 4. No one elected these gun nuts to represent us. They have no right to invade our state. And where’s our protection from their domestic violence? Sandoval, Heller and Fiore have all violated their oaths by supporting them, arguably committing treason. I heard the comparison to Rosa Parks. If Rosa Parks had refused to pay bus fair for 20 years, refused to obey a court order to stay off the bus, then shown up with an assault rifle to claim the bus belonged to her—well, maybe.

CG Green