Letters for November 26, 2009

Jesus’ wife?

Re “Love your neighbor” (Letters to the editor, Nov. 19):

“Since the late 6th century, Mary Magdalene has been misidentified in Western Christian Tradition as an adulteress and repentant prostitute; although nowhere does the New Testament identify her as such. Pope Gregory the Great made a speech in 591 A.D. where he seemed to combine the actions of three women mentioned in the New Testament and also identified an unnamed woman as Mary Magdalene. He wrongly stated that she was a prostitute. This erroneous view was not corrected until 1969 when the Vatican issued a quiet retraction.” - Wikipedia

I, too, recently moved here, from Hawaii, where it doesn’t get much more tolerant of differing cultures. I knew before moving here of the legalized prostitution and accepted such as part of Nevada. But please stop promulgating the wrongful association of Mary Magdalene with prostitution. Maybe your newspaper can help the effort to cleanse the name of this Christian saint.

Martin McDavitt

Vote the Cal way

Nevada residents, please close the door on Harry Reid. Reid is an arrogant and vile politician who doesn’t care about what the people want but promotes his and his cronies’ agenda. If the health-care bill passes, it will be one of the destructive forces to America as we know it. If you don’t believe me, save this letter and when it happens, pull it out and be reminded I told you so. We need to get rid of politicians like Reid who are doing everything they can to strangle this country so we can’t breathe or prosper. Please, I’m begging the voters in Nevada to close the door on Harry Reid. And lock his office when he comes home for vacation to send him a message of how the majority of American citizens feel about him and how he has treated us.

Leanne Pleshek
Big Bear City, Calif.

Age of health

Re “Unified theory of skepticism” (Editor’s Note, Nov. 12):

I appreciate Brian Burghart’s candidness and boldness in his editorials. He’s not afraid of controversy or saying unpopular things, though many of his ideas I find to be closer to the truth of things than most media I metabolize. As a health care practitioner who contributed to some of his nine rules listed, I feel compelled to share more insight around the necessity of exercise as well as the unique molecular fingerprint each of us maintains in the world. Gone are the days when we looked for a unified theory that correctly summarizes every individual through each unique life phase. It’s better perhaps to get comfortable with the notion that you live through more than 25 distinctive phases in the life span of 90 years. That way the 19-year-old operating system you committed to doesn’t have to describe what your 60-year-old body is confronting.

One powerful real-time insight is that you are always recreating yourself through how you train your physiology. The body adapts perfectly to every stress, and the longer or more severe the stress is the more pronounced the adaptation. Like breeds like. Congestion and inflammation in living systems are always secondary to toxins and lack of movement. You’d be hard pressed to find a jack rabbit with obesity. Exercise is like the Ctrl + Alt + Del function on your computer. It unsticks whatever is stuck in the system allowing for movement and progress to return. We both train our physiology and restrain our demise. We are our own groundskeepers and gardeners, and we create the weather patterns in our internal ecology. Our genetic inheritance is less than a third of determining our lifetime health.

The burgeoning fields of epigenetics and nutrigenomics accurately describe the ways thoughts and nutritional choices affect the vast genetic blueprint our parents gave us. The crutch of inherited diseases is no longer able to hold any weight. We inherit our choices for better or for worse. Recognizing these fields and our unique molecular ecology requires that biofeedback become the barometer for deciding where on the illness-wellness spectrum we choose to hang a shingle. This biofeedback can be through devices or through the subjective interplay of our energy levels and how we feel. The only challenge in relating to one’s self through biofeedback is we have to be willing to be our own parent and resist escaping from difficult times through chemical alterations or indulging our vices. As I say to many of my patients: There are few truths that summarize everything, but there is one truth that befits the present circumstances in one’s life. As a steward of your body you execute immediate, appropriate responses to current challenges and envision a long-term vision of self that most supports the quality of life you yearn for.

Everything else is simply a story based on a distraction. There are plenty of those. The question is, what kind of story will you choose to pen?

Taylor Donovan

Freedom of religion

Re “The Pot Issue” (Feature story, Nov. 19):

The use of force against people who use cannabis can’t be called a war, although Congress declared it a war, and the police use deadly force to entrap citizens who respond with peace demonstrations and flowers. If this was a war, the 100 million Americans who have admitted using it would kill all politicians who haven’t changed the laws. If it was a war, both sides would be allowed to kill freely, not just the police. Oh yes, there are gangs with weapons, but these people are at war with everything. The average user just hopes he will not be found out because if he is then he gets discriminated against. And terrorism is using political power to push an inhuman agenda. Cannabis is a natural resource with more than 10,000 uses. Our own government grows it, yet denies its citizens the same rights. If they were truly concerned, they would arrest themselves and confiscate all of their own property. Read page one of the Bible for further instructions on how to treat plants with seeds. Congress has violated everyone’s First Amendment rights due to these laws.

Mike Hermanski
Stevens Point, Wis.

Nothing to see here

Re “Out of sight” (Letters to the editor, Nov. 12):

I can assuage the fears of Grace Davis that there is a conspiracy in the Assessor’s office to suppress the information on the house at 2550 Lake Ridge Shores East and the entire neighborhood. The address is entered, rightly or wrongly, in the Assessor’s data as Lake Ridges Shores East not Lakeridge. Try that address and go to the Parcel Summary page, and you will find all the information on the property.

In the article, it is implied that “Zestimate” establishes the value of the property at $790,000, and that number is supported by the Assessor’s appraised value of $798,000. Neither of these sources is appropriate for establishing current market value.

At the “Zestimate” website, one of the first things you find is a disclaimer that says their numbers should not be used for market appraisals.

The Assessor’s appraised value is a “cost approach,” for taxation purposes only, and is not intended to be market value. (In 2005 when the property was purchased for $1.3 million, the probable market value at that time, and the Assessor’s appraised value, cost approach, was $681,558.)

The reduction in the real estate market has brought these two numbers together only by happenstance.

The best way to know the true current market value of this property would be to have it appraised by a local fee appraiser. It would be difficult to judge the validity of this transaction without that number.

Ernie McNeill