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It’s time we celebrate diversity in Lodi

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Posted: Thursday, December 13, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 6:05 am, Thu Dec 13, 2012.

I was disappointed to read the letter by Christy White complaining that the "Rainbow Pride" float, sponsored by a group promoting acceptance of LGBT people, doesn't belong in the Lodi Parade of Lights. For Christy White, this somehow conflicts with her "family values."

She also incorrectly implies that "sexual activities" were promoted by the Rainbow Project float and that LGBT people are not family-oriented.

I was glad to see the Rainbow Project float in the parade. It's about time we celebrate the diversity of people in this area! Christy needs to learn that "Hate is NOT a family value."

Bigotry wrapped in "family values" is still bigotry.

David Rodgers

Woodbridge

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Welcome to the discussion.

43 comments:

  • brian ratto posted at 9:27 am on Thu, Dec 27, 2012.

    brian ratto Posts: 8

    Just another invitation to everyone here.
    The Lodi Rainbow Project is meeting on January 5, 2012 at 3:30 pm at the Lodi Round Table Pizza (Kettleman Ln. and Lower Sacramento Rd.)
    Everyone is welcome to join us.

     
  • John Lucas posted at 10:59 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    Jerome said:

    It was simply one group of people going beyond being tolerated to insisting upon being accepted.

    They should be happy to be tolerated? Your version of what being a Christian is becoming less and less percentage of the population every year and the change among young people is dramatic. When and if it becomes a very small part of the population are you going to be happy with being tolerated but not accepted by your fellow citizens?

     
  • John Lucas posted at 10:43 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    Human beings and all the groups they form are being tested always. It is part of the human condition. We are all caught in this morality play and there is no escape for to do nothing is an action.

     
  • John Lucas posted at 10:32 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    When Jesus said you must forgive 70 times seven what do you think he meant? One must accept what is. If a man shoots you there are three things one must do. First you must get medical help. Second you need to call the police to get this person off the street. The last is that one must forgive that person and accept what happened and that person as who he is. It does not mean we do not protect ourselves and it does not mean we have to like that person. It is really all about what to do with our anger. If we do not accept what happened it will turn into resentment. Resentment is the reliving of anger over and over again in our minds. It is a cancer that will destroy out lives.
    Someone close to me did a terrible thing to me one time. I was seething in resentment and my life was a living h-ll because of not what he did but because of how I dealt with it. I was complaining to a very special friend of mine and he said, "You have to pray for him". I said," Can't I take him out to the backyard first?" He said no. I was driving halfway to Los Angeles and back everyday and when the resentment would come up I would immediately pray for that person who did the bad thing and wished him well. It took 6 months but a miracle happened and the resentment died. It was one of the great lessons of my life. That person never apologized ever but it does not matter. The problem is never anyone else. I now try to accept or forgive (they are the same thing) immediately. I am not always successful. Run this past your Pastor see what he says.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 10:11 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Again Mr Kinderman, thank you for articulating your thoughts in a way that clearly demonstrates that what you have to say comes from a place of goodness...not hate.

     
  • Jerome Kinderman posted at 9:48 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    Jerome R Kinderman Posts: 2363

    Forgiveness and acceptance are the same thing? On what planet?

    Simply put, if someone offends you or commits a crime against you and then you choose to forgive them, are you in any sense accepting what they did? If so, then the offender should then feel free to commit the same act against you again and again and again. After all, their behavior was deemed to be acceptable by you.

     
  • Jerome Kinderman posted at 9:37 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    Jerome R Kinderman Posts: 2363

    Ah, so this was a test? I wasn't aware of that angle. I wonder, had Lodi been acutely aware it was undergoing an examination of sorts, would the outcome have been any different? Of course we'll never know for sure. But as far as I'm concerned it was no test at all. It was simply one group of people going beyond being tolerated to insisting upon being accepted. Well, they certainly got their buck's worth because it would appear that their lifestyle was being celebrated; it would “appear” that way.

    I've already offered my two cent's worth here and in response to the original letter by Ms. White and one other. To reiterate would be simply a waste of my energy and time. I'm content to let time, decency and the good people of Lodi to determine the final test of groups like LGBT. Whether we'll pass with "flying colors" is yet to be seen.

     
  • Peter Bellville posted at 9:14 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    gopher Posts: 26

    Mr Kinderman, thank you for a leveled and thoughtful response. we are in agreement.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:29 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Kinderman stated...But the point of Ms. White's original letter was simply that any float that promoted ANY type of sexual behavior as the Rainbow Float obviously did had no place in the Christmas Light Parade. Unfortunately the online comments offered in response to her letter and others for and against her stance have morphed into something well beyond the scope of what she intended.

    Exactly! This is not about hate at all. Very well said Mr Kinderman.

     
  • John Lucas posted at 7:35 am on Mon, Dec 17, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    Jerome said:

    But the point of Ms. White's original letter was simply that any float that promoted ANY type of sexual behavior as the Rainbow Float obviously did had no place in the Christmas Light Parade.

    The float was not promoting any sexual behavior. It was not evangelistic in any sense. It was a group of people who are different in their sexuality than the majority through their organization celebrating the season. The City of Lodi was being tested on whether or not these people are a welcome part of our community. Lodi passed with flying colors

     
  • Jerome Kinderman posted at 11:06 pm on Sun, Dec 16, 2012.

    Jerome R Kinderman Posts: 2363

    Mr. Bellville, I agree that those who are offering forgiveness regarding this matter imply that some sort of wrong has been done that would warrant such a pardon. But such offenses would have had to been made against those offering forgiveness. As far as I'm concerned, since no homosexual has ever wronged me personally, I am in no position to forgive them. Now as I do believe homosexual behavior is an affront to God, He will forgive each and every one of us who calls upon Him for forgiveness through the death of His Son Jesus Christ but only if we believe Jesus to be the Son of God and that He died upon the Cross as payment for our sins.

    It's become apparent that there are many who do not believe homosexuality to be sinful or wrong. Naturally that's their opinion and they are certainly entitled to it. Where some folks have gone astray is where they seem to think those of who do believe homosexual behavior to be wrong and sinful are not entitled to that belief for reasons that clearly escape me. They even go so far as to offer Biblical Scripture in support of their contentions, but often leave out salient portions (either in error or by design) that clearly prove that homosexuality and the behavior that emanates from it is indeed sinful.

    I haven't been harmed by their behavior so far, therefore It's not within my right to forgive them for anything. But the point of Ms. White's original letter was simply that any float that promoted ANY type of sexual behavior as the Rainbow Float obviously did had no place in the Christmas Light Parade. Unfortunately the online comments offered in response to her letter and others for and against her stance have morphed into something well beyond the scope of what she intended. Even my own comments were somewhat removed from the subject matter of her letter, but I believe were appropriate considering the direction taken by others who were either for or against what was being offered.

     
  • John Lucas posted at 4:22 pm on Sat, Dec 15, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    What do you think Jesus was talking about when he said we must forgive 70 times seven?

     
  • Robert Chapman posted at 4:10 pm on Sat, Dec 15, 2012.

    Bob Chapman Posts: 997

    Mr. Bellville, I am always amazed at the people who ignore God's word that declare homosexuality as a sin, but refer to what Christ DID NOT say as His stamp of approval. These people are desparately trying to justify their lifestyle and are using scripture (or lack of it) to do so.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:54 am on Sat, Dec 15, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Bellville stated I don't know anyone who would say forgiveness and acceptance are the same thing.

    I too do not know of anyone who would say forgiveness and acceptance are the same thing. I also do not know anyone who hates people that are gay. The letter accused anyone who disagreed with this float being in this particular parade as being hateful bigots. Anyone who can only see hate as a possible reason someone might disagree is a bigot himself.

     
  • Peter Bellville posted at 10:44 pm on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    gopher Posts: 26

    I don't know anyone who would say forgiveness and acceptance are the same thing. I don't agree with that. It is not that a person who is left handed should be ashamed, but rather what he does with his left hand. We all share the human condition but that does not excuse all our behavior.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:21 pm on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    [offtopic]


    I wouldn't disagree with the post of Mr Lucas... Unfortunately, it has nothing to do with this letter.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 2:53 pm on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    [thumbup]
    Well said John

     
  • John Lucas posted at 2:46 pm on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    Being gay is part of who someone is. It is not something that needs to be forgiven. However condemning people those who are not ashamed of the way God made them is most certainly a sin and bigoted. It is ironic here because you are the one engaging in a learned behavior where gay people are just being what God made them.

     
  • John Lucas posted at 1:13 pm on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    It is said that forgiveness and acceptance are the same thing. In a sense it is. That people who are gay should feel shame or be forgiven because of who they are is insane. Our sexuality is a huge part of who we are. It is an innate part of us. Should people who are left handed be shamed? A gay person can be good or bad and is subject to the human condition as that is what being a human being is all about. Being gay just is and frankly should not be any big deal.

     
  • Peter Bellville posted at 11:43 am on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    gopher Posts: 26

    For those insisting on forgiveness, you need to consider two points. First, forgiveness implies something is wrong and needs forgiving. Second, forgiveness implies repentance of the wrong. Are these two points satisfied in the matter of homosexuality? If not, then forgiveness is inappropriate. Much more can be said on the subject but I forbear.

     
  • Peter Bellville posted at 10:56 am on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    gopher Posts: 26

    Tim: in quoting John 8:7 you neglected the 11th verse where Jesus says to the woman to "go and sin no more". Forgiving others does not mean we embrace their sin. Forgiving does not negate the fact that there is sin. I have no intention of embracing homosexuality, nor labeling it as good.
    Isaiah 5:20

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:11 am on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    typed below...If we do not, then may I suggest Christmas and the Christmas traditions that have been alive and well for many decades.

    should have been deleted.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:09 am on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    The Title of this letter is..."It is time we celebrate diversity in Lodi"...

    I submit if that is true, then lets have a diversity event and parade in Lodi to make it happen. I also submit that if diversity is really the issue, that all groups be invited no matter who and what they are. Or are we talking selective diversity?

    May I suggest we also have a Christmas parade in Lodi that is specifically to celebrate Christmas. If we do not, then may I suggest Christmas and the Christmas traditions that have been alive and well for many decades.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 4:41 am on Fri, Dec 14, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    You are mistaken Mr Heuer.... I understand what you are saying, but it is off topic from the points I was making...

    Clearly you do not have the ability to articulate your perceived connection to anything I stated or you wouldn't attempt to be coy.

    You stated that you were thankful the Tea Party was not invited... so am I as my point was politics should not be the point of a Christmas parade.

    I also stated that if groups wishing to make political statements are invited, then making clear to the community that it is not a Christmas parade would be appropriate. That would entail holding the event in another month other than December.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 10:39 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    My bad, should have been holidays
    Is it still hanukkah?

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 10:32 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    Perals before swine no doubt.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 7:04 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Oscar stated...I would like to cordially invite you all to a meeting of the Lodi Rainbow Project.
    We are having a meeting this Sunday December 16, 2012 at 1:00pm at the Lodi Public Library, in the conference room to the left of the main doors.

    Thanks for the invitation. May I ask, are there topics of discussion? Do guests participate in a discussion? Is there something each person should bring?

    I have time that day so I'll make a good faith effort to attend.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:57 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Which holiday is that? New years? Easter?

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:56 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Heuer stated...In response to darrell...I am one who promots intellectual freedom and feel everyone is free to follow their personal beliefs.

    You just wrote a book as a response to me according to you. Unfortunately, not one sentence addressed anything I posted. Nothing you stated has anything to do with what I said. Why did you distort the premise of your post by stating it was a response to me? Are you OK Mr Heuer?

     
  • Sam Heller posted at 5:19 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Sam Heller Posts: 176

    Thank you, Tim. Great comment. I too choose to follow Christ's teachings. They are clearly stated in the New Testament.

    It is a great time of year to just take the time and celebrate Christmas by reading Christ's teachings... and quit trying to judge our neighbors. Love your neighbor.

    I personally loved the Rainbow float.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 5:03 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    Thank you for the warm invitation
    Have a happy holiday

     
  • Walter Chang posted at 4:59 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Walt Posts: 1150

    Hey Tim, you got any Deuteronomy or Leviticus??

    "The guys" don't like any of that New Testament stuff...

    [beam]

     
  • Tim Litton posted at 4:14 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Tim Litton Posts: 24

    Family values? Morality? Huh, which side are you on? Right? Left? As a father I teach my children to be true to themselves and live their life righteously and to not judge others for their misgivings and sins. It is not our job to pass judgment on our brothers and sisters of this world, but rather it is our job to help them and guide them. Many of you spew your hate and vitriol on this forum, and claim to be Christians. If in your heart of hearts you believe you are, then maybe you need to open the good book up a little more often. Jesus is about forgiveness and not passing judgment. He died for all of our sins, not just yours. So maybe you should not judge people just because they sin differently than you. So, values, morals, right, left, well, I’m on Christ’s side. What about You?

    John 8:7
    He lifted up himself and said unto them, he that is without sin be the first to cast a stone at her

    Matthew 7:1
    Do not judge or you too will be judged.

    Matthew 7:3
    Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?

    Romans 2:1
    You who pass judgment on someone else, for whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself.

    Luke 6:37
    Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.

    So in fact, what is more Christmas than a community accepting a group of people for who they are instead of what they are? Kudos to the Downtown Lodi Business Partnership for allowing this float! And, kudos for those who had the bravery to ride on that float and give us all a glimpse of things we need things we as a community need to work on. Thank you!

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 3:29 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    In response to darrell
    I am one who promots intellectual freedom and feel everyone is free to follow their personal beliefs. I don't care if its UFOs, bigfoot, government conspiracies, ghosts, snake worship or any religion as long as it doesn't hurt anyone or force their ideas on others. There are those that have declared many times they are against religion of any kind that is to be expected.They are usually silent until some one like Kinderman or Docktor start declaring how things should be for others according to their beliefs. Tamer but not unlike sharia law in my eyes. My personal fear of evangelical and fundamentalists religious groups is their desire to reestablish heresey laws and punishments on others. As I say everyone has the freedom to believe what they want just don't force it on me.
    And that is what was happenoing over the GLBT students which was mean and uncalled for even by his own religious standards. I heard no denigrating of religion until Kindermanan started on what the parade should be and who should be in it and what the rest of us should be doing at christmas. He was making rules that were not in the parade description or rules. The comments represented a variety of the community. It became clear there are only two reasons to hate the GLBT community: one is religious fanaticism the other is homophobia otherwise why would you care. The float was not an issue it was the target of an issue.
    Now I have heard many disparaging remarks about muslims on these pages but never heard the equivalent concerns condeming , as you say acts that are "hateful and mean simply because they are (muslims) trying to follow their faith" (terrorists being a another topic). But to say what christmas SHOULD be is only HIS idea. The holiday serves jewish people, buddhist people people of no faith all residing in lil ole Lodi. They have no believe in his concern about the Jesus person. The intimation he was giving if you don't do it his way then don't do it at all or stand the accusation of hypocrite (heresy) and prepare to be judged in the hereafter. And also he has a strange memory of Lodi because I remember it always being this way just less open and more segragated. There was a period of time when I was a practicing buddhist. I still favor the eastern religions and philosophies but not under any illusions of their own shortcomings.
    BTW the Tokay HS float was number 20. If you look at the list Jeff Tillet provided you'ld see quite an eclectic group. I find personal satisfaction the T Partiers weren't invited (talk about political) but if they had who am I to complain. After all it is christmas. To me christmas is inclusive celebration and not snarky or clichy(sp) as grammer school interactions could be. Thats where the, well you can't play in our ball game find your own, bothers me. But christmas is everybodys ball game. Also if someone wanted a conservative or liberal float I wouldn't find objection unless it was hateful or angry. But if it was in the spirit of the holiday who cares. Now even your joking about a polygamist parade float would be fine. I don't have any problem with poligamy if it is practiced with adult consent (like the TV show "Sister Wives") and not exploiting people (or children) or be incestuous (as in Texas). I personaly wouldn't want that life style but someone else more suited may find it fulfilling. Its like the gay issue not for me but someone else may experience happiness. Its the libertarian in me. What ever consenting adults want to do it's their world as long as they don't hurt anyone or force it on others.

     
  • Oscar Orejel posted at 2:47 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    oscar orozco orejel Posts: 5

    I would like to cordially invite you all to a meeting of the Lodi Rainbow Project.
    We are having a meeting this Sunday December 16, 2012 at 1:00pm at the Lodi Public Library, in the conference room to the left of the main doors.
    Here is a link to the Facebook event for the meeting.
    https://www.facebook.com/events/140289056120585/?context=create
    We meet the third Sunday of every month at the Public Library.
    All are welcome to attend.

     
  • Peter Bellville posted at 1:55 pm on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    gopher Posts: 26

    Some people such as David feel compelled to defend homosexuality by labeling those of us opposed as hateful bigots. That is incorrect of course. The gay community would like everyone to believe opposition is bigotry or discrimination. See Catherine's letter where she lumps "people of all faiths, colors, genders, and sexual orientation" all together. It is not the same. Homosexuality is not a faith, color, or gender. It is a behavior or life style such as being a burgular. It is about morality. Supporters of homosexuality want to celebrate diversity but this is not diversity of people, but diversity of morality. Diverse morality is no morality at all.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 11:38 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    i did not see the Hispanic float. I cannot comment. I did say that I would be against any liberal or conservative minded organization promoting their politics in this type of event. I also suggested it would be appropriate to have alternate parades that does not hijack Christmas during alternate months.

    Forth of July would seem to be an ideal time frame to celebrate diverse political views, interests and ideological topics.

    as a secular non Christian myself, I am embarrassed that intolerant secular people call Christians hateful and mean simply because they are Christians trying to follow their faith..

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 10:39 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    darrell says "a political statement at an event that should not have been about politics" and this is because they had a float representing GLBT like minded kids. So do you think the Tokay HS Latinos float was a political statement as well? Stands to reason in your distorted logic. I'm sure they're great kids as well.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 10:36 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1591

    Robert, Christy stated the float shouldn't be in the parade. Thats not simply your definition of aceptance, exclusion is an act of intolerance.You do realize it is a thin line between intolerance and acceptnce. Acceptance is simply a mental idea. Intolerance is an action. So it is simply a matter of do you put your thoughts into action or not. By exclusion you have now moved to definite intolerance. An action.

     
  • Robert Marty posted at 9:30 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    rmartygeo Posts: 32

    Catherine: So, Christy's opinion makes her a bigot? Interesting. But, expected from those who pop off about "intolerance" and "bigotry". Christy (at least by her letter) is in no way a bigot. All great and dandy about your business and your daughters -- wonderful. But the fact remains that a group that has come together to be LGBT is, in fact, about sexuality. They cannot get away from it. The whole notion of the group is BECAUSE OF THEIR SEXUALITY.

    And, I don't see the intolerance -- I see the non-acceptance; but as I have said before, tolerance should be expected and given; acceptance is personal. As Mr. Baumbach states below (and I agree), Christy's letter is not a hateful one at all.

    One last thing: I find it interesting that LNS will delete "personal" attacks from these comments, but not from letters. Interesting.

     
  • CATHERINE ERICKSON posted at 9:14 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    FRITZY9 Posts: 17

    Let's see, Christy, I raised my two daughters in the Lodi area, I started my 25 year old business here, I shop her, I love the feel of a small country atmosphere town also. But I am not a bigot. Just the fact that you have a problem with a gay pride parade float is your problem. Open your heart if you say you are the church going person you are and let all people of all faiths, colors, genders, and sexual orientation in. Heterosexual people never have to be afraid of discrimination and even violence as a group! The LGBT community does! The more people know and understand others not like them the more peace and understanding there will be. There was a gay couple at our oldest daughter's wedding in October and several of the the wedding party wanted to go into Lodi and have some fun at some of the downtown bars and clubs. My daughters know well the reputation of the Lodi area and how "others' unlike the accepted norm can be treated. They made sure that the young male gay couple went no where near Lodi bars for fear they would get beaten up. This is the ugly truth about Lodi. Any activity that sheds more light on the intolerance in this area is welcome, in my book. Lean forward!

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 7:49 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Letter stated...Christy needs to learn that "Hate is NOT a family value."

    Clearly, Chritianphoebia is alive and well in Lodi. If Mr Rogers did not want to promote hate and bigotry, he would not have written this letter as is. Christy was not hateful a bit.

    No one was saying this group should not be accepted in Lodi. No one was saying these kids did anything wrong. Clearly, Mr. Rogers is insulting and rude in this letter and appears to have a superiority complex.

    The purpose of the concern was this particular event and that this float was making a political statement at an event that should not have been about politics. Had this same float been in November or July to make a political statement, I would have loved to see it. I am not religious or attend church. I do not post this as a family values type person.

     
  • Marc Yates posted at 7:13 am on Thu, Dec 13, 2012.

    MWYates Posts: 22

    Hey David! Look in the mirror if you want to see a bigot. Christy has the right to express her opinion. I guess you can't "tolerate" that, huh?

     

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