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Thursday, June 24,2010

Letters | Don’t forget autistic adults

Don’t forget autistic adults Your article “Autism 101” in the June 17 edition was very good in explaining the difficulties faced by families with autistic children.

However, I would like to point out that there is a deeper problem in the autistic community that we very rarely hear about. This is the issue of the care of autistic adults. My autistic son is 26 years old. He had all the behavior and adjustment issues that are described by the families in Jefferson Dodge’s piece. When autistic people become 18 they do not disappear. They still have to be cared for. They continue to be troubled by the effect of their autism. And, with aging parents, there is the question of where and how will they live out the rest of their lives. There are very few services available for autistic adults. With the rise in awareness of autism it is essential that this population not disappear from our awareness. The first sentence of the article contains the word “children” and the last sentence contains the word “children.” Let us remember there are many, many autistic adults and their families who need help also.

C.M. Brown/Lafayette

Here’s what Palin would do

(Re: “What would Sarah do?” Danish Plan, June 17.) Paul Danish continues his slide to irrelevance with his recent paean to the former half governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, and the snarky rebuff to the efforts the Obama administration has made in response to the BP oil spill. He endows “Sarah” (one can only wonder if she calls him “Paul” when discussing his editorials … oops, forgot that she doesn’t read newspapers … oops again, I guess I can be a little snarky myself ) with “a lick of common sense,” knowing “a lot about the oil business,” “knowing a lot about oil dudes” and “what goes on around an oil rig.” He bases his hypothesis about her common sense on his fantasies about what she would do if she were president. He bases her oil business expertise on his guess that she slept with and ate dinner with her husband Todd and that during those times their discussions centered on the oil industry. He guesses that she had “Tony Hayward’s phone number in her computer” (not her Blackberry or iPhone?) and that she was involved to some degree in Alaska’s negotiations with BP on a pipeline deal. No oil spill-managing, gusher-capping, deep water-drilling, wetlands-protecting, disaster management experience? Not a problem.

McCain thought she had great foreign policy experience because she could see Russia from her porch. The conservatives love leaders to whom they feel equal to intellectually, they can have a beer with and, well, whatever. … We can’t forget (or at least shouldn’t) the “Heck of a job, Brownie” moment in the Katrina aftermath.

You betcha. So, Paul, your answer to this is to continue with the “drill baby drill” refrain and disregard the experts put together by the “Harvard Law Review editor” and ask WWSD? Here is my “fantasy” about what would happen if “Sarah” were in charge. The gulf would be opened to more drilling immediately (can’t screw it up any worse than it is, and those oil boys give a lot of money to Republican campaigns), we would be asked to pray to whatever imaginary deity Sarah may be praying to at the moment (without considering that if that deity was all powerful “she” probably caused the spill in the first place and might be a bit piqued at our feeble efforts to undo her work), and then Sarah would resign her presidency to pursue a reality show on managing oil spills and leave the running of the country to her vice president, Glenn Beck.

James C. Bailey, Jr./Boulder

That’s a great idea Mr. Danish had. President Obama should have put Sarah Palin in charge of the BP oil spill. Then we could finally see what a complete mess this lightweight could make of any situation more complex than a small-town city council meeting. Yeah, I’ll bet BP CEO Hayward’s e-mail address is on her computer. How is that gas pipeline deal working out, anyway? You think “pillow talk” with her husband gives her some special insight into how BP executives operate, because of his very part-time job on the North Slope? Please. Your column was nothing but Fox News’ approved talking points on how Obama is supposedly screwing up the clean-up. All these points have been refuted, from the stupidity of Bobby Jindal’s sand berm caper to the bogus claim that foreign help has been refused because of the Jones Act.

What a difference we see from those crisis days right after the 9/11 attacks in 2001. Then, it seemed like everybody was flying a flag, and the president, who was not elected with a popular majority, enjoyed approval ratings of over 80 percent. These poll numbers were based less on President Bush’s actions than on a general outpouring of patriotism.

Now, with the oil spill crisis consuming the nation’s attention, the president’s every move is criticized, every decision second-guessed by a faction tormented by rage at losing an election. Their pinched, bitter hatred is fed by a partisan media empire, and they can barely conceal their glee at every setback in the Gulf. Every picture of drowning pelicans gives them a fuzzy feeling of anticipation of next November. Their media echo chamber has them convinced that their redemption will come then. Maybe, but they have revealed their true colors, and they aren’t red, white or blue.

Fred Koster/Nederland

An ode to an oil spill

Dear President Obama, we
Wonder how you’ll end
This undersea catastrophe;
Just what do you intend?

The Deepwater Horizon blew
Near on eight weeks ago,
And still it spews black filth into
The Gulf of Mexico.

Finally free enterprise
Has proven inefficient,
But though we cheer BP’s demise,
Your anger’s insufficient.

Your predecessor is to blame
(We’ll figure out just how);
It’s not your fault, but all the same
Please take bold action now.

We faithful harbor not a doubt
In your omnipotence,
So please head south and straighten out
This oily mess immense.

The corporate goons have failed with their
Robotic submarines.
It’s going to take a man who dares
To do without machines.

So SCUBA dive down by yourself
(Or maybe bring Michelle)
Jump off the continental shelf,
Swim deep and plug the well.

You’ll need a wrench and welding gear,
A flashlight ’cause it’s dark,
And PETA says to pack a spear
Non-lethal for the sharks.

Once you’ve fixed the leaky bits
Of the containment dome,
Deploy a boom around the plume,
And then you can come home.

Oh, how we’ll gloat and carry on
And taunt the GOP!
While you pretend nonpartisan,

We’ll tell our grandkids of the Prez,
The Saviour we all treasure,
And also how the word “Valdez”
Became a cubic measure.

And President Obama, sir,
You’re backed by Boulderites:
We’ve banned from any county land
All offshore drilling rights.

David Rea/Boulder

Now is the time to stop Iran

In a 12-2 vote, the U.N. Security Council approved a fourth round of sanctions against Iran on June 9 in an effort to convince the Islamic Republic to abandon its nuclear enrichment activities. The new sanctions are far weaker than what is needed to stop Iran. The United States and the European Union must take additional actions to undermine Iran’s nuclear program. The WhiteHouse knows this but must redouble their efforts on this issue.

The ranking member of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs stated that the new sanctions were not robust enough. Said Rep. Ileana Ros- Lehtinen, R.-Fla., “This resolution, full of loopholes, will not stop Iran’s march towards nuclear weapons or influence the regime’s behavior in any way. That the U.S. put all our eggs in the U.N. basket — and got this goose-egg in return — is a disaster. ... The U.S. Congress must immediately impose crippling sanctions against Iran. ... This is our last chance.”

Of the 15 Security Council member states, only Turkey and Brazil voted against the new measures; Lebanon abstained. It’s time for Turkey, a NATO ally, to stand with America and the West. It’s time for the world to investigate not only its ties with Iran, but also its ties to the IHH, which caused the mayhem on the Mediterranean.

U.S. sanctions legislation targeting Iran’s energy sector — the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act (H.R. 2194 and S. 2799) is pending approval in Congress. With the U.N.sanctions now approved, now is the time for the U.S. sanctions to pass and be implemented before it is too late.

Jonathan Rich-Shea/Denver

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