Letters from the issue of Thursday, June 30, 2005

I guess I take it personally because my husband has put his life on the line. We both also work in government, and those of you who are opposed can make a difference, but not by just bitching about things. Like anything to do with the government, you have to find the right way of bitching, like on paper to someone who can actually do something about it.

John Dougherty took the first step in getting the information out there about military recruiting of high school students ("Uncle Sam Wants Them," June 2), and now it's up to us. I love our military, even if I don't agree with what it's doing all the time. Recruiters have a job to do, just like you and I.
Laci McNitt, Gilbert

Punk Iraq: John Dougherty is a communist. Why shouldn't military recruiters try to salvage no-good high school students from drugs and rap music for a life of serving their country in the military? In the long run, they will be much better off.

The kind of drivel that the [people like] Dougherty spew makes me sick. It would serve this hippie right if his son had to go to Iraq and stop listening to punk music.
Lawrence Todd, Phoenix

Why not?: What's the big deal? I see nothing wrong with military recruiters trying to find more cannon fodder -- as New Times calls the high school kids getting recruited -- by going onto campuses like Camelback High School's.

Where else will the military find soldiers? They way I look at it, the same people who are crying over the possibility of a draft are complaining about recruiting on high school campuses. Hey (duh!) isn't it more likely there will be a draft if the armed services aren't allowed to do all they can to get recruits? It's not like they have much choice when Uncle Sam decides to continue the war in Iraq.

Excuse me, but there must be something I'm not getting here.
Ron Rohrlich, Los Angeles

It could be worse: We seem to not mind recruiting events for anti-government efforts, but all of a sudden recruiting for the military is such a thorn in our sides?

I work as a civilian with the military and am a reservist myself. Some of my soldiers were misguided youth or youth who just needed the mentorship that the military chains of command offer so that they could get on the right track. They benefited immensely from serving in the Army (and others have benefited from serving in the other three branches of the service).

Is the military for everyone? No! But is it fair to not let people know about it either? There are a lot of evils out there from which we should shelter our youth, but the military is not one of these evils.

We in and affiliated with the military are just your average freedom-loving, flag-respecting, not-in-it-for-the-money, self-sacrificing folks who are saying to America: "You can rest assured I will answer the call to protect yours as well as other oppressed peoples' rights and freedoms when called upon, so sleep well tonight."

It's rather sick that in this country people attack the institution that protects them for wanting to recruit more people to ensure we have the resources to offer said protection. I wish you parents could glimpse recruiting methods in other countries where kids are snatched off the streets.
Tina Shahijanian, Phoenix


Drop it: Michael Lacey's story of Luciano Arriaga Jr. was riveting. It's hard to believe that a guy could get railroaded like that. But Lacey proved that it happens ("Thunder Road," June 16).

What I want to know is why doesn't the County Attorney's Office simply drop all charges against Arriaga, and apologize to him. Wouldn't that be the just thing to do, rather than even holding another trial? It makes me think Andy Thomas really hates Mexicans.

It's great that the Arriagas are holding the line. Few people would have the cojones to do that. They would just cop to a lesser charge and be done with it. Except that the crime they didn't commit would hang over their heads for the rest of their lives. Better to risk prison than that. You're finished anyway if you have that on your résumé.
Daniel J. Ortega, Phoenix

Just don't defend yourself: How can anybody criticize a cop for stopping somebody who looks suspicious on a dark and stormy night in south Phoenix? Look at what happened recently when an officer pulled somebody over and got killed for his trouble. I don't blame Officer Warren Poole for being suspicious of Luciano Arriaga.

Bottom line: make sure you exhibit extreme caution when a cop pulls you over. It's just common sense. Don't walk away on a dark street. And never, never hit a policeman. The system has no choice but to throw the book at you then.
Dante Newman, via the Internet

Scary cop: What I want to know is what we have to do to get this drunken cop, Warren Poole, off the street? The way he was acting was outrageous. I don't think a guy like that should continue to serve on the police force.

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