Gun Rights

To the Editor:
Sigmund Freud is not the most popular voice of reason in today’s psycho-chemical approach to controlling mental illness but it is undeniable that his psychosexual theories of sublimation and extension of elemental sexual anxiety can be applied to America’s fascination with guns, dating even back to the passage of the 2nd Amendment and the taming of the frontier, essentially Mother Earth.  Applied to Donald Trump, with his succession of trophy wives, his long red ties, his sexual braggadocio, his quest for adulation, and fascination with wealth and glamour,  Freud’s insights shine a light on his concern about the size of his hands.  It is more than a bit disconcerting that those same hands do command America’s military might and that his finger hovers above the nuclear trigger.  Hopefully his fiery rhetoric is just that, only rhetoric.

                Robert Porath
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The QB Who Kicked the Hornets Nest

To the Editor:

As someone coming of age in the times of the Civil Rights struggle, Viet Nam, Kent State, and the assassinations of John Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, and Robert Kennedy, I have frequently  wondered just what does it mean to be a “loyal American”?  What is it to “respect the Flag”?  What does “patriotism” entail?  In asking and addressing these same questions, Colin Kaepernick has become the Quarterback Who Kicked the Hornets Nest.  Any number of NFL teams could immediately use his skills, but the reason he is not playing is not a football decision.  It is a socio-political-economic decision based on the fear of teams and the league losing fan and advertising support.  Both Kaepernick and the owners have valid concerns, but the overriding question still is what does it mean to be an American? Or, for that matter, what is it to be a valid person in a still racially divided society?  In inserting himself into the fray, Donald Trump is that guy standing in a crowd surrounding what appears to be a fight about to break out who is yelling for the fighting to begin.  This is for his fan base, but it is utterly irresponsible behavior.

Robert Porath

Human Sparked Climate Change

To the Editor:

The frustrating aspect of the denial of human sparked climate change is that it chooses to ignore the basic chemistry of oxidation, particularly that of the combustion of fossil fuels.  The carbon, hydrogen, and energy present in oil, natural gas, and coal have lain dormant in the earth for millions of years.  When burned, these element combine with oxygen and release levels of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, water vapor, and heat (plus various other chemical compounds) that are now active in the atmosphere.  Climate science is the attempt to understand what this means for the future of every living thing on the planet.  This part is not simple science.  It is globally complex.  Climate scientists have been threatened with losing funding for their research by pro-industry Republicans since the Bush Administration and are wary, with reason, of speaking out forcefully, but to set this exploration aside is not only short-sighted, it is dangerous.

Robert Porath

Tierra Nueva

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Tierra Nueva

In this random pick-up-sticks, double helix

Melting pot amalgam and gene pool diaspora

Of multiracial physiognomy, skin color,

And multilingual saga, rhythm, and song

Of European, African, Asian, Semitic,

And Native Peoples world and voice

That is La Tierra Nueva, Las Americas,

What is it, here today, to be a person,

To be, certifiably, a human being,

And can we, that being, intervene

Upon our predisposed tribal fears,

Prejudice, and self judgement of value

And humanity based on heritage,

Wealth, gender, and skin tone?

Can or can’t we?  Are we, the People,

This mixed breed, capable or culpable?

Female Statuary

To the Editor:
A not entirely trivial bit of the history of female statuary is John Ashcroft’s covering of the breasts of the blindfolded, scale holding symbols of Justice during his tenure as Attorney General.  If Harriet Tubman is not a proper replacement for Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill, perhaps the Venus de Milo or Rodin’s The Kiss might serve to better reflect feminine beauty and mystery and deflect our tendencies to military engagement.  Similarly, lest the reality of Art upstage the surreality of ambition and war, the copy of Picasso’s “Guernica” portraying the anguish and suffering of a village being bombed and strafed during the Spanish Civil War was covered with a tarp as our intention to attack Iraq was being announced from the steps of the UN building in New York.  It seems we have but a tenuous grip on the realities of justice and life.
Robert Porath

Governance

To the Editor:
Since Ronald Reagan was President, Republicans have been running successfully on his platform of “government is the problem” and that deregulated markets can solve the problems of the nation.  They have been aided in this by wealthy donors who saw (and see) clearly, “there is money to be made here”.  This has resulted in a slew of office holders not only indebted to their donors but also largely devoid of the ability to govern, which, in a democracy, requires having a perspective that extends beyond narrow self interest.  The impending perils of global climate change are quite frightening enough without the sense that those in office are utterly inept in the skills of governance.

Robert Porath

Mt. Evans

To the Editor;

As to honoring past icons, Colorado’s 2nd Territorial Governor John Evans, as one of the founding fathers of Denver and Colorado’s economic development, deservedly has his name attached to several small railroad towns, a major street, and even a Professorship and chapel at DU. He is similarly honored in Illinois, however, from his failure as Superintendent of Indian Affairs and involvement in instigating the Sand Creek Massacre in which a peace-seeking village of Cheyenne and Arapaho was brutally attacked, it seems incongruous is that one of our magnificent “14ers” also bears his nome.  The uprooting of the Native Peoples of America amounts to a genocide equalling that of the Holocaust.  That John Evans’ name is on a piece of the natural beauty of Colorado is a travesty that should be removed.

Robert Porath