Hold drivers to account for pedestrian deaths

Re: the Oct. 27 article “Pedestrian deaths at record level across area.”

I don’t understand why drivers are not cited when they run over and injure or kill someone. Perhaps they were not speeding, not drunk, not under the influence of drugs, but they also were not attentive. A car is a lethal weapon. In the U.S. more people are killed or injured by cars than by firearms. If I fire a pistol and inadvertently and accidentally kill some bystander, and simply claim “I didn’t see them,” I can assure you that I would be tried by the justice system.

As someone whose grandson was killed while walking on the sidewalk by an inattentive driver, I can relate to the family now seeking compensation for their child. But there is no compensation, no matter how grand, that can relieve that loss. However, to just excuse the driver without at least a citation is inconceivable. A user of an automobile must be held accountable for their acts — whether impaired or not.

Dennis Winsten

Consultant, Tucson

Glad Obama

stood up to the GOP

Re: the Oct. 14 letter to the editor “In Obama, voters elected an amateur.”

What have the “pros” in the House of Representatives done? Changed the rules in the middle of the night so only Rep. Cantor or one of his lackeys could bring Senate legislation to the floor of the House. The other pros let Sen. Cruz hijack the democratic process. Now we have another letter using code words to describe our duly elected president as an amateur. Enough already. I will take President Obama’s leadership and steady hand any day over what the “non-amateurs” have done to tear our country apart. I am glad that President Obama has stood firm and taken on the pros in the Republican Party.

Jim Robinett

Mitigation specialist, Tucson

Reject dependence on the government

Why don’t we all reject the dependence on government and turn back to God. With prayer, the promise of Christ cannot be lost. Without prayer the kingdom of heaven cannot be gained.

Charity comes from our heart, not the politicians taking our pocketbooks and using it to buy more votes. The fear of self-reliance for security and safety places us on the plantation of economic slavery and creates an addiction to dependence.

Frank Liebsch

Retired, Sierra Vista

Moving AZ bighorns is inhumane, insane

Re: the Oct. 23 article “Meeting today on bighorn sheep project.”

I read with dismay that the incredibly inhumane transfer of the bighorns to the Catalina Mountains is actually going to happen. Stunning. Let them live in peace with their already established herds — plucking them out of their environment with helicopters sounds like absolute torture both physically and emotionally. And to what end? They’re gone from Tucson because of our rampant, grotesque development of that beautiful mountain range. It’s an insane plan.

Peg Kazda


NSA’s broad spying must be halted

Re: the Oct. 24 article “Merkel complains about US surveillance.”

There is no doubt any more that the U.S. government, through the NSA, is spying on friends and foes, and is now hacking also into the mobile phones of one of its closest allies, the German chancellor, Angela Merkel.

This has got to stop immediately, and if President Obama has any guts or any values left he should intervene and set new limits on this spying program.

We are losing face all over the world, and instead of being the beacon of freedom and hope, our great nation is turning into an ugly, hysteric, distrustful, frightened and dishonorable country. I had set my hopes on President Obama as a strong defender of freedom and justice for all, and now see myself deeply deceived.

How can I explain American practices of spying even on its best friends to my German colleagues? This is not friendship: This is outright hostility and imperialism in a high-tech manner.

Albrecht Classen

Professor, Tucson

We need to stop executing people

Re: the Oct. 24 article “Jones executed for 6 Tucson murders.”

After 17 years of hell on death row, medical staff “worked for nearly an hour” to find a vein in Robert Jones’ drug-damaged body strong enough to carry the lethal dose of phenobarbital. The Daily Star reported comments: “It was too easy” and how he “wasn’t made to suffer the way his victims were.” To identify with relatives’ urges to get even is normal: To carry it out is senseless.

We can’t know what it feels like to die from being shot in the back — like Jones’ victims — or from a shot in the vein, like Jones.

However, as his death certificate notes “homicide” under the cause of death; we, the people of Arizona, know what it feels like to be a premeditated murderer.

Let’s set an example for our children and stop killing. And let’s honor the last wish of Robert Jones: “Love and respect my family and friends, and I hope my friends are never here.”

Gretchen Nielsen

Writer, Tucson