Border security for all to see

Re: the Feb. 13 article "Governor tours border, invites Obama to visit, see problems" and the Feb. 15 column "Let's hear from all on border security."

I am happy to see Tim Steller question border security.

A few weeks ago a Sunday morning news show had three mayors of border cities. All of them claimed that our borders are more secure than ever. What does our governor need to be satisfied that our borders are secure?

Driving through border crossings and checking points, I see the Border Patrol falling over each other. On one occasion I counted more than 20 Border Patrol vehicles at a checkpoint.

Federal spending on immigration enforcement now surpasses all other federal law enforcement activities combined.

One of the most costly of these programs is Operation Streamline, a little-known enforcement program that funnels immigrants into the criminal justice system. This program provides billions of dollars to private prison corporations.

Rosemary Hallinan

Retired, Tucson

Lawmakers haven't earned per diem hike

Re: the Feb. 12 article "Lawmakers give up bid to raise living allowance - for now."

The article regarding the state representative who wants to increase legislators' per diem spurred me to put pen to paper.

Rep. David Stevens, R-Sierra Vista, has decided he needs additional compensation and has 45 other representatives who agree with him? I guess an "end around" the system by voting a per diem increase is perfectly OK.

Imagine the Legislature actually doing its job, balancing a budget while adequately funding education, public safety, public health and infrastructure repair and upgrades. What a concept!

To think that in these economic times it's OK to more than double the living expenses for all the Legislature is seriously misguided.

The good people of Sierra Vista need to have him refocus on the important issues he was elected to work on, not a self-serving agenda.

Other state residents should let their representatives know that such a blatant disregard for the constitutional requirements for voter approval cannot be tolerated!

John Granberry


Elected officials should read Steller

The Arizona Daily Star has a new voice in Tim Steller, providing a fresh slant into issues facing Tucsonans.

He brings information to light and insights not offered elsewhere. From disclosing the National Rifle Association's past support for putting guns back into the hands of the mentally ill to stressing the need to listen to diverse voices on border concerns, Steller makes me wish our elected officials would read him and take heed.

I congratulate the Star in offering his columns to its readers.

Ginny Sherman

Retired, Tucson

Russian meteor wasn't a surprise to everyone

Re: the Feb. 16 article "Why didn't we know it was coming?"

I knew it was coming! I had it on my calendar for Feb. 15 at Mostly Books. Capt. Mark Kelly was scheduled to read about Meteor, the amazing "Mousetronaut"and he did. In fact, he read from my copy.

I don't know much about meteors in general, but the timing of this book reading and the arrival of an astronomical phenomenon on the other side of the world is not something I'll soon forget.

Joan Unwin

Caregiver, Tucson

Kids should get security, not City Hall

Re: the Feb. 15 article "Mayor, City Hall may get added security."

My first words about this would be "hypocrites" and my last words would be "the mayor and City Hall" but not our children and schools?

Their priorities are eschewed plain and simple.

Paul Cragle


No intelligent context for Tobin's comments

Re: the Feb. 16 article "House won't get to vote on 2 bills to curb unions."

"We still have many of our members who don't want to hurt public safety," said House Speaker Andy Tobin, R-Paulden.

Gee, thanks. I'm ever so comforted that "many members" still care about the police, firefighters and corrections officers.

"Public safety is a Republican issue …" Really? Now I'm not so comforted, thinking of all those Democrats and independents who are apparently uninterested in the issue of public safety.

Please don't tell me I'm taking these comments out of context. There is no intelligent context for such remarks.

Perhaps Tobin should have a chat with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, who clearly is on to something concerning the "stupid" party.

Virginia C. Gethmann