Just Because You Use Land, It Doesn't Mean You Own It

I felt little sympathy for the Klump ranching family after reading "Klump Country Blues" (May 20). Sure, they probably get the runaround with government officials and have had to deal with changing land policies over the years, but it is apparent that they were acting like a bunch of hillbillies with their threats of shooting people, with the killing of the jaguar, etc.

I don't appreciate ranchers' attitudes that the public's land is transferred to their ownership after a certain period of leasing it. They need to check a dictionary to see that leasing does not equate to ownership, even if the lessee makes improvements on the land. That would be like saying that if someone rents a house long enough, then they own it. Let's also not forget the issue of the low, antiquated grazing fees that the federal government charges ranchers, as compared to private land leased out.

The Klumps are just an example of a widespread problem that has many forms and seems to be getting worse with the increase of the population in the West. The issue of off-road vehicles is another example. Off-roaders destroy habitat and landscape for no purpose other than idiotic fun. Sometimes, local governments collaborate with them in the abuse of federal lands. This is especially true in Utah, where several counties have "officials" who act more like terrorists by blazing new roads into the desert on BLM land and who promote off-roading in defiance of the federal laws that are there to protect the land. I am impressed that the BLM is so aggressive about enforcing the laws here in Arizona, because up in Utah, with the blessings of the Bush administration, the BLM is not doing an effective job.

Brian Brainerd

Tuttle's 'Favorite' President Got Too Many Blowjobs, Then Lied

Tell Connie Tuttle to quit sniveling and get over it (Tuttle, April 29). I wouldn't vote for Bush, either, but everyone--including Democrats and Republicans alike--had to put up with our favorite slime-ball and his harridan wife for eight years. Tuttle's favorite president spent half of his time behind his desk with his pants around his ankles and perjured himself besides. That sounds like her type of guy.

Peter Meis

We Need to Put Education Before Money

I am writing concerning Tim Vanderpool's "Crossing the Line" (Currents, April 15). The children deserve the right to have a first-class education. The children from Mexico are coming to the United States in hopes of bettering themselves through a good education. I truly believe that no matter where in the world they come from, no child should be denied the right to have a good education. We as Americans let the almighty dollar affect the way we think. We're more worried about the cost, and we can't see how truly important it is for us to educate the children of the world.

Steven Urquidez

A Mental-Health Horror Story

Regarding your cover story, "Head Games," about new licensing requirements for mental-health professionals (May 6): Approximately two years ago, I thought I was doing the right thing by moving back to Tucson to escape a domestic-violence situation in another state. However, after experiencing verbal and psychological abuse from the so-called mental-health professionals in this state, I have come to regret this decision. (Unfortunately, I no longer have funds to move anywhere else.) I have found that a lack of ethics permeates this state; even though the so-called mental-health counselors (from a state-run agency) who verbally abused me admitted to it, and even seemed to delight in the severe distress it caused me, they cannot be held accountable, because they are not licensed.

I was seeking assistance so that I could find enough relief from my symptoms--due, in part, to post-traumatic stress disorder--to return to being a gainfully employed, functioning member of society. Incidentally, I'm not proud of the fact that I had to resort to receiving Social Security disability benefits, especially since I have experienced first-hand that I am looked down upon by others and treated as if I am a worthless human being, at best. It also should be noted that I receive SSD, which is based upon my work-earnings history and not supplemental security income, which people who have never worked are eligible for if they meet other requirements.

No one wants to believe or listen to my story regarding the cruel things which were said and done to me, which only reinforces the notion that I am not a valuable member of society, simply by virtue of the mental-health label that was slapped on my forehead.

When I threatened to sue these so-called professionals, it was OK for them to make up a lie saying that I threatened to kill them. A so-called mental-health professional who I'd never even met had a petition drawn, and the police came to trot me off to the loony-bin dungeon of Kino, where I experienced further types of abuse. Interestingly, the Tucson police treated me with much more dignity and respect than any of these state agencies ever did!

The specific details of what happened are too numerous to go into here, but suffice it to say that if I was creative enough to fabricate this horrendous story, I would have written a book on The New York Times bestseller list.

We now know that some members of our military have abused Iraqi citizens, and pictures reveal their glee in doing so. This news only serves to reinforce what I have already experienced first-hand: Those who have power and/or authority over others tend to delight in treating their subordinates in a less-than-human fashion.

To all those so-called mental-health professionals who refused to get certified: It was their own responsibility to obtain the necessary requirements before-hand; since only two other states do not require licensing, they can obtain employment there, where they can continue to not be held accountable for the irreparable harm they have done to people like me. Obviously, they are not paid to care.

Lisa Green

Bush Is NOT a Christian, Thankyouverymuch

If George W. Bush is actually elected, it will be because he's playing on the majority's fear of strangers and fear of God--fear of the unknown (Danehy, April 22).

I don't believe his political strategy will work any better than anything else he's done. Nothing could be much worse than what's becoming known, And if he's a Christian, I'm Elvis Presley.

Gretchen Nielsen

Fred Ronstadt: Silver-Spoon-Fed Brat?

I just finished reading Jim Nintzel's article, "Garbage In, Garbage Out" (Currents, May 6). It looks to me that rich-boy Ronstadt is up to his evil tricks again. This guy seems to think we all grew up on plush real estate in the Foothills. His proposal to raise property taxes for libraries is appalling. It seems to me that money is no object for this silver-spoon-fed brat. Someday, maybe my family will buy half of Tucson and install me as a City Council member so I can further do what is best for me and my rich friends.

Men like Ronstadt should have to work roofing jobs in the summer time before they get to serve on the council. Sure, raising taxes is no thing for someone who received a huge return this year from ol' Bush. Maybe he can use his giant return to help me pay for the $168 (yearly) bill for trash pickup when the council decides to privatize trash pickup.

Adam Olan Yeater

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