March 19, 2004

The Public Forum . . . El Foro Publico

The Passion Draws Receives Rave Reviews

(“The Passion of Chirst is not about Anti-Semitism, it’s about love!” published March 5, 2004, by Jose Ortiz drew huge response from readers. Below are just some of the remarks.)

Thanks for your comments. Just a clarification: The cry of “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” is actually the first line of Psalm 22 of David, which describes almost exactly the events of the crucifixion and ends with praise and thanksgiving to God for victory. It was a clear message for the people that the prophecies of the Messiah were fulfilled.

Victor Perez

Very very good. Everyone should read it. I have studied theology for over 20 years and this was one of the best messages yet on the purpose of the Passion of the Lord.

Jerry Fagan

Thank you, sir, for your wonderful and insightful comments about this great, stirring movie. Oh, that people everywhere understood — that’s all that God is doing with this undertaking! He just wants everyone to know how much He loves us and the extent He went to save our souls. I understand the persecution from the uninformed; I just cannot bear the comments of sadomasochism. Our Lord is holy; something they do not grasp. May God help them and may He bless you in Jesus’.

Marylynn Stults

What is clear from the criticism of the film is the clear ignorance of many, regarding all things Christian. Underlying the comments from some Jewish leaders was a claim of anti-semitism in the Gospels themselves. The criticism assumes people are ignorant enough to judge an entire ethnic group based on a movie. Four people die in the movie, only one in an incredibly violent fashion. Dozens of movies have people dying in the first scenes, and then more during bloody scene after bloody scene, and yet those do not get anywhere near the criticism as this movie regarding the violence. The prejudice towards Christianity in this nation grows in leaps and bounds. Perhaps we as Christians should criticize others equally.

Luis Gomez

Enjoyed your commentary about “The Passion.”  Thanks for your willingness to express your personal thoughts and beliefs in print.

Carole Bos

Iraq War 1-year Anniversary

As the one year anniversary of the start of the elective war against Iraq approaches, it is important to remember how and why our Government became engaged. Our current leaders at worst lied, at best misled a 9-11 shocked American public into a conflict that had no relevance to the so-called “War on Terror-ism.” Many in the media are also responsible for uncritically providing an echo-chamber for the Administration’s propaganda. We know there was never a WMD threat from Iraq. We know there was no connection to 9-11 and Osama bin Laden. Plenty of evidence was out there that disputed the claims made by Bush, Cheney, Powell, Rice, and Rumsfeld -like Scott Ritter, Hans Blix, and ALL of the National Intelligence Estimates produced before the October 2002 report that omitted all qualifying statements and assesments of the threat. More importantly, Iraq was militarily contained, and any disputed “stockpiles” of chemical or biological weapons, if they existed, would not have had the shelf-life to still be dangerous.  We know Iraq did not have a nuclear program.

In addition to the tragic and unnecessary loss of life on the part of Iraq and the Coalition Forces, this adventure has real consequences on our foreign policy. Much of the world was and is against our occupation of Iraq. The few national leaders that have supported the US, have generally done so against the overwhelming wishes of their respective publics. This sentiment can also be directly seen in the recent ouster of the ruling party in Spain and the statement by the new president that Spain will continue to support efforts against terrorism, but that the war in Iraq was a mistake.

Hopefully “regime change” in November can correct the flawed course our country is on.

Joseph M Vuglia
San Diego

Merchant Marines Finally Recognized

I am happy to say that a bill was introduced by Congress on January 27th by the Honorable Bob Filner, HR 3729. It was long overdue!

The belated “Thank you” to the Merchant Marines of World War II Act 2004 would pay each eligible veteran a monthly benefit of $1,000. That payment would extend to the surviving spouse.

Approximately 8,651 American civilian merchant marine seamen and officers wre killed, drowned, or lost at sea in WWII. While serving our country aboard ocean going ships, transporting troops, arms, bombs, food, military equipment, combat tanks, gasoline, etc., a total of 800 American and 4,300 allied ships were sunk/destroyed by enemy guns, bombs, floating mines and torpedoes. The American Merchant Marine deaths on a per capita count were as hig as the deaths of those in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Rudolph G. Garcia
National City

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