Letters to the Editor

Sanctuary chair affirms hospice’s mission and care
On July 7, 2007, two investigators from Attorney General Jim Hood’s office walked into Sanctuary Hospice House. Thus began a 23-month long ordeal that has been a time of contrasts – a time when we have been persecuted, yet a time when we have been uplifted and blessed. I would like to share some things that we have witnessed throughout this egregious attack:
1) We saw Marilyn Lehman stand with conviction and courage as she and her family were terrorized by the Mississippi attorney general’s agents. We admire and respect her more than words can say.
2) We have seen our medical community continue to refer their terminally ill patients to Sanctuary for compassionate, loving, end-of-life care. To date, 205 physicians have referred patients to Sanctuary.
3) We have continued to see patients and families choose Sanctuary Hospice House. Presently, all beds are filled and we have a list waiting for a bed. It has been a privilege to care for 876 patients from 32 counties throughout Mississippi.
4) We have seen our community continue to love and support Sanctuary. Thank you. Your outpouring of confidence and trust has sustained us during this attack.
5) This past Tuesday we witnessed the prosecution come to Tupelo for trial. A jury panel of Lee countians had been summoned. Before the trial even began, 8 of the 11 counts were dropped and then we witnessed an offer for a plea of two counts invoking North Carolina vs. Alford, which is plea with no admission of guilt, and this included dropping the 9th count. As I watched and listened I thought of a Texas friend who says, “Big hat, no cattle.” Judge Gardner so well stated that this was an opportunity for Mrs. Lehman to have peace of mind and go on with her life for a $300 fine.
6) Most of all, we have repeatedly witnessed the goodness of God throughout this ordeal.
Please always lift us in prayer and please know that our mission and commitment to our community remain the same.
Lauren H. Patterson, Chair
Board of Directors
Sanctuary Hospice
Tupelo

Wildmon disrespects readers of the Journal
I sometimes find humor in Tim Wildmon’s opinions, but the May 24 column, “Imagine living in Liberalville, where life is doomed,” was not only sad but illustrates the need for people who differ with what they may view as liberal policy or viewpoints to vilify them. Having just returned from California I can agree with Wildmon that California is indeed in bad shape – really bad shape. But it is strange he omitted to mention that the governor of the state is a member of the Republican Party, a political party not often associated with liberal politics. And again he failed to mention that last week California voters soundly defeated several propositions that would have raised their taxes and sent a message to the governor that he and the Legislature were responsible for getting them out of the financial mess they are experiencing.
The truth is that both descriptors, liberalism and conservatism, are relative. I would imagine that somewhere in this country even Wildmon would find himself regarded as liberal in some of his beliefs. It is obvious Wildmon is an informed person and that is what makes his “opinion” so sad. To knowingly write something that can be interpreted by some as truth when in fact it is only opinion – and not at all based on the entire picture of what is happening in California or in any other of his examples – is misusing the opportunity this newspaper is affording him and disrespectful to the readers.
Watching the Memorial Day concert in Washington D.C. on PBS after reading Wildmon’s column was what really inspired me to write this letter. So many men and women are serving our country at this moment, many from our area, so we can be free, so we can be either “liberal” or “conservative” and so we can be Americans with all that comes with it. Yes, we can agree to disagree, but when will we take note that there is nothing American about using condemnation that is presented in generalized and sometimes exaggerated terms to divide us? We really are more alike than we are different.
Cathy Grace
Tupelo

Hull’s views about Bush elicit negative response
After reading James Hulls’ “apology and clarification” letter, I must respond. I have met Hull in his professional capacity as a journalist, and I have the utmost respect for him. However, I must take issue with his comparison of the “pass” given President Bush for supporting the death penalty and the “rejection” of President Obama’s position on abortion. Hull implies that this is some kind of double standard based on race. Since in addition to be a “political scientist, journalist and social commentator,” Hull is also an ordained minister. He should know better. Abortion is murder of the innocent, pure and simple. Any other view is secular rationalization. The death penalty, on the other hand, is just punishment for the most grievous crimes.
The Bible is clear on murder: “Thou shalt not!” (Exodus 20:13). The Bible is also clear that capital punishment is fitting and just (Deuteronomy 19: 18-21). Jesus also made it clear that the Old Testament law is still in effect (Matthew 5:17-18).
To equate abortion, the murder of the innocent, with meting out just punishment for the evil is the height of hypocrisy, especially for a minister. Mr. Hull, you know better!
Harold Hodges
Tupelo

NEMS Daily Journal