Ralston Arena does a lot of good

Serving a beautiful wedding dinner last weekend, I was asked who the caterer was. I proudly said Ralston Arena. They told us how great the food was. Conversation led to questions about whether the servers were temps because of the arena shirt I had on. I proudly said no, we have a great staff.

We serve our own functions and do the meal and table cleanup as well. Ralston’s Banquet Hall can serve around 400 people. The person was surprised and said they would put the word out how nice it was here. In reply to all the negativity, it is a shame when writers point fingers to Ralston for not looking at the big picture. Any arena startup has problems.

Quit giving the Ralston Arena and its staff a black eye for doing a job well done.

Philip Keyser, Papillion

Need money for roads, see TIF

Here is an idea for the Omaha City Council: If you want more money to fund roads, stop giving away our tax money as tax-increment financing to every bar, apartment complex and shopping center that wants to build in town, and start using it correctly. To give money to developers in some of the most lucrative spots in town, then turn to the hard-working citizens of Omaha, hat-in-hand, is disgusting.

Craig W. Horobik, Omaha

God’s law vs. law of man

Friday’s World-Herald (Sept. 4) carried the front-page headline: ‘For clerk, God’s moral law trumps U.S. law.’ It’s the story of how Kim Davis, a 49-year-old county clerk in Kentucky received a jail sentence for refusing to issue a marriage license to same-sex couples. I applaud her decision to go to jail rather than compromise her beliefs. I’m an 89-year-old Navy veteran of World War II and an ordained, licensed minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Over the last 20 years, I’ve married more than 300 couples in and around Omaha. On one occasion, I politely refused to marry a same-sex couple. To date, no court has told me I’m compelled to marry same-sex couples, but I believe that day will come.

The courts have already told a florist he must sell flowers and a baker that she must bake a cake. So, if and when that day comes, I will turn in my license and face the consequences. In the words of Martin Luther, “Here I stand, I can do no other!”

Gil Hill, Omaha

Ky. clerk’s actions a slippery slope

Imagine this scenario: An elected official at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, because of his religious beliefs concerning guns, refuses to grant any gun permits to be issued by himself or anyone in his office. His beliefs are very strong, following the scripture “Thou shalt not kill,” and he believes that guns are an instrument of killing, which is proven daily.

He also believes there are many people across the nation with similar beliefs who will back up his stand against those who would take away his religious freedom. Would the GOP presidential candidates come to his defense? Or would they crucify him for taking away the civil rights of others and encourage the state to terminate him for not doing his job?

Marriage licenses for all is now a civil right, not a freedom of religion issue, just as freedom from slavery became a civil right, although slavery is condoned in the Bible.

Barbara Sawatzki, Omaha

Iran deal deserves a robust debate

The headlines proclaim the Iranian deal is done. That it is “done” is a sad commentary on the current state of American governance. All acknowledge that questions remain. Some suggest that we put political shenanigans aside when considering the benefits of this deal. In the poisonous atmosphere of Washington, can one ever put political shenanigans aside?

Many say this deal is about the science. As a scientist, I know we rarely have any decision-making power, but it is up to our elected officials to listen to us. Elected officials didn’t listen when the science said Yucca Mountain would be safe or that Boyd County would be safe or that nuclear power is safe.

If this really is a good deal, it should be capable of withstanding public scrutiny in honest, open debate. Sadly, the current state of American governance is such that no honest, open debate on this deal could be achieved. The absence of such debate means that should the deal turn out to be bad, we will gain that knowledge too late.

Barry Butterfield, Omaha

Husker fans remain a class act

My wife, sons, and I were at the NU-BYU game yesterday, three of us wearing our Brigham Young University blue amidst the sea of red. My youngest is a University of Nebraska-Lincoln law school grad and wore red.

Before and after the game, we had many of the fans welcome us to Nebraska and wish us well. They were just as friendly when we told them we were BYU grads living in Papillion. After the game, we had numerous Huskers congratulate us. We did not experience or hear a single bad word or ill-tempered display.

Nebraska football has had its ups and downs over the years, but the fans have remained constant — loyal, informed, fiercely supportive and courteous. They are the perfect model for what great fans should be. Go Big Red!

Mark Partridge, Papillion

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