Voter ID law born solely of mistrust
An Associated Press article of July 9 exposed the effect of voter ID laws: They do more to prevent votes than to prevent fraud.
In fact, voter impersonation, one form of election fraud, occurs so rarely that it hardly exists.
A July 9 column by Eugene Robinson in the Washington Post cited the probe of election fraud by the Justice Department under President George W. Bush. It was nationwide, lasted five years and convicted a total of only 86 individuals – none of whom was involved in voter impersonation.
You may recall that the Indiana voter ID law came as a result of fearful claims of widespread election fraud – but no specific instances of voter impersonation were ever mentioned. The legislators simply acted on distrust of Indiana voters.
Speaking of trust, with Indianas voting machines you dont really know whether your votes are counted correctly. You know what you asked the machine to record, but you have no evidence that it followed your instructions. The machines produce only final totals.
At least 27 states have adopted a voter-verified paper trail. Each voter is provided with a printed list of his voting choices with only the machine identified. If the printout agrees with the voters intentions, it goes into a protected container to be available if there is a recount or an audit of a specific machine.
Without the paper-trail approach, Indiana is simply asking voters to trust its equipment and procedures while it clearly mistrusts them.
GORDON E. WALTER Fort Wayne
Retired administrator left a lasting mark
This is a farewell to a much-acclaimed leader: Barry Kanpol, dean of IPFWs College of Education and Public Policy, whose administrator duties ended in July.
I learned from him that true mentors encourage courage with a concern for others well-being. I felt much empowered by the integrity and the power of my voice, beyond all the politics and tenure-related hesitations.
I will remember the time he took to give feedback on manuscripts. He did not encourage us to produce a number of journal articles; he had us focus on the process and writing with a civic purpose.
He set the example of a leader who puts faculty and students before technical, institutional and financial constraints. I cannot say that I understood the breadth and the depth of his vision in the short three years I was here, but as much as I was able to grasp, these ideals will be my guidelines.
Finally, I learned from him that as an academician, you are also an educator, activist and idealist. You need to live your ideals with your ethics. Kanpol leaves a wonderful legacy to faculty, staff and students.
ZEYNEP ISIK-ERCAN Assistant professor of early childhood education, IPFW
Health mandate defense draws on flawed logic
The Unites States Conference of Catholic Bishops showed great courage. This administrations disregard for the First Amendment right to religious liberty is incomprehensible.
In all due respect, the analysis of the Rev. Edward J. Ruetz (Outdated theology drives mandate foes, July 17) is flawed. Theological insight is a progression, not some discontinuous diametrically opposed insight.
The respect for private conscience can never be confused with directly cooperating with evil. With Ruetzs logic one could justify any vicious behavior if the person believed it to be moral. It is this kind of thinking that had contributed to those who betrayed their promises to Christ and his church. It can be used to legitimize behavior that is both seriously sinful and in fact imperils ones immortal soul.
Jesus chose 12 apostles, one of whom was a traitor who chose to think that hope and change rested in political solutions rather than a respect for eternal realities. Contraception and abortion-inducing drugs are not health care. They are a fundamental attack on human dignity and the worth of every genetically complete human.
As Bishop Kevin Rhoades clearly stated, we cannot comply with the law in its current state. Christians were thrown to the lions under a repressive empire, the empire fell, Christs church is still here.
THE REV. GLENN KOHRMAN Elkhart