The American-News welcomes letters of opinion from our readers. Letters regarding current local and national news items are encouraged. All letters are subject to editing for length and style. Letters containing potentially libelous or obscene statements will not be published. Letters must contain name, address and phone number for verification and in case of questions. E-mail letters to: Letters may also be mailed to: Editor, Montevideo Publishing, P.O. Box 99, Montevideo, MN 56265

Koenen listens to the people
Dear fellow constituents and voters of state Senate District 17:
Tuesday, Aug. 14, is primary election day in Minnesota.

I am a moderately-conservative voter since 1974. I have supported Republicans perhaps 70 to 75 percent of the time. However, this year in the primary I endorse Lyle Koenen in the state Senate race on the DFL ticket.

As a state Representative, Lyle voted “aye” on the Defense of Marriage Amendment. Lyle has experience in the state Legislature and he listens diligently to the people. He’ll also explain the progress of the people’s business at the St. Paul Capitol.

I consider Lyle Koenen to be a good friend. If you vote on the DFL ticket on Aug. 14, I highly recommend a vote for Lyle Koenen.
—Merlin L. Marlowe

Don’t spread ignorance, hatred
I was very disappointed after reading your “Heaven Help the Home” segment, and after reading part 2, I am absolutely disgusted.

I would like to be shown the study that Mr. Runyan uses to support his “facts” about children in households with same-sex parents. If his only reason for saying this is a negative environment for children is that they will be more open to a same-sex relationship, then I don’t see how this affects them in any sort of a negative way.

It’s not the same-sex couples who are at fault for their children, or anyone’s children, being unhappy or emotionally stunted, it’s the people who condemn them for their lifestyle.

I cannot even begin to counter half of the opinions stated in the article because they were beyond hateful and ignorant. The church should spread messages that are conducive to peaceful and harmonious relationships and viewpoints. Reverend Runyan stated that legalizing gay marriage is like opening Pandora’s box. That is absolutely false. Spreading hateful and bigoted opinions, on the other hand, most certainly will lead to more hatred and insanity.

In this article he compares gay marriage to pedophilia and beastiality. If I write an article comparing interracial marriages to people being allowed to marry their hamsters, will you publish that as well? Allowing someone to express views this hateful is absolutely not acceptable. It is hard enough for homosexuals to be accepted as it is; they absolutely do not need or deserve any added negative attention simply for being who they are.

Suicide rates in homosexual teens are rising at a very alarming rate and yet, instead of trying to comfort them, you publish an article comparing what they feel to being attracted to a young child or an animal. Homosexuality has existed as long as the world has, and homophobia is a complete backtrack on evolution and a detriment to world peace and acceptance of others.

On your site, one of your rules for comments asks that no one discriminates against anyone else because of their orientation. I would ask that you follow your own rules for your own articles. Please think before you spread ignorance and hatred.
—Cassie Wright

Vote ‘no’ on amendment
Polite society has traditionally avoided certain topics in conversation — politics, religion, sex — but this fall Minnesotans are being asked to amend our state constitution to provide that only a union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as marriage in Minnesota.

Now we find ourselves needing to have polite conversations about issues we have often avoided. In honor of friends and relatives living in or wishing to one day live in a committed relationship and in memory of those who lived very difficult lives at a time when such a thing could not even be imagined, I will vote “no” in November. Please join me.
—Sue Kempe