Tablet Opinion

Letters: Time for term limits; breach in protocol; faith misunderstood

Time for term limits

The U.S. Congress is the only place in the country where you can continue to work with an approval rating of 16 percent.

And not to forget the raises and perks that the average American can only dream of.

If a worker in the private sector has an approval rating of 16 percent, that worker would be fired.

Sounds like a double standard.

Term limits for members of Congress would be a step in the right direction.

What good is for the average American should be good for Congress as well.

A three-term congressman (or one-term senator) who has reached retirement age would be eligible for an annual pension of $17,588 for six years of work. That’s pretty generous.

— Jan M. Verrijcke, Arlington

Breach in protocol

We have heard a number of times of the breach of protocol at a Dallas hospital that caused a nurse caring for a terminally ill Ebola patient to contract the disease.

The first breach of protocol in my mind occurred when the president, Congress, the CDC and Homeland Security failed to contain the disease to the West African nations that were the source.

In any epidemic, containment is essential to prevent the spread of the disease worldwide, and in our case to the U.S.

Our elected leaders, and their appointees have known for months that the Ebola virus was exploding in Liberia and other West African nations. It only makes sense that only official travel should have been allowed out of those countries.

Private travel to attend weddings, anniversaries, funerals, reunions, etc. in the U.S. or in other countries should have been prohibited.

I believe that our leaders, elected and otherwise, were asleep at the switch. That is the most serious and the most grievous breach of protocol to date.

— Dr. Bruce K. Jacobson, Fort Worth

Faith misunderstood

Frank Matthews’ Oct. 14 opinion column, “Go, Francis go,” superbly illustrates why the extraordinary synod on the family is so timely.

Like many Catholics, and in spite of his professed Catholic upbringing, Matthews is almost completely misinformed on the actual teachings of the church.

He seems not to know that all of the sins he mentioned can be repented of and forgiven. But, just as with murder, the sinner must have remorse and intend not to continue the sinful behavior.

Jesus himself told us that divorce and remarriage is equivalent to adultery. If a couple enters into this kind of arrangement not knowing the Lord’s teaching, and builds a life together, then they are in a very difficult situation.

Pope Francis seems to be searching for ways to lovingly reach out to such couples while remaining faithful to God’s commands. All of us sinners would do well to emulate his concern rather than Matthews’ cynicism.

— Michael Arth, Southlake

May I urge Frank Matthews to study in depth (and it’s deep) the Catholic faith, to correct some of his erroneous ideas expressed in his article.

His “take” on sin and forgiveness leaves the impression that heinous crimes are easily forgiven, but remarriage after divorce, without annulment of the first, and the use of birth control, are unforgivable.

Christ, through His sacrament of reconciliation in the Church, forgives a repentant person’s sins, but does require the intention of refraining from that sin in the future.

Regarding the old rule of meatless Fridays (plus adult fasting during Lent, etc.), it was just that: a rule of practice. As such, it could be changed. Its purpose was to encourage penance, self-denial and sacrifice.

God’s laws concern the sanctity of life, marriage, our relation to Him and to one another. We are asked to be obedient.

Our do-as-you-want culture today would benefit from a return to the basics.

— Carolyn Allen, Benbrook


Letters must be no longer than 200 words and must have a full name, home street address, city of residence and home and daytime telephone numbers for verification.

Letters endorsing political candidates or ballot issues must be no longer than 150 words. Letters for the Nov. 4 elections must be received by 5 p.m. Oct. 23.

Email (preferred):; Fax: 817-390-7688

Regular mail: Letters to the Editor/Elections, Box 1870, Fort Worth TX 76101