Letters: Briles, Trump, Starr, handguns, Muslims

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Art Briles and class

I cannot second-guess the Baylor University regents, but I would like to share a couple of Art Briles memories. I lived in Stephenville in the 1990’s, when he led the Stephenville High School Yellow Jackets to four state football championships.

Coach Briles’ Friday radio program always began with thanks to “… our team, our school, our community, our fans.” He rarely used the word “I.” The program always ended with some compliment of the opposing team, reminiscent of the late Darrell Royal. Class personified.

But my favorite Art Briles story had nothing to do with football. One autumn Saturday, the Stephenville High School band went to Glen Rose for the area UIL marching contest. I keenly remember that day because my son was drum major. As I climbed the bleachers, there were Art and Jan, cheering and applauding as loudly as anyone. They had no children in the performance—they were there for “our band.” Class demonstrated.

Some say Coach Briles never will coach college football again. Time will tell, but I predict that his formidable talents will be sought after by professional football, where employees other than the head coach are responsible for policing athletes’ behavior.

Hard lessons learned—both Baylor and Art Briles will bounce back. Good days are not over for either of them.

Rodger Weems


SBCers on the Trump train

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A letter advises, “vote to further God’s purpose.” How would we know we are doing that? The writer says we would vote for showperson Donald Trump. The writer indicates he is “pro-life” and his single issue seems to be abortion. I don’t claim to know how to further God’s purpose, but there is more to being pro-life than just having contempt for women who have had an abortion. If you promote merchants of death in the gun lobby, favor the death penalty, favor a war of choice based on false evidence and killing more than 4,000 Americans and 100,000 citizens of Iraq, you are not pro-life.

During 79 years, I never have witnessed a political candidate who has told more vicious, flagrant and provable lies than Trump. Usually, people are embarrassed to be caught telling a lie, but not Trump. His bigoted attack on a judge even irritates fellow Republicans. He accused Secretary Clinton of murdering family friend Vince Foster, whom even Ken Starr finally admitted had committed suicide. He says Clinton persecuted many women who had an alleged affair with President Clinton. Even Fox News couldn’t stomach this and asked a campaign spokesperson to “name one.” They couldn’t. Because there wasn’t one.

Sadly, some of the most prominent Southern Baptists have jumped on the Trump train, including those with the empire built by the late Jerry Falwell. This has proven immensely profitable, as the money is flowing in. Why should we be surprised the SBC lost 200,000 members last year?

Carl Hess

Ozark, Ala.

Should Starr teach law at Baylor?

Should Ken Starr be a law professor at Baylor University?

In the Baylor scandal over ignoring or covering up rapes and other assaults, Head Football Coach Art Briles was fired, Athletic Director Ian McCaw was sanctioned, and President and Chancellor Ken Starr was demoted to chancellor and law professor. Within days, McCaw resigned as AD and Starr resigned as chancellor because “as a matter of conscience,” he wanted to “urge them (Baylor regents) toward transparency.”

Starr says he was following federal regulations regarding sexual assaults at Baylor. Yet in May, the Baylor regents authorized $6.3 million to hire additional staff to get up to date with the regulations. If Starr can get on camera, like before a football game or on a mission trip, he acts like he cares about people. Yet when a rape victim is in his office or sends an email, he ignores it. He wants transparency, but his crisis-control expert stops the interview with KWTX, takes him into another room to coach him, and he comes back with a different statement.

Starr is famous for turning the Whitewater real estate investigation into a $40 million investigation of Bill Clinton’s sex life. (In the Starr Report, Whitewater was mentioned four times and sex was mentioned 580+ times.) Yet when Bill Clinton’s friend, a billionaire sex-trafficking pedophile, needs help, Starr is instrumental in getting him off with a plea bargain deal. Links to 2 videos and an article are available by clicking here, here and here.

Don Haney

Richmond, Texas

Change Constitution, 2nd Amendment

A nation that does nothing about the rising tide of gun violence within its borders is not a great nation. 

Despite all of our “God Bless America” pleas, God does not bless nations where hate and greed trump love. Should any citizen in our country be allowed to buy a military assault weapon? Who really needs one? 

It is time to amend the U.S. Constitution, the outdated Second Amendment, and update it to meet 21st century needs.

Paul L. Whiteley Sr.

Louisville, Ky.

Muslims don’t own a monopoly on radicalism

Christian radical Timothy McVeigh bombed Oklahoma City. A Christian radical racist shot people in a church in South Carolina. Jim Jones, a Christian radical pastor, took his people to Guyana and poisoned them.

I don’t get it that only Muslins are radical.

Jack Milligan

Highland Village

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