Letters to the Editor: Sportsmanship missing from local sports

When I was at the Clovis/Hobbs basketball game on Feb. 16, I noticed the Wildcats played their hearts out. Unfortunately they fell short and lost the game.

The student body present to support their team lost so much more. They lost their self-respect.

During the game the student section chanted “Hobbs sucks.” When a Hobbs player would pass the student section, Clovis’ students shouted obscenities.

Whenever a referee would make a call the students didn’t like, they would chant “Push it.” Say that enough times and we all know what it really sounds like.

For a community and a school that prides itself on character, it sure wasn’t displayed this Friday night.

I love a good rivalry, but it is ridiculous that we need 10 or more police officers at a high school basketball game for riot control.

I was counting on school administrators to correct or control the students that night, but they just stood by, hearing the same things everyone else was hearing — a total lack of respect for themselves and everyone present.

The players from both teams were very respectful to one another. They displayed fine sportsmanship and character.

Joel Gershon

Helmet law not created for profit
I want to thank you for publishing the story “Helmet law up for vote,” in Tuesday’s CNJ.

I hope the bill will gain the governor’s stamp and be welcomed by all.

I can assure you it is not a helmet company promoting this bill, but people who know and live with traumatic brain injury.

My family, friends, neighbors and all who pay taxes will forever be touched by brain injury. On March 4, 1998, my 8-year-old daughter sustained severe traumatic brain injury. I now know the truth well.

My daughter went from being a popular honor roll student who sang, danced, and competed in many sports, to lying in a hospital bed for three months while her body contorted into unthinkable positions and tubes kept life pumped into her.

She went from running barrels on her horse to spending half a year learning to walk again. She went from performing Shakespeare to spending nine years in intensive speech therapy trying to produce words that relay her thoughts.

She has traded her many moments dreaming of her future to praying for death. My dream of her college and my grandkids has turned into thanking God for another day and praying she will reach semi-independent living.

My daughter has had eight surgeries on her brain so far; they were paid for with tax dollars.

This is an issue that touches all. One in 30 kids sustains a severe enough TBI (traumatic brain injury) every year in the U.S. to cause a permanent disability. We can change those numbers.

We need to promote safety with helmet use and proper child restraints in cars. A broken brain is not just another injury that will heal in time. It is forever.
The only cure is prevention.

Brenda Crocker
Fort Sumner

Informing others is Christian duty
An Eastern New Mexico University student from China recently wrote there is freedom of religion in China. There are places of worship for many religions in China; however, there is no religious freedom there.

For Christians, the Three-Self Patriotic Movement churches are the registered and approved places to attend. Activities and leadership in these registered churches are closely scrutinized and controlled by the government, according to the Voice of the Martyrs Web site — www.persecution.com

Bibles are routinely confiscated when being used outside the registered churches. The demand for hymnals, tracts, apologetic materials, Bible study and other teaching materials is high, but the supply for house churches comes from underground efforts.

Christians are only 7.25 percent of China’s population; house church groups comprise almost 90 percent of China’s Christians.

A major crackdown against these unregistered church groups happened in 2003-2004. Several hundred Christians were arrested and a 28-year-old teacher and a 34-year-old female evangelist were among Christians beaten to death in police custody.

In 2005, 100 security officers from five Chinese government agencies raided a conference of 140 house-church leaders and 10 guest pastors. They seized Bibles and Christian study materials and arrested attendees, including two American pastors who were detained, questioned and then deported for taking part in “barbaric” and “uncivilized” activities. These were pastors from denominational churches in the U.S.

A well-known house church leader, Liu Fenggang, was arrested in October 2003. He was released Feb. 5. He had been arrested for providing national intelligence to overseas organizations by reporting a house church destruction case to overseas Christian organizations.

Influence from outside China is the best hope these persecuted Christians have.
Informed support of Christians worldwide is every believer’s responsibility.

Carolyn Spence