1. Times Publications

  2. Times Media Group Publications
  3. The Valley’s Best Told Stories


The following has been transcribed from our Sound Off line during the past month. Sound Off is a monthly editorial feature of The Times. We encourage participation.

Submissions can be made via phone at 480-348-0343 (option 8) or make your submission on this Web site by emailing soundoff@timespublications.com.

Am I exaggerating or does every other Sound Off comment include the “you dummies” and/or end with the phrase “you dummy?” Maybe it’s my imagination, but I have this image of the writer being some crotchety retired person laying blame on others—usually Republicans—for all the problems in the United States and the world. I got news for these dummies: Most of today’s social and fiscal problems aren’t the result of recent decisions and actions, but rather those made in the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s. Now let’s think. Who were the folks who came up with, in charge of and voting for all those poorly planned ideas coming apart today? Think about it, you big bunch of dummies.—A 53-year-old man.

This company that was supposed to be boarding dogs for these people who neglected these animals and went on vacation and left somebody else in charge, I hope they get the pants sued off them. I foster for a program with animals, and I never leave the animals unattended.

There is such a huge gray area when it comes to hypocrisy in the Hobby Lobby decision. It is a business. It does business with China. China has legal abortion and has practiced female infanticide as a culture for thousands of years, and yet, that’s OK. Somehow supplying abortion drugs or birth control pills—whatever you want to call them—to employees is not OK. It’s OK to do business with people who believe in that. I just get lost here. Is it just after the money? They just ask forgiveness of God for dealing with people who practice abortion, but they can’t do that with their own employees, apparently. I don’t get how you moralize what you’re doing, just for profit-making reasons. The bottom line in business is profit—not religion, not morals, not ethics even. If you can get away with it, if you can make a lot of money by being unethical and no one catches you, you’re a hero in this culture. It’s capitalism, folks. It’s not religion. Morality doesn’t make anybody rich.

Here’s an idea: If you are unemployed, homeless, can’t fit all the kids in the car and drive from one free meal to another, just put a couple of the kids on the bus that says 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. and send them off with goodwill and prayers. How about that?

I was all excited to read about Papago Plaza being rebuilt and refinished with new stores for the neighborhood. When I saw SkySong was getting involved, it made me sick. I’m so sick of hearing about SkySong, which has done nothing for my neighborhood. Not a thing. All they did was take up space, build more buildings and take up every street in the neighborhood. Quit talking about SkySong. All they do is spend the City’s money, taxpayers’ money and who cares about it? I’m sick of looking at those diapers again.

Why isn’t the bleeding heart press asking more intelligent questions about people who come to America and expect to receive all its benefits? They (immigrants) should not be surprised they are resented after three to five years, and they still refuse to speak its language. They disrespect their own family by expecting their public-educated children to be translators for them. How lazy can you get?

You remember when George W. Bush tried to privatize Social Security during his term? If that would have occurred, administrative fees would go up from 3 percent to 20 percent, just to implement the new program. You get charged. You really think Republicans have your best interests at heart? Privatize, privatize, privatize. Expensive, expensive, expensive. You lose.

It’s the Fourth of July, and Americans disrespect our independence. All across America we sing the praises of God—“God Bless America.” God has blessed America very richly, abundantly, graciously and mercilessly. For all these blessings, we have a strange way of showing our appreciation. We aborted 130,387,000 of his absolutely defenseless, unborn children, and we do it every year. We’ve been doing it for 41 years. How long is he going to bless the United States? I don’t know. These people have the audacity to call abortion pro-choice. How shameful we are.

So sad to hear of Dick Wagner’s passing. He was a great guitar player for people like Alice Cooper. He will be missed.

Republicans tried this in the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that retirement was a benefit and not an hourly wage. The whole purpose of taxing retirement is so they can tax Social Security at 30 percent and they can tax welfare.

Why don’t the Republicans see the good in people? All they do is hate, hate, hate. The Democrats accept those less fortunate. What would Jesus do?

The GOP is in dire need of a CLO—a chief listening officer. Otherwise, Republicans will continue to forfeit major potential constituencies.

In today’s news, yes, Mr. (John) Boehner, “Your work takes responsibility for something” unquestionably refers to yourself and others self-serving, narrow-minded forever segregationists. And, as a Congress, you all are failures and unworthy of your paychecks and benefits. You’re just selfish, selfish, selfish. Same old, same old.

It’s noontime and the annoying credit cards people are calling again. How do we get rid of these annoying phone calls? The telephone company says they can’t do anything about it when they’re an 800 call. Why are we paying for no service? Is anybody else complaining about these annoying phone calls? You don’t want to because nobody’s smart enough to read the no-call list? Help!

Given the Diamondbacks have essentially fielded nothing more than a class AA baseball team, isn’t a reduction in ticket prices at Chase Field in order?

Question: In all the finger-pointing about who was responsible for the border problems, which generation helped drug use caused it in the first place—the millennials or the V Generation. Figure that out, and the problems can be solved all around. Stop finger pointing, look at yourself, first.

You Republicans, who call yourself Christians, need to know the difference between illegals and refugees. Refugees must leave their country when their life is in danger. The Bible has repeatedly say love your neighbor as yourself. The Republicans take a stand to hate them. Therefore, Republicans can do anything they want. It just shows they’re not really Christians, but liars with hate in their heart. I am praying for you hypocrites.

With the season more than half over, the only positive thing about the hapless and helpless Diamondbacks is (Paul) “Goldschmidt Happens.”

Another high-rise plan for historical Tempe? Who are you kidding? There’s nothing left of historical Tempe but the hill and the river stone floor in Monti’s. It’s deplorable. Soon enough, someone will have an idea to tear down “A” Mountain because it blocks the view of the stadium and all the other high rises of the historical, once-pleasant downtown Tempe. Just deplorable ignorance.

Another unfortunate tragedy—and you can bet someone in Moscow already knows what ignoramus showoff pulled the trigger?

For all the good, the magic of computers, iPads and photo phones have done to connect the people of the world, now comes the latest feature that should be called blubber, blubber invasion of privacy. You can’t have it all. Everyone is now on camera somewhere 24-7.

Congratulations to Eric Chavez of the Arizona Diamondbacks on a great career. Enjoy retirement!

Crazy world. On any world map, Gaza appears to be the size of Long Island; the shelling area equal to Manhattan. Get the picture? It’s all in ruins and homeless people who are hungry. Who would you help? The rocket throwers who started the mess in vengeance or the bombers who trying to end it and restore commerce for all? Now, you can’t decide? Criticize America for doing nothing, but being helpful for either side? Are you ready to send your sons back to war that we didn’t want anything to do with in the first place? Think about that. Just plain think about it. Quit criticizing our government.

For 100 years, Europeans have called for Americans to solve their problems. But, they did not ever learn that America is a do-it-yourself nation? So what now? This time, remember the lessons and do it yourself, Europe. Do it yourself. You were poor students.

I’ve been a person with disabilities for about 21 years. I’m in my late 50s, and I have an extreme pleasure of owning a service dog. She’s a standard poodle. What I’d like to do is tell people this: When you see me walking with my white cane, red tip and my gorgeous standard poodle with her vest on her saying “service dog,” please don’t touch her. Please do not touch my service dog. Do not call her. Do not step on her foot. Do not run her over with your grocery cart. Please control your children around my service dog. You see, I have five permanent disabilities because of my brain surgery years ago. As I get older, I have more of a struggle in the world. I am not complaining, just explaining. I’m just merely explaining that those of us with disabilities, as we get older and have service dogs to help us, we need help.

We have a question for the Ukrainian rebels: Are you sure you want to be a part of Russia, now that they’re blaming this brouhaha on you? Taking all their weapons and going home? Now what are you going to do? You’re going to be nice to your Ukrainian neighbors? That’s the way they do it in Russia, remember? Poor dummies.

The current television ads of Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidates are replete with shock and “hee-haw.” Well it’s been proven that legal alternatives are just disgusting. Go back to the code of the West, “Get a rope.” If the person is innocent, the rope will break. If not, justice is at work. It’s that simple. Why do they have to mess everything up?

If you enjoy any of the public broadcasting stations, send a message to the FCC at www.fcc.gov by Sept. 1 to make sure they vote to renew Arizona State University Channel 8’s eight-year license. It is the viewers’ business to fight the commercial stations’ lobbyists trying to destroy the competition of information to the public—especially with today’s terrible problems. Believe it or not, Washington still does a lot of under-the-table deals. Vote for Channel 8 to keep its license.

Putin’s bad international manners are not America’s problems. They are the Russian people’s problem, and they are ashamed. Shame on Putin’s ignorance.

War or peace? Once a people accept a justification of kill or be killed, there’s no stopping until everyone is dead, and no more children are born to carry on the old grudge. Is this world now ready for the code of universal hate or love thy neighbor, whether you like them or not? It’s some choice.

There’s nothing like a sore loser. Hamas and al-Qaida, what you are you going to do when there’s no women and children left to perpetuate your hate? Self-destruction is called “suicide” in any language, but stupid war is genocide. Don’t you know that yet?

Sunday afternoon television is most entertaining, but stop looking for Jimmy Hoffa’s body. There never was one. It went in an acid bath and down the drain, long, long ago. That’s the kind of people they were.

Obama began his presidency apologizing to the world, instead of proudly representing his country. We have Obamacare that caters only to people qualifying for free medical care, including illegals. Don’t forget Operation Fast and Furious, the I.R.S. scandal, the VA scandal and the droves of illegals entering this country when Obama knew that would be happening a year ago and did nothing. How much more damage can this man do in the next 2 1/2 years?

So, why doesn’t the U.N. go into Palestine and Gaza and close off all those dumb tunnels, except the one for trading with Egypt? What happened to all the brains of these smart, smart men who can’t figure out that simple solution? Close off the tunnels, except when necessary for survival, and keep it guarded. Any kid can figure that out. Of course the mean old men at the U.N., it’s just beyond their ability.

Did I just hear right? Congress says reimburse the veterans for outside medical care when they can’t get into the VA. Excuse me? Does that mean the homeless vet with no money has to pay a doctor before he can be “reimbursed?” There you go. That’s what’s wrong with the people in Congress. They don’t have any common sense at all.

Whoopee, filming under a skirt and the best picture you can get are of fat thighs and soiled underwear, if you’re lucky. Sicker than sicker than sick. What is wrong with this country and the men in it? Sick, sick, sick.

My complaint is that, with the increase in technology, it seems like companies assume that every home in America has a home office and can afford to go to the store every week for ink and paper. I won a prize from a local radio station, and now they want me to print a W-9 to take to their office before I can claim the prize. It used to be if you won a prize, you went to their office and you filled one out. Not anymore. Now they are so cheap they want you to pay for the ink and paper. Then I started doing promo events for a local demo company and, instead of mailing me the paperwork or doing the paperwork online, I have to print out 20 to 30 pages and then fill out a couple of them and mail them back on my dime. Sometimes I miss the days before technology. Technology is costing me a small fortune!

Pictures don’t lie. When you see the ignorance of the rebels of the Ukraine removing the bodies of victims, you see the future of other innocent nations of people who oppose political slavery. Well, thanks for the validation (Vladimir) Putin and (Bashar-al) Assad. Now we really know the proof of the future you plan.

I enjoy sports talk radio, however, I rarely listen to KTAR FM 98.7 between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. because local hosts are, by and large, ill-informed myopic blowhards. Case in point is the co-host of the weekday afternoon drive-time program, who often turns discussions into a monologue about his daughters who attend college on athletic scholarships. It’s obvious that this gas bag is a middle-aged jock wanna be who lives vicariously through his kids. Man, get a life.

Thomas Jefferson stated most bad government results from too much government. How true that statement is today.

It is very sad that our first bi-racial president will be judged in history as the most inept, corrupt, wasteful, subversive, destructive, divisive president ever; a man who was twice elected because of the color of his skin rather than the content of his character.

Oh poor old Mr. Cheney, suggesting Republicans have all the answers to everything but they won’t say so because the Democrats would use it and take all the credit when there is success. How juvenile can he get? Don’t put that poor old man on television anymore. He makes you want to cry.