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We owe it to these brave rescuers to refrain from unsafe practices

To The Daily Sun,

Early Sunday evening as we were finishing dinner while visiting a neighbor, there was pounding on the front door. A young man with panic in his voice told us that both he and his friend had fallen through the ice on snowmobiles. He made it to shore, but his friend was still out in the frigid water.

Within minutes, the emergency teams from three towns responded to our 9-1-1 call. This story might not have had a happy ending had it not been for the excellent training and teamwork of these three local fire and ice rescue units. As eyewitnesses we stand in awe of the dedication and professionalism of the Laconia, Gilford and Belmont ice rescue teams. The young man in the water was in the middle of Lake Winnisquam approximately one-half mile from shore. We could only watch and pray. The focus and dedication of the rescue effort was incredible. We are so fortunate to have these highly trained professionals in our community.

Without them the ending to this story would have been tragic. There are heroes in our midst — each and every member of the ice rescue teams from Laconia, Gilford and Belmont was a hero on Sunday night. We were privileged to see them in action and we are extremely grateful that they were there. We also thank the Tilton-Northfield and Meredith Fire Departments who covered Laconia and the Weirs should there have been another local emergency.

We cannot end our letter, however, without issuing a word of caution to all those who venture out on the ice during the winter when ice fishing, snowmobiling or skating. In many of our lakes, currents affect the thickness of ice. There are often areas of thin ice or open water on our big lakes due to these currents. An open water rescue, especially at night is a challenging and dangerous endeavor for all involved.

The firefighters who risked their own lives to save the young snowmobiler did so without question and with amazing precision. We owe it to them not to engage in unsafe practices while we enjoy the outdoors in winter.

Liz & Alan Rosenfeld


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James Veverka (1-12) 470 BIG BANG

To The Daily Sun,

Tony Boutin says there are just too many zeros for life or the universe to have happened without God. Mr. Boutin brought us the "God of the Gaps" argument to us in all its glory. For those who don't know what this term is, its the habit people have when they don't have the scientific answers yet, don't understand them, or just refuse to acknowledge them, the say God did it. A god fills in their gaps in knowledge. When primitive man didn't understand lightning, plagues, earthquakes, battle losses, famines, infertility or floods, they said God did it. But since the dawn of the scientific age, millions of things have turned out to be just natural events, not God.

These days, folks like Tony use the God of the gaps argument to explain life and the "creation" of the universe. Unknown to our scientifically illiterate brethren who prefer Fox news and Duck Dynasty over education, science is at work to explain those two as natural phenomena. The physics math that brought us the television screen and the nuclear reactor also brought us the prediction of the Higgs Boson particle in the 1960s. In 2012 it was discovered at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland and sent shockwaves and excitement around the scientific world. The Higgs particle is what gives other particles their mass. No, not magic.

Backed by many lines of evidence, physicists have for decades predicted that the universe appeared spontaneously due to quantum fluctuations. Now we have a mathematical proof for just that prediction of a universe from nothing (zero energy state). Thanks to the work of Dongshan He and his team at the Wuhan Institute of Physics and Mathematics in China, these guys have come up with the first rigorous proof that the Big Bang could indeed have occurred spontaneously because of quantum fluctuations. https://medium.com/the-physics-arxiv-blog/a-mathematical-proof-that-the-universe-could-have-formed-spontaneously-from-nothing-ed7ed0f304a3

It might surprise you to know that the total energy of the universe is zero. All the positive energy and negative energy together adds up to zero. In the matter of life's beginnings, scientists have long conjectured on how life could have sprung from non-living matter. Now we have a testable theory.

"According to physicist Jeremy England, the origin and evolution of life are processes driven by the fundamental laws of nature — namely the Second Law of Thermodynamics. He's come up with a formula showing how a group of atoms, when driven by an external source of energy (like the sun) and when surrounded by a heat bath (like the ocean or atmosphere), can sometimes restructure itself as a way to dissipate increasing rates of energy." http://io9.com/physicist-proposes-a-thermodynamic-explanation-for-the-1507452119

Scientists have already come up with some experiments with which to test the idea. It appears we may live in a Biophile universe where life is a cosmic imperative.

James Veverka


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