LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Security at town hall went beyond the pale
The Place: Lee County Justice Center
The Scene: Armed guards; some officers with assault weapons; men with arrogant and harsh demeanor checking, scanning purses, assault dogs, etc. What a shock as we arrived Tuesday for the Nunnelee town hall meeting.
As the meeting began, nervous apology was made for the security measures. There was an explanation given for the need for such because of the shooting of a congresswoman and others. We all grieve at such tragedy. We, as Americans are very thankful for our freedom of assembly. We understand the possibility that some lone, demented person may do harm, as in the Gifford shooting. Yet, is it just, is it right that all citizens are forced to accept rough-shod, overly-threatening government security?
Our choices are a nanny state where government “cares” for us, or, freedom. It has been rightly said: “Anyone who trades freedom for security deserves neither.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn suffered under bitter communism in Russia.
His great books and lectures testify to his love for freedom. His constant warnings of Western Civilization’s fast slide toward communism/socialism went unheeded.
A reporter asked Solzhenitsyn what he saw as the future of the West.
He responded, “I see a jackbooted foot on the neck of mankind forever.”
As Americans accept more and more government intrusion, that prophetic warning is one to contemplate.
Thanks to Congressman Nunnelee for the fine town hall meeting.
To security: Lose the rifles and dogs.
Susan Seale
Corinth


Were McCain president, we’d be fighting in Libya
My attention has been drawn to John McCain by his recent activities and how different things would be if McCain had won in 2008.
Many people have said that anyone could do a better job than Barack Obama is doing. The only problem with that argument is that “anyone” wasn’t on the ballot in 2008, John McCain was. He was the one and only alternative to Obama available, and if the Republicans weren’t happy with that choice then they should have chosen someone else, shouldn’t they? No one held a gun to their heads and made them give McCain the nomination, he won it fair and square.
Has anyone noticed what McCain has been up to lately? He has been screaming for two months that American ground troops should be involved in the Libyan Civil War to anybody who would listen. This past weekend he went to the rebel stronghold of Benghazi and said that the U.S. should recognize the rebel government and, again, should send in soldiers to fight. The problem here is that the “rebel government” is fictional, no one is in charge of them all yet. There’s no one to recognize. They have no overall leader. Also, in this time when Democrats and Republicans can’t agree on anything, solid majorities in both parties do agree that getting involved in a third ground war in the Middle East when we’re broke and can’t afford another war would be a grave mistake. Obama has pledged not to send ground forces and, so far at least, is sticking to his word. Like Obama or hate him he’s trying not to waste American lives. Do the Obama haters realize that if McCain had won, and he was president, American troops would be fighting, bleeding and dying in the Libyan desert right now, at this moment? If McCain favors that, doesn’t it make sense that McCain would have acted on that impulse by now? Feel free to hate Obama, Republicans, if you please, but keep in mind what the alternative could have been. Elections really do have consequences. Sometimes lives really do depend on the choice you make at the ballot box.
Richard Wilkinson
Amory


Barbour was wise to sit out the race
The editorial in the April 27 Journal basically accepted Gov. Barbour’s explanation for his decision not to run for president at face value. Presidential campaigns are, of course, daunting enterprises which place tremendous demands on the candidate’s time and family, and whose reward for success is the Hardest Job in the World.
However, I am not completely satisfied with the governor’s explanation. Let us consider the state of the Republican Party today, where around half of GOP voters don’t even believe the current president to be an American citizen (despite abundant and irrefutable evidence to the contrary), and who believe that his ultimate aim is to destroy American democracy and institute some form of Islamo-Fascist government in its place. Let us consider that, and ask ourselves: “How could a serious Republican like Haley Barbour ever hope to succeed in such an environment?” Where good sense is labeled foolish, and compromise is treason?
I believe I would sit this one out, as well.
Jamie McFadden
Tupelo


Spay, neuter decisiondoes kindness to pets
Be Kind to Animals Week starts today. Most of us who are fortunate enough to have a companion animal are fully aware of the responsibilities that accompany this gift.
There is no kinder action we can take to benefit the world of animals than to reduce the existing over-population. A little common sense should tell us that the most logical means of addressing this is through sterilization, better known as spaying and neutering. The procedure is simple, safe and has a rapid recovery time.
Spay, Inc. is a very low-cost program in North Mississippi that has served this area’s needs for almost 12 years. Started by Ruth Shelton in August 1999, over 13,000 animals have been spayed/neutered. There’s no better time to take advantage of this worthwhile program. Call 869-9900 to make an appointment.
Kathy Fealhaber
Tupelo


‘Palinism’ identifiedby factual distortion
Just before the Christmas holidays I overheard on one of the cable news channels that my wife lives to watch some rhetoric about “Death Panels.” Wow! I thought. This is either some sort of weird déjà vu of 2009’s Health Care Reform Bill mania or an attempt by cable news to resurrect an old non-issue to fill in for a period where there was not much happening (at least negatively) in the world in order to fabricate an issue that will excite viewers and pump up ratings. It lasted about a week, encouraged by one particular network that is especially good at touching the reactive, the dissonant, the hate nerve in all of us (fair and balanced). But, it died; about a week’s worth of vitriol, then gone.
I think the issue was back then that Medicare would be allowed to pay for an individual’s discussions with his or her doctor about some things that worry all (or some) of us – what can I do if I go blind – If I can’t feed myself – if I get Alzheimer’s – if I get so old that I become a burden on my family. Forgive my simplistic ignorance, but I thought these were good issues to be able to talk to a doctor about and to have Medicare assist in paying for these doctor consultation fees.
But, politics distort a perfectly good issue. This one is a good example. This Medicare benefit was defined as a “Death Panel” in order to further the agenda of an opposing political party. Here is a perfectly legitimate benefit twisted, politicized, brought to our attention only during election time, by the simple expedient of changing its name to “Death Panels.” If you notice, this sort of distortion of fact is becoming more and more an accepted part of our governmental leaders. I have decided to name this tactic after the one who used “Death Panels” in her campaign and later rhetoric, over and over, and over again. “Palinism.” This lady, this “Almost a Real Governor” of Alaska (fortunately the state’s greatness is coming back after she quit) is an expert with this tactic.
Palinism: the art of hiding facts with issue distortion, the art of furthering one’s argument by twisting reality, disguising reality to support your own agenda, calling a lie an “interpretation of issues.”
Being a politician.
Fritz Crytzer
Pontotoc


Reassess who it is we need to blame
I have just read the article about Rep. Nunnelee speaking of cutting Medicare and Medicaid.
This makes me furious because when I go to an ER, dentist’s office or doctor’s office it will have many people with the “free” cards.
Try cutting that out, then count the money saved; we all have worked hard and long for the benefit. Tell me that the money Japan sent after Katrina was what was sent back to them recently after their tragedy. Try putting tax on products made outside the USA when it is imported back to us, and then count the money. I bought a Chevrolet this year because it was made in the USA. After it was a done deal my paperwork showed made in Mexico. Is this really only the fault of the Democrats?
Clara Hardin
Ripley


Lawsuit prematurely casts redistricting to courts
As a fervent believer in state’s rights and the state constitution, it is incomprehensible to me that Mississippi would willingly toss redistricting, such an important issue to all Mississippians, into federal court. Redistricting is the cornerstone of determining who represents our interests. It is key to our representation and our voice in government.
Now, some individuals seek to limit our ability to have a voice in our elected leadership by pitching the responsibility to the federal court in the form of a lawsuit, rather than follow a process clearly outlined in the constitution.
Legislators were elected by their fellow citizens to perform this important task every ten years following the decennial census. Legislators failed to accomplish redistricting this year, but the constitution gives lawmakers another year to approve new lines.
Redistricting should be completed by representatives and senators elected on the state level by citizens of this state and in accordance with the constitution.
The NAACP v. Barbour, Hood, Hosemann, et.al, lawsuit was filed only 42 days after the Census was delivered to the Legislature and before the constitutional process was exhausted. In an attempt to skew the lines in their favor, individuals sought federal intervention to place what is clearly a state issue into the hands of the United States government.
So what is a reasonable time for the Legislature to finish the redistricting process? Article 13, Section 254 clearly says, “The Legislature shall, at its regular session in the second year following the 1980 decennial census and every ten (10) years thereafter … apportion the state in accordance with constitution of the state and of the United States …”
When we lose the roadmap of our government (the state constitution), we lose our direction as a state.
Delbert Hosemann
Mississippi Secretary of State
Jackson

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