YOUR OPINION: Letters to the NEMS Daily Journal

By NEMS Daily Journal

The rest of the story merited publication
On Monday (Sept. 17, 2012), the Daily Journal chose to print only the “positive” side of the story entitled “Furor fades a year after military’s gay ban lifted.” Left out was the following from the Associated Press report – which indicates all is not as rosy as the Journal’s excerpt wants us to believe following the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” In fact, that report notes that the scope of the resulting troubles is difficult to gauge because military personnel fear repercussions if they speak up.
According to the AP report, retired Army Brig. Gen. Douglas Lee believes it is safe to say that troops who oppose openly homosexual military service are pressured “not to rock the boat on this.”
He adds that those who supported “don’t ask, don’t tell” have been effectively silenced and now live in what he describes as “a culture of fear.” He concludes by saying “There’s a lot of discontent out there and concern about this issue.”
Being a journalist myself, I fully understand the space restrictions imposed on a newspaper article.
But I believe it’s critical that the whole story on this issue be conveyed to the public – not just the part that looks through rose-colored glasses at a controversial piece of legislation that was railroaded through against the wishes of most of the troops on the ground, and whitewashed by a pro-homosexual administration.
Jody Brown

Some feel victimized by having Obama
In Mississippi and many other states, a large chunk of that 47 percent that Mitt Romney criticizes as being dependant on government assistance of some kind are his supporters; no matter how hard he tries to disparage them or how much disdain he shows toward them, they will still vote for him.
They voted for John McCain the last time and they will vote for Romney this time.
Race and age of the voter have more to do with determining who people will vote for; this is a far more significant consideration when it comes to voting than whether or not one is dependent on the government for subsistence.
As a part of that greater history lesson extrapolated to future truths, there will be a majority of blacks and most other minorities voting for President Obama; and, probably, a majority of all white women will also vote for him. Yes, this demographic will vote for him regardless of their income.
Many of the Republican states have the largest percentage of poor people, who depend on government subsistence, but they will vote for Romney. The majority of white males of all Incomes, rich or poor, will vote for Romney. Romney can unknowingly talk however he wants about them; for whatever reason he wants, he can call them laggards and losers, but they will still be his core constituents.
Yes, many of them see themselves as victims, not of policy or government dependency, but more as victims of having to have Obama as president.
History might not tell us, but we will quietly go about our daily lives knowing that no matter how hard we work to change things, many political truths will remain the same; and Romney should remember that whichever individual is elected that person will have to be the president for all of us.
Arvin Mosley

Charter schools are an insidious plan
I am a retired teacher who is concerned for the future of this state which I believe will be determined by the future of our public schools. I know that some elected officials have supported our students and teachers and some have not, but I want to share my opinions with everyone.
First of all, the current proposal for charter schools is simply a way to fund private schools with public money and will drain much needed money from the already underfunded public schools.
No one who actually knows anything about the schools in this state is for this insidious proposal. Instead of doing more damage to our public schools, those who hold the future in their hands should be adequately funding them! Nothing is more important for now or for the future than the education of our children, and it is shameful that we are not funding our schools adequately.
Secondly, we must keep our good teachers and attract more. Teachers not only are required to have college degrees, but to continue their educations as long as they are in the classroom.
Their salaries should be in line with the salaries of other professions with similar requirements. The best and brightest should be able to choose to be teachers without depriving their families of the opportunities they could afford by choosing other professions.
The idea that some politicians want to raid the retirement funds that belong to teachers and other public employees is appalling to me. The security offered by the retirement system is one of the few advantages our teachers do have.
Please, let no one force those with hearts for teaching to choose between their desires to provide the best lives they can for their families and their desires to nurture students and contribute to our future.
Insulting our educators by underfunding our schools, underpaying our teachers, and threatening to take their retirement funds, will be the reason Mississippi does not rise to the top, and decision-makers will detemine that outcome.
Karen Cooper Dieckmann

Who will replace trees that died?
I have read with interest the questions surrounding the airport authority.
I have a question for the city and county regarding the $50,000 that was given to provide a barrier from the planes as they sit and await to be taken apart. Who was responsible to make sure the plants that were planted lived? Almost all of the cedar trees died within a few weeks after being planted. I would guess this was a cost of about $10,000 to $15,000 that is just lost.
Who will pay for this mistake? Oh I know: the taxpayers of Tupelo and Lee county.
Jackie D Spearman

Click video to hear audio