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The Readers' Forum: Friday letters

The Readers' Forum: Friday letters

  • 73

Voting for empathy

As requested, I am responding to the Oct. 10 letter “What I’m voting for” without invoking the name of the current resident of the White House.

I am a registered Republican (for now), but I am voting for: Empathy; truth and honesty; ethical behavior; civility; an acknowledgment of and an end to the COVID-19 pandemic; the importance of science; equality for all people (Black, white, brown, male, female, LGBTQ, straight); immigrants’ rights — the words on the Statue of Liberty; an end to law enforcement brutality where it exists, support and appreciation for them where it doesn’t; affordable health care for all who want it; preservation of Social Security and Medicare; reasonable Second Amendment rights (neither elimination nor a free-for-all); the rule of law; women’s reproductive rights; freedom of all religions (not merely that of radical conservatives); climate control to save our planet for future generations; voting fairly and freely; empathy (yes, listed twice because it is sooo lacking); and most important, Democracy (not a dictatorship or autocracy).

I already have voted for Joe Biden, and am darned proud of it! Voting otherwise would be voting against all of the above.

Vote! Vote early if you can, but please vote! Don’t let “poll watchers” or Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s restrictions or voter suppression (including long lines) intimidate you.

Mike Jeske


Our only hope

As the effects of our religion diminish, so go our long-held civil and political freedoms. Our democracy and our Christian faith were made for a Christian nation. Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians, “… Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom!” God’s spirit opens our eyes and hearts to see as He sees — red, yellow, Black, white and brown — all children of the cross. But how can God’s spirit remain in a nation that accepts abortion as a “right” and even a “necessity” as we afford women’s selfish demands, and head down that ugly road we’ve already traveled … to slavery?

Slavery was at first abhorred by Christian colonists but the need for farm labor carried the day and Jesus’ teachings took a back seat.

Our history shows what democracy can do for a nation even when the framers were imperfect. James Madison said in no uncertain terms, “Before any man can be considered as a member of Civil Society, he must be considered as a subject of the Governour of the Universe.” Five original colonies acknowledge God in their preambles; seven others did so in their religious freedom provisions. Our 33rd president, Harry S. Truman, said, “The fundamental basis of this nation’s laws was given to Moses on the Mount.”

We talk around our only hope. It is as if there is an elephant in the room and we all ignore it. Him! Jesus! America wants something with God in it!

William A. Goins



The writer of the Oct. 9 letter “Violated principles” suggests that we “Study the Ten Commandments and guidelines in Exodus and Deuteronomy,” which she says the Supreme Court has violated. But those commandments and guidelines are, for the most part, unconstitutional. If one believes our laws should be based on the Old Testament, then one must accept practicing slavery once again — and prepare to stone disobedient children.

Her biblical interpretation would also deny abortion, though, according to the Jewish part of the “Judeo-Christian values” she touts, life enters the body with its first breath, not at conception.

And, as writer Neil Carter once explained: “In Numbers 5 we are told there are circumstances under which Yahweh actually instructed his people to perform an abortion. If a man suspected his wife of having slept with another man, he could take her to a priest, who would give her ‘bitter water’ to drink and then perform a curse over her in order to induce a miscarriage. Whether or not this ritual ever accomplished its purpose is difficult to say, since the only ingredients spelled out in the text are water, dirt, and ink (and of course ‘a curse’). But the intent of the punishment is clear: For her alleged infidelity, the Bible says her pregnancy should be terminated.”

I doubt this will change anyone's mind. It's not really the Bible that concerns them; it’s controlling women.

Still, I will never stop being astounded at how little Christians understand their own Bible.

Phil Ronald Turner


Not very trustworthy

I watched Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett on Tuesday morning, being questioned by Sen. Lindsey Graham, trying to set liberals’ minds at ease by pointing out how difficult it would be for her to overrule the civil rights legislation that Democrats have fought so hard to provide the American people.

I appreciate the effort and wish I could trust her. But President Trump told us he was nominating Barrett because she would overrule those rights. That was his selling point when he presented her to conservatives.

He also said she would be needed to vote his way when the 2020 election goes to the Supreme Court, which is what he expects to happen.

So whom should we believe: Trump or Barrett?

I don't trust either.

Helen Batterton


Voting for Biden

I accept the challenge of the Oct. 10 letter “What I’m voting for” to say why I am voting for Joe Biden without referencing President Trump. He cannot invite comparison between the men running for president. Trump’s behavior and character cannot withstand comparison to Biden’s behavior and character.

I’m voting for Biden because I am voting for the Constitution and the rule of law. No one, not even the president, is above the Constitution or the law. I’m voting for the next Supreme Court justice. I’m voting for honesty, integrity in government and fairness for everyone in this country, not just for those who think like me. I’m voting for the military and veterans, and for the ability of everyone in this country to have a voice, regardless of their income, background, race or religion. I’m voting for health care; disability benefits; education; and the fair, living wage that would allow everyone to provide a decent life for themselves and their children. I’m voting for clean air and clean water.

I’m voting for good and against evil. I’m voting for the future of this country. I’m voting for a good, decent man who has dedicated his life to public service and who cares more about this country and about other people than he does about himself.

The Republican Party did not even write a platform for this election. Make no mistake — Republicans are voting for a man, not a set of principles. Does their man stand up to scrutiny?

Mary Gallagher


Full support

Dan Besse has served on the Winston-Salem City Council since 2001. Southwest Ward citizens trust him to understand their concerns and act in their best interests. They know that Dan understands his responsibilities as a public servant accountable to the community.

Dan knows the essential concerns in our state today. Our students need a solid education to prepare for the future; our teachers need the resources to do their jobs effectively. They both need and deserve our support and respect.

The current N.C. legislature has abandoned our heritage of commitment to public education. In 1795, our state welcomed students to the country’s first public university; the dismal rankings of our public education system today shame that legacy, menace our children and threaten the vitality of our economy.

Dan gets to the heart of a matter objectively, honestly and carefully, and he achieves results.

He will articulate these needs in the legislature and find solutions to restore our confidence in public education. He also knows that excellence in education builds and sustains economic health and stability.

Dan won’t play games with health care; he will ensure that our tax dollars rightfully return to meet the medical needs of N.C. citizens. Since I first met Dan in the 1980s, from air to water, emissions to erosion, he’s worked to ensure a clean and safe environment in N.C.

We need Dan Besse in the 74th N.C. House District. Give him your full support!

Martha Wood


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