Letters to the editor

Jul. 10, 2013 @ 01:20 PM

Swimmers deserved more

This is in regards to the coverage (or lack of coverage) of the Durham Summer Swim League Champs that took place on July 5th -6th on the UNC campus.

 My kids and their friends performed well but, they swim year-round so this is not about them. This is about those kids that, for six-eight weeks every summer swim competitively. They start practicing in mid-May, in freezing cold water. Some can barely make it across the pool once. Their goal is to swim at Champs. This is their Olympics - to swim at a university pool, see their names on the board and to be cheered on by hundreds. DSSL awards ribbons to the top 20 in every event. The swimmer in last place is cheered for as loudly as the person in first. Each year the Jodi Brookhart Award is presented to a league swimmer that has overcome many obstacles in their everyday life but shows up religiously to practice and meets.

We have had the pleasure of swimming with two of the past recipients. The Herald-Sun really missed a great opportunity to praise the swimmers as well as the families and coaches that made it all possible.

Amy Schumann

Durham

Government a bully

Edward Snowden is a whistleblower who revealed how our government is spying on the American people. Likewise, he revealed how the United States is engaging in cyber-espionage on many nations throughout the world, friends and non-friends alike.

President Obama and the national security establishment are beside themselves with anger. They can’t explain away the fact they are spying and maintaining records on many millions of Americans and have been lying about it. After whining to the world that the Chinese were hacking into American computer systems they can’t pretend that the Chinese are doing anything worse than we are doing.

All they can do, having been caught with their pants down, is to do everything they can to get Snowden back to the U.S., so they can punish him. It is going after Snowden harder than it’s gone after any one person, save Osama Bin Laden (and no one is accusing Snowden of having killed or hurt any people).

What does this say about Obama and the U.S.government? Nothing good. Obama came into office saying he respected whistleblowers, and that he’d have a more open government. He’s done less than zero for more open government.  Whatever his beliefs, Obama has not stood up to the agenda and pressure of the huge national security machine. The U.S. government is revealing itself to be a petty and mean-spirited bully that will try to protect itself from any threats, even if they are threats to the government and not the American people.

Stephen Dovenitz

Durham