Letters to the Editor

Letters: U.S. on the brink of authoritariansim

A word of warning

This is a word of warning. Several things make me worry that we are on the brink of authoritarianism.

1. Portraying the press as “the enemy of the people.” The press is the enemy of non-factual statements. Our current president has averaged more than five counter-factual statements a day, and the press has an obligation to correct them. The press is also the watchdog against inciting division. President Trump celebrates body-slamming a reporter, makes fun of a disabled reporter, sees fine people in the Charlottesville marchers shouting “Jews will not replace us!” for example — then accuses the press of negative coverage when it reports what he says. Jefferson said if the choice were between newspapers and a government, he would choose the newspapers. President Trump incites his rallies against them.

2. Misusing the military for politically motivated domestic tasks,. The 5,000 troops being deployed to the border are constitutionally prohibited from domestic direct action without an act of Congress, so will be performing backup operations for the Border Patrol. A former Customs and Border Protection chief calls this “a misuse of active duty military.”

3. Our president openly admires dictators as “strong,” while taunting democratically elected leaders as “weak.” Writing as an “unaffiliated” who has voted for both Republicans and Democrats, may we and our leaders be vigilant against authoritarian tendencies, as Jefferson saw: “The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.”

Elizabeth B Hale


Balance matters

I had been told about my limp for several years before it became critical. People would comment that I was limping when I didn’t even notice that I was. Then pain set in, and I thought it would go away. After a year of increasing pain, I went to the doctor who showed me x-rays that made it clear. I needed a hip replacement.

After surgery, the first joy was that I had comfortable balance on both legs without pain. I have now begun to appreciate that balance is very important — a balanced diet, balanced physical exercises, balancing family life with friendships.

Balance even extends to our government. Our forefathers gave us the Constitution, in which checks and balances between and within three branches of government are central to the document’s wisdom. The framers of the Constitution knew that unfit and corrupt individuals can rise to positions of great power. Therefore, everyone’s views, voice, and vote was made important because balance is what keeps Ship USA from sinking. With a balanced Congress, we are a stronger and more stable democracy. Out of balance, and we are headed for trouble.

Ken Kastleman


The mayor’s letter

Regarding the news story “Mayor Calls for end to hateful rhetoric.”:

The mayor of Durham’s letter about hateful rhetoric proves that he is not a mayor for all the people of Durham. His letter panders to his democratic base with allegations of violence due to ”hateful rhetoric” by the president and His supporters? What rhetoric, Mr. Mayor?

I and many in Durham support the president. What are we to conclude from the mayor’s letter? It is false and follows a long history by Democrats labeling others and hoping an uniformed base believes it. I urge the mayor to retract his statement and become the mayor of all of us in Durham.

From one of the many in the “Basket Full of Deplorables” in Durham.

J.P. Hanson


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