This is Viewpoints for Sunday, June 23

June 23, 2013 

Immigration reform costs

In relation to Giovanni Peri’s letter to the Los Angeles Times published in The Telegraph: Mr. Peri was born in Italy, an Italian citizen who received his degree from UC Berkeley in 1998 and in 2009 became a U.S. permanent resident, not a U.S. citizen. He, his higher education, work and resident card did not occur because he entered the U.S. illegally.

His article states U.S. citizens benefit by high-skilled foreign workers who are a powerful engine of economic productivity and wage growth while low-skilled does not crowd out Americans because the decreasing supply of native-borns are aging or are becoming more educated.

Since he sent his article to the Los Angeles Times, in 2009 the Population Reference Bureau reported the vast majority of 16 million children living in the U.S. were of foreign-born immigrants and according to the National Bureau of Economic research, unemployment in Los Angeles County reached 12.3 percent in 2009, and the county has reported budget deficits for the past five consecutive years.

To determine how well illegals and their offspring are benefiting citizens of Los Angeles County, on June 14 Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich revealed that an additional $54 million in welfare payments was issued in April to illegal alien parents for the native-born children, and their Department of Public Social Services expects that more than $650 million in welfare benefits will be distributed to illegal alien parents in 2013, not counting $550 million for public safety and $500 million for health care costing the County taxpayers $1.6 billion a year, which does not include hundreds of millions of dollars spent annually for education. Costing this county billions should hint as to the additional cost of federal taxes.

Further, from 1998 to 2007, 60 emergency rooms in California closed.

As to his opinions benefiting immigration reform, reforming words on paper are worthless -- just like words of our present immigration laws -- if not enforced. We have thrown time, money, trust and protection out the window along with our Constitution and democracy that allow U.S. citizens to participate equally through their elected representatives -- not foreign countries nor their citizens.

-- Faye W. Tanner

Macon

Kinder and gentler?

It was interesting to read about the President’s plan to open Afghanistan peace talks with the Taliban. Are they going to come up with a kinder and gentler plan to decapitate someone?

-- Lou Stennes

Warner Robins

Misplaced priorities

I found it interesting watching a news capsule on WMAZ news today. A Macon taxpayer was asking for the city of Macon to remove debris in the alley behind his home. He was told the alley belonged to him, and his neighbor directly behind him. He was also told the alley was not on the city tax digest; therefore, it was not the city’s responsibility. Here we have a taxpayer who has paid taxes for many, many years asking for the city of Macon’s help, and he was denied.

The city of Macon is going all out to get the public swimming pools ready. These pools are primarily used by children from mostly black neighborhoods. The taxpayers of Macon are paying for these pools to be operated and maintained. The city of Macon is providing free busing of these children to other pools while the pools in their neighborhood are not available.

How can the city of Macon explain why a taxpayer is denied his request for debris removal and yet justify ALL the expenses associated with the public pools be paid for by taxpayers? Maybe it is time for someone with authority within the city of Macon to ask, do we take care of our taxpayers, or just continue to support what the liberals want taken care of? The comparison between these two reeks of politics

I am a resident of Houston County, and darn proud of it. Certainly there are issues in our county I disagree with, but what is going on in Macon and Bibb County makes the issues I have in Houston County pale in comparison.

-- Bubba Ragan

Perry

Selling Obamacare

According to an article in Thursday’s paper, “Democrats say they have no choice but to sell the law to the public because the Republicans and their allies are aggressively spreading misinformation, discouraging people from enrolling, and refusing the additional money the administration says is needed to implement the changes.” But the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says that instead of the $1 billion the administration said it would take to sell this program, estimates are that it will take $5 billion to $10 billion. Is this the “misinformation” the Democrats are talking about? Just who is peddling misinformation? I am glad people are skeptical, because they should be. Obamacare has been a pig in a poke from the beginning, and the pig stinks to high heaven.

It does not make sense to send billions of our tax dollars to Washington and have them dictate our medical care. We should have the freedom to pick our own doctors and make our own health care decisions. I wonder what would happen if the government decided which attorneys, veterinarians, plumbers or electricians we could use, and then set the fees that they could charge? I am sure that the cry would be deafening from both the consumers and the providers.

There are better ways to accomplish health care reform. One example is to increase the threshold on medical savings accounts rather than decreasing them as Obamacare has done. The MSAs should be tax-free, carried over from year to year, and as a result, we would have more control over our everyday health care decisions.

-- Amanda Upshaw

Macon

Music’s Shared Heritage

This year marked the sixth year for the Big O Singer Songwriter Camp, held here in Macon during the week of June 17. Thirty music-loving students are participating, learning everything from the fundamentals of songwriting, singing and production to the basics of the music industry.

The camp is organized by the Otis Redding Foundation, a nonprofit run by the Redding family in the late soul legend’s honor that implements a variety of educational outreach programs tying into its musical legacy.

I remain in awe of the Redding family and the foundation’s work to not just honor our Macon music history but their efforts in encouraging and nurturing the arts in Macon.

Working with campers are some of Macon’s own local musicians, who have the opportunity to share their talents, inspire these youth and be reminded of their own important role as artists (and leaders) in our community. This is what legacies are all about. They aren’t always inherited; they can also be instilled. The memory of Otis Redding is so much bigger than the songs we hear or the footage we see. Otis remains a cornerstone of our community. He continues to inspire our youth. And his legacy will forever shape our arts and culture scene. I can’t wait to see what these talented campers will do!

-- Jessica Walden

Macon

Confused about the lawsuit

In reference to the story about the Giddings family suing for the right to search the grandfathers farm for the remains of their daughter: 1) Why didn’t the district attorney, Cook, bargain for the missing remains in exchange for taking the death penalty off the table for Stephen McDaniel. I thought that was the usual route for taking the death penalty off the table. Can you ask him? Maybe he isn’t up to speed. 2) Why haven’t the police obtained a search warrant and searched the grandfathers property with cadaver dogs? I don’t understand this at all either. Why does the family have to sue for the right to search the property?

-- Betty Echols

Macon

Not a Meeks fan

Catherine Meeks is just unbelievable. She wants to devote an entire column to a few tweets about the Hispanic kid who sang the national anthem and browbeat everyone over racism but where was she in March when the black teen brutally murdered the white infant in Brunswick? Where is her condemnation of racism in the black community when blacks have a “beat whitey night” at the Iowa State Fair or black teens across the country target whites in the brutal “knockout king” game? What about the white family that was attacked and beaten in Baton Rouge just recently simply for being “in the wrong neighborhood”? And they were told this by their black attackers! If the races were reversed in these cases, Catherine Meeks would never let us hear the end of it. Could she be any more of a hypocrite?

-- Mike Ganas

Macon

Stupid country

You may live in a stupid country if:

1) Your government records every computer keystroke and phone conversation from law-abiding citizens, but leaves its borders wide open to ambulatory extremists and others intending us harm.

2) Your government harasses and monitors tea party members, pro-lifers, ex-military men, Christians and political conservatives but considers mosques, where terrorist types love to mingle with likeminded people, strictly off-limits to spying, snooping and undercover stakeouts.

3) Your government passes a “farm” bill that is 80 percent welfare, 20 percent farm subsidies and 100 percent pork.

4) Your Department of Homeland Security frisks old ladies in wheelchairs and diapers while Middle Eastern women in hijabs are waived through security right on to an airplane.

5) Your president says he will rid the world of nuclear weapons because he believes in Utopia. Not yet clear where he stands on the Tooth Fairy.

6) Your government calls itself “The most transparent administration ever,” when, in fact, secrecy abounds and cover-ups fail to hide the facts of gross security violations, punishment of political opponents and abandonment of American citizens under live fire from jihadis.

All this stupidity is brought to you free of charge via the Democratic party, providing toxicity to government since 1924.

-- John Brogden

Warner Robins

Thanks, Bobby Pope

Regarding Bobby Pope’s article of June 18, I agree that Staples was more than a top basketball coach. He was, in fact, outstanding in so many areas. I am sure that lots of old Perry Panthers, basketball players and students, enjoyed the article very much. Pope mentioned Lee Martin’s scoring the first varsity basket in Stegeman Coliseum in 1964. My wife, Janice, and I saw it. Also, Martin scored the last two points in old Woodruff Hall. I saw that, also. I am glad that Pope mentioned Dwayne Powell who was the best shot I ever saw, with the possible exception of Larry Bird. Yes, Powell was that good. I believe that Fessor coached 36 years and had one losing season. I was on that team. Fortunately, I was also a member of the 1959 team (although I did not play much) that won the state championship. Thanks, Bobby Pope, for bring back lots of happy memories for lots of people.

-- Larry Walker

Perry, Georgia

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