This is Viewpoints for Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013

December 11, 2013 


I enjoy the language and humor of the “Brits.” I have attempted to understand the Oxford College debate subject, “positive discrimination is a necessary evil” which Erick Erickson participated in.

Realizing there could be possible miscommunication, Yank vs. Brit, separated as we are by a common language, I am surprised that the subject was agreed upon considering definitions, questions and possibilities since the definition of the word “is” was never resolved.

If there is positive discrimination for one person there will be negative discrimination for another person. If positive discrimination is a necessary evil then negative discrimination must be a necessary good. Does this mean that positive is deemed to be evil and negative is good? (The debate subject premise must be based on those blinkered.)

Since America received, or we borrowed, so much from Mother England, this could explain some of the dysfunction we currently experience from our nation’s leaders in Washington, D.C., working as if there are two languages. One group says bear the necessary evil for their positive discrimination agenda while the other group says enjoy the good that results from their negative discrimination agenda. If you have trouble understanding this you can understand why we did not clear up the meaning of the word “is.”

If you understand this reasoning you possibly have a place in national politics. Lord help us.

-- Arthur D. Brook


Free workshop

Is anger one of the primary causes of violence? The vic-ki Foundation, a 501 (C)(3) charity established to address youth violence in Middle Georgia has advertised a free one day Anger Management Workshop (17-years-old too adults) taught by state certified anger management instructors. So far, no takers. If we had even a general idea of what provokes them to a violent act, just maybe we could stop some of them. It’s just a one day workshop but it’s free and you could possibly learn something about yourself you didn’t know.

Are we really seriously considering doing everything possible to end violence? Maybe not. The vic-ki Foundation (violence isn’t cool-knowledge is) is trying to do its part. email:

-- Charles McGhee

Warner Robins

Gun control doesn’t work

The article on page Sunday, “A year after Newtown, rift over guns deepens” was a total lie. People supporting gun control are at the lowest level in 20 years at less then 40 percent. Opponents of gun control are way over 60 percent now and if you don’t believe that, then ask why Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid won’t bring it up in the Senate? They know they are losing seats already because of the push for gun control, just like Colorado did, only on the federal level,

Fix the problem by eliminating gun free zones; pass a nation wide law that would allow more people to carry and gun crimes would go down,

Every person who committed a gun crime in a gun free zone broke at least five existing laws. Besides, we may need the Second Amendment to straighten out Washington, D.C.

-- Ronald Schwart


Where’s the humbug?

Great ball of fire Bob Carnot, how you cut me to the quick. And you did it during the most joyous season of the year when bells are ringing and carols are approaching from all directions. Bob, had it not been for the superb program “Christmas Bells are Ringing” that we enjoyed at Wesleyan College Sunday afternoon, I would go to my weeping willow tree and cry too. You are the antitheses of Santa Clause just when I need to believe the most.

Your letter in Sunday’s Telegraph criticized most regular contributors to the Viewpoints page, but you left me out. Now Bob, I have been submitting letters to our local newspaper since 1960 when Joe Parham was editor and we wrote our good and bad lines on a yellow legal pad, added a six-cent stamp and had it delivered by post. Once, in what can only be described as a decision made in a medicated fog after some joyous event, Viewpoints awarded me a Golden Pen Award. Surely based on that alone I deserve a pinch of your criticism.

I digress for a moment to say Parham, 10 other true and good men and I served on a jury in the 1970s and we elected him foreman. For a while I was unsure if Judge Cloud Morgan was sending the defendant or the jury to prison, but that is another story for another Viewpoints letter.

Returning to my topic, I read all your stuff faithfully in Viewpoints, Bob, and had I been included in today’s rant, I believe you would have finally written the perfect letter to the editor. You were so close, Bob. So very, very close. Humbug.

-- John G. Kelley Jr.


Centuries-old controversy

In response and with respect to his “Your Say” opinion as a historian, I suggest any concerned reader who has confidence in Wikipedia, visit it for the full story that not only has a picture of Squanto, but tells of (Tisquantum (Jan. 1, 1585 – Nov. 30, 1622), also known as Squanto, was the Native American who assisted the Pilgrims after their first winter in the New World and was integral to their survival. He was a member of the Patuxet tribe, a tributary of the Wampanoag Confederacy.

The historian is not alone in mentioning contradictions in Scriptures, for some students questioned them and they were discussed in my Christianity class while attending Mercer in the late ’50s. I am neither a historian, and certainly not smart, but I am a believer. In my opinion there is a need for every mind to believe in life’s purpose and designation and I choose to believe in God, his son, Jesus Christ and God’s plan for the salvation of man’s soul as revealed in the Holy Bible.

Further, nowhere in my opinion did I confess to know the Bible. I did say; I believe it was God’s plan for Squanto to become a Christian in order to bring Christ into the lives of the Indians and all Americans. I also believe God not only has a plan for each of his children, but his entire creation that spans beyond any imaginable or conceivable historian’s mind of knowledge and beyond the mind of all humans.

-- Faye W. Tanner


European monster?

It is such a shame that some people here in Middle Georgia have such a hard time grasping such a simple, time tested tool, as a traffic roundabout. Kent Barron and Diane Middleton seem to think roundabouts are some odd monster from Europe being forced on an innocent population against their will. In reality, it’s a great idea long overdue. No more left turns. No stopping if there’s no oncoming traffic. Doesn’t that make perfect sense?

I’d like to ask these folks have they ever driven through Butler, Colquitt, Blakely, or any other small town in Georgia? The courthouse square is a roundabout from 100-plus years ago. This is not some foreign phenomenon. This is something we should have been doing a long time ago. I suggest that if we can’t navigate a simple roundabout, maybe its time to retire the drivers license.

-- Mike Simpson


Forgot one

In a recent letter Diane Middleton forecast an increased requirement for “wrecker and ambulance services, med stops, body shops, accident investigation teams and junkyards,” due to the addition of traffic roundabouts in Warner Robins. She astutely failed to add morticians to the list, as the purpose and effect of a traffic roundabout is to slow traffic and cause it to flow through the intersection in the same direction, thereby minimizing the potential for serious injury or death. Saving lives is probably worth the inconvenience.

-- Neal Snyder

Warner Robin

prayer for today

Father, is the reason Thanksgiving season songs are not as plentiful as Christmas season songs because the former is a highly reflective time, whereas the songs and hymns leading up to and including Christmas Day resoundingly usher in the birth of your son Jesus, yet again? Thank you so much for all the lovely music. Amen.

-- Chris Westbrook


Readers -- ministers, rabbis, priests and laypersons alike are invited to contribute prayers to this weekly feature. Mail them to “Prayer,” The Telegraph, P.O. Box 4167, Macon, GA 31213; or fax to (478) 744-4385; or e-mail

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