Letters to the Editor

This is Viewpoints for Saturday, September 24, 2016

Awake yet?

Have Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump and Occupy Wall Street awakened us, or will we just sleep forever?

Sam Marshall, Milledgeville

Desperate people

Out next president is going to have to deal, perhaps rather sternly, with ISIS, North Korea, Iran and maybe even Russia. If you think Hillary Clinton is the right one to meet these probable crises, I won’t try to change your mind. Only you can do that. But for the sake of our future generations, I respectfully ask that you give it a lot of thought between now and election day.

It has been said that Donald Trump is a “loose cannon.” I say that’s better than no cannon at all. They also say the best defense is a good offense. Who is more “offensive” than Trump? I would rather have a president who may “shoot from the hip” than one who will not even recognize impending threats to our well being.

If we fail as a nation, all the grand promises made to women, minorities and other select groups will be null and void. Our potential adversaries do not respect or even tolerate individual rights. Trump’s campaign slogan is “Make American great again.” That means everyone. If you think he is too callous and outspoken, remember, desperate times call for desperate measures. Think about it!

Larry Smith,

Knoxville

No toll booths

This letter is to all drivers who are unaware of charges incurred on any express toll roads, without toll booths, in Georgia. Today I received a letter from the Georgia State Toll Authority with my license plate and vin number on it, stating I had failed to pay a toll while driving in the Express Lane on Interstate 85 in June. Thinking this was a mistake and/or scam, I called the Georgia DMV and was redirected to the Georgia Transit Authority where I was told, “Due to the fact I did not have a Peach Pass (which I did not know I needed), I was charged 25 cents in toll road fees and $25 in administrative costs fees (for processing the ticket for driving in the I-85 Express Lane in Atlanta near Indian Trails Road). When I told the Toll Authority that I had not passed any toll booths without paying the toll, I was informed the there are no toll booths but to drive in the express lane on I-85 or any other toll roads in Georgia you now have to have a Peach Pass or will be fined via camera.

Just wanted to pass along this information for any Middle Georgia drivers not aware of needing a Peach Pass to drive in the Express Lane on I-85 and other express lanes that require a toll in Georgia.

Susan Barker, Macon

Achieved certification

Residents of the Peach State should feel proud to learn that the Georgia Aquarium, one of the most popular and cherished attractions in the region, achieved welfare certification under American Humane’s global Humane Conservation TM program for zoos and aquariums — becoming only the fifth in a group of elite institutions worldwide to earn the prestigious seal of approval.

The Humane Conservation program, launched in June, is an ambitious, first-of-its-kind initiative that uses rigorous, evidence-based standards developed by a scientific advisory committee comprised of world-renowned animal behaviorists, veterinarians and ethicists, among other leading experts to help ensure the welfare and wellbeing of animals living in the world’s zoos, aquariums and conservation centers. Ours is the first third-party certification devoted solely to verifying the animals in the care of these institutions are healthy, positively social, active, safe and living with proper light, sound, air and heat levels.

Adding to the program’s rigor, certification in the Humane Conservation program is contingent upon the results of independent, third-party audits. Ethics-driven Georgians and international tourists from around the world can now look forward to experiencing the excitement and adventure of Georgia Aquarium with the peace-of-mind that comes from knowing the animals living there receive only the highest standards of verifiably humane care.

Dr. Robin Ganzert,

president and CEO, American Humane Association, Washington, D.C.

Another nail?

For Dr. Miguel Faria and those who are urging me to vote for the lesser of two evils, I refer you to the news coming out in today’s Washington Post about the latest depth to which Donald Trump has sunk. He has been using his charitable foundation to pay off his legal fees for lawsuits against him. How much evil are we willing to accept in addition to what we already know about the man?

He has single-handedly reduced his presidential campaign to a cesspool of bigotry, misogyny, xenophobia and ignorance of the issues. The thought of a man with no moral compass leading this country ought to scare even the most ardent Clinton foes. Again, I urge you to vote for a candidate rather than against one. This year’s Libertarian candidates, Gary Johnson and William Weld, are the real Republicans in the race.

Len Gregor, Kathleen

Loose lips

As predicted, how to deal with terrorism is among the top issues in the current presidential campaign. News commentators are urging both candidates to give details on how they would defeat ISIS and other foreign terrorists groups. Hillary Clinton says she will continue the Obama policies of air strikes, special forces and intelligence gathering to “degrade and destroy” ISIS over an extended period of time. Donald Trump says he will “focus on working with our allies on a military campaign to utterly destroy ISIS and defeat radical Islamic terrorism,” to include military warfare, financial warfare, cyber warfare and ideological warfare.

That is about as much as the voters need to know. Did President Roosevelt tell the voters that Gen. Eisenhower was preparing to invade Normandy? Did President Truman tell the voters that Gen. MacArthur was going to land at Inchon? Did President Bush tell voters that Gen. Schwarzkopf was going to destroy the Iraqi army by outflanking them in Desert Storm?

Charlie Adams, Fort Valley

Where’s Spinee?

Like 43 million American households, we own a dog, a beautiful black Lab that has become an integral member of our family. And while I deplore Donald Trump’s divisive politics, the mere fact that he owns/loves a yellow Lab (Trump asks that you pray for Spinee’s recovery from recent surgery.) humanizes Trump in a way few other things can. But what if it’s all a lie? I’ve seen no pictures of Trump walking Spinee in Central Park or on one of his golf courses. I’ve seen no pictures of Spinee sitting with Trump on Trump’s jet or at the office or at home. If Trump loves dogs as he claims, why is there no evidence that Trump, who’s supposedly worth $10 billion, has ever donated a single dollar to dog welfare agencies like the SPCA, to spay and neuter programs, to dog adoption agencies, or to agencies that help low income families pay for pet food/treatment? Most voters don’t care if Trump owns a dog but they should care if Trump has lied about owning a dog because it goes to the heart of questions about Trump’s honesty, transparency (Where are his tax returns?) and truthfulness.

Larry Knight,

Columbia, South Carolina

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