Letters to the Editor

This is Viewpoints for Thursday, April 16, 2015

But for a few events

Thank you for publishing Nicholas Hollis’ piece about the ending of the American Civil War. Seeing the title, I let out a mild expletive expecting some Confederate revisionists to revel in the divinity of Lee, the make-believe superiority of the Southern soldier and the glory of the “Lost Cause,” which was in reality the worst cause any soldier ever fought for until the rise of Hitler. Or a piece from someone like Miguel Faria substituting simplistic platitudes for knowledge. Or Jim Costello piling one mistake on top of another. Or the mawkishly sentimental piece of bad history that the editors of this page published a few days ago as “150 years ago, two men saved our country.”

So, it was a happy surprise to see that it was a column that celebrated one of the Confederacy’s best generals, James Longstreet. Had the South had the good fortune of Lee having a heart attack while his blood was up at Gettysburg or had a stray shell taken off his head, Longstreet would have assumed command of the Army of Northern Virginia and instead of the foolish Picket’s Charge taking place on the third day of Gettysburg, the federals would have been left clinging to their hills while Longstreet’s army maneuvered around their left flank and got between the Army of the Potomac and Washington forcing the Yankees to attack the entrenched Rebels, with the results most likely being another Battle of Fredericksburg (a Yankee slaughter) and we would be living in a watermelon republic called the Confederate States of America today.

While I liked Hollis’ column for giving credit to Longstreet, I disagree with his assessment of Grant. Lee was a good but not great general. Grant was just adequate and was one of the worst presidents ever to live in the White House. For a while, he did work to protect the recently freed slaves but all too soon abandoned them to white terrorists and the beginning of a shameful century of Jim Crow. Ken Burns’ “Civil War” is an overrated purveyor of often wrong conventional wisdom and the only good thing about his film is that he had the good sense not to use re-enactors.

-- Jim Sandefur



What makes Hillary Clinton think she is qualified to be president? While she was secretary of state she accomplishment nothing. While she was a senator she did nothing.

-- Mark Rhodes


No reform efforts

This letter responds to the self-aggrandizing statements and egoistic perspectives cited in your April 9 article, “Griffith: FVSU reforms drew opposition.” Griffith’s efforts at reform did not draw opposition because the faculty or campus was not supportive of his international agenda focused on recruiting Hispanic and other international students. In fact, Fort Valley State University has a majority international faculty, perhaps among the highest in the university system. Under Dr. Oscar Prater’s and Dr. Kofi Lomotey’s administrations, the campus maintained a Center for International Studies with a director of international education. Before Griffith’s arrival, international recruitment was a regular fixture at FVSU. More importantly, students of all heritages are actively recruited and welcomed on campus. Griffith did not bring international education or recruitment to FVSU as a reform effort.

Griffith built his “reform” agenda on “dreaming and doing.” The doings that followed the Griffith “dreams” ignored the real human and financial needs of the campus. For example, Griffith:

Ordered $2,500 in international flags for a parade and his inauguration while academic departments lacked paper and other basic supplies.

Frequently called on the FSVU band to perform at various functions while not providing funding to hire a band director.

Hired a vice president at $170,000 with only a bachelor’s degree.

Terminated highly-qualified staff, supposedly to balance the university’s budget, and simultaneously awarded raises to administrators with more than $20,000 being given to four people.

-- Juone Brown

Fort Valley

Wasted tax dollars

In reading David J. Griffin’s viewpoint regarding the gunfire aimed at two anglers at Tobesofkee, I thought, this viewpoint echoes my sentiments exactly. I was outraged when I read about this incident involving anglers Adriel Miles and Shelby Smith having been fired at from the balcony of the home of Dr. Jalal K. Ghali and nothing has been done by local law enforcement. Not only does the GBI and the Department of Justice need to investigate this incident, but the FBI, the ACLU and the NAACP need to launch investigations.

The background and the actions of this doctor need to be thoroughly investigated. Not only are the deputies inept but the lack of action on the part of the elected Sheriff David Davis is inept as well. Tobesofkee is a public facility maintained in part by local taxation. The sheriffs office is also funded with tax dollars paid by local citizens.

My fellow Maconites, this is a prime example of our tax dollars being wasted.

-- Melissa S. Kuipers


A few thanks

I am writing this letter to show my appreciation for several people whose acts of kindness recently touched our family. Thank you to John Stumbo for so eloquently expressing a message we all need to hear. To Jason Vorhees, for capturing such an endearing moment with his camera. To Cassidy Austin, she is a very extraordinary young lady. She has a bright future ahead of her. If more people shared her compassion for others, our world would be a better place. My family and I will never forget her. That race will always be in our hearts. Thanks to Langdon Scott, for making us smile and being an inspiration to us every day.

-- The Family of Langdon Scott


Spoil the plan

In reference to Steve Barker’s “Robbery” of government going to Central America to bring relatives of illegals living in the U.S. at taxpayers’ expense. That my friend is President Obama kicking Congress and showing them just who is the big boss of immigration and Congress kicking U.S. citizens for allowing it.

The federal government has allowed illegals to break just about every law in the land without punishment in order to push its self-interest. Listen, I have a suggestion for a bill that would upset the big bosses’ plan to eventually permit all illegals the right to vote. The millions of illegal parents who have lived in the U.S. for a long time producing U.S.-born children to those who will confess their real names and country of origin. Issue them a permanent special non-voting ID resident card, which will allow them to legally have a Social Security number, work legally and pay taxes, but as punishment for all their illegal activity, never allow them U.S. citizenship therefore, never allowing them to vote. I wonder how many politicians would push for such a bill? However, we already know if Congress passed the bill, Obama would veto it.

As it is, illegals are rewarded and receive better treatment by the government than U.S. citizens.

-- Faye W. Tanner



Back in March The Telegraph published my thoughts on the lack of leadership practiced by the president and Rep. Austin Scott, our incapable congressional representative. Recent events indicate that the lack of leadership bug has infected Sheriff David Davis, Mayor Robert Reichert and Mercer University. What else explains the silence and apathy concerning the attempted murder of three fisherman on Lake Tobesofkee?

Sheriff Davis is hiding behind his desk. The mayor is exerting no pressure to investigate this violation and Mercer’s leaders are doing nothing to learn if their employee committed a crime. This is not the leadership one expects from those in authority. This is a dereliction of duty.

Why should citizens feel safe when their top law enforcement official bows to the interests of college executives? Why should people respect a mayor who only expounds issues that shine a glowing light on himself? And what of Mercer University, which hides the only suspect in a crime?

It is also sad to view the timid reporting of this capital crime by local media. One can recognize The Telegraph’s fear and lack of aggressiveness because of it’s partnership with Mercer at the Center for Collaborative Journalism, but for the TV stations to abet the concealment of the principals in this matter speaks of collusion.

Mercer is a strong presence in this community. It is growing in prestige and power. How it uses this growing influence to abuse justice is not a pretty sight. This is governance in the 21st century. Are you happy?

-- Bob Norcott


The Telegraph has printed everything we know about the case and stand ready to print other facts as they become available.

-- Editors