According to the latest statistics America is way down on the educational charts, poverty is high, good jobs are few and we are suggesting a reduction in our military while staffing military bases around the world. We can get troops anywhere in a matter of days and yet bases cost billions of dollars.
Our president is in Africa seeking to help with electrical power sources, our own roads and bridges are in dire need of work. Please read this. Yesterday again, the tenth in two weeks, a family sought to rent one of my homes. Their 16-year-old daughter was pregnant. But what is staggering is that our Social Security system is paying her $736 a month due to a doctor finding her mentally deficient. I get it, but fraud is rampant.
-- Joe Hubbard
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Breath of fresh air
I joined other pastors in meeting Curtis L. Jones Jr., the Bibb County superintendent of schools. Many of these same pastors were invited a few years ago to Central High School to meet with the then-superintendent of schools. What a palpable difference in the two meetings. Such a difference between beginning a presentation with structure, hope, audacious goals and common sense rather than a picture of a broken window.
I look for good things to come. We in the church have always had a vested interest in teaching people to read so that the Bible can be an ever-present resource to them. How refreshing to hear Jones speak of the power of being able to read and reason. Well done.
-- The Rev. C. Jarred Hammet Jr.
Northminster Presbyterian Church
A third term?
The multitude of candidates declaring for the Republican nomination for president of the United States has reached such numbers and still growing, that Hillary will not have a chance for the office of president. Our current president will recognize the immediate danger to the people of the United States and in order to protect us will declare martial law, suspend the 22nd Amendment and declare for a third term based on FDR’s record of four terms. There is no question that America’s present national condition is equal to the threat of World War II.
-- Gilbert R. Switzer
Put up or shut up
I would like to thank the mass media in this country. I was thinking about voting for Donald Trump. After the media told me about his thoughts of illegal Mexicans and John McCain, I know Trump is my No. 1 choice. The only thing that would make it better is Scott Walker as his running mate.
There are millions of Americans who don’t vote because they are sick of spineless politicians. Now is the chance for them to put up or shut up. Please register and vote to start turning this country around. We now have a candidate with male body parts. All legal, working, taxpayers get out and vote.
-- Mike Wolff
It is time to rethink our priorities. Shall we be a Christian nation and state or shall we be as the radical Muslims? Shall we destroy great works of art because it offends some of us? The radical Muslims have destroyed several thousand works of art, like the great statues of Budda. Regardless of our dislike or feeling for our forefathers our children should be able to see what they have created. I guess the Statue of Liberty shall be next because radicals don’t like liberty or freedom of all people. Freedom destroys their belief in Allah who wants all nonbelievers killed. Are we next because we want to remember the gallantry of our ancestors whether they be right or wrong.
-- Brian T. Reid Sr.
Under the same umbrella
Pimps and preachers are found under the same manipulative umbrella. While socially they are perceived as opposites, their functions in society are very similar. Each preys upon the weak, ignorant and gullible. The pimp usually entraps one weak, uneducated desperate woman at a time. He presents himself as a kind, wanting to help, gentle being. He seduces her first with sweet words, sometimes money or gifts, creating a relationship of superficial trust until he has power over her mind and body. She then becomes his tool for what he is really after: her energy (money).
The preacher’s actions are very similar. The largest difference is that he works a crowd of weak, poorly educated and gullible individuals who are afraid of death. He pontificates the idea of an invisible, all powerful, master manipulator’s existence who will, at death, send their “souls” (whatever that is), to either an infinite place of torture by fire or they can join his organization, pay their energy (money), live by certain (constantly changing) rules and live after death in blissful happiness, of which he knows nothing.
At the Tubman Museum where preachers and pimps share the same mural, well, they have it right.
-- Dr. Sam Williams
Muslims follow the teaching of the Prophet Muhammad (Islam) and believe humanity is divided into two groups: the believers (Muslims) and nonbelievers (infidels) and that homosexuality is among the worst of evils. The duty of Muslims is to propagate Islam throughout the world. ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) mujahideens (Muslim guerilla fighters, jihadist) are in the process of purging their part of the world of infidels who refuse to convert or to pay a poll tax (jizya, a sign of submission to Islam rule) and those Muslims doing the bidding of infidels.
The Quran promises those who die fighting the way of Allah (jihad) will receive the greatest of rewards in Jannah (paradise). In this paradise jihadist sit on gold-encrusted thrones of happiness; spouses are resurrected as virgins full of love and walk amidst fruit-laden trees that are never-ending and never out of reach. They recline by rivers of incorruptible water, milk, wine and honey pure and clear and an abundance of voluptuous virgins to choose from.
President Obama removed the foundation and protection from the newly evolving Iraqi democracy -- referred to the emerging ISIS army in Syria as a JV team and refused to arm their adversary in Syria and referred to them (as they marched into Iraq slaughtering tens of thousands) as unemployed Muslims in need of a job. To pacify the world’s outrage, he reluctantly begins bombing and hesitantly sends in an army of 3,000 plus to motivate a cynical Iraqi government, a skeptical population and a reluctant army to confront his ISIS creation (a Muslim killing a jihadist is cursed by Allah for all eternity).
With one eye on their Islamic duty and the other on paradise al-Qaeda, ISIS and Iran are competing to see who destroys Satan’s playground, sanctuary and incubator. They call this place -- where the majority of the population have abandoned the teaching of their Christian God and saturated their faith-based military with homosexuals, America, home of the great Satan.
-- Travis L. Middleton
Can’t regulate hate
As I read J. Andrew Smith’s letter concerning licensing, testing, training and recertification to be allowed to use a firearm, I can’t help but chuckle. He does make valid points concerning automobiles and the need for licenses, testing and training. However, I feel he is a bit misguided in his views on this.
Cars are in fact dangerous and can kill. So are baseball bats, plastic bags, knives, bathtubs, window blinds and even automobile airbags, yet we don’t require the same prerequisites to use these items. The tool isn’t the problem, the user is and we can’t regulate the hate out of our hearts.
These requirements do not apply to guns because as a society we are not required to use them on a daily basis starting in high school until we grow old. If the majority of the populace was required to fire a gun every day multiple times, I’m sure there would be much more stringent licensing, testing, training and recertification requirements. But the fact remains that guns simply are not used nearly as much as motor vehicles so the comparison is not valid.
Lastly, he claims that just like alcohol and tobacco, firearms should be heavily taxed. Those taxes surely have not stopped all the DUI deaths and lung cancer occurrences in America. Its time to stop blaming the gun and start acknowledging that the person behind the gun is at fault. All the licensing, testing, training, recertification and taxing in the world can’t stop the hate.
-- Matt Renno
‘Whistle Down the Wind’
Happy to see the Backlot players doing “Whistle Down the Wind,” the musical. I first saw this as a movie, not a musical, years ago as a child in 1961. It starred a little girl now widely known, Hayley Mills. The book was actually written by her mother, Mary Hayley Bell and starred Alan Bates. She was phenomenal as the child who discovers the escaped prisoner in her barn. I’m sure a few of us “older” readers may remember it.
-- Jo Garcia