4/15 Letters: The Green New Deal might be out of reach at the moment, but that doesn’t mean we can’t act.

Cutting carbon

In “A risky, unsettling lunge to the left by Democrats” (April 1, ), the Charlotte Observer editorial board decried the Green New Deal as an unrealistic part of a Democratic climate change manifesto. The truth of the matter is the Green New Deal is forcing climate action to the forefront at a critical time.

With an election looming and 11 years to drastically cut emissions before some worst-case scenarios start playing out in real time, we must act on the issue to mitigate climate change. There is another bill that can help us significantly cut our CO2 emissions without costing the typical American family a cent: HR 763 – the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act.

This bill would cut emissions at the source through a progressive price on carbon. The bill is revenue-neutral, meaning fees collected will be returned as monthly dividends to American household and not kept by the federal government. HR 763 is a possible mechanism toward achieving a Green New Deal, indicating that it is not so unrealistic after all.

Justin Baumann


Deficit spending

Politicians of both parties — in Congress and the White House — have been lying to the American people since the start of this century. The big lie has been this: It’s ok to have deficit spending because it helps the economy to grow. The last time Congress adopted common sense and fiscal responsibility was with the Contract with America in 1994.

President Clinton cooperated, taxes were raised and we had a balanced budget only one year before Bush came into office. He didn’t use his veto, and constituents of both parties lobbied their special interests. Spending cuts to offset tax cuts never happened. Obama’s record was even worse. Trump’s tax cuts will not be offset either. The end result over the next decade, unless drastically changed, is projected to raise the current $22 trillion of Federal debt to over $30 trillion with no plan.

How can the Democratic candidates propose “Free College” and “Free Medical coverage” when nothing is really “free”? It’s the same lie.

If we buy the lies, we will place upon our children and grandchildren an undeserved burden. Numbers do not lie. Politicians lie about their numbers. Stop deficit spending in FY 2020!

H. Theron Few


Where he belongs

The very name – Silent Sam – tells you everything you need to know. Whatever message the statue’s creators intended, it has not been the message heard by the statue’s onlookers almost since inception. For the first half of its tenure, the statue looked down on a majority of students using it as a sexist joke. For the next quarter, a majority of students didn’t notice it at all. For the final quarter, it looked down on a majority of students, of all genders and races, gazing back in disgust.

Silent Sam deserves to stand over the graves of the soldiers he was created to memorialize – boys, often younger than college freshmen, who marched off to die in what they were told was a worthy cause. To insist that Silent Sam be reinstalled where he is not wanted is to insult the living, to insult Sam, and the people who created him.

In the name of decency, put him where he belongs – standing honorable vigil over fallen comrades.

Brian Nibbs


No death penalty

Kudos to Durham DA Satana Deberry and the family of murder victims Deah Barakat, Yusor Abu-Salha, and Razan Abu-Salha for their courageous decision not to pursue the death penalty against the accused killer. Their decision permits a speedier and final resolution of the criminal justice process and ensures the safety of the community without resort to vengeance. Further, it confirms the judgment of voters who elected Deberry, Sheriff Birkhead and candidates for District and Superior Court who promised reform of the criminal justice system.

Kenneth J Rose


Coal ash

Thankful. This is how I and the communities most impacted by Duke Energy’s coal ash pits feel. We are thankful that Gov. Roy Cooper and DEQ Secretary Michael Regan are requiring Duke Energy to clean up after itself and putting a priority on the protection of our drinking water and health. Duke Energy, valued at over $56 billion and operating as a monopoly in NC, will likely respond by saying that customers will have to foot the bill. With the many community members who have spoken up over the last several years, Duke is informed enough to have known better and certainly profitable enough to afford to pay for cleanup without raising rates on the people of NC, especially those with fixed incomes or families struggling paycheck to paycheck.

Lubana Lanewala