Regarding “Trump plan would dramatically cut legal immigration” (Aug. 3): In 2015 I became a citizen of the United States. As a naturalized citizen, I take seriously my letter from the president: “to promote the values that guide us as Americans: hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism.” I came to this decision thoughtfully, and thanks to tolerant Americans, I am in the position to live with as many rights as one who was born here.
I follow with frustration the steps being taken to curtail entry of those who wish to follow the values outlined in my citizenship letter. I think of the Statue of Liberty poem: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” and I wonder how tired and poor an immigrant needs to be to qualify to breathe freely. My yearning to be part of the United States was based on an intangible desire to participate in freedom and liberty, with social responsibilities of which I could be proud. I treasure every day God has given me to practice President Obama’s call to service. The duty of citizens is to uphold these practices. Tolerance and curiosity are obligations as servants of this nation.
Prevent asphalt plant
We have a home in Riverfront Acres in Jefferson. Our special interest is our proximity to a proposed asphalt plant and its high potential for emitting pollution into the air and into the pristine New River. Science has proven cancer-causing chemicals are emitted into the air from asphalt production. Runoff from this production will also carry harmful chemicals into the river, a river protected by the federal government and one designated as a national treasure.
Maybe even more importantly, Camp Hope, a free camp for terminally-ill children and their immediate families, sets up just below this proposed plant. Camp Hope provides these children a serene place to enjoy nature, the landscape, the river and other amenities. It allows parents and caretakers a break from care for these deserving children. What a shame if this retreat has to close because our governing officials and lawyers see the asphalt plant as more important.
The Blue Ridge Parkway is only a few miles from this proposed site. As word of this polluting industry spreads will tourists cease to visit Glendale Springs, Jefferson and West Jefferson? What is more important; tourism dollars or dollars in the asphalt plant owner’s pocket?
We want to acknowledge and thank the Ashe County Board of Commissioners for taking preventative action and a stance against pollution. They see and understand what losing millions of dollars in health care, land values, tourism and taxes will do to our thriving communities.
Gurney and Donna Wike