Letters to the Editor

2/17 Letters: Magistrates’ religious beliefs shouldn’t keep them from doing their jobs

Regarding “You can’t make me perform same-sex marriages” (Feb. 15): It is inexplicable to me that Gayle Myrick dares to compare her choosing to leave her magistrate’s job because of her discriminatory religious beliefs regarding same-sex marriage with accommodations made for disabled employees, prison guards not having to participate in executions, and pregnant women not being required to engage in heavy lifting. None of her comparisons involves a public sector employer accommodating its employee’s wishes to engage in blatantly discriminatory conduct. Not even close.

The fact that some other employee could have served as a substitute for Myrick so she could indulge in her intolerance is irrelevant. A magistrate is performing a civil ceremony in a courthouse, not a religious ceremony in a church. The magistrate’s religious beliefs should not be permitted to interfere with the duties of his or her office.

It is shameful that the state chose to settle rather than pursue an appeal of the administrative judge’s ruling. There should be zero tolerance of bigotry of any kind in our judicial system.

Charles Putterman


‘This must stop’

Regarding “17 dead in school shooting in Florida; suspect, 19, arrested” (Feb. 15): Is there a parent in this country who opens their door, smiling with reassurance, as they send their child off to school, whose heart is not seized with the fear, with the question: what if it is my precious child that doesn’t come home tonight?

There have been multiple school shootings in the first 45 days of 2018. When is this carnage going to stop? I am filled with rage. Why can’t we do something?

We cannot continue to slaughter our children. This must stop. America, where is our heart?

Ellen Powers


Tax cut ‘prosperity’

If there is one thing all Americans can agree upon, it is the need for a strong economy. Luckily, 2018 is already off to a great start. Over the past year, we have seen an abundance of job creation, and the Department of Labor just released a report saying average hourly earnings jumped nearly three percent in January.

What do we have to thank? Tax cuts. The passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has unleashed a wave of prosperity that supports the job creators and the millions of Americans they employ. The tax bill has encouraged investment and promoted new opportunities.

Jason Saine


‘Waited too long’

Regarding “17 dead in school shooting in Florida; suspect, 19, arrested” (Feb. 15): It is now irrefutable that our heroes in Congress are more afraid of the NRA than they are of seeing school children die. We have waited too long. It is past time to replace every single one of them who is opposed to sensible gun control laws.

I call on all citizens who are as appalled and disgusted as I to vote in November.

Sherry Emanuel


Report abuse

Regarding “Former sports doctor sentenced to a third term” (Feb. 6): Larry Nassar, a formerly respected physician, sexually abused his patients for decades. There is much to learn from this case that may help protect children against such abuse in the future.

While Larry Nassar alone is responsible for his abusive actions, it appears that many adults in a position to recognize and report potential abuse may have dismissed concerns raised by the victims. In light of this scandal, it seems a good time to review reporting laws in our state.

All adults and institutions in North Carolina are mandated reporters of child abuse. In other words, the law requires all North Carolinians to report the suspected abuse of a child. It is critical to note that the law specifies the term “suspected abuse.” This means that a reporter does not need to have proof or definitive knowledge of such abuse – they need only to have a reasonable suspicion and report it in good faith.

We all have a responsibility to protect children from abuse and neglect. The Nassar case is a tragic example of how critical that responsibility is and the devastating consequences that can ensue when such responsibility is neglected.

Dr. Stacy Thomas


Committee on Child Abuse and Neglect

NC Pediatric Society