Letters to the Editor

The U.S. should stop ‘trying to run everyone else’s country’

Regarding “US braces for possible cyberattacks after Iran sanctions” (Aug. 8): From reading about Iran, America’s latest “panic de jour,” it strikes me that we don’t do a particularly good job of running our own country (heavy debt, no universal health care, failing infrastructure, unaffordable college, etc.) but we do love to tell everyone else how to run theirs.

You can go down the current list: Great Britain, Europe, Canada, China, Iraq, Afghanistan, North Korea and now some talk of invading Venezuela. It seems no other major power in the world tries to tell everyone else what to do like we do.

There is a place to exercise our might in humanitarian issues – helping with disaster, feeding the starving, helping with medical epidemics.

But let’s tend to our own knitting and not be trying to run everyone else’s country, a task we haven’t been very good at. We are in real danger of no longer representing President Reagan’s great vision: “America is a shining city upon a hill.”

Doug Jurney


Tariff solution

Regarding “China ‘stealing intellectual property’ hurts SC plants in trade war, Graham says” (July 22): The escalating trade war harms nearly all Americans. North Carolina agriculture is dependent on foreign markets, especially China, and it is vulnerable to foreign tariffs.

On the Wilmington NPR program, Coastline, I was asked by an Eastern N.C. farmer whether there was another way to contest unfair trade practices, besides tariffs. There is a less destructive alternative that could be applied immediately.

President Trump could suspend tariffs tomorrow against all trading partners who also suspend their retaliatory tariffs against U.S. exports. This truce in the trade war could immediately stop the bleeding from the self-inflicted wounds. It would be a win-win trade deal for all affected countries. Since Congress was not consulted on tariffs initiated since March, congressional approval of the tariff truce would be unnecessary.

The U.S. and other countries have complained about China’s unfair trade practices, especially policies toward intellectual property that appear to result in “stealing” of technology. The U.S. could encourage other members of the World Trade Organization to join them in a formal complaint against the alleged unfair practices. The WTO has a well-established dispute settlement procedure, that has ruled in favor of the U.S. in 90 percent of the complaints it initiated.

Thomas Grennes

Professor of Economics Emeritus

North Carolina State University


Regarding “UNC shoe mess another compliance black eye for a university that has had too many” (Aug. 6): News & Observer sports columnist Luke Decock seemed surprised that UNC football players would break NCAA rules by selling the fancy shoes they received from Nike.

I don’t know why. UNC cheated for many years by offering phony classes to keep athletes academically eligible, and suffered no consequences. Wouldn’t UNC football players conclude that they can get away with a much less serious violation?

Steve Clark


Victim rights

Imagine a victim of domestic violence. Her attacker is arrested, charged and released on bail. He’s angry, frustrated and feels justified in punishing his victim. This victim has no knowledge the attacker is released. She is then murdered by her attacker out of revenge.

All too real and all too likely.

Victims of violent crimes too often become victims again – sometimes by the criminal justice system and their attacker. They are left in the dark, confused, and frustrated. The type of participation in the criminal justice system laid out by Crime Victims’ rights Amendment (Marsy’s Law) can aid victims in rebuilding their lives by treating them with dignity and respect.

Victims deserve to know if they are in danger, they deserve to know about court proceedings, and be able to speak of their experience. Right now in North Carolina, this is not universally practiced.

Voters will have the opportunity in November to vote “yes” to expand the rights of victims and join 32 other states.

Christina Williams

Wake Forest