Letters to the Editor

6/24 Letters: It really is time to talk about reparations for slavery and discrimination

Serious discussion

What a blessing that we are finally having a serious national discussion about reparations for slavery and racist violence and discrimination. I can think of few federal policies that would do more to lift up this nation. Some oppose reparations on grounds that today’s Americans are not responsible for slavery.

Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates rightly called that “a strange theory of governance.” He noted, “We honor treaties that date back some 200 years, despite no one being alive who signed those treaties. Many of us would love to be taxed for the things we are solely and individually responsible for. But we are American citizens, and thus bound to a collective enterprise that extends beyond our individual and personal reach.”

In 1988, President Reagan signed an act that compensated Japanese-Americans for their imprisonment in camps during World War II. If that was the right thing to do, and it surely was, how could it possibly not be our obligation to provide redress for the torture, lynching, murder, and stolen labor of African-Americans? I encourage Rep. Price to join Reps. Butterfield and Adams in co-sponsoring HR 40, which creates a commission to study reparations proposals.

Christina Cowger


Free stuff ploy

Here we go again! Congressional hearings over slavery reparations. In case anyone did not know, it was all paid for long ago. There were 600,000 lives lost in the Civil War and a president assassinated. No amount of money will compensate for this tragic time in history. It is nothing more than a “free stuff from the Democratic Party” ploy.

Michael Whittingham


Breaking the law

I continue to be amazed at your paper’s respect for those who disobey our country’s laws. In the June 18 “Don’t force sheriffs to bow to ICE,” I read with amazement how some elected officials still refuse to follow the intent of our laws. Plain old common sense hits anyone between the eyes when the definition of “illegal” is understood, not just read. “Breaking the law” is what illegal immigration boils down to, with no exception. The word illegal kind of gives it away; that must be why our “news” stopped using the word, perhaps to cloud people’s understanding.

When a national border is crossed without permission, you are a criminal. The job the sheriffs all swear to do is upholding and enforcing the laws. Who would elect someone tasked with catching criminals to not help all other law enforcement agencies? How is “the selfishness and self-interest,” to quote the N&O’s founding editor Josephus Daniels’ warning, of a few sheriffs applauded by your editors in the sanctuary city of Charlotte and why?

John Gallant


Credentials and references

If the writer of the June 19 letter “Climate Change” wanted to be taken seriously by a knowledgeable and informed readership, he should have included his credentials and cited a reference or two. As it stands, the letter is laughable.

Richard Shirk


Better enforcement

I am writing with regard to the letter titled “A Cost of freedom”, which was recently published. Incredibly, the writer blames the Second Amendment for violence involving guns in this country. Law-abiding citizens use their guns to prevent crimes against themselves and their property. I don’t doubt that the Second Amendment has led to an increase in the number of guns, but it is a grave error to conclude that this has caused an increase in violent crime.

In fact, in the 25 years following 1990, the violent crime rate was cut in half, despite there being a great increase in the number of guns in the country. Gun control laws mainly affect those who abide by the law. The frequent call for our lawmakers to “do something about this gun violence” is based on wishful thinking, not knowledge of the facts. There is no simple solution, but we could start with better enforcement of the laws we have now.

Andrew S. Barclay


Hold Trump accountable

I want to know what is taking so long to hold the current occupant in the White House accountable for what he is doing to our government. His actions are destroying the cornerstones of our government. Our very security is under attack in regards to elections, our infrastructure and our national security. President Trump is trying to start an unnecessary war with Iran, is still in bed with Russia, and it seems no one is doing anything to hold him accountable. Enough is enough! I am sick and tired of feeling like our government is going to implode.

Elise Dickinson