The plight of children in U.S. custody is a national disgrace. No ordinary person (not a politician) wants children to be separated from their families and kept in situations that are not allowed even for animals. Damage so far cannot be repaired, but it does not have to be continued and steps can be taken to heal the pain. Ordinary people across the United States can’t believe this is really happening to children, but the truth will come out to the shame of all of us but especially to the politicians. As citizens of a democracy, we are all responsible. We must act.
Janie and Barry Freeman
I was so impressed to read in the N&O a few days ago that a Raleigh woman was charged with a felony for letting a rabbit starve to death. The law and its enforcement seem to reflect a society that deeply values the life of even small, helpless creatures, and is willing to punish those who neglect or mistreat them.
But when I read the news about the negligence of children detained at our southern border, it’s clear that we aren’t being true to our values of protecting those who are helpless and harmless. In the same way we hold a person accountable for not properly caring for a rabbit, we need to hold our government officials accountable for not properly caring for the children in their custody who are separated from parents and locked up without adequate food, water, and sanitation.
I want to live in a society where we do truly value and protect all life — one where we at least care about the mistreatment of hundreds of children kept in concentration camps as much as we care about one unfortunate rabbit kept in a cage.
Several weeks ago, television viewers and newspaper readers looked at a sea of humanity in downtown Raleigh as teachers closed the school systems down demanding more pay. There are some people who think that a person should get an increase only when they do a satisfactory job and meet the prescribed standards. Years ago, a person was not automatically given an increase simply because they came to their place of employment, but also were expected to teach those under their care. I am sure that a vast majority of parents still expect similar results.
I read that only 28% of high school seniors answered correctly when asked who was the leader of the country that fought the U.S. in Europe in World War II? Only a whopping 13% knew the reason the U.S. entered World War II. We just celebrated the anniversary commemorating that time in history that cost millions of American men and women their lives... Yet less than one third of the high school seniors could answer these questions correctly. Based on results published, perhaps many should ask the schools, what are the students being taught? Or perhaps… what aren’t they being taught?
Quality and access
Thanks to Sen. Berger for his explanation of the N.C. Senate’s lack of action on Medicaid expansion (“The other side of Medicaid expansion,” June 23). His last paragraph was especially informative. He carefully split healthcare concerns into quality of care and access to care. Unfortunately, he then seemed to indicate that NCGA could address only one or the other, and he appeared to prioritize quality. I am willing to bet that possible beneficiaries of Medicaid expansion would argue that both access and quality are critical and that the NCGA should be fostering both. I cannot comment with certainty about his data in other parts of his column, but I did find it interesting that many states that expanded Medicaid discovered that enrollments exceeded expectations. This suggests the problem could be larger in North Carolina than Berger admits. It is past time for the NCGA to provide access to quality healthcare for all citizens of NC. I hope the voters agree in the next state-wide election.
It’s the job
House Bill 370, which would require sheriffs to cooperate with ICE, should not even be necessary. Sheriffs should automatically cooperate. The bill was developed in cooperation with the Sheriffs’ Association and was modified to take into account some of its concerns. Sheriffs don’t get to decide which laws they enforce and which they don’t. If they don’t want to do their jobs (which is get criminals off the streets) they should be removed. Racism has nothing to do with this issue.
Vincent M. DiSandro Sr