The Opinion Shop

Letters to the Editor: Voting, seniors, voter fraud, voter ID, Amendment One, campaign funds, Thom Tillis, Kay Hagan, snakes, mousetraps, campaign emails

These letters were not published in the print edition but deserve a look.


I am a disabled senior, and my wife and I voted early in Cary recently. The experience took nearly two hours, and I am convinced that the Republican scheme to make voting difficult to impossible for seniors, the disabled and minorities is working.

We arrived to find parking confusing, and after joining a long line a worker spotted my walker and portable oxygen tank and asked why we weren’t informed that we could curbside vote.

We returned to our car and found the designated area. The instructions given by the poll workers differed in details. The ballot is confusing; we both spoiled our first ones and had to revote.

The actions of the Republican legislature in shortening the time for early voting, eliminating straight ticket voting and limiting the number of early voting locations make our right to vote an exercise in determination. If anyone thinks the system is bad now, just wait till photo IDs are required in 2016.

The Founding Fathers must be shamed and sickened at the perversion the Republicans have staged in North Carolina. This has to be stopped.

Ronald Bryant



I keep hearing that here in North Carolina “voter fraud is non-existent.” The word “virtually” is often excluded, because including it would admit that it actually does exist. How do we know?

It is reported that there are about 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States, and approximately 400,000 live here in North Carolina. Who can prove that none of them has ever voted illegally? Wouldn’t it make sense to implement measures to prevent it entirely? Must we wait until we discover that much more fraud exists than we believed before implementing procedures to prevent it?

Another part of the law that is never mentioned is that there are special considerations for residents 62 and over who might have difficulty providing a birth certificate in order to obtain a photo ID. The law also makes it easier to obtain a photo ID and allows for free photo IDs for those who cannot afford one. However, let’s face it, most people must have valid photo ID to do anything these days, things like getting a library card, using a credit card, getting medical care and receiving government assistance.

Those against voter ID must be in favor of voter fraud.

Russell Catania



I have read in this space the repeated claims that since Amendment One passed with 61 percent of the vote, the “people have spoken,” and we should respect the “will of the people.” I remind letter-writers that a prohibition on same-sex marriage in Virginia, which is virtually identical to Amendment One, was struck down as unconstitutional by the Fourth Circuit, and the Supreme Court has declined to review the case.

As a result, Amendment One was considered to be unconstitutional as well. So it doesn’t matter what the people have voted on, or how much the margin of victory was. If 61 percent of the voters voted to make Zoroastrianism the state religion, it would still be unconstitutional. If 61 percent of the populace voted to take away women’s right to vote, it would still be unconstitutional. If 61 percent of the electorate voted to return to separate but equal schools, it would still be 100 percent unconstitutional.

It doesn’t matter how many people want to pass unconstitutional measures, the measures are still unconstitutional. This, like it or not, is the American Way.

It never ceases to surprise me how many otherwise patriotic Americans don’t really like the Constitution very much.

Louis Dohme



Regarding the Nov. 2 news article “ Hagan, Tillis push voters to polls”: Thom Tillis and Kay Hagan spent more than $100 million on their respective campaigns.

While the final dollar amount is yet to be determined, how can either of them or their supporters justify their spending as representing the best interests of the people of North Carolina?

I wonder how many teachers that money could have hired or how many people with insurance issues it could have helped. I would have assuredly voted for the candidate who aired just a single short ad saying “we decided not to disparage our opponent and donated the money to a charitable cause.”

That’s the kind of person who should be representing this state.

Simon List



Regarding the Oct. 8 news article “ Snake eats mousetrap, gets a little help”: I am glad the woman was able to find the NCSVM Turtle Team for help. After seeing the picture of the snake online, I was distressed to notice that apparently she had used a glue trap to catch mice in her garden.

I have been a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for many years and have taken countless birds off these horrid traps. Most people do not consider that nontarget creatures will get stuck on them. Insects will adhere to them, and then birds (usually Carolina wrens) will go after the insects and get stuck. Often they break wings and legs trying to get loose. This type of trap should be banned.

If someone needs to get rid of mice, please use snap traps, which are humane. I realize those cannot be used outside since other animals would be killed, but there are other kinds of traps.

I have had people bring me birds stuck in glue traps that had been placed in their garages and even their houses when a bird managed to get inside. Nothing should have to die, trying to rip their limbs loose from glue and then starving.

Ann Rogers



Thank God this election is over. For several months I have been receiving at least 50 emails a day from Democrats asking for a donation of $3 or $5 to this campaign and that campaign.

It all started when I responded to one email with a small donation. They must have spread the word. I call it the Emaila virus. It will kill democracy if it isn’t stopped!

I ceased giving months ago because I didn’t want to encourage the onslaught, but the appeals kept coming. Every day I had to weed them out in order to find my real email.

If the Democrats do not find a better way to finance their efforts, I predict that the party will be dead by 2016.

Lane Tracy