The Opinion Shop

More letters on Donald Trump, gun violence, state legislature, lying and Lt. Gov. Dan Forest

Letters that got overrun by other issues before they could see print:


More time for Trump gaffes

Regarding the Aug. 10 news article “Some hear threat in Trump’s remark’s”: While the latest gaffe from Donald Trump, the slightly fuzzy challenge to Second Amendment people over the presidential job of judge appointment, is something he is actively backing away from, we should learn not to be too surprised by the variety and depth of his ability to talk his way into crazy situations.

Get used to it. Before the November election, he will have plenty of time to give us a lot more comments that display his inappropriateness to be the nation’s leader.

Plus, the NRA now has TV ads criticizing Hillary Clinton’s armed security while hinting that she will gut the Second Amendment. After Trump’s shout-out to the gun-rights folks, she needs extra security.

Also does Trump know that any judicial nominations need congressional approval, which has been hard to come by lately? If he gets the top job, might be hard for him, too. Wonder how he would react to that?

Deborah Brogden



Memorialize gun violence victims

The current carnage of gun-related deaths continues to terrorize America. No responsible leader or organization is aggressively advancing a coherent plan to curb the deadly violence. The president and Congress seem resigned to wait out the impending election before once again deferring to the NRA on gun death prevention.

In our society, we build conspicuous memorials and monuments to our dead citizens who perished in a common tragedy. Such commemorative sites exist for 9/11 , Oklahoma City and even such a contentious theater as Vietnam.

Why not a memorial site in Washington on the Mall to remember all of the victims of gun violence? Their numbers are neverending, and we, as a nation, have clearly made a conscious choice to accept gun killing as a normal, acceptable staple of American society.

The establishment of of a “National Memorial To The Victims Of Gun Violence” would be in keeping with our longstanding tradition of honoring our dead who perished in a common tragedy.

However, it might just also spur us all to encourage our national leaders to finally make a concerted move to combat these deaths, which constitute a major public health problem for all of us.

William C. Crawford



Delusional legislators

As a psychologist, I am concerned about the mental health of many of our state legislators.

It appears that they have had hallucinations or delusions regarding two phenomena: men entering women’s bathrooms and voter fraud. Federal court ruled that there was no evidence of either problem, yet a majority of our legislators thought those were serious enough problems to require legislative remedy.

Certainly hallucinations and delusions can be contagious to some extent. For example, some people can be convinced that a dead person has appeared at a seance or that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time; but for a whole majority of the state legislators to be convinced enough of the existence of voter fraud or men entering women’s bathrooms to pass laws based on such faulty information is disturbing!

I wonder if some cognitive behavior therapy isn’t in order.

Robert P. Hawkins



A new national pastime

Lying is being given a bad name. What happened to the days when lying was presidential?

“Read my lips; no new taxes.” “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky.” “Iraq has weapons of mass destruction.” “Of course the $400 million wasn’t a ransom payment.” “I never sent or received classified emails on my unsecured server.” “I’m sorry if my comments about Mexicans being rapists, Muslims being terrorists or a dead soldier’s mother being subservient, offended anyone.”

Those lies required professional collaboration and planning. Those lies will “live in infamy.” At some point, lying became implausible.

“Of course I hit 73 home runs without human growth hormones.” “Of course I won seven straight Tour de Frances without doping.” “Of course sex with those 57 drug-impaired women was consensual.”

No one believed them. But everyone wanted to. So everyone pretended to. Now, pervasive lying is reflexive. Subconscious. Even unconscious.

“I was robbed by cops who put a gun to my forehead.” Ryan Lochte wins “the gold” for turning an idiotic incident into an international issue. A personal worst for him, I hope.

If lying is to become our national pastime, let’s put some effort into them.

Bill Massey



Forest the demagogue

Regarding the Aug. 7 news article “ Forest hopes grassroots style lifts him to re-election, higher office” on Lt. Gov. Dan Forest’s campaign bus: Forest represents the worst kind of demagogue politics. He has no ideas other than to divide and alienate North Carolinians.

His insulting speech regarding the president of the United States bordered on slander. He parrots right-wing talking points intended to inflame his right-wing base, purporting concern over children to explain his support for House Bill 2 (which were rated “False” by Politifact) as just one example.

If Forest supports children, he would urge the legislature to expand Medicaid and fully fund the public school system, instead of spending millions of North Carolina tax dollars to implement and defend unconstitutional laws.

In your article, Forest admitted he is using his campaign bus as a stunt to prepare for his 2020 run for governor. Does he have nothing better to do? How much of our tax dollars are going to support his multi-year campaign?

Assuming he defeats Linda Coleman (which is a big assumption), we can expect four more years of his hurtful, demeaning and insulting rhetoric.

Laurie McDowell



Early morning surgery

Regarding the Aug. 6 news article “ Cary dentist’s license revoked after patient dies”: The most amazing part was the fact that the dentist had nine surgeries scheduled before his 10 a.m. appointment that resulted in the complications for his patient.

Equally amazing was the fact that there was no mention of where he performed the surgeries.

Where in the world is it considered normal to perform nine surgeries before 10 a.m.? Kudos to the administration of whichever hospital or clinic that allowed a dentist to do this.

Dennis Stephenson