Letters to the Editor

A city coming into its own

Columbus, It has been a steadfast wait for your residents who believe that your potential and essence would someday shine forth. And now these citizens are enjoying the rewards of their faith.

Your budding abundance is showing, Columbus, and your hustle and bustle are encouraging. Even the casual observer notices how you have recently spread your wings. New businesses are springing all about, and vast office parks are under construction whose elaborate resources foretell of even more impressive industries to come. The sprawling embrace of Columbus State University is making lively dots in your landscape; not to mention the renaissance of your historic and uptown districts. Yummy eating establishments abound and home sites are acting like hometown neighborhoods again.

It is all very exhilarating, Columbus, and am sure that many others join me in thanking you for being so supportive of your growing family.

Spontaneous and automatic you may seem, but those who understand know better. They realize that much purpose and courage have been engaged in council rooms and back rooms where hands have reached across decades of social and ethnic divisions to shake the hands of others.

Columbus, Georgia, you are something else!

Mary Adams Otwell


Freedom of faith?

At the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, the President cited two instances of faith, one of an American in a Nazi camp asked to point out the Jews in a lineup. He averred that "we are all Jews." He was asked a second time with a pistol pointed at his head and commented again, "we are all Jews" at which point the commandant lowered his pistol and left. The second of a Muslim in a park here in the U.S. who was afraid to kneel and pray out of fear. His daughter reminded him it was time to pray. He knelt and prayed.

The President then said, "Faith is the great cure of fear." I find his statement hard to reconcile as in recent years his administration has limited the ability of Catholics to live out their Gospel mandate if they do not offer contraception, sterilization and the morning-after pill to their employees, forcing them to sue the federal government. In March the petition of the Little Sisters of the Poor will be heard in the highest court of the land. They "fear" that if their petition is rejected they will have to pay $2.4 million in fines, limiting their ability to care for the poor, the sick and the dying.

We are in a post-Christian vortex, arguably at the mercy of militant secular progressives hell-bent on subverting our cherished religious beliefs. We must remain faithful to the Gospel, our only fear being "Fear of the Lord."

Joseph Liss


Culture of gullibility

When I received my undergraduate degree I was reminded by my Jesuit mentors that if it meant to me that I was educated, then they had failed. Conversely, if it impressed me with how stupid I was, then they had succeeded because education is intended to expose stupidity and open the mind to progressive thought and development.

We are a nation that condemns learning and the traditions that are deeply rooted in human experience and development. As we witness the 2016 presidential nomination folly anyone endowed with academic integrity can only cringe at the hatred, misinformation, distortions and malevolence that inspire Republicants. To vote for or favor any GOP candidate for the presidency this year is a frank admission of the failure of education by any advocate, and it cannot be overcome by Christian fundamentalism that never considers or embraces the imprimatur of the Beatitudes.

Wall Street is not the economy of the United States. It is a swill pit teemed with corrupt liars and swindlers whose sole purpose in life is to enrich the few at the expense of the many suckers who can be conned. 2008 should have awakened everyone's eyes to the carnage, but the public were conned into a "bailout" that enriched the robbers. Now, for those who are lucid, the filthy lucre pit is ridiculously expanded and the Wall Street debt exceeds the total of the entire federal economy obligations. What does the GOP advocate? Cut government spending, sabotage medical programs and Social Security, while impoverishing working class Americans in every sector.

It's good for business.

Robert John White


Time for a change

The presidential race is kicking into high gear. Americans are itching for a change, not just in the White House.

In the distant horizon a wave is building that will eventually be a tsunami of revolt at the ballot box in November. That wave can be summed up in three words, "You Deserve Better."

Here in the Second District, Sanford Bishop has been in Congress for two decades. His title is Representative. One must ask, "Whom does he really represent?"

Take, for example, Obamacare. In the fall of 2009 through March of 2010, Sanford Bishop heard from thousands upon thousands of Southwest Georgians calling on him to vote "NO" to Obamacare. His mailbox, e-mail, fax machine, and phone lines were flooded with opposition to this horrific legislation. Hundreds of people showed up at his district offices week after week urging him to vote NO.

When it came down to it, he had a choice. Would he represent the thousands in southwest Georgia, or the few in his own party? He made the choice. He represented Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama and ignored the people back home. You deserve better.

Six years later when Obamacare is a hated and dismal failure, Sanford Bishop got a second chance. Again he chose to represent Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama instead of Southwest Georgians. He voted Noto repeal Obamacare. You deserve better.

After the vote to repeal Obamacare was overwhelmingly approved, President Obama predictably vetoed it. This gave Bishop a third chance to represent southwest Georgia. He had the opportunity to vote to override the veto. Bishop chose to represent Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama instead of Southwest Georgians and voted NO to override the veto. Strike three.

You deserve better.

Donald E. Cole


The prefab Flint narrative

The editorial space given to Ben Boychuk on Flint's water crisis was well below what we've come to expect of the Ledger. The finger-pointing and excuses, rather than shedding light on the conditions that led to this tragedy, simply confused readers with standard conservative-speak.

Much as the economic recession caused by Wall Street was blamed, by Republicans, on (amateur) black home-buyers victimized by (professional) mortgage brokers, the working class and largely black residents who dared to vote Democratic were fingered by Boychuk as responsible for the decline of the region's economy. Naturally Obama was to blame, and the despised EPA vaguely accused of delaying necessary paperwork.

Nowhere was there a mention of the Republican final solution of overthrowing the elected city and school officials and their replacement by rightist "Emergency Managers" beholden to no one but their political boss, Gov. Snyder. According to Boychuk, the villains are those pesky layabout voters and the party of spendthrifts who broke the bank.

Those not suffering from selective amnesia will recall the catastrophic effects, especially on the black working class, of the mass deindustrialization of the entire region that gave us today's "Rust Belt." Then, the export of our auto industry was blamed on greedy workers who prevented us from competing with modernized foreign companies using slave-wage labor.

The Flint River was not polluted by greedy workers, but by greedy capitalists looking to cut costs at all costs.

People's homes are now worthless. Children by the thousands are at incredible risk of intellectual impairment and simply taking a shower results in skin disorders. All Mr. Boychuk has to offer is standard sloganeering designed to reinforce the know-nothing mindset of a dumbed-down electorate.

C.L. Martin