The Macon County News letters page is a public forum open to a wide variety of opinions. Letters are neither accepted nor rejected on the basis of the opinions expressed. Writers are asked to refrain from personal attacks against individuals or businesses. Letters are not necessarily reflective of the opinions of the publisher, editor or staff of The Macon County News. Email letters to maconcountynews@ gmail.com.
The U.S. is a country of asylum seekers
The U.S. is a country of asylum seekers and their children. Every immigrant to the U.S. arrived at our borders looking to escape from either government tyranny, economic hardship, or criminal violence. U.S. law and international law requires that asylum seekers who present themselves to our immigration personnel be given the opportunity to prove their reasons for seeking asylum. Instead, the new “no tolerance “policies take children from their parents and put them in cages or send them to temporary facilities often located thousands of miles from where the parents are jailed. Another new policy recently implemented requires that asylum seekers be turned away at the border; there is no opportunity for them to plea their case to an immigration judge. The children of asylum seekers have not been wholesale separated from their parents for decades. The prevalent method used by immigration judges over the past decades was to use electronic trackers, as in ankle bracelet, and court bail to ensure asylum seekers remain local to the court. This method allowed the asylum seeker to stay with their children until their court date. Some parents had been occasionally separated from their children in the past but only when the judge determined there is a significant chance the asylum seeker would skip bail. This solution was the exception. These asylum seekers are not choosing to present themselves to U.S. immigration courts because they plan to live off U.S. government largess. These people are escaping from the government and gang-related torture and murder common in their country of origin. The dangerous trek these asylum seekers take across thousands of mile of inhospitable landscape is a dangerous but necessary risk to take, a risk that keeps their children out of the hands of murdering gang members and corrupt government policies in their native countries. The “no tolerance” tactic recently implemented that separates the children of asylum seekers in every case is being used as a deterrent to discourage asylum seekers. This strategy turns out to be the largest case of government sponsored child abuse this country has ever seen.
John Barry – Franklin, N.C.
Our nation is at a crossroad
It grieves me greatly to see our culture so deeply divided, and it seems as though this is done so deliberately. We seem to be at a crossroad of sorts, and many not being sure what direction to go, and there’s no one to explain the reason that one way is better than another. Our country’s direction has been distorted and unclear, many have little knowledge of where we have come, so we have little reason to know where we should go. Just moving forward with a unencumbered freedom for all seems to be the quest for modern thinking, and there is little room for discussion as to why we are thinking this way. Sadly, this has been slowly brewing for decades. Many will take my thinking offensive, and I truly understand this, I also at one time would have thought the same. As a confused young man, not outwardly, but internally, I saw growing up, lives being self destroyed, all the while in what was to be living life to the fullest. Drugs, alcohol, living life without boundaries. In making a business delivery to a local mental institution, I was surprised by a young high-school friend, starring blank faced, starring at a wall, saying nothing, leaving his family hurt and confused, with little hope of what was once happiness, turn tragic. Through watching friends and families within my evolving modern culture, I found a deep hurting scar forming across our land. I was in an internal search of making sense of all this, while outwardly showing all was fine. In seeing all this around me I saw that there’s something within us that’s crying for reason and purpose in need of a foundation, a reason for life and living. I began to more intently listen to people, reading books and try understanding the reasons for what was happening within my culture. To no fault of its own, the church didn’t seem to have the answers I was looking for, but I was never comfortable asking either. Looking at other cultures and comparing them to ours I discovered a uniqueness I never realized. Our thinking and working out a direction for us as a new county was truly amazing to me. Never before was freedom, justice, and just laws, ever been instilled in such a way of unselfishness. A desire, although not always realized, in a country that was to be for the people, not for rulers, or for the power hungry. But I was asking why and where do a people such as this come to this type of reasoning, leading a people and a country instilled with generosity, and so free that people from all nations wanted to be part of this living? This force didn’t come from nature, environment, or our DNA, which is part of today’s thinking and takes the individual responsibility out of the equation. But a common thread in a belief in God our Creator is what made the difference, It’s a foundation that builds a people, a country, and a once confused young man seeking hope, and finding the most fulfilling and satisfied answers for life. Some have gone down this same road, but have turned back when the road gets hard and rugged. Living the Christian life I will tell you, is not easy, but it never has been! History has never been loving, kind, just, peaceful, and caring towards the common man. It is only though God / Christ, that this is instilled in us and makes our quest for all these things possible. For where else is the basis where this comes from, and we are so desperately in need of? Life can be complete in Him, so where else do we find answers that speak to the internal search that gives such a hope?
Deni Shepard – firstname.lastname@example.org
Many factors to consider that drive up drug prices
A recent letter writer correctly pointed out pharmaceutical companies spend more on advertising than they do on research. If it were just that simple the problem could be solved but it’s not. However, drug manufacturers must, of necessity, recover their huge investments as quickly as possible and frankly, the medical community does not want to be the pitchmen for them nor do they want to stick their necks out and get sued. They know trial lawyers spend over $1 billion on television advertising just waiting to find some fault with a new drug. They also know there are very few drugs that won’t have a bad reaction in some people. In practice, we pay those costs through higher drug prices. Even years of grueling studies by the Food and Drug Administration, someone will have a bad reaction, no matter what. We pay higher costs because of the lawsuits. On a related subject lawyers pay only around $5,000 a year for malpractice insurance but OB/GYN doctors pay as much as $200,000 per year. And, because only one in 12 new drugs ever get past the testing stage you also pay for research that doesn’t pan out. But, without that, there would be no new drugs hitting the market. You are also paying higher prices for the simple reason Europeans have laws on the books keeping the prices for drugs low. We are paying for all the research and development. It’s not fair and this is what President Trump pointed out. And don’t forget the pharmaceutical companies pay thought the nose for their insurance. It all boils down to several things which drive up drug prices. To summarize: lawsuits continue to cause drug prices to go up; drug companies must advertise because the medical community won’t push unknown drugs; and other countries refuse to help pay their fair share of research. Through all this drug companies must continue doing their research and keep their staff scientists working to find yet another good drug. Like so many things in this country, big pharma has become a football to kick around by those unwilling to look at a very complex problem with no easy answers. It’s easier to take a simplistic response to the problem. Criticism is cheap when you don’t understand the problem.
Bob Wilson – Franklin, N.C.
Contributing members of society welcome
There was an excellent letter in last week’s Macon County News about defending our borders. I would like to add a few of my own thoughts. Do you ever lock the doors of your house, garage, etc.? If you do, it may be because you hate everyone else in the world. Or it could be that you welcome guests, but you would like the opportunity to do so on your own terms, since you pay the property taxes, utilities, insurance, upkeep, etc. I think most Americans would fit into the second category. We desire, and rightfully so, some privacy. If we let everyone into our home for any reason, at any time, soon it would not be a comfortable place for anyone. It would quickly degenerate into a complete mess. And because the “guests” are not paying, they will not be as motivated as you are, to take care of things. These are some of the reasons why an open door policy on your home would not work out well. Why does anyone think it would be any different at the border? We have rules in our “national home.” We call them laws. Most of them are based on the Ten Commandments in Exodus, chapter 20. For example, we don’t allow stealing what belongs to another person. That’s because we understand that the person who worked hard to earn the money to buy something, has a right to decide how, when or if it will be used. We have many other laws, or rules which we expect everyone in our national home to live by. If they don’t, they will be separated from their families, and placed in a jail cell. Why is it so difficult for some to understand why we can’t let everyone who wants to, enter our national home? Especially when they break the law just to get in? We as a nation need to set down the rules for entry into our national home. They should include abiding by all of our laws. We also need people who want to become Americans, not people who want to import their own culture, and not integrate into ours. We also need people who want to work hard and contribute to our society, not people who want to take advantage of our social welfare programs, and educational systems. Is it too much to ask that people who are guests in your home abide by your rules? Is it too much to ask that people, who want to become permanent residents in our national home, abide by our laws? There is a difference between immigrants, and illegal immigrants, even though the MSM [Mainstream Media] deliberately ignores this in most cases. An immigrant fills out the proper papers, and goes through the legal requirements to become a citizen. It often takes quite a bit of time and effort. But when they succeed, they are often very proud of this achievement. Many of them have become outstanding, contributing citizens. It is not fair to them to allow others, who sneak across the border illegally, to stay and reap the benefits of our society, without working for it. Immigrants should be welcomed into our national home. Illegal immigrants should be arrested and deported. If they come in again uninvited, they should be jailed. It is not a matter of compassion versus lack of compassion. It is the rule of law.
Ed Hill – Franklin, N.C.