Letters for August 31, 2017


A reminder of what this country is about

Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Constitution of the United States


We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Amendment XIII. (1865)


Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

Amendment XIV. (1868)


All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Amendment XV. (1870)


The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.

Amendment XIX. (1920)

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

Amendment XXIV. (1964)


The right of citizens of the United States to vote in any primary or other election for President or Vice President, for electors for President or Vice President, or for Senator or Representative in Congress, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State by reason of failure to pay poll tax or other tax.

These words form the basis of our governance and the ethos of the United States.  The changes made over time through Amendments reflect the evolution of the Law toward the words of the Declaration of Independence.

We fought one war over the scourge of slavery, and another over the scourge and threat of Nazism.  It is time for all loyal citizens, including our political representatives, to publicly declare their opposition to the threats of Nazism, White Nationalism and Racism and support the words and spirit of our Constitution.  The Macon County Democratic Party does.


John Gladden, Executive Committee

Macon County Democratic Party

Early immigrants did not speak English

I was glad to read intelligent responses with a different opinion than that of a recent letter whose writer stated that English language proficiency should be a prerequisite for entry into the U.S. I am sure there are many others who share my history of grandparents emigrating to the U.S. in the early 20th century. My paternal grandparents who came to this country as legal immigrants around 1918 did not speak English, in fact, they were illiterate. They bought a farm, raised 10 children, all of them bilingual.

Half of whom, without the benefit of completing elementary school because their help was needed on the farm, went on to own small businesses. Haven’t we heard enough of this ethnocentric and selfish attitude of fearing cultures different from your own and valuing people only for what they can do for you?

Thank you for allowing me to express my opinion.


Judy Stockinger — Franklin, N.C.

Is the power worth the cost?

When I was a youngster attending Long Branch, Locust Field and Jarrett Memorial Baptist Churches in Jackson County, North Carolina, I sensed a fear within adult church members that the corrupt political machinery posed a threat to the sanctity of the church and its Christian mission. Remarks were made to the effect that there was no place for politics in the church.

Now that I am much older I fear that many churches have over-extended their mission and jumped recklessly into the corrupt government they once feared and vowed to distance themselves from.

With the drastic decline in the influence of churches in America in recent years I am left to wonder what will happen to what little influence churches have if they become even more political than they were in my teenage and early adult years. How can Christians be very devout if they join in with corrupt politicians that they once criticized for their negative influence on Americans? How can Christians be good citizens without getting tainted by their own mingling daily with political operatives? What will be the measuring stick for determining a good Christian? Will it be his/her political prowess or Christian deeds?

In short, is worldly power worth the cost that a Christian has to pay to obtain it?


Dave Waldrop — Webster, N.C.

To take down monuments is taking down history

You know I promised my wife to not write any more letters for a while, but what I see going on in America is very disturbing to me.

To take down the Confederate statues around our country is wrong. What you are doing is destroying America’s history. What will we teach our young children about slavery. How, who, and why. I would think the people who according to history would want young children to understand what happened and why. To take down monuments, you’re taking down history.

Now, let’s talk about our beautiful Civil War monument downtown. This damn New Yorker will stand the post with a baseball bat to stop anybody who has any idea to take it down. And, I am sure many of my brothers will be there also with their bats.


Wm. Trapani — Franklin, N.C.

Memorials are not always about the glories

Is the governor mad? Has he been suckered in by the current trend of capitulation?

Isis has been destroying ancient monuments of history. Will Americans do the same?

There is nothing to see here folks, move on. Wait. The little town of Franklin saved their elegant statue of the old war to remember the wailing of mothers, the disgrace of trying to hold humans in bondage, the greed we should all remember and resolve never to do again.

Our art and memorials need not remind always of glories, but of defeats, wounds to our spirits, lessons to our souls.

The complainers of today do not have a lock on the wounds of slavery. From the Jewish slaves of the pyramids, the serfs of Europe, and the Native Americans Hernando de Soto brutally held to build cathedrals to God. De Soto brought his entrada down the Cullasaja (400 Native American slaves; his Spanish scabbard found in the gorge chasm and now resides in our Macon County historical museum. All of these American slaves were either starved to death or fed to his pack of mastiff dogs before he reached the Mississippi.

And yet we see parks, waterfalls, roadside signs bearing his name about his quest to rob our American treasures.

The town of Franklin refuses to let the Native Americans recover their mound. Are we afraid they would hold ceremonies we Christians would so despise? Why would we hang on to some monuments we don’t own and let others go?

The Europeans visit each other’s history. It is a major part of their economy to remember past glories and horrors. They pride themselves in being more civilized that we crude Americans.

We are intent on destroying ours.


Shirley Cruse Cole — Franklin, N.C.