Letters to the Editor for March 17

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Just what is Socialism? 

There seems to be a lot of confusion about just what Socialism is.

Bernie Sanders has brought to light something that formerly was against the law and if this were the 1950s, he might have been arrested for espousing Socialism.

Simply put, Socialism is a political system where the state owns everything, manufacturing, banking, even the land your home is on.

Everyone works for the state and private enterprise is not allowed.

Only one political party is permitted and the state controls all media including television. (Political correctness at its best.)

It usually starts out quietly enough, the state makes more and more regulations to control the free market and your lives until eventually, it owns everything. For a time, people go along with the change.  Eventually, however, as the economy begins to fail, people realize they have walked into a trap.

I recall Bernie Sanders has a degree in Political Science so there is no doubt in my mind that he is fully aware of exactly what Socialism is.

Sanders told his followers that Nordic countries like Denmark are Socialist countries but the fact is that Socialism failed many years ago and all are now free market Capitalist Democracies.

While there are some countries still trying to fit a square pin in a round hole, they are in a failure state and by that I mean everyone is equally poor.  (Except for the politicians of course.)

Even countries like Vietnam are slowly converting to a capitalist economy along with other countries that have discovered the advantages of having a free society.

China began moving toward a capitalist economy in 1979.

The dream of a Socialist society in Venezuela has all but collapsed with some 783 percent inflation rate and empty grocery store shelves.

Some of the remaining hold-out countries have had to resort to force to maintain the status quo as a police state takes control.

While I can understand that segments of our society would like to follow Bernie Sanders for his vision of a Socialist controlled country, along with its promise of a utopian world, I suggest they have no idea of what lies in store for them.

As often happens, the only rich people left in a Socialist country are the politically connected elite and they grow rich on the backs of the workers.  (Assuming there are jobs for them.)

Creativity, entrepreneurship, hope for individuals to build a better life, all come to a screeching halt.  Life becomes dull and drab.

Why someone like Bernie Sanders, and I suspect Hillary Clinton as well, would like to destroy our free market and enterprise system is beyond me except perhaps the greed for power. Sometimes greed is for more than money or possessions. For some, greed takes the form of power.

Someone mentioned that we already have socialism and that Social Security was a socialist idea. But I must mention that I paid into it with my own money for 60 years. I’ve also been paying into Medicare since the 1960s so it was all my money to begin with and it didn’t come free.

No society is perfect and cannot be but our vain attempts to find a utopian society can lead America into a tragic spiral if we are not careful.

Bob Wilson — Franklin, N.C.

Struggle of good and even both external and internal 

There’s no escaping the realization that evil and suffering seems more profound and wicked within our advanced modern world in which we all live. The furthering of man’s knowledge, intellect and advancements of technology hasn’t seemed to rid ourselves from this plight we all seem to be infected with. Even though some have tried escaping and looking for a more tranquil life or utopia, the plight  of evil and suffering always seems not far behind. But evil and its effects can only be recognized against the back drop of what is good. If all life were only evil we would not recognize good, and if all life were only good we would not recognize evil for what it is. So the knowledge or value of what goodness is, is only known by its extreme opposite of evil’s destructive nature and what it is. This struggle of good and evil is not just something we deal with and recognize externally but is within the heart of each and every one of us as well. This good and evil is not from the realm of the physical world, even though we see and feel its effects all around us, but its source is from a different dimension or realm that we seem to ignore but we know it’s there.

Through out this world we have systems of justice and punishment that deal with the evils and wrongs we do against each other. From the harsh killings, genocide, human trafficking, to the softer evils of lying, cheating, and corruption, we’re all looking for something or someone who’s trustworthy to rid us of what seems to be infecting all of us to some degree. But there’s also a higher or supreme justice that has taken our rightly deserving punishment and took all the evil within this world and within us and took this upon Himself (Christ).

Easter season highlights this dilemma and points us toward the ultimate remedy, but many within our culture see no need for forgiving, or forgiveness. Whether realized or not, Christ died for all the wrong and evil we see around and within us. Who really wants to deny that there is something wrong with us and with the world that needs to be put right? We want justice and wrong doings set right, but we never seem to get there, because evil of any degree is within each of us. This blame and denial has been our human story since the beginning of time and hasn’t changed or evolved in the least.

The Crucifixion and the Resurrection  both intersect at a cross road, and Christ fulfills this dilemma that’s within us, in bringing justice, forgiveness, meaning, and purpose that is openly displayed within His Love towards us penetrating our most inner being, which when realized, this manifests itself both internally, and through us outwardly, to hopefully bring light into a dark world which we all are all part of.

Worth thinking on,

Deni Shepard — Franklin, N.C.    nds13@frontier.com

An attempt to ‘think positive’ 

I’ve submitted letters to the editor dealing with a variety of topics. My wife – decidedly genteel from birth – feels many of my letters convey a negative message to the reader. She challenged me to express my views in a positive manner. I accepted her dare. Here goes.

1) I am positive that the Constitution has been corrupted by Washington liberals’ policies.

2) I am positive that 11 million migrants reside illegally within the U.S. borders.

3) I am positive our foreign policy is a joke.

4) I am positive that our colleges have become baby sitters for social butterflies and time wasters.

5) I am positive that elected officials turn into mindless donkeys in Washington.

6) I am positive that climate change people are really unemployed environmentalists seeking work.

7) I am positive that all lives matter. Period.

Well, with all the positivity expressed by me, must have delighted my lovely wife. You think so?

With respect,

Bill Trapani — Franklin, N.C.

Safety of children worth any amount of money 

Imagine you just got a call from your child’s school and the person on the other end tells you that your son or daughter has been killed in a school bus crash. She then goes on to say that the bus flipped over, and almost all the children were killed. You hang up and burst into tears for the child you just lost.

If something as tragic as this were to happen to any child, you would be horrified, wouldn’t you? Sadly, however, this can happen because Macon County’s children are unprotected by seat belts.

After talking to a school board employee, I found that not only seat belts  limited to use on handicap buses, but also that cost is the only thing holding the school board back from protecting all of our children. My feeling is that our county should install them for the good of each and every child who rides the bus to and from school.

Seat belts in cars have been required by law since 1968, according to the North Carolina Department of Public Safety. Just because school buses are free transportation does not mean they should be any less safe than the family car. Also, the school bus driver has a seat belt when your children are completely unprotected in the back of the bus.

According to a study by Safe Guard 4 Kids, children can get tossed around like clothes in a dryer and suffer hits to the head that can result in injuries such as concussions and Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI and, worst of all, death. To get a visual image of this sad reality please go to www.Safeguard4kids.com/crash-test/.

Many people might argue that it would cost a lot of money to equip all the buses with belts, but, in my opinion, the safety of our children is worth a lot more than anything money can buy.

Emma Baker, age 13 — Franklin, N.C.

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