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MCN a forum to discuss a variety of issues
Last week a letter writer mentioned me in the Macon County News and Shoppers’ Guide. At least, I think he did. According to his words, he and I disagree on most political issues. I normally leave other people’s letters alone. But, this time I wanted to make a couple of remarks regarding D.P. I want to assure him that I still respect his right to an opinion different from mine. That is the beauty of an Op/Ed page. Civilized societies discuss important issues in those spaces. This gentleman refrained from denigrating me simply because he disagrees with me. Hats off to him!
Also, I want to tell D.P. that I have very high regard for his writing skills. I read his opinions when I can. Not many writers can hang with him in the ability to express an opinion. I hope he writes for other publications. He is certainly worthy of that.
Thanks to the MCN for the opportunity to interchange ideas.
Dave Waldrop – Webster, N.C.
Legislators need to end the bloodbath across nation
Do these four names ring a bell with anyone: Corbin Dahmuntry Holston, Marsiah Emmanuel Collins, Philstavious Dowdell, or Shaunkivia (Keke) Nicole Smith? Don’t feel troubled if these names are only vaguely familiar, they’re the four young people shot and killed at a birthday party in Dadeville, Ala., recently (average age – approximately 19). It was just one mass shooting among many (before that one and since), the names mingle, then quickly fade into obscurity.
No matter how horrible the massacre, how graphic the circumstances, we’ve become collectively so immune to the terror we turn our eyes and ears from the carnage. I don’t relish living in a country where an 11-year-old 5th grader must smear herself in a classmate’s blood and play dead in the hope she won’t be shot. Knowing this, our “leaders” still refuse to do what’s necessary to stop the gun violence. This 11-year-old child now must carry the scene of her classmates being pulverized and decapitated to her grave. Shame on us for allowing this to happen over and over and over again.
After every shooting someone in Congress stands up and talks about gun reform: background checks, red-flag laws, more funding for school security and mental health counselors, banning this or banning that, raising minimum age limits, and the endless babble about common sense measures that endlessly goes nowhere. As columnist Eugene Robinson phrased it, the “orgy of death” continues; in fact, it’s getting worse. Gun violence now even affects life expectancy in the United States.
What has to happen to precipitate a reversal? Is there anything that would stop the senseless and indiscriminate slaughter of our children? What (if anything) would cause Congress to act? Congress is well aware of what the people want. In a Fox News poll published in The Week, May 12th, “81% of registered voters support raising the legal age to buy a gun to 21, 77% support a 30-day waiting period for all gun purchases, and 61% favor a ban on semiautomatic assault weapons.” See, even Fox gets it right sometimes.
Knowing all this, why doesn’t Congress act? Are the names of the places where massacres occur too hard to remember, or perhaps too easy to forget? Would Arlington be easier to remember than Uvalde; Washington, than Dadeville; Alexandria, than Allen, Texas, where a mass murderer killed eight and wounded seven innocent people as I write this?
Perhaps it’s the names of the victims (mixing and mingling and adding up to hundreds over a period of years) we find difficult to remember. What if, instead of Corbin Dahmuntry Holston, the victim was Corbin Dahmuntry… Well, I’ll let you fill in the blanks. Whatever the reason Congress continues to refuse to act to curb gun violence (and so many Americans seem okay that they do), we must keep in mind, only lawmakers have the power to effect substantive and permanent change.
No other industrialized, democratic, educated nation on this planet allows the daily slaughter of its own citizens except us; “The Land of Opportunity, Land of Liberty, the great melting pot, a nation of immigrants and the Half-brother of the world, the U.S. of A.”
All grandiloquence aside, state legislatures need to pass laws that will bring an end to the bloodbath taking place across our nation. The U.S. Congress needs to be inspired to pass bills that will reach the president’s desk for signing within 24 hours.
If Republicans truly believe that the butchering of American citizens is tolerable, that such carnage occurring between our shores on a daily basis is acceptable then they should come right out and say so rather than insult our intelligence with idle talk of locking doors, arming teachers, and their never-ending “thoughts and prayers.”
David Snell – Franklin, N.C.