Letters to the Editor for August 19, 2021

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Audits would put matter to rest once and for all

 “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism” is a quote often attributed to Thomas Jefferson but may not have originated with him. It became a popular statement back in George W. Bush’s presidency during protests against the Iraq war along with comparisons of Bush to Hitler and war criminals. Hillary Clinton and other Democrats (Democrats, the party, not democrats who actually believe in democracy) were fond of it and the press gladly quoted them. Well, how is this form of patriotism doing today? Not so good. There are many tripwires today that can get you in trouble but questioning the 2020 election will get you labeled a conspiracy theorist if not an insurrectionist or terrorist and “a threat to our democracy.” Let’s look at how “our democracy” is doing.

Keep in mind that Bush was considered an illegitimate president by many because of the 2000 election in which the Supreme Court put an end to endless recounts in search of votes for Al Gore which if “found” would have settled the matter. Votes are supposed to be counted until the Democrats win, otherwise Republican perfidy is alleged. When the opposing party is not given the same ability to question irregularities, this puts democracy on a very shaky foundation. When Bush left office with low approval numbers and Barack Obama was wafted to the presidency by uncritical media adulation and a nation desiring to put the specter of racism behind, dissent was no longer patriotic, it was racist. I, along with many others, decided to give him a chance once in office, hoping that he wasn’t as radical as we feared. We were soon disappointed and the Tea Party emerged as a true democratic movement to oppose Obama’s policies and to elect people to Congress that would represent our interests. Nothing racist about this but the media slandered them anyway. The result was a huge gain of Republican seats in the House resulting in a majority. It would seem that in a well-functioning democracy notice would be taken of this and an attempt made to find some compromise and listen to the voice of the people. Instead, to prevent a repeat in 2012 the IRS was used to deny or delay tax exempt status to conservative groups while allowing tax exempt status to progressive groups. Also harassing audits were conducted against some groups like True the Vote. This handicapped these organizations from having the same influence that they had previously while tilting the playing field in the liberal or progressive direction. Obama was re-elected and the Democrats continued to blithely ignore democratic rumblings. The Democrats thought they had a shoo-in with Hillary and laughed at the idea that Donald Trump could possibly be elected. When he won all hell broke loose. They blamed the loss on everyone but themselves. Instead of soul searching, they went on a search and destroy mission to undermine not only the Trump presidency but the Electoral College, the Supreme Court, the rule of law, and anything else they perceived to thwart their power. With the surprising success of the Trump administration despite the roadblocks thrown up, it appeared that he was cruising to re-election with a strong economy and  greatly improved security at the border. Then came Covid. Voting procedures were loosened and massive mail in voting was instituted, in some places without proper legal authority. The mendacious media blamed Trump for everything ignoring the remarkable feat of making a vaccine available in record time. Even so, it looked like Trump was on his way to a second term on election night. Then, inexplicably, voting was halted in several swing states with Trump having a comfortable lead only to have that lead mysteriously vanish when huge batches of Biden votes came in in the wee hours of the morning. There was sufficient reports and video evidence of potential irregularities that made it reasonable to question some of the results. What happened was a sudden campaign to declare the election the most secure in history and to place out of bounds any discussion to the contrary.  When a legitimate protest of the election got out of hand, the rioters were not treated like BLM or Antifa who caused much more damage, but were labeled terrorists and held without bond while arsonists and murderers had been freed. Does this sound like “our democracy?”

This brings us up to today. There has been a forensic audit of the election in Maricopa County in Arizona. The final report has not been released but the preliminary results point to huge discrepancies that would flip the state to Trump. A number of other states are in the process of seeking to do the same. State run media is not reporting on this. In fact, there has been a tremendous amount of hysterical opposition to them. Wouldn’t it be great for “our democracy” for us to have confidence in our elections? There is not just a fringe group of malcontents questioning the results but many tens of millions of patriotic dissenters that want an accounting. Don’t even bring up the red herring of the courts dismissing the cases brought to them. The courts didn’t want to touch them with a ten foot pole and would not hear them based on technicalities, not substance. If the election was as secure and aboveboard as so stridently claimed, then let us be shown to be stupid and wrong by welcoming forensic audits and putting the issue to rest. We need to know what happened so that voting laws can be amended so that it can be made easy to vote but hard to cheat. The voter suppression trope is old and tired and contemptible. I suspect that the Democrats know in their heart of hearts that they cheated and want to maintain a system that can be gamed. Doesn’t democracy die in darkness? Millions of Americans believe that the election was fraudulent. This issue is not going away. Let’s be honest and do the right thing for “our democracy.”  

David Parker – Sylva, N.C.

‘I have the right to live the way I want to’

To people who think they are the only ones that have rights just because they believe that what they believe is the only way for everyone else to believe is why we can’t get along! If you don’t want to get the vaccine that is your problem but when you put others at risk is everyone’s problem. It should be against the law if you transmit COVID-19 to someone and they die from it! If you are not vaccinated you do not have a right to go out and put anyone’s life at risk. You are probably alive today because of vaccines! Don’t you realize that! We all have to pay for the mistakes of stupid people and I have the right to live the way I want to so get over yourself and do the right thing! No one is coming to take your guns or force you to get the vaccine or even take your freedom. You are going to be the cause of the failure of the country not the people who are doing the right thing. This is a free country and not just for people who think they are the only ones who think they are better than anyone else. People who are in denial of what’s happening with the environment and the pandemic will be the ones that kill us all. If you don’t believe the virus, just keep doing what you are doing and sooner or later it will get you and if you don’t believe in climate change well then you are dumb  

Felecia Henderson – via email

It’s time for people to stand against tyranny

In your recent edition Jim Gaston wrote an article on “Thought Nuggets from a freedom lover.” What an excellent, well written article and I believe he speaks for millions of us across the country. Thank you for publishing such a quality, inspiring article. It is time people stand up to the tyranny before we lose all our freedoms.    

Faye Streiff – Franklin, N.C.

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