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Letters to the editor – Monday (4-14-08)

Does this mean Kannapolis should annex Salisbury?
It is wrong to forcibly annex people against their will and offer no services or benefits that they do not already have.
Prior to 1959, those affected had the right to vote on annexation. In 1959 that right was taken away and has not been restored because of the influence of a powerful and well funded lobbying group.
Just because this law still exists does not make it right!
This annexation will produce no profit and will not pay for itself. It will burden all the residents of Rowan County and the city of Salisbury with increased taxes and reduced services.
In Mayor Susan Kluttz’s words, the reason for this annexation is that those “residents have enjoyed the proximity to Salisbury with no shared economic responsibilities for many years.”
Can’t this be said for all of the Rowan County residents, the nearby cities and surrounding counties? They also come to Salisbury and spend at the city’s restaurants and businesses. Those businesses have benefited, and so has the City of Salisbury. Do you plan to annex and tax those people too?
The city of Salisbury benefits from its proximity to Charlotte and Winston Salem. Do they have the right to tax Salisbury?
Salisbury will greatly benefit from its proximity to the new Research Campus. Using your logic, shouldn’t Kannapolis be allowed to annex Salisbury?
No excuses will make forced annexation right.
If you wish to annex people into your city limits, make them feel welcome. Speak directly to them ó don’t hide behind a hired gun and a law propelled by a group of lobbyists. Provide valid and valuable reasons to become a city resident.
If you truly want to do the right thing, don’t forcibly annex ó do the fair and democratic thing, let these people vote!
ó Barry Lester
Salisbury
City is already struggling
to meet needs of residents
As I listen to and read about what our mayor and city councilmen are proposing in annexing many county residents, and raising their taxes to double what they are currently paying, I am very saddened. Why?
My husband and I married and moved to the city of Salisbury in 2004 after searching for our first home together. We really didn’t want to be in the city, but it’s where we felt the Lord wanted us to move. Mayor Susan Kluttz brags about the great services that our city offers, but she doesn’t speak much on the rising crime rate, drug and gang problem or homeless population right here in the city of Salisbury. These are real issues and I can’t see how adding to the burden of an already struggling city can do anything but make the problems worse.
I often wonder, too, how our mayor and city councilmen can sleep at night knowing that annexation will inevitably cause some elderly person to have to decide, do I eat, buy my medication, or pay the added taxes that annexation will bring. It’s not whether it’s legal or not, it’s whether it’s right, and I believe most will agree with me in saying, it’s not right.
Let’s hope that our mayor and councilmen will do the right thing. Please listen to the people.
ó Ruth Whedbee
Salisbury
N.C. 150 residents aren’t falling for propaganda
When I read the recent pro annexation letter from Ray Wingerson of Salisbury I was led to wonder where an ordinary citizen of Salisbury got access to the League of Municipalities’ propaganda that he reproduced in his letter. Then I remembered that Charles Ray Wingerson Sr. is an alderman in Rockwell and was part of that town’s recent ill-fated annexation attempt.
I can’t pretend to be sorry that annexation fell through. The people outside Rockwell did not fall for this baloney and neither will the good folks of the N.C. 150 area.
I find it very interesting that almost every pro annexation letter can be traced back to some city official or employee. But I guess that should be no surprise since they seem to be the only people who believe this stuff!
Also, I would like to respond to Ralph Almond. When he stated “the people you allowed to win the vote are worthy to guide this well-planned program for annexation” he was totally wrong. The people we elected are fighting this annexation with the people that elected them.
ó Charlie Hendrix
Salisbury
Commentary was unfair to founders
Regarding Thomas Barnett’s April 8 commentary “When America wasn’t so democratic”:
I certainly agree with Mr. Barnett when he says we should be patient with developing countries. I also respect his range of knowledge of our history. However, I do resent vehemently a twisting of facts and use of loaded words to make our founding fathers into something dirty and sleazy.
Consider: The two party system is not a standard of democracy. It evolved later. The party system was never considered by our founding fathers nor was it written into the constitution. Don’t use “party” to measure democracy.
Consider: Benjamin Franklin, when asked, did not say they had given the country a democracy but a republic, a representative form of government. Our nation is a republic, not a pure democracy. For example, in early practice the elected state representatives appointed the two federal senators from each state.
Consider: No, we didn’t fight dirty! We fought as did every country before and outside that European aberration of suicide marching and as has every country since its discontinuance. What is dirty is slandering these honorable men.
Consider: When our country was founded, every landowner, large and small, was a voter because these were the only ones who paid federal taxes. To have a say in the government, you had to be part of that government.
These men, cheaply scorned and libeled by Mr. Barnett, were leaders in their colonies and elected to their positions. They gave their lives, their fortunes and risked an honor that they held sacred that we might breathe free.
Mr. Barnett does not deserve the privilege of teaching our young people as long as he fails to show respect for the men who designed and bought with their blood this free nation that he enjoys today. I’m proud to be a Christian American.
ó Bill Beard
Linwood
Handicapped fans face higher fees
Could someone please explain to me why it is so much more expensive to get a seat at a sporting event, a hotel room or anything else for that matter when you have disabilities or have mobility problems?
My husband and I are avid race fans and have been trying to get tickets to Lowe’s Motor Speedway races. The speedway is doing these advertised specials of four seats for “X” amount of dollars through various sponsors.
Well, if you call and check about these seats and request handicapped accessible, guess what? Our price is nearly double and sometimes triple.
This is ridiculous! I think that seats to such events should be less expensive for such individuals. If only these people knew how many dilemmas the average person has to go through to even get to an event like this and, once there, have to fight their way to a seat that is worth nowhere near its cost.
I have e-mailed Lowe’s Motor Speedway but have not received a response.
If someone could offer a solution, I would be more than happy to talk with them.
ó Vickie Shields
Concord
Landowners should decide how to use their property
This is in reply to those who wish to control property use in western Rowan and other parts of the county.
Many of us who are Rowan County landowners understand that each part of our county contributes to what Rowan County is and will become. However, for hundreds of years, those of us who own property, or whose families have owned the property, throughout the county have given the rest of the population a place to hunt, fish and otherwise enjoy our area at the expense of the landowner.
Now it behooves me to know that these landowners are not capable of deciding how to use their property (often, these properties have been family-owned for 100 years or longer). Now, we must be told by some outsider, a consultant, who has never endured the hardships of farm living, how and when to dispose of our holdings.
We do not tell those of you who own investments other than real estate how and when to sell your investments, nor to whom. We do not tell you what you must do with the profits of such sales. For those of you who own farmland and want to farm it yourselves or even lease it to real farmers, we do not tell you what to grow or how much rent you should charge.
Please, if you will stop telling us what we must do with what is ours, we won’t start telling you what to do with what is yours. Or else, we’ll gladly tell you what to do with yours!
ó William E. Myers
Woodleaf
Please be brave enough
to sign messages you send
I love to read and learn new things, so imagine my delight when last week I received a fax. It disappointed me the fax was anonymous, signed only by “Concerned Christians.” I would hope all Christians are concerned about grace, justice and mercy, and would sign their names, but no.
And this unsigned fax was chock full of slander and innuendo! It was, I gather, a political message that a certain candidate for president is dangerous, deceitful and downright un-Christian altogether. He might also be liberal (shudder!), which of course is the worst thing possible! Oh, no!
Well, it brought to mind a portion of Luther’s Small Catechism, which comments on the Eighth Commandment, which states, in the King James Version, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor” (Ex.20.16).
Luther says, “What is this? Answer: We are to love and fear God so that we do not tell lies about our neighbor, betray or slander them, or destroy their reputations. Instead we are to come to their defense, speak well of them, and interpret everything they do in the best possible light.”
Now I know Luther makes it difficult for any of us, especially during a political campaign! Nevertheless, I consider it the height of cowardice to send unsigned messages of fear and loathing, and it’s especially repulsive these people consider themselves “Christian” who do this cowardly deed.
We Christians should be fearless (the angels always say “Fear not!”), and if we are notable for anything, let it be grace, understanding and tolerance; abounding in faith, hope and love. And always sign your name!
ó Pastor Gregory Yeager
St Mark’s Evangelical Lutheran Church,
China Grove
Inconsistent messages
There was an obvious irony that Thursday’s Post (April 10) included a report that high school students were warned by guest speakers of the dangers of alcohol use and driving after drinking, while an article reporting on Rowan Museum’s “Speakeasy” included the quote “…the reality is, you can’t have a fun, nighttime party without alcohol.”
Young people see through inconsistent messages. The reality is that, according to the National Highway Traffic Administration, more than one-fourth of all traffic fatalities in North Carolina involve a driver impaired by alcohol. Not all of these drivers are teens. Adults should lead by example in showing that alcohol is not necessary for a good time ó and fewer innocent people will be maimed and killed on our highways as a result.
ó Tim Deal
Salisbury
Put predators in prison
How many children have to be hurt before child predators are put in prison where they belong?
I read in horror in the April 10 Post about John Richard Brigman, 62, of 503 Dodge Street being charged with having sex with a 9-year-old girl. This is not the first time this man has been charged with this crime. In the early 1990s, he was convicted of first degree sexual assault on a girl who was only 7 years old. He spent less than a year in jail for this crime and has not had to register as a sex offender because this took place before Megan’s Law was passed.
Brigman’s son (Richard L. Brigman) is now in prison for molesting at least five children. He will be in prison until the age of 90, thank God. The acts of sexual assault he committed against these children were unbelievable. Apparently, the sins of the father were passed on to the son. Please put predators in prison where they belong. We need to protect our innocent children!
ó Sandra Poole
Salisbury

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