Letters to the editor — Monday (11-23-2015)

Published 12:30 am Monday, November 23, 2015

Hudson’s bill scores one for xenophobes

Cowardice is a trait wherein fear and excess self-concern override doing or saying what is right, good and of help to others or oneself in a time of need — it is the opposite of courage. As a label, “cowardice” indicates a failure of character in the face of a challenge. Representative Hudson’s bill scores one for the xenophobes.

Fear and distress are powerful political tools, used to drive public policy, and Muslims are the Republicans’ bogymen. Not ISIS. Muslims. All of them. The bombing of the World Trade Center and the rush by the Bush/Cheney administration to go to war in Iraq is a shining example of a bad decision made under duress. Hudson’s bill falls under this category. It preys on the fear and distress of the moment.

Our first responsibility is to protect our country. That is fundamental. No two ways about it. But we do not make ourselves safer by ignoring our common humanity and turning away from our moral obligation to help others in need. Yes, our fences should be high. But our gates should be wide.

For longer than I have lived, the United States has resettled tens of thousands of refugees from all over the world, including Syrians. Growing up, Thanksgiving at the parsonage was always an event to host a new refugee family or person fleeing conflict from some part of the world. For the refugee, it is a long, grueling vetting process that takes up to two years. TWO YEARS! What more can this bill do to ensure our safety? Nothing. This is simply political theater ala exploitation of fear, being played out at the expense of Muslim women and children. It is beneath us as Americans. It lacks courage and leadership. It is cowardice.

— Michael Young


Paying it forward

Recently, my best friend Patsy and I decided to check out some of the new stores in our great hometown of Salisbury. Both of us, being in our early 70s with knee and back problems, usually keep our shopping trips somewhat short. We did, however, work up an appetite and decided to go across town to McDonald’s on East Innes Street for a light lunch.

As it was my turn to pay, I ordered for both of us. The cashier quoted me the cost of our meal which included 57 cents in change. I told my friend that if she had the change, I would cover the rest. Before we could retrieve and present our money, the cashier told us, “I don’t need the change.” I didn’t understand and asked, “Why not?” She said, “It’s all taken care of.” Looking up from my purse and to my left, I became aware of two smiling young ladies. These sweet strangers had paid for our lunch. What a blessing! We thanked and hugged them both.

As an afterthought, we recalled Hebrews 13:2, which reads — “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” This random act of kindness certainly restores our hope and faith in the younger generation of today. Both of us pray God’s richest blessings for these young ladies!

 — Margaret T. Shumate



Thanks for your help

I would like to say there are still good people in this world. Three weeks ago I fell at Walmart face down and hit my head so hard it was bleeding. I could not move my right arm to get myself up. A lady knelt down beside me and took a cloth to my bleeding head and stayed with me until the emergency service arrived.

I could not see the lady, so I would like to thank her for helping me.  I do not know your name, but God does, and I am so thankful for people like you. I also would like to thank the employees at Walmart for taking care of me and finding my husband, who was in another department. It turned out I cracked my right shoulder in two places, broke my right arm and took five stitches in my forehead. Thanks again, Walmart, for all your help.

— Pat Floyd


Youth and crime

My main concern for the city of Salisbury is the crime rate. Crime in Salisbury has spiked at a rate so alarming that Salisbury Police recently opened a substation in the West End Community while citizens are organizing community meetings to brainstorm ideas to curb this recent trend. With nowhere to go or nothing to do, youth seem to be the heart of the recent crime. Juvenile crime affects parents, neighbors, teachers and families. It affects the victim of the crime, the perpetrators and the bystanders.

As a citizen I believe we need to be able to offer affordable, accessible and realistic programs for youth during the summer and after school. The programs consist of educational opportunities to help them succeed in school or to help them become obedient youth. Our youth have been mislead from respect and discipline. These programs will need to help the kids causing crime to learn respect and gain knowledge about their community and its people and receive discipline. In order for the kids to learn their lesson, discipline must play a part in this program. Youth need moral support, so the parents, or the people youths look to, need to be their support system and help them to get to a better place where they can make the right decisions.

I feel that if the youth will take part in trying to help themselves, and can see the positive outcome they will have on themselves and others, then they will take part in these programs and turn away from crime life and become better people. It is time we give every youth the chance to make the right choice.

— Adam Miller

China Grove

Traffic light a problem

I think the traffic light time should be changed at Innes Street and Fulton Street because only about five cars can go at a time. Everyone needs to have a fair amount of time or they might break the traffic laws.

— Miles Lester