To The Daily Sun,
I recently overheard some negative remarks about downtown Laconia made in a casual conversation. This rankled me, but I did not really take the time to think why ... until now.
I realize our city has many challenges, but nothing different from what many cities face today. Those of us who love Laconia watch with pleasure every positive step and change for the better downtown or in Lakeport and all through our city.
As a community Laconia still has a very strong beating heart. We have many positive initiatives that help our community in all sorts of ways. We have volunteer efforts (and I could name many, but fear I will leave something out) that bridge many of the gaps of poverty and need that hurt children or suffering families in our town. We have agencies and public servants that put their shoulder to the wheel daily and do their job to their utmost to make a difference. We have individuals who give and have given their time, money and energy to untold efforts to better our community.
We have downtown merchants and local businesses that time and time again support every drive and cause that comes along.
Let's resolve that this holiday season will be a time of "good will" to our city. If we saw someone fall to their knees, we wouldn't jump in and kick them in the shins. We all know what to do. Lend a hand to pull them to their feet. How? Go downtown or to any local merchant and spend a bit. Go out to eat, or meet for coffee, shop, get a service or just smile. Lend a hand in one of the many civic efforts that go all out to turn the tide for the less fortunate during the holiday season. If this is not possible, thank someone who does. Cheer them on. Be a booster of Laconia this holiday season, and all of 2015.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 November 2014 12:36
To The Daily Sun,
It's really really November out there, isn't it? Wind, rain, mixed precipitation and all. Well, we made it through another midterm election in which somewhere around 18 percent of Americans elect the winners. But, hey, we can think of our nearly stillborn midterms as part of our ingenious system of checks and balances that also gave us the veto and the executive order.
Don Ewing and Russ Wiles have joined the screaming rabble of those that think the GOP has a mandate after a 35 percent turnout. That is funny. I think that the 18 percent of Americans who elected senators and representatives to a Congress with a 12 percent approval rate are going to be very very disappointed. And everyone's dog knows that the House seats are expertly gerrymandered for the GOP.
So, conservatives, don't expect much different from the past few years of getting nothing done. Obama will use his pen just as the Constitution outlines. Vetoes and executive orders are required when a Congress won't do its job. Remember, this same GOP bunch said Obama did not have a mandate after the 2012 elections so this is going to be a lot of fun watching the hissy fits and temper tantrums of the sandbox party running up to the 2016 election.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 November 2014 12:31
To The Daily Sun,
To the people of Campton:
I want to say thank you for your vote and the trust you have placed in me. I have delayed in writing because the election was very close and it went to a recount. I want to take this time to thank Jim Aguiar for the many years he put into serving our community. Even though he and I disagree on many key issues, I have faith that Jim served with honorable intentions and true community service.
As I mentioned to many of you while I was knocking on doors this summer, my intention is to do everything I can to restore power and authority back to where it belongs, in the hands of the people. I believe you know what is best for you and your family and how to best spend your money. In achieving that end, I plan to do all I can to reduce taxes on families and businesses. I would also like to do all I can to reduce the amount of regulations and mandates placed on individuals and businesses in New Hampshire. Not only are high business taxes and energy costs keeping new businesses from New Hampshire, but the regulations and ever-changing tax laws keep them out as well. I look forward to doing my part in encouraging more opportunity not only for our entrepreneur but for working people in Campton as well as the entire state. We have such great opportunities in New Hampshire, let's not waste them.
For those of you, who voted for me, thank you. I am humbled by your trust. For those who didn't vote or didn't vote for me, I will work very hard to earn your support. Thank you and God bless.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 November 2014 12:27
To The Daily Sun,
As we begin another season of cold and snow, here's a sad tale that is all too true. The One Percenters in this country are bringing the United States to a very dangerous demographic situation that is like that of third world countries.
The National Center for Family and Homelessness released a report in September which highlights the following:
1. 1 in 30 children living in the U.S. is homeless.
2. 2.5 million people — or 37 percent of the entire population — of the U.S. are currently homeless.
3. There has been an increase in homelessness is 31 states and the District of Columbia from 2012 to 2013.
4. There are homeless children in every city, county and state in the U.S.
The authors of the report found that 10 percent to 26 percent of homeless pre-school children had mental health issues requiring clinical evaluation. These figures are based on the most recent U.S. Department of Education 2013 data released in September, 2014.
A homeless child is defined as follows:
1. Lacking a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence.
2. Living in a residence that is a public or private place not designed for human beings.
3. Living in a shelter providing temporary housing.
4. Sharing housing with other families.
There are additional criteria used as measurement.
The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act was signed into law in 1987 and reauthorized in 2009 as the Homeless Emergency Act (HEARTH). All 50 states and the District of Columbia take part in the annual count. The numbers reported by the McKinney-Vento school liaisons are likely an undercount of homeless children attending public schools. For more than 25 years the National Center on Family Homelessness has conducted research to document the reality of these children's experiences with the hope that the information can mobilize the political will to improve the lives of these children.
Homeless children have no voice and no constituent power. With low levels of education, many of the mothers are unable to find jobs that paid livable wages. Children experiencing homelessness are among the most invisible and neglected individuals in our nation.
Some requirements needed to reduce these numbers are:
1. Safe affordable housing.
2. Education and employment opportunities.
3. Comprehensive needs assessments of all family members.
4. Services that incorporate trauma-informed care.
5. Identification, prevention and treatment of major depression in mothers.
6. Parenting support for mothers.
7. Research to identify evidence-based programs and services that can help.
Each state is assigned a rank with 1 being best, 50 being worst. Some of the ranking are as follows: Minnesota-1, Nebraska-2-, Massachuesetts-3, Iowa-4, New Jersey-5, Vermont-6, *New Hampshire-7, to Neveda-44, Arizona-45, New Mexico-46, Arkansas-47, California-48, Mississippi-49 and Alabama-50.
*We shouldn't be mislead by New Hampshire's standing. We all know that there are many millionaires and billionaires who live in New Hampshire. Instead of talking about the hidden poor, we might call the super rich among us the hidden wealthy, living in gated communities or compounds. Some, if not most of these family residences are second, third or fourth homes (such as that of the former governor of Massachusetts).
Now for the important questions. Are you going to pressure your elected state and federal representatives to implement programs to change these grim statistics? Or are you just going to be happy that you are not one of the homeless among us? As the old saying goes: There but for the grace of God go I', right? Are we going to be our brother's keeper? Or are we going to stand by and keep letting the One Percenters hoard more of the financial pie? What does your conscience tell you?
Last Updated on Friday, 21 November 2014 12:22
To The Daily Sun,
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the voters in Grafton County District 9 for coming out and voting on Nov. 4. I am honored to have been chosen to be your Representative in Concord and hope to justify your trust in me by supporting policies that improve the atmosphere for small business and jobs in our state.
Especially important to me will be fighting against unnecessary tax increases and unsustainable spending at the state level.
To the voters of Alexandria, Ashland, Bridgewater, Bristol, and Grafton, I thank you one and all.
State Representative-Elect, Grafton District 9
Last Updated on Friday, 21 November 2014 12:18