To The Daily Sun,
The cartoon in your edition of The Daily Sun on Tuesday, May 13, depicting a gun owner standing over a body and claiming he felt threatened by someone questioning his right to carry is an excellent example of biased and misinformed propaganda on behalf of who ever concocted the cartoon, (notice I refrain from using the word 'artist').
Of all the people I have known, who are licensed to legally carry a concealed or non-concealed firearm, including myself, none would fit the absurd mentality depicted in that cartoon. In fact, gun owners I know would be better described by the opening monologue of the History Channel's TV documentary series, "Tales Of The Gun" which states, "The gun has played a critical role in history. An invention which has been praised and denounced... served hero and villain alike... and carries with it, moral responsibility."
The final statement of the monologue is the most revealing truth. As a law-abiding citizen who appreciates my legal right to carry a firearm, I understand, most likely far more than people who would produce a cartoon like the one that was in your newspaper, the moral responsibility behind my right to carry, and hope I never actually have to use my weapon against anything more than a paper target.
Michael G. Shanks
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 09:34
To The Daily Sun,
In the year 2012, the top 1 percent of the people in the U.S. increased their wealth an average of 32 percent. The remaining 99 percent lost 2 percent of their earning power. Half of the wealth went to the top 10 percent. The last time this kind of inequality existed was in 1901 when President Teddy Roosevelt worked to level the playing field.
Despite the fact that Republicans in Washington have no desire or inclination to correct income inequality, state government can be a catalyst in raising our standard of living and helping people and businesses succeed. By helping all of our citizens receive a livable minimum wage, reducing the income inequality between women and men, and rebuilding our infrastructure, we can close the gap between the ultra rich and the shrinking middle class.
I believe that a strong, vibrant middle class is essential and possible in all the towns of New Hampshire. It's time that we send people to Concord who will work on policy and legislation that rebuilds our infrastructure and expands our educational system for a brighter economic future.
Our representatives should work for all the people, not just a select few. What we have now are representatives who come up with the philosophical justification for selfishness and opposition to economic and social progress. It seems they are out to punish the unfortunate who are suffering in our economy by avoiding prudent and essential state spending.
Speaking before the Cleveland City Club in 1968, Senator Robert Kennedy said, "We must admit in ourselves that our children's future cannot be built on the misfortunes of others... those who live with us are our brothers. For we must recognize that this short life can neither be ennobled or enriched by hatred or revenge."
I agree with Bobby Kennedy's words, and firmly believe that we should be bound together by a common concern, not division and suspicion. I believe we can establish a common faith, a common goal that all those who live in our community share the chance to live out their lives in purpose and happiness.
If I sound like a citizen who is thinking about running for state office, you are correct.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 09:30
To The Daily Sun,
I just read an article yesterday about the IRS which said that $13 billion was given out in the EITC tax credit program.
The EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit) is a program that subsidizes low-income families. I read on the Tax Policy Center of the Brookings Institute website that the credit is fully refundable: any excess beyond a family's income tax liability is paid as a tax refund.
Since 2003 about one-quarter of the payments each year were improper. This is ridiculous.
Can you imagine working in the private sector and one-quarter of your monies in a part of your budget went out by error. Someone would have definitely been fired. And it would have stopped in no time.
To think that these errors are still happening at almost the same percentage since 2003 — that is 10 years, and nothing has happened.
No one has been fired. The Congress has done nothing to stop this program.
Well I should not have written nothing. The IRS has given out bonuses to boost employee morale. What about taxpayer morale? I think the IRS paid $70 million in bonuses in the year 2013 alone.
So let me get this straight. We are trillions of dollars in debt. A quarter of the money we pay back in a program is given to people who should not get it.... And the people doing this get bonuses. And what do our congressmen and senators do?
Well, Jeanne Shaheen wrote a bill to limit the amount of money paid for paintings of representatives.... Duh......
And they say Washington D.C. is broken..... No kidding.
You can guess who is getting contacted from me today.... What about you... what are you doing? We must contact our representatives and say "No more."
Stop wasting my hard-earned money.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 09:27
To The Daily Sun,
Today's letter, I will direct to the Mad Hatter of Radio in Laconia, Neil Young.
You keep calling me a "taker" because at 60-years-old I went on disability. At 62 I started receiving my Social Security benefits, which I worked from the age of 14 until retirement; mostly as a self-employed contractor. And over the years, I provided jobs for many other people. I paid my taxes through all those years and I am only getting back from what I paid into. I pay my mortgage and all my bills with my SS benefits. You may also receive these benefits, plus Medicare. You have a lot of gall to call me a "taker", when you have also received government benefits.
I know that you lost a parent in WWII and call yourself a "War Orphan". It's horrible to lose a parent. I know this from my own life. My father lost his mother when he was 2-years-old and was shuffled around to family members who didn't want to care for him. It doesn't matter to me how a child loses a parent. Be it war or in my fathers' case his mother dying in child birth. What does matter, it that there were not benefits for my father as a child to help survive, so he basically cared for himself at a very young age. Compared to what he went through, you had it made.
You spend too much time living in the past and complaining about everyone else getting free things. Most of the time, you don't know what your are talking about. Spend more time researching your subject matter before you speak. That means listening to something other than Mad Hatter Tea Party views. You need to open your mind to all aspects of the social media. Get your facts correct. Stop saying your show is an "open forum" when it is actually for ultra conservative nit wits and that kind. I don't like using these words, but if it's good for the goose, it's good for the gander.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 09:20
To The Daily Sun,
We regularly read in this paper right-wing opinions that trickle-down economics works, and that racism is no longer a problem in our country. How much more proof do you need to understand that these opinions are wrong.
I understand if you rely on a channel called Fox for what you consider current events, you are proud of your least-well-informed citizens label. So, I am not talking to you. You go on believing what ever it is you believe. Oh yeah, I wouldn't use the word "news" in association with that channel ever, I don't care what they say. Also, I love a good fairy tale as much as the next guy, but that old yarn about the gray haired old white guys being responsible for the civil rights movement is even more tired than a bear climbing onto a boat in the Antarctic.
Were there courageous Republicans back in the 1960s who helped bring civil rights to fruition? Certainly. Were there Democrats back then who embarrassed themselves and our country by fighting it? Oh yeah, they did.
Where's Paul Harvey when you need him, you know, for "the rest of the story." I know the rest of the story, so do most well-informed people, check it out for yourself, it's a part of our history, like it or not. I recently heard the peepers starting up their evening music, I was out looking for a courageous Republican.
Every day, along with even more severe weather, we hear of more records being broken by the 1-percenters, the wealthy are getting wealthier every day. And I say more power to them. I honestly have no problem with people making lots of money. But please, don't expect me to believe that they care about anyone but themselves. If the wealthy having even more wealth created jobs we would be begging folks to come here to live because we would have so many jobs. Remember that the right-wingers think women are paid less than men because they aren't good negotiators. As if all jobs women apply for have negotiable salaries. They also believe that you should have a "right to work" which certainly sounds reasonable if you don't look too hard at it. If the right is successful in doing away with unions, you can be sure that "right to work" will become "your job goes to the lowest bidder," now doesn't that sound like fun?
I have to wonder if the true patriots, you know, the Revolutionary War patriots, brought their wives and kids to hide behind when they fought the British? I'm willing to bet they didn't.
I get the gun culture, many of my family and friends are into guns; most of them are liberals; they are for the most part gun nuts. Not to be confused with nuts with guns. I don't get the shoot-first-and-lie-about-why-you-shot after, laws in this country. They call them "stand your ground" laws — what a joke. A very famous case involves a young man who "stood his ground" and he was murdered by a criminal with a gun. The right-wing criminal friendly laws are just beginning. In the case I just mentioned they tried to make the sociopathic criminal a star of some sort, really sort of scary when you think about it.
Back to what in reality aren't patriots, but are actually terrorists invading Nevada, in support of a man who is happy to tell you he doesn't believe in the United States of America. This freeloading right-wing millionaire is enjoying himself and flaunting his right-wing criminal activity, and he is being protected by a bunch of loonies with guns, ironically the bands of roving criminals that the right-wingers claim we have to arm ourselves to defend ourselves from, you can't make this stuff up.
Now to tackle the seemingly difficult task of explaining the difference between a knife and a gun. A knife might be made to cut things for many reasons and in many ways. Guns are made to kill people. A knife may be used to harvest fruits and vegetables, then to slice them prior to consumption. Guns are made to kill people. A knife might be used to butcher meats of all kinds and also be used again prior to consumption, to slice it into bite sized pieces. Guns are made to kill people. A knife may be made to carve wood, or to use to create many different works of art. Guns are made to kill people. Well I think you know where I am going with this. While I may feel that the world would be a better place without guns, not to worry. My powers of ridding the world of firearms has been greatly over-exaggerated. The funny thing is, is that I am not even anti gun. Everyone in my family and all the friends who are gun owners keep them secure in a safe. That's what they tell me anyway. I've seen the safes so I know they have them. I certainly would not support the confiscation of guns by anyone, but at the same time I believe common sense mental health background checks are a useful tool to help slow the killings. We will never be able to stop the killing, yes. Knives can be used to kill, but it takes a whole different mind set to stab someone, than it does to shoot them from, say, ten to twenty feet away.
A few words about Benghazi.
I understand that it was a tragedy. But please, you must realize that the result of this wild goose chase will be that Ambassador Chris Stevens made the fateful decision to go there on his own. Now think about that for a moment. I don't know what decisions were being made or why, about the security issue at embassies and other diplomatic compounds around the world. I do know that Paul Ryan gave an interview, I believe it was after the incident in Benghazi, where he stated that he had voted against more security for our embassies because we were paying too much already. Now I don't agree with Mr. Ryan about much, I would have to guess that he is, and was, right about that. But what to do? That is what we should be clearly focused on.
To the woman who wrote about this incident, blaming it on President Obama making us less safe around the world. Do yourself a favor and do a smidgen of research prior to writing a letter to anyone, it will keep you from embarrassing yourself again.
It's too bad the right-wingers like to take a tiny bit of a whole story, and attempt to make it a scandal. It's too bad because now they've brought it to a high school, yes I'm talking about the kerfuffle over the novel "Nineteen Minutes."
My first thought was back to when I was in high school, I read an assigned book by the author Paul Zindel. I think this particular book was called "I Never Loved Your Mind." The book I'm talking about was about a couple of young school kids, who along with the help of others, arrange an illegal abortion. The story was a tragedy from the beginning, but I don't remember much about it now. What I do remember was a kid I went to school with from kindergarten telling me that I was going to burn in hell for reading that book. He got very upset when I laughed at him, I'm sorry, it was funny the way he said it. I can tell you with a great deal of certainty that that book made me realize how important not getting a girl pregnant was to a high school kid. Now that's just me, I can't speak for any of my classmates, but I'm willing to bet they got the message too.
There are a couple of lessons from this that the kids will learn, the one apparently topical one from the book, and the other from those protesting it. Maybe that's not so bad after all. I look forward to reading "Nineteen Minutes."
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 09:16