To The Daily Sun,
During the period of open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act, I encourage everyone still without insurance to sign up. Those in New Hampshire who are already enrolled should check whether they can get a better plan this year. Five insurance companies now offer 40 plans that include at least two New Hampshire hospitals in each network.
Folks complain mightily about Obamacare, and, clearly, there are things that need to be fixed. But we don't need to "throw out the baby with the bathwater." There are many positives about this law. Just talk to people who now have protection.
Ask someone who had been without insurance because of a pre-existing condition, or someone whose plan didn't include conditions that must now be covered. When insurance companies chose to cancel their sub-standard plans, folks could find other plans, with better coverage or a lower deductible. Talk to one of the 10 million now covered who can afford insurance for the first time, or kids under the age of 26 who can stay on their parents plan.
Do you know anyone with cancer or other major illness that had hit the lifetime limit? They, who previously faced bankruptcy, can now be insured. Many feared losing access to health care if they switched jobs or got fired — that fear is gone.
So Obamacare helps not just the newly insured, as monumental as that is. It affects millions, and soon to be millions more. Please enroll now at www.healthcare.gov.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 11:24
To The Daily Sun,
In recent letters to The Sun, at least three people challenged me to attend a Tea Party meeting. I am flattered that these people want me to attend. I thank you all for the invitation and I intend to take you up on it.
One such writer, my friend Steve Earle, actually bet me "a coffee and a doughnut" that I would not attend such a meeting. He will lose this bet. I told him the other day that I would attend and in the near future I will be attending one with him. I am holding him to the coffee and doughnut, though.
Actually, I do not mind attending any event I have time for, even those whose organizers I disagree with. In fact, I have been present at a couple of Tea Party events. But, alas, at none of the meetings in the Lakes Region mentioned by one writer to The Sun. I have attended conservative Christian church services (including those that did not have a coffee and doughnut hour after services) and have gone to creation science lectures. I have even attended meetings of the conservative John Birch Society, including one in Laconia.
So, to any of the others who invited me to Tea Party meetings, remember I am in the phone directory. Feel free to invite me any time. Will you also extend Mr. Earle's offer of coffee and doughnuts?
E. Scott Cracraft
Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 11:22
To The Daily Sun,
Democratic and Republican parties grossly misuse the words liberal and conservative. First, liberal comes from the Latin word, libre "to be free." A liberal is a free thinker. Neither party fits this description in that they do not embrace liberalism. Both parties are narrow-minded, rigidly maintaining their respective platforms. Conservative has its base from the word, conserve. This means conserve our rights, Constitution, country, way of life, as well as the greater public good. A true conservative should focus on the preservation of our overall health, safety and welfare.
The U.S. Constitution protects our right to the pursuit of life, liberty, happiness, and the right to property. The Bill of Rights, the first 10 amendments to the Constitution extends this protection in multiple situations, all of which are appropriate today. Therefore, neither Republicans nor Democrats are either liberal or conservative.
One can be a free thinker if he/she takes all the perspectives and evidence, of a given issue and weighs these fairly and objectively. None of the parties in this country does this. For the most part, it is felt most parties are bigots, in that they do not recognize and understand, the dimensions and scope of this country's demographics. They also fail to realize the positive attributes of other parties. One is a conservative when they conserve the principles of our Constitution, our way of life, promoting the health, safety, welfare, and the rights accorded by this document.
Recent Ferguson events appear to be racial. However, reviewing these events indicate something far deeper and dangerous confronting our country today. Democrats need to recognize that some nearly 60 percent of this country is supporting the other 40 percent. This cannot continue. We simply are taxed out to support more people right now. Yet, the Republicans want to take away our rights to safety, health, and welfare, destroying an institution that was commenced by the American Revolution. Ferguson demonstrates this significant weakness developing in our country today. The "Hug" picture shows there is hope for our country, for all Americans, be they born here, immigrants (legal and illegal), or adopted.
Large companies need to realize the heart and soul of our economy are our people. If we do not work, we cannot buy their products. With monies in our hands, the economy will grow. This would improve the quality of life for everyone. Outsourcing jobs does not make our economy grow, people here in this country do. With job growth in towns like Ferguson, events that occurred can be either reduced or prevented. This concept applies to every geographical area, business, and industry in this country. An increase in minimum wage is essential to improving the lot of the employment picture.
Consider something else. The United States is the only country in the entire world that has significant populations trying to enter for freedom, hope, and life. There is something right about our country.
All parties must realize two things. First, each of us is a heartbeat from death. Death is the equalizer of all human life, and life on this planet. We are created, born, live, and die. Secondly, no matter what the color of skin, creed or religion, sexual orientation, rich or poor our blood is red. The movie, "To Sir with Love" points this out. The black teacher in England sustained a cut and bled. A student said, "His blood is red." Another student said, "Did you expect it to be, purple?" We must understand we are all human beings on this planet.
A sobering note must be considered. Should an asteroid, meteor, or even the Moon demolish our planet, there is no discrimination. Everyone will be impacted. Climate change impacts Everyone. Free thinkers know this, and must seek and develop ways to improve and conserve our existence.
Ferguson is an eye-opener in this age of electronics and high tech age. These protests are genuine. Peaceful protests are legal and must be protected at all costs. It is of mutual benefit to all U.S. citizens and our guests. Violent protest is unacceptable. However, this demonstrates frustrations of peoples held back and denied their rights. Please consider the French Revolution, the American Revolution, the Civil War, the World Wars (I and II), and the wars of all mankind. The NFL football players in St. Louis had the right to protest. They supported a fragile and desperate community. Demonstrations across the US focused on all rights, not just a single group. The high tech age has exposed more government intervention and invasion of our privacy than ever before. These are further threatened by the divisiveness in this country. We must learn from Ferguson to recover and strengthen our country.
Liberal, free-thinking people must focus on what is needed to conserve our Constitution. Democrats, Libertarians, Tea Party People, Republicans, etc. need to come together to preserving our union. (Please remember, this is what Abraham Lincoln was trying to do with the Civil War.) But we also need to know, the "Price of freedom is not free." There is sacrifice, but there is hope. Ferguson offers an opportunity of hope for all of us. All of us must come together to promote all our welfare, health, and safety, as well as quality of life. This long division must not continue. Ferguson points this out. When our country becomes unified, we can grow strong again.
High tech has created the potential for our country to fall. Our electrical power grids are at risk that will devastate our economy. Our lives, quality of life are at risk. The rights to privacy, protection under our Constitution are at risk. Computer hacking is just as serious to the welfare of our country as the events of Ferguson. Ferguson is opening our eyes to all of these issues that trouble our country. Racial unity, religious unity is a benefit for all peoples and creeds. High tech needs to be constrained within the dimensions of our Constitution, without sacrificing all our rights.
The U.S. Constitution is the greatest document created in the history of mankind. Religious books are great documents. The Constitution protects the rights of religions. The Constitution is designed to protect all of us regardless of race, creed, age, or sexual orientation. We are all human beings.
The expression, "In unity we are strong, divided we crumble" applies to our country's existence today. We had "Boston Strong" in the past. Now we must make our country, "USA Strong"! USA Strong can provide the hope by learning from the events of Ferguson. Please, let us all open our eyes to those who are USA Strong today. We cannot do this separately, individually or divided. We must do this all together, (united we stand).
John F. Kennedy said these words. "Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what YOU can do for YOUR country." Let's see what we can do for our country, to make it strong again. Let's see how we can learn about our differences, ourselves, our neighbors, our peoples who make this country. Most important, we must merge these differences, then work together to make our country USA Strong.
Robert T. Joseph, Jr.
RN, ASN, BA, EMT-I
Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 11:17
To The Daily Sun,
Thank you for your paper's recent and ongoing coverage of the generous businesses and organizations who support the Land Trust's mission so that they can continue to provide quality, affordable workforce housing for Lakes Region residents. I noticed in your paper recently that Belknap Landscaping as well as Eptam Plastics were the most recent to join the list of other businesses who have done the same. Thank you to them and others who deserve the credit and recognition for their generous support through the purchasing of tax credits from the Laconia Area Community Land Trust.
The Land Trust has been helping people in this area for more than 20 years and support like the tax credit purchases help make it possible. In addition, local citizen Eliza Leadbeater has volunteered her time and energy to get the word out to area businesses about how purchasing tax credits from LACLT helps their business while at the same time they're helping others. Thank you Eliza.
I encourage those of you contacted by Eliza or others at the Land Trust to hear and learn more about how you can help. Business of any size can participate and you can learn more by calling Laconia Area Community Land Trust at 524-0747 or www.laclt.org.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 December 2014 11:46
To The Daily Sun,
Sorry Mr. Brooks, but I found it ludicrous, and almost humorous, that you would describe our Founding Fathers as "conservatives" and King George III as a "liberal progressive." Individuals who were extremely liberal and progressive founded our nation. So liberal in fact that they fostered and won a revolution. The Founding Fathers and patriots that won this country's freedoms are often referred to as "Classic Liberals."
If you're not a liberal-progressive, fine, but the ideology of the Founding Fathers is pretty well settled as a matter of history. If you're going to argue that Jefferson, Madison, Franklin and Washington weren't liberal-progressives, you might as well claim that Himmler and Goebbels weren't fascists. If our Founding Fathers had been conservatives as you purport, our country would be more likely, a member of the United Kingdom. They rejected monarchy and aristocracy in a revolutionary move.
"As mankind becomes more liberal, they will be most apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality." — George Washington
I don't think that anyone with a reasonable amount of intelligence would dispute that America wasn't founded by Christians. I would, however, argue that America was founded by Christians who learned from their experiences in England that you cannot force your particular belief system on everyone, as the king did. Hence the departure of the 150 souls for the New Word in 1620. Our forefathers were smart enough to know that a new system was required. In their wisdom, the framers in Philadelphia knew that the time had come to break from the precedents of history and bar any religious group from imposing itself on the nation using the engine of government. They put their own beliefs aside for the greater good, and penned the Constitution, granting freedom of religion for all.
Many of our Founding Fathers were raised on Christian teaching, the most interesting of which was the promotion of an openness to more liberal political ideas.
It would certainly take a whole lot more than "references to God or the Bible" to push the notion that somehow the United States is a Christian nation, when in Article II it clearly states that we are not.
Unfortunately for conservative Christians, the very notion of "the free exercise" of their religion means imposing their narrow conservative values on everyone else. So, regardless of whether the "Christian Nation" lie is perpetuated via false readings of, or refusals to read, the Constitution. There is no doubt that conservative right-wing Christians will continue to use the pressure of their load and arrogant voices to deny rights and promote their political agenda.
While many conservative Christians and politician are upset that the United States was founded as a secular nation, today's right-wing conservatives — against all credibility and in spite of the historical record — insist that our Founding Fathers had it all wrong, and that the United States was indeed founded as a Christian nation.
"(I have) always regarded the practical distinction between religion and civil government as essential to the purity of both and as guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States." — James Madison
Mr. Brooks, nobody in this forum has "denied the values upon which our nation was founded." These values have become the standard of social and moral conduct for almost half the population of the earth.
My contention is, that Christianity does not hold a copyright on these beliefs. While Christianity does make up approximately 75 percent of our church-going population, why must we disenfranchise other faiths by falsely claiming to be a "Christian nation?" We are a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of common values.
While Mr. Torressen never expressed how I twisted the past, I would encourage conservative contributors to this forum to heed his words: "To twist the past to fit an agenda is intellectually dishonest."
Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 December 2014 11:03