Letters to the Editor

·4 min read

How did we become this divided?

I am truly baffled as to how this country has become so sharply divided in the past five years.

It seems that issues such as abortion, guns, and sexuality are among the causes. I believe that a woman has a right to control her own body, that due to the incredible amount of murders by guns- gun control, and while I am a straight white man and

I do not claim to understand some people's sexual preferences, I certainly respect them as long as they are not breaking the law. I have not walked in anyone else's shoes.

It seems that one side is out to destroy the "terrible Libs" also known as the Democratic party. I became a Democrat as a public educator, having been to the statehouse several times and seeing how we were viewed negatively by Republicans in their desire to privatize education for profit and how the Democrats largely hailed public education as a high priority in this state. I mention this to explain how I became a Democrat,- but due to the fact lately the Libs have been under such attack that I wondered what achievements have been achieved under Democratic administrations. I found this interesting and some of those are listed below:

  • Social security

  • minimum wage

  • unemployment compensation

  • United Nations

  • FHA

  • NATO

  • Peace Corps

  • Civil Rights Act

  • family Medical Leave

  • EIC

  • amongst others -(if you Google it the economy historically has fared better under Democratic administrations)

Also a determined president (a president to this day that I hold in great admiration) who believed no one should die bankrupt because of medical bills. He introduced the Affordable Care Act, but due to resistance led by Mitch McConnell, did not succeed as desired. However, the Affordable Care Act is still here, never having had the opportunity to develop into the outstanding program it could have become.

Jeff Kraner

Carroll

Reproductive choice is being taken away

On May 2nd, a leaked draft of a Supreme Court decision, written by a man, Justice Samuel Alito, intends to overturn Roe v. Wade, taking away a woman’s constitutional right to reproductive choice.

Heather Cox Richardson in her Letters from an American outlines what led to the recent leak.

Richardson wrote, "In 1985, President Ronald Reagan’s team made a conscious effort to bring evangelicals and social conservatives into the voting base of the Republican Party. The Republicans’ tax cuts and deregulation had not created the prosperity party leaders had promised. To find new voters, they turned to religious groups that had previously shunned politics."

To keep that base riled up, the Republican Party swung behind efforts to take away women’s constitutional right to abortion, which the Supreme Court had recognized by a vote of 7–2 in its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision and then reaffirmed in 1992 in Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

As recently as last week, only about 28% of Americans wanted Roe v. Wade overturned, Republicans continued to promise their base that they would see that decision destroyed. Recognition that evangelical voters would turn out to win a Supreme Court seat might have been one of the reasons then–Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell refused to hold hearings for then-president Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Merrick Garland. Leaving that seat empty was a tangible prize to turn those voters out behind Donald Trump, whose personal history of divorces and sexual assault was not necessarily attractive to evangelicals, in 2016.

Politically, the Republicans could not actually do what they promised: not only is Roe v. Wade popular, but also it recognizes a constitutional right that Americans have assumed for almost 50 years. The Supreme Court has never taken away a constitutional right, and politicians rightly feared what would happen if they attacked that fundamental right.

Whether I believe in abortion or not, I cannot/should not, tell/force, a woman, what she can or cannot do with her own body.

Should a “predominately male” Supreme Court say a woman’s body is no longer hers, but now belongs to them?

Bob Muskensturm

Lancaster

Open up to 'Common Sense'

DHS, Department of Homeland Security to monitor so-called misinformation or disinformation?

“Immediate necessity makes many things convenient, which if continued would grow into oppressions. Expedience and right are different things.” These are not my words but those of Thomas Paine; writer, patriot, and revolutionary.

My recommendation is, crank up the audio books and listen — no dust off the book and read, “ Common Sense” and renew your understanding of what America is and the role it plays before all is lost.

Stephen Ball

Lancaster

This article originally appeared on Lancaster Eagle-Gazette: Letters to the Editor