Letters to the editor: Government waste, primaries, masks, nullification, social justice

·4 min read

Cut waste first

I’m an escapee from the Republican Party. Newly minted Democrat in registration only. So with all due respect to President Biden’s much-needed infrastructure full-court press, I have a suggestion as to how to fund it. Why is it with you Democrats that you first, last and always raise taxes, for heaven’s sake? Cut government W-A-S-T-E first. Billions upon trillions of dollars await your spending pleasure. Infrastructure repair and updating is absolutely 100% necessary. I support it. And if all else fails, and you can’t squeeze enough money out of newly found cuts to bureaucratic waste, just file a fraudulent income tax refund request with the IRS. They give away billions of tax dollars every year. They have lots of money. I’m sure they’d be willing to contribute to your goal. Oh, and then do, please, close those pesky income tax loopholes that are just plain stupid. Thank you.

Jean Lynn, Nampa

Closed primaries

As a rebuttal to the April 5 letter from Mr. Bolton of Meridian:

Dems and Rs are not BYU and BSU, as suggested by Mr. Bolton. The goal is a better playing field for both teams. Open the primaries and you’ll get the best coaches and the energy of more fans. As Americans, we’re all on the same team. Open our primary elections and cheer for Team America!

Hollie Conde, Boise

Wear a mask, legislators

The Idaho legislators who refuse to wear masks or social distance owe the taxpayers over $300,000 for their paid vacation. Seeing them regroup in the House and Senate without face coverings after having a “pandumbic” is really unfair to those of us who have to pay taxes! It’s a good thing if they have to end this year’s session without further legislation so they can do less harm!

Sheila Robbins, Boise

Federal nullification

It is very disappointing that a panel in Idaho’s House approved legislation intending to give state lawmakers nullification power over federal government actions and court rulings. I am not a fan of many of the things the federal government has done under the current administration (or any past administration for that matter). But there are things that are more important than partisan politics, with the strength of the Union being first and foremost among them. I thought President Andrew Jackson, generally a supporter of state’s rights, settled this issue in 1832 when he called nullification “incompatible with the existence of the Union, contradicted expressly by the letter of the Constitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent with every principle on which It was founded, and destructive of the great object for which it was formed.” Freedom is never free, and the cost of having our sovereign state is deferring to the federal government’s power in those areas where the U.S. Constitution makes them supreme. Our legislators are in a position to do tremendous good for our state, and I hope they will stop wasting time on this and spend more energy doing the things within their power to help Idahoans.

James Petzke, Meridian

Social justice attacks

How do the latest attacks on so-called “social justice” programs in Idaho colleges and universities help Idahoans? Despite widespread COVID-19 closures this past year, Idaho higher education stayed open and held in-person classes, remote live classes on zoom, and online courses to serve all Idahoans by ensuring their access to college education.

In fact, most Idahoans value our higher education institutions. Drive to any part of this great state, and you will see college and university banners waving proudly on people’s front doors and propped in storefronts of local businesses. How peculiar to think that the concepts of social justice, an integral part of higher education for generations, is now viewed as the root of Idaho’s problems. I doubt Idahoans buy it.

Let’s look at some real issues, like our state’s rock-bottom minimum wage that has been stuck for over a decade at $7.25/hour. Do you think this affects Idaho’s families? What does this pitiful, state minimum wage say about how much these same legislators value Idaho working families? If I didn’t know any better, I might think these new anti-social justice crusaders don’t value the people and public institutions that generate actual economic prosperity for our state.

Leontina Hormel, Moscow