Now is the wrong time for Charlotte’s mayor and council members to get big raises

·4 min read

Impressions matter

Regarding “‘Political danger’ warning as Charlotte mayor, city council are in line to get big raises,” (May 6):

I am all for good salaries for hard-working officials who spend much time and effort on behalf of citizens.

But I think the large percentage increase when so many people are out of work, sick or otherwise in distress sends a terrible message to citizens. The message loud and clear is: “We don’t care what your problems are at the moment, we’re looking out for ourselves.”

I say this not to be nasty, but as a citizen with a background in media and public affairs. Impressions matter.

Diane St. John, Charlotte

Diane St. John
Diane St. John

CMS funding

The writer is a former CMS Board chair.

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Board of Education has no taxing authority and thus must “beg” for money from other sources.

The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners has the responsibility of providing the majority of that money through a long-standing budget process.

County commissioners are elected by the people to carry out their legal functions, and having oversight over another elected board is not one of those responsibilities.

Educating all children is the single most important and challenging task our community continues to face.

Please give those with that grave responsibility the respect and resources they need to meet that challenge.

“Coach” Joe White Jr., Charlotte

Race theory

As they do whenever American racism is honestly discussed, reactionaries cultivating panic around Critical Race Theory have defaulted to quoting the “content of their character” passage from Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech.

Tellingly, they aren’t tweeting words King spoke four years later: “Racial injustice is still the Negro’s burden and America’s shame. And we must face the hard fact that many Americans would like to have a nation which is a democracy for white Americans but simultaneously a dictatorship over black Americans.”

As anti-Critical Race Theory bills pass in state legislatures, you can bet that most everything King said or wrote when he wasn’t standing on the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 will be stamped “indoctrination” and scrubbed from public school history curriculum.

Nicholas Holt, Charlotte

Racism, sexism

Throughout my high schools days as I rode the bus to school, I saw Blacks who lived on nearby tenant farms get on buses to go to segregated schools, segregated by state law.

As a woman trying to enter UNC Chapel Hill in 1964, I was told: “We have a woman’s college for you. UNC-G.”

When I graduated from college four years later, I was told I could get a job as a teacher, secretary or nurse. I refused to go into those professions in 1968 on principle.

I did work, was married, and volunteered at the Isabella Wyche School in Charlotte, a segregated school by law.

Do the N.C. legislators trying to limit teaching about racism and sexism in the U.S., intend for me or any other woman in the state to forget reality and not teach what we experienced?

Katherine Nelson, Rock Hill

Progress on racism

Let’s stop debating whether America is a racist country. It is not.

But America is and always will be inhabited by some percentage of racist people.

Individuals all have some degree of racist tendencies, informed by their own life experiences.

The U.S. has a “two steps forward, one step back” history of trying to improve conditions for all marginalized people.

But to call us a racist country is to ignore the long arc of America and Americans seeking to be a more perfect union.

Robert Edmonds, Cornelius

Jobless benefits

Regarding “End extra benefits,” (May 9 Forum):

During the 2008 recession, I credited unemployment insurance with allowing me to avoid the knee-jerk minimum wage employment that this Forum writer recommends.

Not only did it save my 20 years of career experience from being wasted, but after returning to my chosen field three years later, the taxes I have since and continue to pay on my higher salary have made that extended benefit an excellent investment for the state and nation.

Bonnie Likens, Charlotte

Bonnie Likens
Bonnie Likens

Cheney, the GOP

The Republican tent just shrunk again with the ouster of Liz Cheney.

Now, if you tell the truth about the election or are critical of the man who mismanaged COVID, caused an insurrection that threatened our government, and lost both the presidency and the Senate, you’re no longer welcome.

The plan for the future of the party seems to rest on lies like Trump won the election, COVID is not so bad, guns don’t cause gun deaths, and racism isn’t a problem.

That is not what most reasonable people believe.

Vincent Keipper, Concord