Tuesday letters: Spending gov’t money, Freedom Celebration, mask mandate, and disenfranchised voting
What to do with money I didn’t earn?
Just got my Economic Impact Payment debit card and I’m feeling a little naughty about it. You see, despite some long periods of unemployment, I’ve never been on the public dole before. I thought shoplifting to feed myself was a nobler venture than applying for indigent benefits. It’s ironic my first government handout is coming from an administration that despises welfare loafers.
Maybe what really bothers me is, like many of our nation’s wealthy, I’ve neither earned, deserve, nor, most importantly, need the money. I have a modest lifestyle and I’m living quite comfortably on my pension and social security.
I think I’ll retain my dignity by spending the $1,200 on small, locally owned businesses only. Kroger, Walmart, Target, Lowe’s, and the franchise restaurants will get none of it. I found it terribly unjust they were allowed to keep their doors open while the small fries were shuttered.
Fred Malo Jr.
Freedom Celebration park activities canceled, fireworks display a maybe
For the first time in 44 years the Freedom Celebration festivities at Apple Tree Community in New Castle will be canceled. This is with the exception of the commercial fireworks display if the conditions allow and Fire Department approves. Some will see this as a capitulation to an overcontrolling government while others will view this as a proper response to the precaution for the current concern over the spread of COVID-19. The truth lies somewhere in the middle.
Yes, there is a COVID-19 illness that is passing through our community and yes it can make you very sick and for some it will be deadly. Educate yourself and take the precautions that you feel are necessary to protect yourself and those around you. You must also consider carefully what you are told by government agencies regardless of wisdom or truth because of government reprisal and litigious liabilities (they have a really big stick). For our company this becomes an assessment of risk, liability and reward and you now know where we landed.
As a business we looked at the upcoming Freedom Celebration and the current uncertainty about what will be allowed and what is the true health risk and we are left with but one certainty — that the financial risk is too substantial to proceed. This is microcosm of what is taking place in our country as the entire county is being told what to do and what not to do in what seems to be an unpredictably random fashion.
Stay paid up and prayed up.
Defiance of mask mandate out of proportion to annoyance of wearing one
That the mask-wearing mandate has caused such rage can only be a symptom of the stress we all have been under. Surely, wearing a face covering is the least we can do to demonstrate our concern for each other when so much is unknown about this virus. Demands for proof of efficacy, or even of perfect safety for the wearer are by definition impossible to meet. Wearing a mask is not about iron-clad protection, but about basic manners, rooted in consideration for others.
To whatever degree a simple cloth barrier reduces the amount, distance or velocity of droplets of infectious material, isn’t it still well worth making this small sacrifice, to reassure our neighbors that we care about their wellbeing?
Every time I get out of my car and have to go back for my forgotten mask, I’m reminded that these are still dangerous times. The fact that I so often do forget tells me I need this reminder in order to show the consideration for others I surely intend and others will show for me.
The defiance and hostility expressed by people protesting the mask mandate, such a slight imposition with such potentially important consequences, seems far out of proportion to the minor annoyance of wearing one. Is it a symptom of the frustration, anger and fear we are all experiencing right now? Let’s not take it out on each other. Let’s wear our masks out of simple good manners and give our attention and energy to the critical responses we need to make to the current crises.
Disfranchisement of anyone’s vote is just not OK
I was stunned when I read the newspaper headline a week ago that six Glenwood City Council members asked for the resignation of the seventh member – Tony Hershey. Tony is an at large elected council member. Gratefully he has refused to resign.
I read the letter submitted to the paper for the community to read. I am unsure how many were able to read it because the Glenwood Post is very difficult to access now.
I voted for Tony, but this is not about my affiliation or lack thereof. For the council members to ask/demand for his resignation not only invalidates his voice, it invalidates my vote and the vote of everyone who had the opportunity to vote both for and against him. My vote has great value to me and as the voting process is threatened in our country, I regard this as a critical matter.
Is this what Glenwood is now? Six people decide in their infinite wisdom that a voice that does not agree with them in lockstep should no longer be heard. Tony may not make his comments in the most politically correct way, but he speaks for and asks questions that many of the community are asking, including me. When I read the newspaper article my first conclusion after being stunned was that Tony was responding in the same way that someone not being heard would respond — with frustration and anger at being unfairly marginalized and bullied.
It is my belief that our representational democracy is dying with each alternative voice that is silenced. I see this happening federally and in various states. Now locally in Glenwood.
I see the problem being little or no communication between the City Council and citizens that have been vocal about this in the past. I will write a whole additional letter about that. There have been no proactive steps to identify or begin to resolve that problem. Silencing Tony is not part of the solution and six on the council send the message that your solutions are the only solutions and your identification of community problems are the only issues the community wants as part of the conversations. I suggest that there are more voices out there that are unheard.
I stand with Tony Hershey because he is a elected voice for the citizens of Glenwood Springs and his voice is my voice. Disfranchisement of anyone’s vote is just not OK.
Figure out how to all get together professionally, listen to each other and even more importantly, figure out how to bring many, many concerned and interested citizens into the conversations as well.
Broaden and take advantage of the community that wants to partner with local government.
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