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Opinion Letters

I think it’s wrong for the state to close all the sweepstakes game rooms. They create jobs for people out of work and provide rent to property owners. If they consider them gambling machines, then what is “Bingo” or “scratch-offs” or lottery tickets? They all require you to pay money for a chance to win money. So, if sweepstakes machines are illegal, then why aren’t the rest of them? It seems like “the casinos” are paying someone to keep the sweepstakes out.

Ronnie Holland — Franklin, N.C.

Ed Morris criticizes the Republican legislature and Gov. Pat McCrory for their decision not to expand Medicaid in our state to accommodate Obamacare. Morris tells us that the Federal government will pay for 100 percent of the increase for three years and 90 percent afterwards (with our taxpayer money, of course). To understand the Republican viewpoint, Dr. Morris may benefit from some local political history.

Kent Coward from Jackson County was a respected GOP activist. To explain how a government program works, he liked to use an anecdote on how to get wild hogs into a cage. According to Kent, you start by scattering corn near the cage. Keep the corn coming for a few days then move it a little closer to the cage. Over time move the corn into the cage, and when the hogs go in to eat, shut the door.

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There he goes again. I mean, of course, Sen. James Davis, with his proclivity for bogus and unsubstantiated "facts." He tells us most recently, in a meeting with county commissioners, that a proposed Republican- sponsored voter ID law is supported by 70 percent of the state's citizens and should be the legislature's top priority. How does he know it's 70 percent? ESP, I suppose, since he offers no verifiable statistics from a surveyor poll. Curiously, he remains mum on the fact that voter fraud is now virtually non-existent in the United States, (ref. Jane Mayer, "The Voter Fraud Myth," The New Yorker, Oct. 29, 2012). He is also silent on the fact that the proposed Republican voter ID and proof of citizenship requirements will disenfranchise thousands of previously valid voters in North Carolina who typically vote — you guessed it — Democratic: Minorities, women, the elderly. The proposed law would also place restrictions on absentee balloting and early voting.

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An advocate, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is “one that defends or maintains a cause or proposal.” Without the support of this community and the admirable time spent by each and every volunteer, staff and board member of CareNet, we would not be able to maintain our cause in the mission to provide for our neighbors that are less fortunate.

In 2012, CareNet, with the help of over 125,734 lbs. of food donated by members of the Macon County community distributed 292,420 lbs. of food to families in need through our food pantry, our soup café, TEFAP and our backpack program. In addition to the assistance provided through our food pantry, we were able to serve 13,011 meals through our soup café and delivered over 15,425 backpacks to school children in need, through our backpack program. While the numbers may be alarming now, we certainly realize we’re just scratching the surface of the real issue at hand. With the ongoing discussion in Washington over our nation’s rising debt, poverty rates and unemployment it would seem that the end may never be in sight?

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