Parade marks 42 years since troops left Vietnam Disneys The Aristocats Kids

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Opinion Letters

My name is Buster. I am a condemned prisoner, chained and left in solitary confinement. Somebody brings mush and water once a day. I get no exercise or socializing and it’s so boring that I am jumpy and anxious and lonely and terribly unhappy. Thing is, I’m innocent! So I send out SOS calls the only way I know: I bark. Yes, I am a dog. We are sentient beings just like you humans, but treated like we are mere possessions, “underdogs” if you know what I mean.

Why do some humans neglect and abuse us when we need to be useful pals? We can’t protect our owners while on chains. We don’t bark selectively at someone prowling around because we yelp at everything, often bothering neighboring households. We want to play and run and maybe go for walks with our human friends but instead are shackeled by collars often too heavy and tight. We are innocent, but no one is representing us.

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Politicians cutting food stamps, medicaid, housing and fighting against affordable health care does not cause abortions. An unwanted or inconvenient pregnancy resulting from a man or woman or both not being responsible for their actions causes abortions.

If individuals would accept responsibility and have only the children they can provide health care for, educate, feed, house and clothe, then there would be no need for the government (our tax dollars) to be the one to provide for the children.

Jesus values all life. Jesus would want the children to have life, the best health care, education, food, housing and clothing. It all comes down to responsibility.

Pauline Burch — Franklin, N.C.

During Sunday’s commemorative Selma voting rights march here in Franklin, our biggest challenge was making it back up town hill. Fifty years ago it took real courage to cross that bridge and face mounted state troopers with hate in their eyes, armed with batons, tear gas and the legal right to bash in skulls. Real blood was spilled that day 50 years ago.

Those sacrifices in Selma lead directly to the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which guaranteed equal access to the voting booth for all citizens. When that law was gutted in 2013 by a conservative Supreme Court, many states of the old Confederacy immediately enacted new laws to limit voting rights. Those new laws would have been prohibited by Voting Rights Act. Once again North Carolina lead the way back to the 1950s by quickly passing the worst voter suppression law in the country.

The rationale for these voter suppression laws is always the same. Laws must be enacted to stop rampant voter fraud and to protect the sanctity of the vote. They argue that you need proper ID to get a driver license or to buy a pizza, so why not to vote? Apparently these lawmakers forgot that you don't have a Constitutional protected right to buy a pizza, but you do to vote.

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The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is proof that our healthcare system in America is beyond broken. As a father of four and a small business owner, I understand the importance of access to healthcare. Notice I did not say access to health insurance. I realize that without health insurance, in today's marketplace, it usually means no access to healthcare; but does Obamacare really fix that situation? If you cannot afford the premium and the deductibles and co-pays, do you really have access to healthcare? From my perspective, it appears the American people, through their representatives and senators, have sold their future to insurance companies, not healthcare providers.

When 87 percent of the 11.4 million people enrolled in Obamacare are receiving an average subsidy of $3,312 per year, I find that figure alarming. Why should the federal government be subsidizing health insurance, much less healthcare? I realize we do not have a true free market system but subsidizing health insurance to the tune of more than $10 billion a year just for Obamacare is going to take us further off track from allowing average Americans access to healthcare. I suggest that our healthcare is so good (or overpriced) the average American cannot afford it, even with Obamacare subsidies.

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