- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Opinion Letters

First let us say to Nat Henry, we honor your service to our country. We respect your opinion on Daylon Plemens hiring for the Macon office VA counselor. We thank and respect her for her service to the VVA members, but many of us veterans believe the disabled veteran who applied for the job earned the right to have it.

Veterans are given extra consideration on all government job applications, but I guess not in Macon County. We believe our county commissioners should have put some effort into checking to see if a veteran had applied, from there no action we guess.

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As a so called Civil War “buff” I’ve read with interest George Crockett’s letters objecting to hearing “Battle Hymn Of The Republic” at patriotic events. I had ancestors that fought in the Union army and ancestors that fought in the Confederate army and I agree with Mr. Crockett that the Battle Hym did inspire Northern soldiers to kill Southern soldiers but no more than songs like “Dixie” or “Bonnie Blue Flag” inspire Southern soldiers to kill Northerners, Robert E. Lee once said that without music there would be no army. Regimental bands on both sides played during battles to inspire the soldiers.

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The State of North Carolina has been blessed in many ways. One of her blessings, in spite of her rugged, dangerous coastline, is that she has never had to attempt to survive a tsunami sweeping in from the sea and destroying all in its path.

However, she has been subjected to a tsunami of newly-elected young (and old) Turks who have systematically staged and produced a greatly devastating wave of what they determine to be economically inspired changes. They believe this will make the state a domain in which they believe their party and their programs will prosper. But they forget about the people who do not have incomes, or voices, on the level of senators and representatives. These mostly silent people form the underlying cushion for so many of the activities in which all of us participate.

They have seriously damaged the entire system of education in North Carolina which had heretofore been a source of great pride to the people of this state, and which has been formed over many years of struggle and sacrifice. Those years produced the Community College System, tops in the nation; schools of math and science which turned out students highly proficient and capable of leading the way in our nation today; health care systems, including Medicaid and Women’s Services which have stood as models for other states. In the days ahead, we will know for sure that these proud accomplishments are in the past.

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We North Carolinians are very fortunate people! Our Republican majority state legislature had the courage to make the necessary cuts in the state budget to close a $2.5 billion deficit. By reducing spending by more than $1 billion, North Carolina’s government will live within its means preventing the bankruptcy that threatened our state and continues to threaten our nation and states and counties throughout the country.

However, ever since the budget debate began and the legislature overrode governor Purdue’s veto, numerous naysayers have been critical of the spending cuts but especially those in education. You would think that the education budget was reduced to $0! What is actually true is that the legislature trimmed bloated areas in education in favor of increasing funding for K-12 programs. The budget fully funds classroom teachers and teaching assistants, makes important education reforms, while also protecting other core state services. The education reforms will lower class sizes by hiring 1,100 additional teachers, pay teachers based on merit, and ensure students can read.

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published: 10/18/2013
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