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Letters to the Editor

July 31, 2009

Respondents have proven my point



To the editor:

The several respondents to my critique of the Taxed Enough Already (TEA) Parties have proven my point. They are less about taxes than their label purports. After all, federal income taxes have come down for the vast majority in recent months. Political ideology, regurgitated by the likes of Liddy, Limbaugh and Beck, all with questionable credentials, dominate these events.

Even in the recent downturn, we remain a wealthy nation and yet we function under an acceptable disdain from "the haves" for "the have-nots." The slightest suggestion that perhaps we should give some thought, and some funds, to being our brothers' keeper, throws up the specter of socialism. How lost in the '50s is that?

Fortunate enough to have had health care insurance all of my life, though certainly not as good today as in times past, I am well aware that I share this planet with people who are sick and without access to care. They go to the market, to work and to school among us carrying with them their burdens. Some of these are communicable diseases.

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When they are rushed to the hospital too late in the course of their illness to save them and the hospital must provide the most expensive treatments to try, how do you think that affects what the rest of us pay? As a tax we would recognize it, but as it is now (hidden in our insurance and hospital rates), we and our employers are paying for it anyway with a profit on top of it.

I commend the young people at the local rally for their efforts to articulate a position through their speeches and essays. The children and young adults in our community have always had my support as they grow and learn to think for themselves. Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and John and Samuel Adams obviously thought outside the paradigms of their day to our benefit.

As far as the economic bailouts for major employment centers are concerned, I would submit that the verdict is still out. Top economists, using their best analyses, heatedly disagree on the likely outcome. So that leaves us with political opinions as the prism through which to make judgments at this stage of the process. And, I certainly don't wish for failure. From mid-2001 to late 2008, we had failure after failure and look where that put us.

Linda Irvin-Craig
Maugansville




City leaders can make a difference



To the editor:

I recently became a Hagerstonian and until this time I had to watch what was going on in Hagerstown from the outside. I felt as an outsider I was not in a position to comment about things going on within the city, but all that has changed now.

Let me congratulate the newly elected mayor and council, two new faces and one old friend of the city, along with three incumbents. As a group you really have a chance to make a difference.

A little advice for the new faces, as well as the veterans: vote for what is right, don't vote the right way. Voting for what is right takes effort, research, vision, diverse input and, above all, political will.

Voting the right way is more than what your friends and neighbors think or what is written in Mail Call; that constituency is usually a minority that pales and hides when faced with factual research, clear and concise vision and a will to do the right thing for the community.

Now a little cautionary note for the three incumbents: I believe that many people who follow Hagerstown politics realize that the three of you in many ways enabled the bad behavior that was hallmark of the last four years of city government. You might not have been the problem; however you did little to curtail or control the problems. Each of you three were fortunate to have the spotlight focused on the ladies who lost badly in the recent primary. Without those three ladies around, the spotlight will now be focused on the three of you. There is another election in four years.

With two new faces, an old friend, and three incumbents hopefully cautious about their future role in city government, the citizens of Hagerstown will look for better government, the government we all deserve, in the next four years.

 

Eddie Lake
Hagerstown

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