Letters to the editor: Jan. 21, 2018

    12:00 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018 Opinion
Ken Herman
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (right) talks about the tax reform bill Monday with Josh Agrelius of Re-Bath of Austin. Cornyn met with three local businessmen at Wally’s Burger Express in Northwest Austin. KEN HERMAN/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Re: Jan. 16 commentary, “Herman: Sen. John Cornyn continues to tolerate President Trump.

Sen. Cornyn does more than “tolerate” President Trump. He voted for him, and by remaining silent when the president lies, bullies someone, insults our allies, makes a racist comment, or attacks America’s free press and all the millions of immigrants who have helped make our country great already, he becomes complicit in these despicable actions.

As far as Cornyn’s representing 28 million Texans, he fails there, too. He usually speaks only for the special interests he likes, most of which President Trump supports as well.

Also, if Cornyn would hold a real town hall in Austin, instead of cherry-picking where he appears, he’d hear not praise, but a scathing reaction to the GOP tax plan from some of us he completely fails to represent.

MARY LEY, AUSTIN

We are appalled and disgusted by President Trump’s racist statement made during a bipartisan meeting about immigration. Language and ideals like this have no place in our society, and certainly not in our White House.

This administration has done little but implement policies that endorse discrimination against immigrants and communities of color. As a country of immigrants, we are made stronger by our diversity. Crude and bigoted slurs emerging from the Oval Office are shameful.

This, now denied, comment from President Trump occurred during a meeting around a bipartisan compromise to extend protections on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivalsprogram. The League of Women Voters urges our leaders to pass a clean DREAM Act to protect, not turn away, the 800,000 young people who were brought to the United States as children.

Stand with the league and contact your senators and representatives.

FRANCES MCINTYRE, LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS-AUSTIN AREA DIRECTOR OF ADVOCACY, AUSTIN

Re: Jan. 14 article, “A trapper’s life: Pursuing animals and the outdoors.”

The article on leg-trapping coyotes was nothing short of repulsive. Can this form of barbarism truly be legal?

I cannot fathom the pain and fear an animal experiences when the trap’s metal teeth snap down on its flesh, ripping into their bone, and holding them there until the trapper gets around to hiking to the trap and shooting them. This for a $10 pelt?

MARK MORRISON, AUSTIN

No room in the inn: There has been more than 2,000 years of change since a baby was born in a stable because there was no room in the inn. We humans have a tendency to focus more on what is different than what remains the same.

When I visit T. Don Hutto, the 512-bed detention center housing women seeking asylum, I look into the eyes of young women just a few years older than Mary. I hear the stories of their flight and again am reminded of Mary’s flight into Egypt to escape Herod’s slaughter of the innocents.

My amigas don’t have gold, frankincense, and myrrh. For some, the journey was five months of walking from El Salvador or Honduras. But like Mary, they have hopes and dreams, and as it was for Mary, there seems to be no room in the inn. This time America is the innkeeper shutting the door.

CONNIE ROALSON, ROUND ROCK

Here are some possible reasons why citizens of Norway are not waiting in line for years to come to the United States as immigrants:

Why would residents from a country with one of the highest standards of living in the world want to emigrate to a country with high cost of health care, high cost of college, massive gun violence and a willingness to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement while denying science? The rest of the world is wondering what has happened to our country, as we consider withdrawing our support from NATO, the United Nations and other alliances that have kept stability on this planet.

When asked on television recently, the Norwegian interviewed just broke down laughing. Hopefully the citizens of this country will not be laughing as they go to the polls in 2018.

DALE BULLA, AUSTIN

Trump’s outrageous racist comments are well known. He is an embarrassment to our country. This is widely accepted by a large majority of U.S. citizens.

Where are our Republican politicians in condemning his statements? Why do they look for commentary to rationalize his behavior? What ethical, moral boundaries do they have? Apparently, as long as it is a Republican president, they avoid doing the right thing. Sad.

DENNIS ALEXANDER, LAKEWAY

Re: Jan. 17 commentary, “How Austin is proving its dedication to clean energy.”

As Luke Metzger points out in his commentary, Austin is among the local and state governments representing more than half the U.S. economy and population that are committed to the Paris Climate Agreement in spite of failing leadership in Washington.

But local solutions, although essential and growing, will not bring carbon emissions down to a level from which the climate can recover. A nationwide, market-driven approach that puts a steadily rising fee on carbon and fairly redistributes the proceeds will add jobs and spur the economy while reducing carbon emissions. It will spur innovation toward solutions, not only in the U.S., but — with a border adjustment — in countries that wish to do business with us.

As Metzger notes, increasing episodes of climate-caused catastrophes deny us the luxury of time that patchwork solutions on their own require.

CYNTHIA LESKY, AUSTIN