Sen. John McCain knew what so many American soldiers know: That even in war, soldiers can remember basic decency and morals.
We often ask soldiers to do a dirty and nasty job. The least Americans can do is support them in their efforts to keep to the high ground whenever possible.
JOHN STETTLER, DALLAS
The passing of the mighty Sen. John S. McCain III on Saturday marks a milestone in United States history. John McCain was the final vertebra of what was the GOP of the last 50 years. With no remaining spine to be found, the remnants of the old party are now totally in the hands of the rogue Trumpist Party.
For Texas dramatists following the demise of the old GOP, it is also a Julius Caesar moment: “Et tu,” Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz?
RICHARD MAASTRICHT, AUSTIN
Re: Aug. 26 article, “Pope decries abuse cover-up, meets with victims.”
The pope has condemned sexual abuse by Catholic priests, bishops and other high-ranking church officials. So what?
We have heard all about the crimes his marauding evil priests have committed on God’s children for decades — yet this scourge continues to this day.
Unfortunately, the pope offered no corrective solutions to address the problem. There was very little to assuage the victim’s anguish. Condemning it and offering apologies simply won’t do it. What’s he going to do about it? And no, we don’t want to hear he is going to pray for the victims. It’s not enough. More is required.
These miscreants should be turned over to civil authorities for prosecution. If found guilty, prison time should be their punishment.
MIKE GONZALES, HOUSTON
School is back in session, and students are tossing on their backpacks and heading into the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, in the face of record-breaking heat waves and escalating coastal storms, many of us can’t help but wonder what the future holds for our young ones. To preserve our planet, we need to invest in clean energy.
Austin Independent School District is poised to lead the way. In 2013, Austin voters approved a $10 million bond to put solar panels on schools — but only a fraction of those funds have been spent. Austin ISD should keep moving forward and turn every school’s rooftop into a shining reminder of the importance of renewable energy. It’s up to our educational institutions to set an example, and show students that school is about more than circling the right answer on a test — it’s about doing the right thing.
EMMA PABST, ENVIRONMENT TEXAS CLEAN ENERGY ASSOCIATE, ROUND ROCK
I remember that President Trump said: “I’ll choose the best people for my administration.”
Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, was found guilty of eight felonies. Rick Gates, Trump’s deputy campaign manager, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and making false statements. Michael Flynn, Trump’s ex-national security adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI for meeting Russian agents. George Papadopoulos, Trump’s former foreign policy adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about meeting a Russian agent. Michael Cohen, Trump’s lawyer, pleaded guilty to bank fraud, tax evasion and paying adulterous Trump’s sexual partners “at the direction of” Trump. Jeff Sessions, Trump’s attorney general, lied to Congress several times over Russian contacts.
If this is a witch hunt, there are a lot of witches swimming in the most corrupt swamp ever.
RANDY BROUSSARD, BELTON
The vulgar and crude questions that Brett Kavanaugh was prepared to ask Bill Clinton during the Kenneth Starr investigation are all we need to know about this man to show that he is unfit to be a Supreme Court justice.
Only a base and coarse person would even consider posing such questions. Also, we now have a perfect of example of a “perjury trap.” What bothers me most is Kavanaugh’s utter lack of care and concern for the pain and humiliation his questions would cause to Monica Lewinsky and her family.
NANCY LABASTIDA, AUSTIN
If Amazon picks Austin for its so-called HQ2, I’m not so sure that’s a good thing. Why? Because Austin is already near full employment.
So, 50,000 new jobs might mean up to 50,000 new families moving to Austin. Results? Increased demand for housing which would cause the already high average house price in Austin to increase. Fifty-thousand more families commuting on Austin’s already congested roads. School enrollment would increase.
Would Austin need new schools? Would property taxes to go up? Probably. Up to 50,000 more families would tap into Austin’s scarce and finite water resources. Would there be economic gains? Of course. The question is would they outweigh the negative impacts on our community. Maybe I’m looking at the glass half empty but I’m hoping Amazon’s HQ2 goes someplace else. I hear Newark, N.J., is nice.
LEE CANTRELL, AUSTIN
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick plans to debate celebrity reporter Geraldo Rivera over the value of a southern border wall — but he refuses to debate his opponent for lieutenant governor, which is a disservice to his constituents.
Patrick is well-known for his theatrics since his days as a sports reporter in blue paint for a Houston TV station. In the debate, will there be any mention of our southern neighbors flying to Canada without need of a visa and crossing into the states through our northern border? Patrick’s arrogance is unbecoming for an elected representative.
JOHN NUGENT, GEORGETOWN
A commentary published Monday about the state’s new school ratings misstated the share of funding school districts receive from Texas. The correct figure is 38 percent.