Letters to the editor: Feb. 12, 2018


This is an open letter to all political candidates using any advertising method.

I’ve noticed over the years that most of you no longer list your party affiliation on your yard signs or roadway posters. Here’s my take on that: If you do not have the confidence to list the party you’re running for, you will not be getting my vote.

If you are not proud enough to list the party, you should not be running for that party — nor for any party at all. Let’s turn this around.

GARY LESKO, SPICEWOOD

Re: Feb. 4 commentaries, “Herman: Texas group offers to fly folks here illegally to California” and “Why it’s time Americans try a little centrism.”

Kudos to Ken Herman for articulating what I think many, if not most of us, think about immigration.

The left refuses to listen to the reasonable concerns that Herman brings up, and often seems to be pushing for opening our borders to all. It is not only xenophobic racists that want immigration laws enforced.

In the same editorial section, Robert Dean’s article on the need for centrists in Washington was spot-on. Unfortunately, I see no way that either party will let a centrist even on the ballot, much less be elected.

WILLIAM L. CAMPBELL, AUSTIN

President Trump suggested Democrats were guilty of treason for not applauding every line of his State of the Union address. The definition of treason applies when an American “adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere.”

Russia levied a cyberwar against our country to help Trump become president. That fact has been firmly established, yet Trump refused to apply sanctions on Russia overwhelmingly approved by Congress.

Despite advice given him by every U.S. intelligence agency, he also refuses to take defensive measures to protect our country against this continued threat by Russia.

Moreover, Trump had his CIA director meet with top Russian spies who had been banned from entering our country.

Seems to me that there’s only one person engaged in treason here — and that would be Donald Trump.

R. CRAIG HENLEY, PAIGE

In a letter on Feb. 6, a writer made some comments about retirement pay for teachers. I retired from the Austin Independent School District in 2000.

In 2001, the Texas Legislature raised the bar to the level it is at now. We once received a “13th check” to help retired teachers, but there has been no cost of living increase at all since then. Even with Social Security (which, by the way, I have paid into my entire working life — all over the country, and not just Austin) retired teachers from earlier years have a hard time living on those funds alone. Having said all of that, I loved and treasured my teaching times at Oak Hill.

FRAN RUSH, ROUND ROCK

Republicans insisted on releasing the once-classified CIA memo in the interest of “transparency.” Fair enough.

But, since the last nine Republican party nominees for president have released their federal tax returns, why haven’t these same Republicans insisted that President Trump make his returns public?

Had President Obama refused to do so, it would have resulted in cries from the other side of the aisle that he obviously “had something to hide.”

Why shouldn’t we come to the same conclusion given Trump’s refusal to be “transparent” with American voters?

JOE PASTUSEK, PFLUGERVILLE

Re: Feb. 5 article, “Log Cabin Republicans push for acceptance in Travis County GOP.”

I laughed out loud at Michael Cargill’s complaint that “As liberal as Travis County is, you would think they would be more accepting” when his fellow Republicans turn him away for being gay. Really?

The only reason Travis County is liberal is because it’s predominately Democratic. We have Republican representatives because of gerrymandered districts, not because the local population supports them. What does he expect from a party that pushes against gay marriage and for the “bathroom bill”? If he wants acceptance, he needs to stop believing the Republicans want him and switch parties.

RONA DISTENFELD, AUSTIN

As the state of our climate goes, so goes the state of our union. Higher temperatures caused by the extra blanket of carbon dioxide that covers our home planet resulted in disastrous weather events that cost nearly $400 billion in 2017. They are likely to be more numerous and destructive if we do not act. Our health is at risk. Lung and heart disease, cancer, birthing problems and dementia are all related to breathing dirty air.

Fortunately, more members of our Congress are hearing our directives to make sure our grandchildren’s children will have a livable world. Congress must create a policy of placing a fee on carbon that results in a dividend to all Americans to help the market transition to safe energy.

Call, write or visit those you hired to work for you in Congress. Remind them they have children and grandchildren, too.

JULIE JOHNSON, AUSTIN



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