Re: July 12 commentary, “Sorry, city employees. Your second job is our business.”
While I agree that an employer has good reason to need to know about other business or employment that may conflict with the duties of a public-sector employee, I disagree that the general public has the right or need to have access to information.
Most second jobs are quite innocent, and the employees should be able to pursue those activities without fear that their work as public employees will follow them to their second jobs. In the course of their work, public employees often anger people, and people often do not understand which public employees are which and may try to pester or take revenge on any or all. This is part of the reason why public employees have the right to have their home addresses and private contact information exempted from pubic information requests.
Leave those folks in peace to try to make a little extra money.
ROBERT ALLEN, ELGIN
Re: July 15 commentary, “From any moral standpoint it’s time Texas ends death penalty.”
State Rep. Joe Moody’s editorial was excellent.
Why indeed are Texans so excited about killing inmates? Perhaps it is easier for politicians to get elected when they are fear mongers. Some people need to be separated from society — but with all our exonerations, why risk killing them? In a state that professes to be Christian, this is disgraceful.
We know we have had wrongful executions and currently are trying to kill people like Rodney Reed and Darlie Routier, who have excellent cases for innocence, but it seems easier to ignore them than work for justice.
Why? Demand answers from your elected officials — and don’t vote with bloody hands. We are all in this together.
SHANNON M. FITZPATRICK, SAN MARCOS
Do you remember the P.D. Eastman classic, “Are You My Mother?,” a book about a baby bird looking for its mother? The story has a happy ending: Mother and baby are reunited.
In light of the difficulties reuniting children and parents separated at the Texas border, I pray that there will also be a happy ending for each of these cases. Sadly, news reports have indicated that some 3-year-old children didn’t recognize their mothers or fathers when they were first reunited.
The tearing away of children from their parents is sickening. “Are You My Mother?,” published on June 12, 1960, 58 years ago, has a heartbreaking connotation for America in 2018.
E. BELL, HOUSTON
The president and I share one commonality: We are close in age. His attitude and positive comments about Putin and Russia are puzzling to me; I remember vividly in the 1950s the Civil Defense drills we had when I was a student at Crestwood Elementary in Fort Worth. During these drills, we would practice hiding under our desks in case the Russians bombed Carswell Air Force Base, a Strategic Air Command base close to our school.
Perhaps Trumps’ private education did not teach current events or American History.
I was a public school student, I am grateful for my comprehensive education. I will never forget my fear.
VICKI BALDWIN, AUSTIN
There seems to be a whole lot of Republicans who are choosing to put our country at risk — or perhaps that is the plan. Eight of them went over to Russia around 4th of July and had a fantastic time.
A Russian politician who attended the meeting said it “was one of the easiest ones in my life.” Yet, again we have Russia licking it chops over the fiasco at the NATO summit that undermined the United States standing as a world leader.
Putin would like the NATO exercises ended in the Baltics, which would endanger U.S. security. Kim Jung Un got the military exercises ended for absolutely nothing in return. I’m betting the “deal” with Putin will result in Americans needing to start learning Russian.
SANDRA BLANKENSHIP, KILLEEN
Melania Trump delayed moving her son Barron from New York to Washington until after the school term because she felt the move would be too traumatic for this now 12-year-old boy. Let that sink in, given what our government is doing to other children.
Our government, after having ripped them apart, deported some parents without their children.
Our government, acting in our name, has been very up front that great cruelty was a conscious policy, aimed at deterring immigrants fleeing from horrendous conditions in their countries from coming here. Pay no mind to what it says on the Statue of Liberty; it seems we were just kidding.
Our government has played a not-at-all trivial role in creating the weak states from which these people are fleeing, going back at least to 1954 when the CIA bombed Guatemala City.
Cruelty dispensed in our name must be resisted.
DAVID VENHUIZEN, AUSTIN
A letter to the editor published July 13, “On justice nominees and abortion,” should have read: “Justice nominees must declare their relationship with the staunchly conservative Federalist Society. In contrast to the Federalist Society’s goals, the Constitution’s preamble includes: “We the People … must promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity…” and the Constitution emphasizes an independent judiciary.