Voice of the Voters
Published: Saturday, November 1, 2008 at 8:45 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, November 1, 2008 at 8:45 p.m.
MCCAIN, VIETNAM AND IRAQ
Senator McCain is more than upset that we will have lost a war if we withdraw from Iraq. More than thirty years ago, we "lost a war" in Vietnam by following the command of a Republican president, and withdrawing our forces. This action allowed McCain, then a pilot in the U.S.Navy, and a prisoner of the Vietnamese, to be freed so that eventually he could become a candidate for the presidency of the United States.
Where would McCain be now if President Nixon hadn't withdrawn our forces from Vietnam? If he survived further imprisonment, and if presidents after Nixon had not wanted to "lose" a war, which we never should have been involved in, he might still be in a Vietnamese prison, and he would not be a candidate for anything.
Robert W. Bertcher,
OBAMA’S NOT AFTER YOUR MONEY
Robin Ecker's letter, "On Sharing the Wealth", Oct. 31, makes some very good points about the taxation plan of Obama's. I agree with her that everyone deserves basic rights and those who make more money shouldn't be so quick to deny those who remain in the poverty brackets. Many people work hard every day and still can't manage to obtain the basics to survive.
So many people are outraged over the fact that simply because they may make over $250,000 a year that their taxes will rise. Relax for a moment and remember that these will be small raises in your taxes, not hugely significant ones. These will be based on your annual incomes and chances are you won't notice much of a difference. I understand that most people work hard for their money and don't want to give it away to those who don't, but helping those who have less than you shouldn't hurt so badly.
Remember the Rule of 3: What you give out comes back to you times 3. Maybe
this will eventually come back as something very good for you later in life. If not, think of it as a charitable donation. Still too angry about it? Get over yourself, you've had tax breaks for too many years, and it's about time the little people got a break. It's truly the people who make in excess of $500,000 and above who will see the most taxes, and I don't think there are that many people in that range around here.
And as for Dot Calhoun's comments in her letter, "Share Obama's Wealth", she states that since he's already won the election he should take his remaining campaign money and pass it around. Last I heard the election hadn't finished yet and it remained undecided. Don't jump the fence too fast there, Dot. There's a lot of campaigning left to do and ads to be bought. It's doubtful there will be much money left, but it wouldn't surprise me if he would donate what was left, if legally possible. And unless you make significantly more money than most of us, I don't really think it's your money he's after.
ARE OUR STANDARDS REALLY THAT LOW?
Would we really elect a president with no substantial experience or
qualifications?Would we really elect a president who has only taken from, but never
served his country? Would we really elect a president who lacks the integrity to stand by his word to accept public financing for the election?
Would we really elect a president who was mentored by an anti-American,
anti-white, hate "preacher" for 20 years? Would we really elect a president who has accepted kickbacks from a corrupt Chicago felon? Would we really elect a president who used cash in exchange for superdelegate votes to "buy" the democratic primary?
Would we really elect a president who used his political power to deny the voting rights of millions of Americans in Florida and Michigan? Would we really elect a president who puts his own interests above the interests of the American people? Do Americans know that they're voting for the next American president, not the next American Idol?Don't we deserve better than Barack Obama? Are America's standards really that low?
CONSERVATION BENEFITS OUR COMMUNITY
Apparently some people in Gainesville and the surrounding areas believe that purchasing and conserving land is a bad idea because it removes dollars from the tax rolls. I believe that those people are misguided and mistaken—I believe that conservation not only benefits our community both environmentally and culturally, but also economically.
To show the impact purchasing land for conservation might have on our tax rolls, I ask, just how many dollars a day are added to the tax rolls in Alachua County? According to the Property Appraiser's office, the just value of land in this county in 2000 totaled $11,838,600,248. For 2008 the just value is estimated at nearly $25 billion. That meansthat over twelve billion dollars have been added to the tax rolls since Alachua County Forever was passed eight years ago; approximately $1.5 billion dollars a year, or over $4 million a day. Alachua County Forever estimates the value of land protected at $70 million.
So for those of you who would vote against amendments or referenda that will make conservation purchases possible, the math tells us that every seventeen days during the past eight years the tax rolls have increased by more than the current value of land under conservation in the county. I think this shows that we can definitely afford to be putting land aside for conservation. But in an era of rampant development and environmental destruction, can we afford not to? Please vote for the Wild Spaces Public Places county referendum. There has never been a better time to purchase land for conservation in Alachua County.
DEFEAT COUNTY INCUMBENTS
While everyone is focused on the economy and full of zeal for change, why not put those concerns into practice close to home? Your county commission has 3 seats, a majority, on the ballot this election. There is no better way to make changes that you can see in your town than to change the local government that stifles economic growth and raises your taxes. If you are one of those voters who treats the county commissioners as an afterthought, make a change in how you vote and think about them this time.
I urge those of you who have not voted already to vote for Kevin Riordan, Lloyd Bailey, and Ward Scott this Tuesday. Some problems cannot be solved in Washington.
IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT THE ECONOMY
In this election the large majority of voters is focused on the U.S. economy, which is understandable. But, let's not forget education, which arguably impacts every issue we face. Our educational achievements have been declining at an alarming rate for
decades. It's clear to me that Barack Obama recognizes the severity of the education problem in the U.S. His constant reminder that the problem begins at home ("Parents need to turn off the TVs and video games occasionally.") exemplifies his insight into the problem.
I believe that Obama, if elected, will deal with education dramatically and effectively. I also believe that John McCain doesn't have a clue about the problem.
Jerry G. Fossum,
STOP UNDERMINING MY NEW MARRIAGE
As a newly married woman, the “Protection of Marriage” amendment is not in my interest. It seeks to undermine my new union with my husband and push Florida women backwards. This amendment is not about gay marriage or encouraging healthy, happy marriages. The people backing this amendment know that gay marriage is already illegal. This amendment will take away health benefits and hospital visitation from domestic partners at UF and all over the state, the overwhelming majority of whom are in male-female couples, and seeks to spark a campaign to push women backwards to the oppressive days of “traditional marriage.”
The campaigners for Amendment 2 in Gainesville held signs saying “Vote for Traditional Marriage” and Representative Cretul says in support of the amendment that “America is the last hope for … Western civilization as we know it.” Traditional marriage, as I learned from my Catholic grandmother from Kentucky with eight children, was about women’s existence being tied to the man they married and once betrothed, to “submit and obey” their husbands and rear children (to the exclusion of any other interests) for the good of “society.” Traditional sexism in marriage and in the home was not civilized for women.
My husband and I pledged in our vows to respect each other as equals in our marriage and to support each other’s life goals and dreams. That means my ambitions and dreams are important to our future, not secondary to his. Love and marriage for us, is not about a horse and carriage. We married for love, as should everyone who wants to. When and if we have children, it will be because we want to and it works for us, not because we are forced to or supposed to. Marriage has changed. Join me in voting down Amendment 2.
FEAR IS NOT THE AMERICAN WAY
Fear has never been the American way, and the last thing we need to do now as a nation is to retreat down that shadowy path. Just the name Barack Obama triggers fear and suspicion in some, but what comes closer to striking a chord of fear in us is the prospect of living through four more years resembling the last eight.
Whether the people who were in charge of driving our economy were asleep or just drunk with greed when it swerved off the highway is irrelevant. The more pressing matter is that our economy is a banged-up wreck, hanging perilously on a cliff of disaster, and for the sake of the country, we need to get things right in this presidential election.
Senator John McCain wants to save us from the rocks below, but at this point, he looks more like a disoriented wrecker driver who has dutifully swallowed a strong dose of bad economic advice because all he is offering us is a worn-out cable of trickle-down economics. Too many people are hanging in the balance for us to trust that outdated policy again.
It is clear to most who have not been blinded by fear that Senator Obama has a brilliant mind, a strong grasp of the issues, and a heart which displays a calm courage under fire. If you are one of the few remaining undecided voters, consider listening to your heart at this critical moment in our nation’s history. We have chosen the heart.
Alan and Karen Cloud,
Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.
Comments are currently unavailable on this article