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Letters to the Editor for Thursday, Jan. 17

Letters to the Editor for Thursday, Jan. 17

Your Voice

Background checks have consequences

For several reasons, I take exception to the column in favor of universal background checks.

The columnist states that these background checks impose no burden on law-abiding gun purchasers. This is simply not true.

These checks must be performed by federally licensed gun dealers, at a cost to the buyer anywhere from $30 to $50, no small amount. And, under these laws, background checks must be performed even when lending your buddy a shotgun to go rabbit hunting.

Plus, when transfers are denied, there’s up to a 95 percent false denial rate, delaying legitimate purchases.

Purchasers filling out background check forms sign a statement swearing that the information given is truthful, under penalty of the law. Applicants swear that, among other things, they have no criminal record, no record of domestic abuse and no disqualifying mental or drug issues.

Funny thing is, only a tiny percentage of disqualified background check applicants found swearing to false information are prosecuted. The rest just go on their way, possibly to obtain a gun illegally.

In closing, I would be skeptical in regard to anything coming from Everytown For Gun Safety. There’s never been a gun restriction they didn’t like.
Timothy O’Neill
Scotia

 

Do you want truth? Connect with Jesus

Thank you for Fred Como’s Jan. 10 letter. I share his dislike of “two tribes sniping at one another” and his desire for the whole truth rather than some bias or other.

I have some good news for Fred and the rest of us.

Jesus is The Truth. If truth is what you want, and you have not yet done so, connect with Jesus. 

By doing that, you will get out of whichever of the two tribes you were stuck in and break from sniping. It might even save you a few trips to Facebook jail, which I avoid because I hear the food there is none too good.

Connecting with Jesus will also get you into judging things Right Down the Line (cool song by Gerry Rafferty) instead of from a ditch off to the left or the right of the road surface. Staying on the path (Jesus is also The Way) is much easier on your car.

For more information about Jesus, search out and befriend Jesus believers like me. We are attracted to coffee, so you will find us at coffee hours, coffeehouses, and coffee shops. Look for the distinctive baseball cap we wear.

I hope this helps, or at least brightens up your morning ride on the bus.
Joel Nelson
Schenectady

 

The new world order sounds very familiar

China was exploited by colonial powers through opium trade. 

The British used divide-and-conquer in Ireland. India (Hindu) and Pakistan (Muslim) got the ‘British’ treatment. 

America is getting the treatment Native Americans received. 

The model is the same.

British treatment — divide and conquer (competing tribes), drugs (fire water) and ideology (Christianity). 

So many hands, foreign and domestic, are turned against America.

The Southwest of the United States was ‘acquired’ from Mexico. This matter will be relitigated as a byproduct of the dissolution of America. Human wave immigration will complete the conquest of America.  

A Fifth Column and Fourth Estate place the United States in mortal danger. The good news is you will be told it’s the moral course of action. As with ‘truth and reconciliation’ in South Africa, new injustices will be created. 

Human nature does not change. Race, color and creed make no difference. “New world order” change has occurred down through history and the world is still here.  A new world is coming, one you will not recognize.

“Bye bye Miss American Pie.”
Edmond Day
Rotterdam

 

Previous presidents held continuous war

President Trump considers using presidential powers, bypassing Congress, and declaring a national emergency in order to pirate $5.7 billion in unused funds to fulfill a very silly “Build that wall” campaign promise.

Democrats are justifiably upset. But wait.

Presidents G.W. Bush and Obama used presidential powers, debatably granted by the War Powers Act, to bypass an all-too-compliant Congress. 

They initiated or expanded Middle East tribal wars. The Watson Institute of Brown University estimates that recent wars have cost American tax payers $5.6 Trillion.

This cost estimate includes items like veterans’ care, weapons procurement and lost investment opportunity in American infrastructure, education, etc. 

For example, $1 trillion hire 5.6 million teachers. Talk about “Keep America Competitive.”

In 1961, President Eisenhower warned of the growing power of the military-industrial complex. 

Sixty years later, it’s the neo-liberal idea of continuous war that supports this metastasized industrial behemoth infecting American economic and social life.

Using this introspective lens, we might conclude that while the boorish Boy-President Trump makes the United States look foolish and dangerously unreliable, lasting international enmity toward the United States results from previous imperial presidents funding brutal, costly, continuous wars going, obviously, nowhere.
Rev. John A. Ekman
Greenfield Center

 

Abortion: No long-term health effects

For years anti-abortion activists have made claims about the dangers and long-term harmful health effects of abortions. 

Last March, an in-depth report issued by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) refuted these claims using the results of extensive data analyses. 

Regarding the safety of abortion, the NASEM report concluded that serious complications from legal abortion are rare, regardless of the method used.

In fact, according to the National Institutes of Health, childbirth in the United States is about 90 times more fatal than legal abortion.

Regarding the potential of long-term health effects from legal abortions, the NASEM report concluded that having an abortion does not increase a woman’s risk of secondary infertility, pregnancy-related hypertensive disorders, preterm birth, breast cancer, or mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Further, the NASEM report noted that abortion-specific regulations in many states may prohibit qualified providers from performing abortions, may misinform women of the risks of the procedures they are considering, or may require medically unnecessary services and delay care.

Finally, the report noted that access to clinical education and training in abortion care is highly variable at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Specifically, training opportunities are particularly limited in the Southern and Midwestern states, as well as in rural areas throughout the country.

Legal abortion in our country is safe and doesn’t lead to harmful long-term health effects.

Unfortunately, the religious right, with assistance from the Trump administration, is intent on imposing serious obstacles to women seeking legal abortions.
Don Steiner
Schenectady

 

Stefanik shutdown vote is not jusified

By U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik voting to reopen the government, she has joined the Dems. Or as I prefer to say, she went over to the dark side.”

I once was proud that we Republicans had a strong female voice in Washington; not so much anymore.

She claims her vote to reopen the government is in sympathy for federal workers.

Her sympathy for these workers who will be fully recompensed and continue to have a job after the shutdown is over — as opposed to the possible and probable future victims of illegal criminals, human trafficking and the drugs poured into our inner cities — is not justifiable.

Her decision not to accept her pay is commendable. However, she hasn’t stated whether she will also be recompensed. 
Dr. Arthur Salvatore
Malta

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