Prepare mail-in vote
Governor Hutchinson: As a League of Women Voters member, I strongly believe in the right for every citizen of our state and nation to be able to participate in the voting process.
I was a poll worker in the March primary election. I worked at a polling station that served many hundreds of voters. The other day, I resigned from working the polls in the fall. I do not believe it is safe for me or for any poll worker to be exposed to that many people. Although I do not have a pre-existing medical condition, by nature of my age (I am 72 years old), I am at higher risk for serious coronavirus complications. I believe most poll workers are in that age and health risk.
Governor, it is time for you to announce that any eligible resident can vote by mail in Arkansas in November. Please do not wait until a few days before the election. People need ample time to request and submit their ballots. It was good that you made a proclamation before the last runoff election to allow more people access to an absentee ballot, but it was too late. Most people never even got the word about that opportunity. Please make the announcement now to ensure all Arkansas citizens are made aware of the method and manner of a mail-in ballot. Please announce now to give county clerk offices time to prepare.
We do not want our polling places to be coronavirus hot spots. We do not want Arkansas citizens, through fear, to refrain from voting.
Thank you for your urgent attention to this matter.
In response to Bradley Gitz's divisive and disgusting opinion piece last Monday: Although Mr. Gitz knows better, he claims that Democrats are being unreasonably preoccupied with safety in this pandemic, that politics are guiding their unreasonable approach, and that their attitude about addressing this pandemic will suddenly change after Joe Biden's election on Nov. 3.
Instead of denigrating Democrats and instigating defiance of the work closures, I suggest that Mr. Gitz study the example of Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who is moving as quickly as practical to properly reopen the state's economy. Governor Hutchinson is opening various work locations and churches based on analysis of Arkansas pandemic data by our medical experts, and he is leading us forward out of this pandemic in a measured, united fashion instead of blaming others for holding us back. Governors in other states are doing the same or they will face voters' wrath in the next election.
Since Mr. Gitz sometimes provides a list of recommended reading to his readers, I would like to return the favor and recommend that he Google Russian disinformation in the 2016 election and read Volume 2 of the Senate Intel report. Since the chairman and a majority of the committee are Republicans, this was not a hit piece by the opposition party. This report details how the Russians used social media to spread incorrect information on socially divisive issues such as race, immigration, and Second Amendment rights. Since there have been no consequences, the Russians will continue to interfere in our elections, and they will simply add this country's response to the coronavirus to their list of socially divisive issues. The disinformation and divisiveness that Mr. Gitz and others are peddling makes it easier for the Russians to keep meddling.
On peeling the onion
Re Wednesday's editorial, "Some global effort": Loved this piece. Your way of peeling the onion of egomania in international media was deserving of a cool smirk, which I had.
It makes me, as an Arkansan from birth, proud of people like you who continue to peel away false statements, innuendo, lies, corruption, purposeful misdirection, and reveal the truth whenever possible. Being bombarded with so much that is written for media sensation and criticism of sincere efforts to solve a world pandemic creates a sense of angst and worry over all of us. I refer to your quote by Milton Friedman. I am judging you by your results, not your intentions. Kudos.
To protect ourselves
These are harrowing times as we make our way through this pandemic. Although information trickles down from the national and state levels, oftentimes it is contradictory or just plain hard to understand. It is up to each of us to determine what our families should do and how they should protect themselves.
I go out occasionally to retrieve prescriptions and acquire a few odds and ends. In grocery stores, approximately half of the customers and workers wear masks. All of us should wear a mask in public. Remember, wearing a mask is not just for your protection, but also protects others. On one occasion, I became aware of a lady sneezing at the end of the aisle I was in. She had no mask, did not cover her sneeze and seemed oblivious as to what she was doing. I immediately turned around and did not go past her, but retreated to a distant place in the store. On another occasion, I noticed someone wearing a mask upside-down, with the nosepiece on her chin and her nose exposed. Both mouth and nose should be covered with a mask and stretched far enough to cover both your nose and chin.
My personal actions include wearing a mask correctly, carrying a small bottle of hand sanitizer at all times and being aware of those close to me and respecting their need for social distancing. At home, I have folding chairs outside our front door for deliveries and a note on the door telling delivery people what is expected of them. We do not take anything directly from a delivery person. We wash our hands often, especially after touching anything from another person. We do not allow anyone, including family not living with us, in our home.
I believe all stores should require masks of customers and employees. What is going on will not be over quickly and we need to be cautious, but not especially fearful, of what lies ahead. With planning, hope, prayer and consideration toward others, we will get through this.
Doesn't make sense
Does anyone else see the incredibly ironic contradiction in Gov. Andrew Cuomo's concern for the value of human life when he is such a champion of abortion?
SHARON VANDER ZYL
Editorial on 05/10/2020
Print Headline: Letters