Our greatest danger
Journalists are definitely not "the enemy of the people," as Joseph Stalin and other dictators have claimed, yet our real truth-reporting media is largely bypassing what Americans need to hear most.
It's not just about the shocking covid-19 spreading and killing through incompetent leadership; not just about climate change (fires, hurricanes, and floods); not just Russian and Chinese meddling in our elections; not the slowing of U.S. mail service to limit voting by mail; not the overwhelming abundance of lies and distortion of truths; not some people believing false conspiracies (like QAnon) and discounting anything they don't agree with as a hoax; not the necessary protests against inequality of justice; not even the likely appointment of a new judge to the Supreme Court right before or after the election--regardless of who is elected.
All this disheartening news is only occasionally referenced by knowledgeable guests on real news programs--a bit more so, in books.
But as the result of these separate horrifying reports--with little notice--morph into the much greater danger to our cherished democracy and revered Constitution, we are rapidly becoming an autocracy.
Care for constituents
When I first moved to Little Rock decades ago, I didn't realize that Arkansas had some esteemed leaders in Washington. Men like David Pryor, later his son Mark Pryor, Dale Bumpers, and others who were highly respected in the U.S. Senate as being people of high principles. On the state level was a relative newcomer named Bill Clinton. These public servants were all voted in time and time again. All of these leaders had been elected because of their concerns and actions for their constituents' well-being, which showed through loud and clear.
We are now faced with an election. One of our current senators is up for re-election with no Democrat running against him. In my eyes, this senator more appropriately fills the role of sycophant to our current president and is more interested in his own self-interest over the interests of the constituents back home.
Admittedly, I know very little about the Libertarian Party. I'm sure that if I researched it I would find both things I like and dislike about that party. In the same way the Democrats are labeled as socialists, a characteristic which I have observed for years to be totally false, the Libertarians probably have similar labels applied to them.
I believe that our country is on a wrong and potentially dangerous path. This has led me to the conclusion that rather than throw away my vote for our current senator, I will vote for his opponent, Ricky Harrington. I'm doing so to send a message that our current senator is not fit for the job he was elected to. I feel Ricky could probably do a better job looking after the interest of Arkansans than our current occupant of that esteemed office.
The chances we take
I used to play a game called Connect the Dots in grade school. I taught my son later how to play it. Now it is popular to use the name to connect similar events or happenings.
I recall a scene in the movie "Papillon" where Steve McQueen's character is trying to escape Devil's Island and comes to a place where a man with leprosy shares a cigar he's smoking with Steve, and Steve takes a hit off it. The man asks him how he knows that he has dry leprosy--the kind that isn't contagious--and Steve replies, "I didn't." He wants a boat from that man, and is going to do anything to get it.
Little did I know that I would be reminded of that scene decades later. A woman who wants to be a Supreme Court justice is playing Steve's role. She talks to various White House officials who can help her get the job, but she will have to not wear a mask, as they are not wearing masks; to do so would be seen as an insult, and people don't give jobs to people who insult them.
So I see the video of this woman having to possibly risk her life for a very good job. My heart goes out to her and all of those, all of us, who have to do that in everyday life to "better" ourselves. Then have to see a few days later how at risk she actually was/is. I wonder what she is thinking today.
Need to do our part
After seeing the president recover so easily from the coronavirus, Arkansans need to meet him halfway on reopening and getting the economy back in shape so he can be re-elected.
Everybody should know now how easy it is to defeat this virus, and we should all take the president's words to heart and not be afraid of covid or let it dominate our lives. Clearly we know now that if you do catch the coronavirus and your in-house medical team thinks you need specialized treatment, a Marine helicopter will be there shortly to carry you off for even more specialized treatment where you will receive the latest in therapeutics that no other person in the world has been given.
But c'mon, people! We really have to meet him halfway and do our part. Is it really too much to expect all of us to ask our groundskeepers to make sure our helipads are in reasonable shape? Frankly, I've been shocked to notice the disrepair that many of my neighbors' helipads are in right now. Our Marine pilots shouldn't be exposed to additional risks because we can't take a couple seconds to ask our groundskeepers to make sure they are in good shape with no obstructions.
Rethink electoral vote
Hats off to Carol Ann Bone for her letter published in the paper regarding how Arkansas' electoral votes are cast. When I vote for a president, I'm voting for the person I want to represent the republic of the United States of America. Letting some gerrymandered elector cast their vote for me renders my voice silent.