Meting out covid cash
Recent correspondent Robert Bemis would have us believe that the covid "Nazis" are forcing people to take the vaccine when "there is nothing wrong with them." That is the purpose of a vaccine--to prevent one from getting sick and subsequently infecting others. If you do not want to be vaccinated, then stay home and let the rest of us get back to our normal lives.
I have a simple solution for the allocation of money from the recently enacted covid-relief legislation. Any state whose congressmen voted against the American Rescue Plan Act will receive nothing, except extended unemployment compensation, direct payments to individuals and families, and aid that directly benefits schools and children. Not another dime.
Any state legislature actively depriving women of their right to terminate a pregnancy, limiting access to the polls to disenfranchise Democrats, discriminating against transgendered individuals just to pander to the baser instincts of their constituents, and otherwise passing mean-spirited and meaningless legislation aimed at endearing themselves to Trump's delusional followers will also receive nothing for their state except direct aid to children and families. Why should any state receive funds from a law it claims to oppose, passed by an administration it claims to despise?
Lastly, the prospect of either Leslie Rutledge or Sarah Huckabee Sanders as governor is too appalling to contemplate. Jim Hendren is certainly no liberal, and he too may end up debasing himself to win the support of the state's far-right majority, but currently he appears to be the lesser of evils in a state filled with them.
DAVID ELI COCKCROFT
On barriers to voting
I imagine Republican strategists will want Donald Trump as their 2024 presidential nominee even less than in 2016. But they know Trump's base can beat primary candidates who oppose him or his choices in the 2022 midterm elections.
They seem to be welcoming the Trump cult into the fold, but are trying to keep it calm. They are, in a word, lukewarm to it. Mr. Trump must, therefore, spew them from his mouth.
The spewing will bring some weak sisters in line and cause others to stand up to the cult. Either way, voters will have more opportunities to--and will on the national level--reject the cult. I predict the spewing will reduce the cult's numbers, but harden it around more "stolen" elections.
Although the cult will lose on the national level, it will prevail and probably grow in several states, including Arkansas. It will be helped where Republicans succeed in preserving and strengthening barriers to voting.
P.S. Making it hard to vote is the real steal. Our history of excluding or discouraging various classes of citizens from voting is no excuse. It's an expectoration on government of, for and by the people. They know that. They don't care. Their main argument, made straight-faced and unapologetically, is that higher voter turnout favors Democrats.
P.P.S. Would you put a "Don't Vote" or "I Miss Jim Crow" sticker on your pickup's bumper? All registered voters should get a ballot and be encouraged to vote by mail.
Stupidity and money
Never in my 96 years have I seen such a suicidal, detrimental frenzy by some of our alleged leaders to outdo each other in stupidity by spending vast amounts of future income taxes on such pie-in-the-sky ideas. Many of the recipients of this covid-19 relief money have said that they intend to spend it to buy Nintendo products. Many of the intended uses for these monies are just as off-target. The word "need" has been forgotten in lieu of politics.
Oh, Lord, deliver us!
Problems into profits
Granddad was a college professor. Dad was an insurance agent. In the '70s and '80s, south Arkansas was scattered with empty public buildings and crumbling, derelict commercial properties. With a dwindling population in the area, these abandoned eyesores were liability hazards for the owners and dangerous nuisances for the rest of us.
Most people saw a problem. Dad and Granddad saw opportunity.
They had the buildings demolished and hired people, ranging from unemployed teens to disabled retirees, to clean the mortar from the bricks and put them on pallets. The bricks were then sold locally and all over the South as premium, vintage house-building material.
The workers were paid a fair wage, and Dad and Granddad made a substantial profit. These men are remembered long after their deaths for many reasons, but I remember how they turned problems into profits.
America, with her rapidly aging population, has been led to believe that there is a huge problem waiting at our southern border, ready to overwhelm us. I believe we should instead see that God has extended a helping hand, if only we are wise enough and brave enough to reach out and accept that hand.
These hungry souls at our borders are the answers to so many of our problems. Here is the vital youthful energy we so desperately need. Here are the builders, teachers, health-care workers, and public servants of tomorrow, if we can just accept them today. We can set up something like the Civilian Conservation Corps to house, feed and employ these "huddled masses" so they can be set on their path to citizenship. Let America accept this gift from God. Let's refuse to turn these valuable assets into bitter enemies. Let's turn our "problems" into profits.
Make America greet again.
It's not how it works
Mr. Robert Bemis wrote that he won't get the vaccine because he isn't sick, while suggesting that we who do have few brain cells.
He obviously doesn't know that you don't get the shot when you are already sick; you get it to prevent getting sick. Evidently he knows nothing about how vaccines work.