OPINION | LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Jeopardizing rights | The God argument | Been there, done that

Jeopardizing rights

Here is a theoretical question: If a ballot measure was voted on in Arkansas, and 59.99 percent of all voters were for it, and 40.01 percent against, would that measure pass? Not if Issue 2 passes this November. And rare for this day, it is something that would be bad for both major parties if it passes.

Republicans, imagine if additional voting-right protections or right-to-life protections failed to pass because a small minority said no. Democrats, imagine if marijuana legalization is shot down by that small minority. That hardly seems fair, does it? You discover a majority of the state backs a position, but it fails because it isn't a big enough majority, the 60 percent that would be required by Issue 2.

Consensus-building is important, as is reaching across the aisle and building bipartisan support. But in today's highly politicized world, getting 60 percent of the state to agree to anything is a tough task. How tough? Theoretically, if Issue 2 had existed since 2010, only nine of the 17 ballot measures passed until now would be law today. Put another way, just 52.94 percent would have succeeded.

Halving our ballot-measure success rate hardly seems to follow our state motto "the people rule." Under this policy, all but perhaps the least controversial issues would be shot down. Some might argue that's a good thing. Perhaps, but remember that ballot measures were how we raised minimum wage and legalized voter ID as well as medical marijuana, all controversial to at least some degree. We the people deserve the right to make controversial decisions at the ballot box. Let's not jeopardize that right this November.


Little Rock

The God argument

Through the ages theologians and philosophers have posited several arguments for the existence of God. The three main ones are the ontological, the causal and design. There are a few others, but these are the three main arguments.

Here is another. It is hard to consider a name for this argument that instantly defines and explains the essence of its truth, but I will coin the name here. It is the Donald J. Trump (substitute your favorite autocrat) argument for the existence of God. Simply stated it posits that there is no truth, and no God, except the truth and God that Donald J. Trump tells us, whatever that is. There can be no objections.


Hot Springs

Been there, done that

I am the widow of a career Navy veteran, and I found Ruth Waldon's letter to have several misinformed statements, but Thomas King put the most glaring ones in "been there, done that" language much better than I could.

Maybe she should have a talk with one of our many heroes who have BTDT. Maybe even try to visit anywhere abroad without shots!



Stop what programs?

President Biden was called a fascist by a recent letter-writer, as was his proposal to forgive a modest amount of student loan debt. Really? Biden a "fascist"? Your correspondent sounded old enough to have at least read about World War II and Hitler and Mussolini. Perhaps if he takes the time to study the matter further, he will discover what real fascism is.

Sarah Sanders boasts that she will stop Joe Biden's liberal agenda, without stating which part she intends to stop. Perhaps supporting Ukraine in its war against Russian aggression? Averting a strike by railway workers that would have cost our economy an estimated $2 billion a day and further exacerbated inflation? Releasing strategic oil reserves to help drive down the cost of gasoline? Reducing our dependence on fossil fuel by increased funding for green energy in the existential fight against climate change? Greatly increasing spending on infrastructure, rural access to broadband and strengthening and rebuilding the nation's electric grid? Funding for medical research and vaccine development? Assisting over 350,000 hardworking Arkansans with ballooning student loan debt? Increasing funding for early childhood education and school lunch programs for families in need of assistance? Insisting that America's wealthiest individuals and corporations pay a minimum tax? Passing the CHIPS and Science Act which will lower costs and create thousands of well-paying manufacturing jobs to reduce our reliance on chip supplies from China?

I'm sure there are other terrible programs that Sarah will put an end to if she can just figure out how. Luckily, she doesn't have any power to stop anything. She will be an Arkansas Don Quixote tilting at windmills. All hat, no cattle. All rattle, no bite.

Perhaps Sanders will join Ron DeSantis and start exporting immigrants and asylum-seekers from Texas to places that will provide them with humane assistance. This cruel stunt intended to produce a laugh among members of the MAGAverse at the expense of more decent citizens is the act of a showman, not a statesman, a grandstander, not a governor.


Little Rock

Volunteer for veterans

It has been four years volunteering at the VA hospital in North Little Rock. Over that time, a lot has been learned, both happy and sad.

The opportunity to do this is more than gratifying. During this time in the heat and cold I've been educated as to the happenings there. As time passed I felt I was being very helpful and supportive to the vets and employees. But after a period of time I realized what a better person I was becoming. I was and still do give every day that I am there. However, I've come to the realization that I am receiving much more than I give.

Retired vets would be such a good match to volunteer here. Most people heading into retirement concentrate on having adequate income to enjoy the deserved time in retirement. Very smart thing to do, but planning on what you're going to do with your time is also very important. Doing something gratifying and challenging is also a smart thing to do.

Come on out to the VA volunteer office at Fort Roots and see what can make you have a complete retirement. Just ask me; that is why I drive a cart.


Little Rock

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