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OPINION | LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Players from outside | Perception and truth | Doesn't make sense

January 19, 2023 at 2:40 a.m.


Players from outside

The Razorback basketball rooster lists 15 players, five from Arkansas and 10 from out of state. One of the 10 is from California, two from Washington, D.C., and one from Brooklyn. Arkansas money, either Razorback Foundation money or athletic scholarship money, is paying for room, board, medical care, an education and travel for those four particular players.

Do you, for a minute, believe those four players gives a damn what the name of the school is on their jerseys or what state they are in? I don't either. They are here to play basketball. Do you think a young man from California, D.C. or Brooklyn is going to stay in Arkansas, be made an Arkansas citizen, and contribute to the well-being of the state? I don't either.

We are going to feed, house and educate those young men, and they will be on their way ... and we will do the same thing all over again. Do you suppose we should give a young man from Arkansas with equal or slightly less talent the opportunity to play for Arkansas? Naw ... let's not take any chances in winning.

WAYMOND TEAGUE

Greenbrier

Perception and truth

The letter from Russ Bailey in the Democrat-Gazette on Tuesday adds another instance to the list of examples of extreme conservatives who, even while claiming they "do not like the man," would apparently vote for Donald Trump over Joe Biden. This one claims that "there is not enough space here to list ... reasons why,"

If there are "reasons why," I'm sure the newspaper would allow writer Bailey space to enumerate them.

I saw a similar example near the French Market in New Orleans, where a man in a costume modeled on the U.S. flag was attending a kiosk offering items calling for the impeachment of President Biden and referring to him as "Traitor in Chief." Notably absent was any information on "reasons why" Mr. Biden deserved that title or impeachment.

Our own newly installed governor has "hit the ground running" to do the same sort of thing, calling for laws to prevent further occurrences of things that don't actually occur.

It seems that writer Bailey, French Market Flag Man, and Gov. Sarah Sanders have learned well at the knee of the former president and the current governor of Florida that, for some people, truth isn't nearly as powerful as perception, even when the perception has no basis in truth.

STACY CLANTON

Magnolia

Doesn't make sense

I do not understand why President Joe Biden's personal lawyers are allowed to search for classified documents they do not have the clearance to view instead of the authorities. This is like allowing the defense attorneys to examine the crime scene before the police.

PHILLIP BASINGER

Conway

Debt destroying U.S.

There is no reason for a budget default. I believe there are thousands of unneeded federal employees, especially in the useless, destructive departments like Education and Energy. It will take several lifetimes now to reduce the near $32 trillion in federal debt. This in itself will destroy America. As of now there is no future in America for our children's children. Sad state of affairs that Congress has allowed to develop.

RICHARD HARRIS

Conway

Freedom to express

Sen. Gary Stubblefield seeks to prohibit the viewing of drag performances by minors. Senate Bill 43 defines drag shows as performers who dress up in clothing and makeup worn by the opposite sex. Oh, and the performers sing or dance. What Stubblefield does not realize is we have another word to describe such a performance. We call it a musical.

This bill, poorly written, would bar families from seeing the Tony Award-winning production of "Tootsie," playing this month at the Robinson Center in Little Rock. It would ban families from seeing "Hairspray." "Victor/Victoria." "Yentl." There are children's musicals, Disney's "Mulan," for example, where gender deception is part of the plot. The senator's bill suggests parents should not allow their children to enjoy an actor depicting a role of the opposite gender. Yet both parents and children have enjoyed performances of "Peter Pan," in which Peter is most often played by a female. Parents might disagree with Stubblefield and worry about depriving their children of quality theater, like Shakespearean theater. Stubblefield might quietly need to be reminded that when Shakespeare's plays were originally performed, all the roles were played by men. Even the fair and lovely Juliet was a close-shaven and well-draped male.

If this law was in effect, it might have accidentally prohibited central Arkansas' Wildwood Park of the Arts from showing its biggest family (drag) show, "Oliver," where the protagonist was female in half of the performances. I once saw a performance at a central Arkansas high school where half the brothers in "Joseph's Technicolor Dreamcoat" were females. A lack of male performers, it seems, created these "pants roles."

I call not for a revision to this bill nor an amendment, as I doubt the good senator could write, or revise, a law that distinguishes between these two types of performances. This bill, as it stands, will incidentally bar the freedom of expression the performances give to us, a gift less rich if limited by law. And this law runs the risk of limiting our children's love of theater. Thus this bill should not be revised; it should be dragged out.

KIMBER BARBER-FENDLEY

Little Rock

Above and beyond

On Dec. 23, I rode the Pulaski Tech bus after work to head home. The weather had turned nasty and the streets were slick. I transferred to the Baptist Medical Center bus when it got to Midtown and the westbound buses were caught in the ice on the hill. The buses were called back to the Travel Center. When the buses were at the Travel Center, the drivers were given special instructions, and when we got to the Baptist Med Center, there were supervisors in SUVs waiting to take us where we needed to go.

I really appreciate the efforts of the Rock Regional Metro drivers and the supervisors.

FREDERICK T. SMITH JR.

Little Rock


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