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Letters to the editor for Jan. 6

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What ‘We the people’ means

Joe Manchin, Joe Manchin, Joe Manchin. Is he the president, or is Joe Biden or as the lunatic fringe insists is Donald Trump still president? Can’t tell the players without a scorecard. Everybody has concluded that Joe Manchin is the reason Build Back Better legislation has not been approved.

But there are at least 50 other reasons the bill languishes and those are the 50 Republican senators. Build Back Better includes a continuation of the Child Tax Credit, money for childcare, paid family leave, free community college, an expansion of Medicare and a large chuck of money to fight climate change and transition to renewable energy. Does this mean that not one Republican supports any of these measures? Are Republicans uniformly against helping the American people? Or is this the more cynical notion that they cannot help the Democrats pass anything?

In the past Republicans would vote for Democratic legislation and Democrats would vote for Republican legislation. Seems to me that the Republicans are putting Party before Country.

And while we are ragging on the Republicans, what about “we the people” don’t the Republicans understand? It is not we the Republican people, we the white people, we the residents of Virginia people, it is “we the people”, all of us, every last one of us. To pass any legislation making it more difficult to vote is a sin against all of us, a sin against the Constitution and a sin against all the people who have suffered and sometimes died so that you can vote and make your voice heard.

LOUIS HARPSTER

Shipman

Hats off to Northam

First, I’d like to congratulate outgoing Governor Northam for the great job he has done for Virginia during this trying time. Virginia has reacted better to the virus than many of the surrounding states because of his leadership and Virginia has won back-to-back awards as the best state in which to do business. He leaves office with a budget surplus and a strong balance sheet. Sir, you’ve done a very good job and I, for one, would cheerfully vote for you again. Incoming Governor Youngkin has big shoes to fill and for the state’s sake, I hope he’s ready to fill them.

Again, I urge him to use the budget surplus to prepare the state for the troubles and opportunities that will come with climate change and sea level rise instead of giving a tax cut. Governments are enacted to do what individuals can’t accomplish; communities in eastern Virginia will soon need millions to combat sea level rise and in the western mountains wildfires may become a big problem.

On the national scene 2022 is a continuation of 2021. We still have loser Trump lying and muddying the legal waters to slither out of his many shortcomings and outright criminal activity. As expected he’s trying to drag out his judgment in the hope that a slavish Republican victory in 2022 will exonerate him for the crime of attempting to destroy our democracy. The question becomes, “Are there enough voters in the country willing to throw the democracy into the waste bin of history by voting for a dictator wannabe or his supporters?” I’d sure like to see Denver Riggleman’s name on the Republican side of General Election ballot for our 5th Congressional District. He is a Republican who respects the Constitution and who has a good chance of earning my vote. I will never vote for a Trumpian and I’m afraid that eliminates our present representative from any consideration.

Finally for this week, the statewide redistricting maps for the House of Delegates, State Senate, and Congressional Districts are now available for viewing by following the links on page 3 of this pdf. https://www.vacourts.gov/courts/scv/districting/redistricting_final.pdf

The political ramifications of the new maps are discussed in the memorandum (last link) pdf from the same page. I hope this information is useful. It appears that the court has done a good job with these maps. I salute them.

We’re Americans and we can do better.

MIKE TABONY,

Gladstone

Visit a neighbor church

My daily reading reflected on tribalism, and spoke of it as a sense of loyalty and belonging to a group. It’s a good thing but taken to the extreme can lead to hostilities.

A thought came to me about our community churches. If we all took one Sunday to attend another church service, we would better understand our neighbors. Meet that church’s congregation and share by loving your neighbor.

Let’s say this idea expanded to have one particular Sunday each year where all churches participated. Each church would present of its history, such as who and when the congregation first got together. A small fellowship gathering could be held afterwards with homemade treats and coffee. I’m not saying everyone in your church leave for a Sunday, but just in small number spread out to attend a church in your area. The following Sunday, those who participated would give a short summary of their visit and what Christian fellowship they felt. Short articles could be sent to your local newspaper or added to an Internet site. It may lead to friendships or support groups, but most certainly broaden one’s view as neighbors.

Christ will work through each one of us and spread His love with a visit to your neighboring church.

THOMAS NELSON JR.

Roseland

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