Kudos to the president

To the Editor:

As far as I am concerned, President Trump’s decision to “transition” our military out of Syria and Afghanistan is important to resolving “neighborhood” problems in the Middle East. The U.S presence and overstaying prevents the countries involved from finding long-lasting solutions. Super powers from the outside don’t understand the complexities nor have the level of inherent risks to broker true peace to the region.

In my estimation, this is a brilliant decision; fostered by a president who abhors violence. A successful business person tends to have an economic perspective entirely different from a military leader. Cost versus rewards counts; for the U.S. these Middle East wars are wars by choice.

Dennis Schneider

Angels Camp

A Christmas
Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

Immigration seems complicated, but it’s complicated because we wish it to be. We look for loopholes and rationalizations in any movement toward reform instead of beginning with the obvious — the moral imperative. A wall is not a solution, but an ungodly idea by an ungodly man.

I have long wondered at our presumption that migrants and refugees are “illegal” when it is a fact that we took the land by force and fiat from Mexico. That is not emphasized in textbooks and our memories are conveniently short. The statement, “We didn’t cross the border; the border crossed us” is true.

For those who struggle to follow the radical teachings of Jesus, how can we possibly align “welcoming the stranger” with our policy of slamming the door on refugees from violence and poverty?

Isn’t the young woman who a week ago climbed the barrier fence to give birth in “the promised land,” the visible and contemporary figure of Mary, the mother of Jesus, who tried to find welcome and shelter in Bethlehem 2019 years ago?

We must accept responsibility for our government’s clandestine activities in Central America in the 1980s and 1990s, working to destabilize those countries and supporting dictators. This, again, is a great omission in history.

We need as encompassing look at immigration. Perhaps open borders are the answer or perhaps a regulated stream where individual U.S. families, churches, businesses sponsor individual families for a finite period to help them settle.

Creative solutions are unlimited, and maybe we’ll all have to have less so others can have enough.

Any approach should be based on need — on what we can do for our suffering brothers and sisters — as opposed to what they can do for us. Perhaps we are missing a great opportunity to become fully human.

Peggy Kingman


Trump’s vanity wall

To the Editor:

The government will remain shut down until we, the American people, pay for Trump’s vanity wall. Is that what you voted for? MAGA.

Terril Spitze

Twain Harte

How long
must this go on?

To the Editor:

Earlier this week, Donald Trump went on TV and referred to the United States as ‘the company.’ Oops.

It’s clear to me that he actually does think of the United States as some business he’s running. In his mind, America is his to do with as he pleases. He acts on impulse, making decisions alone in his bed late at night and posting them on Twitter. He chooses to ignore the pool of expertise and knowledge available to him, preferring to rely on his “gut.” Advisors who attempt to guide him are viewed as enemies who must be publicly destroyed. Nothing feels so good to him as flattery; he basks in it like an old lizard under a warming lamp. He looks up to autocratic rulers like Putin and Kim and envies the brutal power they enjoy.

To be fair, these are values and behaviors he was taught. He was born into wealth and privilege. His world does not resemble ours. He’s never had to work, or worry about paying the rent or the heat bill. He’s never had to make amends for his mistakes. He’s had everything handed to him or fixed for him. The result? He has no character, no substance. He’s a pathetic husk of a man, insecure and spiteful. He’s a danger to us all.

Being president of this country is not like a starring role on a celebrity TV show, or wangling sleazy business deals. It’s a terribly serious, sobering job which involves protecting 300 million Americans. We are accustomed to having a president who understands the job. We don’t have one right now. How long must this go on?

Rene Mayo