Not acting honorable
I sent the following message to Rep. Ben Cline, but it is a message I would like to send to all of Congress:
The formal way of addressing someone of your office is “The Honorable.....” but honorable does not apply right now. By blocking the orderly transition to a new administration, you are dishonoring the process and the office. A new administration has been legally elected. If you truly cared about your constituents and your country, you would accept the results and work together.
I am so very disappointed that our representatives are acting like spoiled children. I think we deserve better. I truly hope this is not the best you and your colleagues have to offer. Put aside blind loyalty and move forward to a future where people who disagree can find common ground.
Carla Selvey, Roanoke
Anecdotal arguments continue to disappoint
In response to Dan Casey’s article “Reps. Cline and Griffith are living in political la-la land” (Nov. 17) and on the subject of anecdotes.
Dan Casey uses opposing anecdotes to argue that Rep. Griffith and Rep. Cline should concede that Joe Biden has, before the Electors have voted, won the Presidential election. While it is true that for me personally I wish it was widely acknowledged by Republicans that Joe Biden will win, and we would move on the national discourse, it should be noted that anecdotal arguments are not the way to win an argument, especially in our day when they’ve been tried by both sides to win over a large majority of the voters and have instead done nothing but leave us divided.
He does acknowledge the sour attitude that many Democrats had when Trump won in 2016, but Mr. Casey then sets up the example of Gov. McAuliffe against the current positions of the Representatives. But this does nothing to win anything; I can point to the anecdotes that approximately 50 Democrat Representatives put deed to the words ‘Not My President’ in 2016 and boycotted President Trump’s inauguration (they were definitely ready to move on to governing...) and Republican Gov. DeWine of Ohio has congratulated Joe Biden. These two anecdotes could be used to argue that with the exception of the very poor attitude of President Trump, the GOP is handling the loss in 2020 better than the Democrats did in 2016.
This is not what I assert, however. I assert that in this polarized time both sides are so invested in political victory that we handle defeats in very poor spirit with a borderline apocalyptic attitude, and compounding that we have an unconventional President bent on saying the opposite of whatever reporters demand that he say.
There is a good argument to be made that for the good of the country, GOP lawmakers should go ahead and acknowledge Biden’s victory. I wish they would be like Gov. McAuliffe four years ago. But anecdotal arguments have not helped so far and will continue to disappoint.
Matt Gallimore, Roanoke
Only two choices?
Let me start by saying that I am old enough that I call myself a dinosaur. When I took government class, we were proudly taught about the American two-party system. Now I ask: What’s so good about only two choices? If you’re shopping for a new car, who wants their choices limited to only two brands or only two dealers? If you’re painting your home, who wants only two choices?
Yet currently we only have two choices politically. As a country, aren’t we more diverse than only two choices? It seems to me that most Americans are closer to the middle of the road than the extremes of both parties. It seems to me that we would be well served to have a third and maybe even a fourth party!
The problem that I see is that so many people feel that they are throwing away their vote by not voting for a Democrat or a Republican. However, consider what it would mean if neither the Democrats or Republicans could achieve a clear majority in either the House of Representatives or the Senate because there were enough third/fourth party members to prevent that. Suddenly the major parties would have to offer compromises to pass legislation rather than the blaming and name calling that they all do now.
It would be nice if someone truly independent could run a successful campaign, but the high cost of running a campaign almost necessitates a party to help with fundraising to mount a campaign. So why not consider a candidate the next time you see a choice other than a Republican or Democrat on your ballot?
If this got you thinking, maybe it’s time to talk about term limits for Congressmen and Senators.
Paul Bradford, Salem
Dial M for ...
For several years I’ve been entertained by the attempts of news agencies, pundits, career politicians and American citizens in general to avoid using the L word in relation to our leader. Instead, they use confusing alternatives such as falsehoods, mendacities, obfuscations, disingenuous and nontruths to describe the steady stream of misinformation (another one!) issuing forth from the president’s mouth. I’ve been known to rant a bit about this refusal to confront the president’s lies, but I realize now that we are doing exactly the same thing with the even more dreaded M word.
That word is MURDER.
More than a quarter of a million Americans have died while the President has done nothing to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead he plays golf, watches FOX News (well maybe not so much anymore), and Tweets his denials. But the truth is that many of the dead have Trump to thank for their current state, and many more will die in the upcoming months because he has no coherent plan. I’m sure we can come up with alternatives to the M word as well – maybe terminating, exterminating or annihilating. But none of them sound as antiseptic as the L word alternatives. Perhaps that is because there is no real alternative word to describe what Mr. Trump is doing to his fellow Americans.
Fred Singer, Radford
Keys have been taken away
Regarding the election, I feel much safer now that the keys to the Hospital For The Criminally Insane have been taken away from its most dangerous inmate.
Joseph Hudson, Roanoke
COVID and Northam
COVID won’t kill Virginia as much as Northam will.
Martha Jeffries, Roanoke