By John Peters
August 9, 2013
To the Editor,
This comment is in reference to the editorial that appeared in the Mount Airy News Tuesday August 6, 2013 titled: “Another national publication looks at NC and it’s not flattering”.
You referenced Time Magazine and the New York Times editorial (which called the session’s actions a “demolition derby”), and said, “Overall it painted the state in unflattering tones, which is, unfortunately, becoming all too common…”
First of all, the opinions of Time Magazine and the New York Times are less than ideal when it comes to the ideals of the citizenry of the state of North Carolina. Having been born and raised in NC and a general contractor in this state from 1979 until 1994 I have personally known the difference between the mentalities of the two regions. There is no comparison in the mentality.
You mentioned the hot button issues:
1. “The General Assembly has limited voter registration and essentially eliminated some folks from the voting process”.
Although I disagree with the General Assembly’s decision to require a picture voter ID at a cost of over a million dollars to NC taxpayers, this provision does not limit or eliminate any qualified person from voting. I suggest to all children, aunts, uncles, nephews, cousins, and friends of those that do not have a photo ID to make sure your relative/friend receives the free photo ID from the state. Far in advance of the voting deadline. Then make sure everyone goes to the polling place and cast a vote for the candidate of their choice. This should encourage a larger voter turnout than has ever been experienced in NC.
2. “Has limited access to the polls.”
If this is in reference to the week shorter period of satellite voting: I encourage all NC voters to make sure you cast your ballot in the allotted time. This should not impose a great burden on anyone wishing to vote. It may even be cost effective for the NC taxpayer.
3. “Made it difficult for young adults still in college to take part in the electoral process.”
This provision should infuriate young adults and cause them to make an excreted effort to return home, register and vote in their designated precincts. After all, voting is one of the only rights of freedom we still have left. All you college kids of voting age be sure you register and vote!
4. “Cut state jobless benefits and interrupted access to federal jobless benefits for many state residents.”
This is one accusation I have no defense for. It is not in the best interest of the many unemployed in NC. The decision to not accept federal dollars was nothing short of saying we do not care about the unemployed in NC. I too have been in the unemployed stats, for almost 2 years after I closed my construction business in 1994. I went back to college and obtained a degree in network administration. I am not a deadbeat that thinks the state or federal government owes me anything. I applied to hundreds of job opportunities during that period and received only 5 or 6 offers to interview. The jobs were simply not available, my age was a deterrent, or the job was prefilled prior to the posting. This decision by the General Assembly will, or should, end the careers of several NC lawmakers. This decision by the NC lawmakers goes to show where their priorities lie.
5. “Reduced funding to programs for the poor.”
Again, I have no defense to this accusation. Cutting funding to the most vulnerable in our state is not only indefensible, it is downright cruel! Why not cut the millions of funding to the NC athletics programs, coaches, chancellors, department heads, governor, etc. Why do we continue to pour money into these rabbit holes that return nothing but controversy concerning fraud by elected officials, and athletes that have passing grades to programs when they have not even attended a class. Yet others suffer because we do not have the funding available. If I remember correctly, the first thing Gov. McCory did was to raise the salary of some of his staff. Voters please take notice of these things.
6. “…so called tax reform lowered personal income taxes, primarily for those who are well-off, decreased corporate taxes, and shifted more of the tax burden to those poor who are seeing benefits and state aid cut.”
Having operated an incorporated small business in NC for almost two decades I know what lower tax rates can mean to a business. But, I never would have asked the state to lower my rate at the expense of cutting funding for Head Start, More at Four, senior citizens meals-on-wheels etc. This action again shows that this present legislature has the interest of business above the NC citizenry. Again, this I think will be another nail-in-the-coffin for the present NC legislature. I counted it a privilege to be able to contribute, in the form of taxes, to the state in which I was earning a living for my family and gaining wealth for my corporation.
Comments by Sen. Thom Goolsby calling the Moral Monday protesters “Moron Mondays…, clowns…carnival barkers…angry aged former hippies from the looney left,” leaves little to the imagination of what he thinks of the NC voters that put him in office.
This legislature is also trying to take over the Ashville water and sewer facilities, the Charlotte Airport and god only knows what else they will try to control.
Vote all these folks into office again and we all deserve what we vote for.