Letters for January 19, 2017

And other times, too

As the events of the last few days have shown, we need to do more as a city to provide for our homeless community. The homeless were the hardest hit by the flooding of the river. We need to provide a safeground for folks to stay without being harassed by police and arrested. We also need to put funding toward building temporary and permanent housing.

Alese McMurtry


A teaching moment

Supporters thought Donald Trump wouldn’t shake hands with big business and the political establishment, but shake it up instead. I’m sad to see Trump is already doing just the opposite by appointing Betsy DeVos as secretary of education.

DeVos believes in more private control of our public schools and supports vouchers, which divert funds from public school, and do not provide every family the opportunity of school “choice.” Vouchers often leave the poorest families trapped in ever more starved public schools. I attended Galena High, where I had the privilege of taking jazz band, but the threat of vouchers means future students may not have that opportunity. Fine arts are usually the first to be cut. If DeVos is confirmed and the Trump administration focuses on expanding policies like voucher systems, we’ll be limiting resources necessary for our children to grow and expand their working knowledge.

Let’s say no to DeVos, no to ineffective and harmful schemes like voucher programs, and yes to adequate public school funding.

Brendan Aguiar


Monumental letter

Since 1906, 16 presidents of both parties have used the Antiquities Act to protect some of our nation’s most valuable and vulnerable natural, cultural and historic resources. Protecting places like Gold Butte just makes sense. Gold Butte saw extensive damage over the past few years and it was imperative this landscape—that is habitat for rare and threatened species, sacred to Native American Nations, and Nevada’s piece of the Grand Canyon—be protected.

In Dennis Myers’s Jan 5 article “Gold Butte preserved,” he states that “[t]he problem is that the law—enacted by Congress—authorizes presidents to act as Obama did, without congressional input.” On the contrary, the benefit of that law is that presidents can act. And they can act to protect places like the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, Great Basin National Park, and now Gold Butte, especially on the heels of the Congressional inaction of the past several congressional cycles.

Senator Harry Reid and Congresswoman Dina Titus had legislation to protect Gold Butte that was stalled in Congress. So thanks to their support and the leadership of President Obama, Gold Butte will be protected for now and for future generations.

Andrea Welsch


Russian denial

Re “Why publish denialism?” and “Exploding green heads,” (editorial and Let Freedom Ring, Dec. 20):

It’s the job of any newspaper’s editor and/or publisher to ensure that facts, not lies, are printed for the public to read and trust. I always assumed that columnists write their opinions based on factual issues, not of untruths. Anything else is irresponsible journalism, in my opinion. If you’re going to permit Mr. Trainor to report his opinion on facts that are inaccurate, his columns aren’t valid.

Sure, you addressed Trainor’s lies in your editorial, but his fictitious column shouldn’t have been printed in the first place. You also could respond to letters that express obvious inaccuracies, such as the Dec. 29 letter that stated “Russia had nothing to do with the leaked emails.” Please set the standard for strong, honorable journalism.

Mary Lee Fulkerson