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Forum, Aug. 2: We’re forgetting where we came from

Published: 8/1/2020 10:00:14 PM
Modified: 8/1/2020 10:00:12 PM
We’re forgetting where we came from

While cooking dinner recently, I happened upon a tub of butter in the back of my refrigerator. When I realized it had a dreaded, politically incorrect symbol of a Native American woman on the lid, I was aghast. I instantly closed my kitchen curtains lest I be found in possession of this “contraband.” Then, I scoured my cabinets in hopes that, while my curtains were closed, I might purge myself of the wonderful rice I grew up with, you know, with the African American man depicted on the box, or my favorite maple syrup with the African American woman depicted on the bottle.

My first thought with the butter was, do I turn myself in? Is there an amnesty drop-off box that might serve to cleanse me of my “guilt”? Or do I cruise the back roads after dark and pitch it out the window?

I am a 50-year fan of the Washington Redskins, (yup, I said Redskins). I dare estimate that there are perhaps millions of Redskins fans around the world. I revered the symbol as a brave, courageous, tough, fighting individual. Coincidentally, our Lebanon football team used the same logo for Agamek. That symbol was taken away and replaced with a bird.

One of America’s oldest, most storied sports franchises has been pressured into removing its beloved logo. Gen. Robert E. Lee has been plucked from any pedestal upon which he stood. A weathervane is removed from its historic perch in Hanover, and there are attempts to erase all mention of the purported “discoverer” of the new world. There are many more fish in this American barrel that can be shot — the Kansas City Chiefs, the Atlanta Braves, the Cleveland Indians and the Florida State Seminoles, among others.

I dare quote the late Carl Sandburg: “If America forgets where she came from, if the people lose sight of what brought them along, if she listens to the deniers and mockers, then will begin the rot and dissolution.”



We cannot allow this to happen

Who are these men who have invaded our cities with no identities, taking away citizens in unmarked vehicles? By his own admission, they were sent by President Donald Trump to be his “goon squad.” They are terrifying peaceful protesters. They are gassing mothers. They are clubbing veterans who have fought for our country. What kind of men would do that? Are they enforcers for mobsters? Have they been recruited from neo-Nazi gangs and white supremacist militias?

The Nazis were able to take over Germany in a very few years by terror, intimidation and lies. Good people were silenced. We cannot allow this to happen in our country. It is time for all good people to come to the aid of our country.



Still no plan from the White House

I don’t fault President Donald Trump for the fact of COVID-19, but we must face the fact of his incoherent and feckless response to it. We’ve seen his ineptitude in three dimensions: “delay, deny, distort,” as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi aptly put it.

On July 24, fatalities from the coronavirus on that day alone reached at least 1,125, the fourth consecutive day deaths surpassed 1,000 (“CDC issues new guidelines for reopening schools,” July 25). The pandemic surges across our nation, with deaths now soaring past 150,000 and cases exceeding 4 million, yet still we see no rational plan coming from the White House. Experts note that, had the president faced facts and acted earlier, we’d have been spared 80% of the casualties.

It’s time for a change. Remember to vote on Nov. 3. Your life depends on it.


South Woodstock

First in nation — for paltry wages

One has to be amazed at the depth of Republican leaders’ heartlessness: the juniorest Sununu, top Republican official in New Hampshire, has just vetoed a bipartisan bill to raise the minimum wage to $10 this year and $12 in two more years. It remains at $7.25 an hour here, which grosses out (so to speak) around $15,000 a year for a full-time worker — less transportation, of course, federal taxes, FICA, Medicare, etc., etc.

We’d love to know how Gov. Chris Sununu imagines someone can get by at the $7.25 an hour that his veto limits them to. It’s $10 an hour in neighboring states — still paltry, but not as paltry as Sununu decrees it to be here. He should be ashamed of holding onto this “first in the nation” label for New Hampshire.



The end may be our only opportunity

The Spanish flu pandemic began in February 1918, right after the October Revolution of 1917, and it ran parallel to the Russian Revolution until April 1920. So it was an extra-existential threat to the world. As those 10 days “shook the world” in Russia, up to 50 million died around the globe.

As it was in 1918, the new coronavirus has today been running parallel to political events that bring public discord, violence and disruption. They run across the political spectrum and bring dire revolutionary challenges such as we have not seen since the 1960s. Even secession has been suggested.

“The craziness of our politics makes you wonder what’s round the bend,” F.H. Buckley, professor at George Mason University’s Scalia School of Law, writes in The Spectator. “After the ‘resistance,’ the pussy hats, the non-stop crises and the permanent impeachment, what could be the next shoe to drop? The answer is a breakup of the country. ...”

We should take note when natural forces — even those that come from bats — empower public events. They may suggest that the end is at hand, but that may offer the only real opportunity to begin again.



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