Thanks for speaking out against the Republican love affair with guns (“Our View: The Gun Raffle Is a Mistake,” July 14). I doubt they will get it.
Rather than seeing guns as dangerous, they seem to want us to believe they are benign or even beneficial. They seem to want everyone to accept their presence at the grocery store, at the bank, on the street, wherever people gather. But I doubt they would recognize that numbing us to the presence of guns would help the plans of the next mass shooter.
They often turn to self-defense as justification, and self-defense is reason enough to own a gun. But they go further. As Vernon Robinson’s raffle plan demonstrates, they imbue these instruments of death with a certain joy and enthusiasm that mocks their claims to be “pro-life.” Anyone who truly believed that life is precious would lament life-ending instruments, without mythologizing or celebrating them.
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This is just one aspect of the Republican Party’s bankrupt, fever-dream philosophy that rational people should reject to return our society to some semblance of peace.
So our tax dollars will fund an artistic tribute to a seedy lawn pest (“City Agrees $1 Million for Dandelion Art” July 2). Why not? It will go well with our other bawdy city council mess, like a renovated train station with no train service, a new pool house for a permanently closed swimming pool, and million-dollar hydroponic tomatoes. Voters, remember all of this in the next election.
Power grid technology
The Supreme Court’s erroneous decision in West Virginia v. EPA makes it very clear that we need comprehensive legislation to address America’s electric grid technology. Corporate profits take precedence over public safety.
In 2021, Duke Energy’s ESG reported on its energy source breakdown: frac gas 36%, nuclear 34.9%, coal 22.3%, wind 3.4%, solar 2.0 %, hydroelectricity 1.3%. Coal and frac gas make up 58.3% of Duke Energy’s network despite known environmental hazards. Unless we demand change, companies will continue to pollute because mitigation reduces profits.
Given the past history of coal ash, can we rely on energy companies to protect the environment? Radiation was also confirmed in groundwater around the Lake Norman Generating Station in 2018. The coal-fired Marshall Generating Station recorded radium levels 2.5 times the federal drinking water standard. Thallium levels at the same plant were also 18 times higher than the North Carolina groundwater standard. Suddenly, a dip in the lake seems much less attractive!
We, the customers, have to live and play in these polluted areas and suffer health consequences. Additionally, increasing extreme weather and increased demands make the current energy grid likely inefficient, unresilient, and undersized. There will be more and more service outages.
It’s time to address a power grid for the 21st century. It is time for all new electrical capacity to be clean and for carbon-based sources to be phased out. We must vote for local, state and federal representatives who support clean energy infrastructure and modernizing the electrical grid now. Vote as if your life depended on it.
“Local GOP to raffle off guns, ammo” (July 13). Oh good? I have been a registered Republican my entire electoral life and cannot believe this level of insensitivity.
I really hope their raffled weapons and ammunition don’t kill anyone.
More dandelions defense
A dandelion is not a “noxious weed” as the author of the July 8 letter “Welcome to Weed Town” declared, but rather like the July 8 editorial “In defense of dandelions” the stated, it is “edible and more nutritious than most vegetables”. .”
And have you ever seen a toddler pick a dandelion and squeal with delight and present it to a parent with great joy? Or that same child picks a dandelion-turned-seed and blows on it until all the seeds are scattered?
I think this public art will bring us a lot of joy!