Letters to the editor: Kevin McCarthy, democracy, school vouchers, HOV lane decision

Where is your respect?

Re: “The Republican Party is looking for a new House priority: Hunter Biden. Republicans say they will also focus on the border, parental rights, IRS cuts,” news on Saturday.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy has stated that his top priorities as House speaker will be investigating the Biden administration, investigating Hunter Biden, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the border crisis, and COVID-19 policies, among other things.

What happened to the economy and gas prices being a priority? Is that what the Republican Party campaigned on and now these issues take a backseat in the investigations?

McCarthy did not respond to the Jan. 6 committee about his involvement in that day’s events and also did not attend Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s outgoing speech as Speaker of the House. Where is her respect for office and for the American people? I guess we already know the answer.

Daisy Barnes, Dallas

democracy won

Re: “DeSantis emerges,” by Kay Wrobel, Monday Letters.

Ms. Wrobel says: “The Democrats showed they didn’t have to rely on real politics to win.” As a freedom and democracy loving voter, I cannot think of a more important policy than supporting and defending our democratic republic.

Yes, our democracy is under attack! We saw it during televised debates when the former president called on paramilitary groups loyal to him to stand by in case he needed them. We saw the same groups storm our citadel of democracy, the US Capitol, on January 6, 2021, in an effort to stop the voter certification of President Joe Biden.

We saw candidates in crucial swing states declare that, if elected, they might not certify the election if the candidate they supported lost. We have seen state legislatures enact laws that weakened voting rights in states won by Biden.

It was essential that the Democrats declare loud and clear that our democracy is under attack. Today, I am truly grateful that enough voters heeded the warning and voted for candidates who believe in the republic and appreciate our democratic values ​​that so many have sacrificed to preserve.

Glenna K. Witherspoon Richardson

Political division deepens

Beneath all the speculation about a divided US political house, lies the failure of a basic idea of ​​how democracy should/must work.

In political theory, the public elects the most intelligent and moral representatives who then think and compromise on complex issues that the general public often cannot fully understand. In practice, it has never worked that way.

Voters tend to select representatives for their side on any issue. Historically, compromises were crafted in the House and Senate by leaders who grasped the idea of ​​”good for all.”

However, some elected officials found that loyalty to the party created one-sided power: power to do things that benefit only their patrons. I think it was Newt Gingrich who first publicly insisted that his party endorse only one side of each issue.

Since then, the problem has gotten worse. Until we elect more people who understand the need to serve the whole people, we will have a divided house.

Ralph Manns, Rowlet

support public schools

Re: “Lawmakers ready to fight for school vouchers: Bill introduced Monday would allow parents to use public funds,” Nov. 15 news item.

We’ve had a couple years of students, teachers, and schools persevering through the pandemic. You’d think the Texas Legislature would propose bills now to increase salaries and school funding to support and encourage teachers and students. I could understand bills for salary increases to attract teachers and bills for air quality systems to keep the school healthy.

However, we have SB 176 and HB 619 that call for “parental rights” to choose schools. Don’t be fooled by the smoke and mirrors. Parents have always had a choice of school in this country: public schools financed by our taxes or private education.

The “school choice” in these bills diverts public school funds away from public schools. The state is responsible for the education of its youth. Who in our state government will defend and support our public schools? Let’s conquer the momentum of education for “my children” and work to improve education for all children.

Rebeca Bertoni, Lantana

Vouchers are a tax cut for the rich

Let’s call school vouchers what they really are: another tax cut for the rich, in the sense that it helps people who have to pay school taxes plus tuition to send their kids to private schools. The vouchers will provide a tax rebate to cover the cost of private institutions.

In my opinion, public education is the best we have. Withdrawing revenue from public schools will harm, if not destroy, education as we know it.

Pete yell, pilot point

Where does it lead?

Last spring, a pregnant Plano woman who was driving in the HOV lane received a traffic ticket. Her charges were dismissed. State Rep. Briscoe Cain, R-Deer Park, a leading anti-abortion advocate in the Texas Legislature, introduced House Bill 521 for the 2023 legislative session. The bill would allow all pregnant women drive in the HOV lane, counting the fetus as a second passenger, thus giving the fetus personality.

This legislation opens the door to other scenarios. Can an IVF fetus or embryo be counted as a tax deduction? Should a fetus be counted in a census? Can expectant fathers be required to pay child support money to expectant mothers from the moment of conception?

The waters of the post-Roe v. Wade are treacherous. Myopic legislators have led us down this absurd path. It is time for a change in the legislative mindset.

Marian R. Levinstein, Lantana

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