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Immigrants and America

EDITOR: Every year on the Fourth of July, I re-read the Declaration of Independence to remind myself what and why we celebrate. It’s interesting to read the list of grievances following the familiar opening paragraphs; the injuries, abuses and usurpations that marked the tyranny of King George III. This year, I was struck by the seventh of the 18 grievances that begin with “He”:

“He has endeavoured to prevent the Population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their Migrations hither, and raising the Conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.”

While we are no longer appropriating lands, we are still a country in need of immigrants. Our unemployment rate is down to 3.9 percent, and many jobs are going begging. King George knew that immigrants would strengthen the colonies and weaken his power; without immigrants the economy would slow and stagnate. Today, immigrants are still our strength. Knowing our history, and we should keep our welcome mat out.

VIRGINIA MACINTOSH

Ukiah

The silent majority

EDITOR: We have been watching the latest expressions of outrage about the separation of children from their parents when they enter the United States illegally. We are wondering why there is no outrage when we separate children from our military when we send them in harm’s way.

We have been watching the outrage when people who have entered our country illegally are housed in tents, then wonder where is the outrage about not providing shelter to homeless veterans and other citizens of our country.

We are watching when politicians and others go out of their way to shout down or do violence to others who express opinions and ideas that do not fit their beliefs. What happened to open discourse and freedom of speech in our country?

We have watched the left deride our president, even though he is doing what the American people have asked him to do. The U.S. is experiencing the lowest level of unemployment and highest level of income. Jobs are coming back from overseas. The only thing the left seems to contribute is derision and dissent, attacking anyone who wants to make America great again.

Ronald Regan referred to the silent majority when he was in office. We think it is time for the silent majority to wake up and vote.

REBECCA Y. GODWIN-POTTS

Willits

Of left and right

EDITOR: If you are going to label the new president of Mexico a “leftist,” then it behooves you to call Donald Trump and his followers, Marine Le Pen and her followers and President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines and his followers “rightists.” I suggest you begin immediately. They aren’t “moderates” or plain old vanilla Republicans. They are right-wing extremists and deserve the appellation.

JACK JACKSON

Sebastopol

A poor portrayal

EDITOR: As a formerly homeless person, I’m tired of seeing the media portraying homeless people in the worst possible light. Being forced to live on the mean streets, or even in the woods, without money for food, medicine, clean clothes or a shower is harder than most people can imagine. The police are 10 times as tough on homeless people as they are on everyone else. It’s difficult to even find a restroom, and every one looks down on you like you’re trash.

On top of this, newspapers continue to describe homeless people in the most demeaning and dehumanizing ways. There are constant references to the public’s fear of homeless people, the great inconvenience caused by those living on the streets and how often homeless people leave trash on the streets.

There is so seldom accurate and realistic coverage of how many homeless people are working hard every day to find jobs and get off the streets. And the newspapers omit reporting on the large numbers of homeless people who work jobs every day to support themselves and their families.

RAMA KUMAR

Fairfax

Saving children

EDITOR: At this time of year, as young people graduate, the world seems full of potential. Unfortunately, it’s not that way for everyone. It’s 2018, and yet 10 children are dying every minute from treatable causes such as diarrhea and pneumonia.

That’s why I’m asking Congress to show its commitment to the future by passing the Reach Every Mother and Child Act. This bipartisan legislation would help pave the way to ending preventable maternal and child deaths in low-income countries.

I am calling on Rep. Jared Huffman to cosponsor the Reach Every Mother and Child Act. We can’t wait. The time to act is now.

STACIE CHARLEBOIS

Sebastopol

Fireworks sales

EDITOR: The Girl Scouts have cookies, a yummy consumable. Boy Scouts have fireworks, another consumable with a bang. Before we rid ourselves of an explosive delight, let us find another consumable that these groups can sell to fund their groups.

MIKE SESSI

Penngrove

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