Defending Animals and Their Defender

Dear Editor,

I’d like to respond to the article of yet another debacle at Guilford County Animal Shelter (Sept. 21, 2017).

You see, Gretel McCall is a friend and probably one of the most compassionate and thoughtful people I’ve met.  Thankfully, she’ll speak up for animals and that seems to be the issue behind this “vendetta.”  The reason, according to Gretel, is as a volunteer she witnessed a dog named “Daphne” in distress.  The area where she was reported as having entered was the medical room where Daphne could get care.  Gretel reported this neglect and was then banned from returning to the shelter.  Daphne died not long after.

I grimaced with every assessment of what went wrong and how it was (probably) Gretel’s fault.  I also contacted Art Cole.  His report of the events of how the shelter refused the items his church collected: box fans, canned dog food, puppy food and toys was plausible.

To hear a Southern Baptist church went to this length for animals is pleasantly surprising (I grew up Southern Baptist).  According to Mr. Cole, he spoke with Nancy Fauser, volunteer outreach coordinator for the Animal Shelter to tell her about the donation.  He expected this to be well-received news.  Instead Ms. Fauser refused it telling him she didn’t know him or his church.

I also asked Mr. Cole what he thought of Gretel.  He said he could tell she was a good person and the reason he contacted her (for donation recommendations only) was he has adopted seven dogs from the Animal Shelter and it was Gretel who helped him with the seventh.  Somehow her suggestions became that “she was behind the church’s donations.”

After the very public scandal a few years ago, I want to ask the Animal Shelter when they will get their act together?  At the root of winning the public’s trust is good customer service and this shelter needs work.  I am told the volunteers do everything possible for the animals, which suggests the “disconnect” is at the top.

First, work on interpersonal skills.  People will adopt from groups they like – certainly not people who are as rude as Ms. Fauser was to the church.  Second, work for the animals.  They cannot ask, “You put yourself before my very basic needs?”  And finally, be accountable.  Gretel is an easy target because she is not there to defend herself.

Lisa Norton

Will Stadium Have Staying Power?

Dear Editor,

If you build it, they will come. But will they keep coming?

Since 1995, my husband and I have been to 99 different minor league baseball games and their stadiums. When we have attended new stadiums that were 2 days old or 1 year old, we have gotten poor seating for the price we had to pay. When we have attended some of the older stadiums, the “bloom was off the rose.”

A good example was the Carolina Mudcats stadium, which seats 6,500. We were there on a Saturday over Labor Day weekend for a double header. The weather was ideal but the attendance was paltry. There were maybe 1,000 in a 6,500-seat stadium.

Greenville, South Carolina, had a 20-year-old baseball stadium. The team wanted a new stadium. The city leaders said no to any funding. The team moved to Pearl, Mississippi.

We attended a game in Wilmington, North Carolina, in 2012. It was a Coastal Plain League game in a seedy stadium. That night on TV the city council was discussing a taxpayer funded stadium. They wanted to use property tax money. The citizens voted a big no. If we had a referendum here, our citizens would have probably voted no.

Bridgeport, Connecticut, a more populous city than High Point, plans to move their team to High Point. Understand that there are a lot of teams coming and going in the Atlantic League. If a team comes to High Point, how long will it be before they go?

By the way, consider this. Where Forward High Point wants to build a stadium, they would have to destroy a lot of buildings that are still useful, and would the infrastructure be sufficient? There would be a lot of traffic tie-ups. Now hear this: It is awfully close to High Point’s only hospital. Ambulances might have trouble getting to and from the hospital.

Who are the people who are driven by the profit motive?

Cathy Harless

That’s Not a Crime

Dear Editor,

A Detroit woman was locked up for refusing to have her son vaccinated. I’m not making this up. Rebecca Bredow was imprisoned for seven days because she didn’t want to have her son immunized. It is probably a good idea to get your children vaccinated, but it should not be a legal requirement. The human race managed to survive without anyone sticking needles in their arms.

If it is all right to imprison mothers that don’t get their children vaccinated, what about mothers that refuse to get their sons circumcised? A Florida woman named Heather Hironimus was jailed for not having her son circumcised. I’m not making this up. She was eventually released after caving in. No mother should be imprisoned for refusing to have her child vaccinated, or circumcised, or for breastfeeding in public.

Chuck Mann

Legal to Offend

Dear Editor,

How long will the hard working, average, down-to-earth American put up with being insulted, demeaned and slandered by hordes of ignorant, pompous, self-righteous social justice whiners who, in some cases, truly believe they know what is the best thing for you to say, do, believe and think? And if you don’t agree with them, or say, do or believe counter to their perceived true path, you are considered a knuckle dragging Neanderthal that deserves to be called every derogatory name from homophobe to xenophobe and every type of “ist” that can be thought of. Sticks and stones …

A Christian bakery can politely refuse to participate in a gay marriage and lose their shirt, but a gay coffee shop owner can publicly curse (in quite graphic terms) and throw out a group of Christians because “they offend him.” And yes, this did happen recently in the State of Washington. Google it.

We are becoming overrun with more and more of the easily offended. You have to ask yourself what’s happening to this country when a child asks for a brownie and someone becomes offended, complains and the child is perceived as at fault. (Again, it actually happened.)

When someone suddenly pops up and tells you they’re offended at something you said or did, the proper answer should be something like, “Oh really? I’m sorry to hear that.” Followed by you going about what you were doing or saying. The incorrect response is to rend your garments, drop to your knees, wailing and genuflecting at the feet of the “offended” person, crying, “Forgive me. I’m not worthy!”

Guess what, whiners. The First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States (I know you weren’t taught about it in school, so look it up) gives me the unalienable right to offend you, should I choose to. And here’s the part that will probably make you have a tantrum – it’s legal. And to add salt to your crocodile tears, consider this. There’s a very good chance I don’t care if I offended you.

That is the real answer to all this nonsense. Unless you truly, unintentionally, unknowingly offend someone or something, you have nothing to apologize for. You have a right to peacefully express your views and opinions without feeling bad. I don’t like or agree with what you say, I choose not to associate with you.

Go Galt and save the republic.

Alan Marshall

Costly Care

Dear Editor,

I just read a beep about a local hospital. What does tasty food and friendly staff have to due with the quality of health care, or the cost of it?

You might take a look at what the hospital billed your insurance company. Or does it matter to you? Do you have to pay any of it?

A hospital bill is the prime example of “invoice padding 101.” Try getting a detailed copy of the billing from the hospital. I’ve got one for over $120,000 for five days, no surgery or transfusions. As far as the oodles of tests packed onto the bill at obscene prices, I have yet to see a copy of the invoice.

I suppose those who can pay are paying for those who can’t, don’t or don’t want to pay. I think that is the main reason for costs that only the very well off could pay.

I’ve always paid my way in life, especially the huge burden of federal, state and local taxes that for the most part pay for Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and Obamacare – over 60 percent of the federal budget alone. On top of that, I am overcharged for medical care in order to pay for deadbeats.

E.R. Harris

Jamestown Spending

Dear Editor,

Our tax and spend politicians haven’t helped Jamestown, but neither do comments being spread by some of our neighbors.

First, let me correct something that’s being said about one of folks that gives up their time, money and efforts to make Jamestown a better place for our children. Mr. Frederick is not wanting to cut nine holes from our golf course. This is petty gossip. He plays 18 holes there, do you?

In 2016 Jamestown spent $825,750 of taxpayers’ money on maintaining the golf course for which only $649,350 had been budgeted. Far from being responsible and reliable, don’t you think? Folks, this is your tax money. Truth: Jamestown has budgeted $230,000 for 10 tee-boxes so the women (and possibly some men) can tee-off closer to all 18 holes.

This should tell you something about responsible and reliable leadership that’s been “running” Jamestown into the ground. Since 2011, property taxes are up 20 percent and general fund spending is up 36 percent. Tax values were only raised on a few properties. The other properties tax values were decreased. Town forgot to mention this, didn’t they?

The 2017 budget is 6.58 percent higher than last year, but yet the economy isn’t growing and neither is inflation. Therefore, for the third year in a row, Jamestown’s debt obligation has grown by almost 50 percent. Part of that is giving everyone on the staff a 2.5 percent cost of living adjustment

(COLA) and up to 3 percent merit increase just for 2017-2018. What kind of town employee should ever get a 5.5 percent raise in a single year when federal COLA for people on Social Security is hovering around zero?

You want accountable and responsible leaders, you have to make sure they know what they’re doing since anyone can spend other people’s money. Some people here are having to do without food just to buy their medicines and raising taxes at rates way higher than Social Security increases is totally irresponsible.

You can go to Jamestown’s website and get all this information. Make you a list and start making Jamestown’s clerks and politicians do what they’re hired/elected to do. If they’re not doing what they should, then it’s time for them to go.

Folks, it’s time to wake up.

Shirley deLong

It’s the Refund

Dear Editor,

In discussing the Republican’s (of which I am not a member) proposed tax reform plan, you make a big thing out of one of the provisions – that the tax rate would be increased from 10 percent to 12 percent at the low end.

You take this out of context, ignoring all of the other provisions, one of which is the standard deduction for the group would be almost double.

You speak as if the tax rate and tax are the same by writing, “if you were paying 10 percent and are now paying 12 percent, that right there is a tax increase …”

No. Put a pencil to it. Considering the proposal as a whole you would see there would be a significant reduction in the taxes paid by that group.

But I don’t think they would be sure of the increase in rate, very few people even know the amount they pay. (Try it. Ask a few of your acquaintances.)

Most everyone is concerned with only: will I get a refund or will I have to pay an additional amount, and how much.


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