Letters published March 4, 2018

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D’Souza is hateful speaker

On March 10 the Flathead Republican Central Committee and Last Chance Patriots will host the conservative author, filmmaker and provocateur Dinesh D’Souza in the Bigfork Performing Arts Center.

This vile, hateful, far-right, convicted felon is a right-wing troll. His latest offense against human decency came when he responded to a photograph of Florida school-shooting survivors crying after the state legislature voted down an assault-weapons ban. He mocked the kids who watched 17 people get murdered inside Stoneman Douglas High School saying, “Worst news since their parents told them to get summer jobs — Adults 1, kids 0.” D’Souza also had to resign his lucrative position as president of King’s College, an evangelical Christian school, over reports of having a relationship with a woman other than his wife of 20 years.

These are not isolated incidents. He has suggested that the Charlottesville white supremacist rally (where a anti-racism protester was murdered) was a staged event to make the right look bad; he called President Barack Obama a gay Muslim and suggested that Michelle Obama is a man; defended Adolf Hitler, who sent thousands of gay people to death camps, as being “not antigay.”

This right-wing commentator has become more and more unhinged, nasty and indefensible. Political propagandizing is his specialty.

This is the kind of people the right-wing Republicans in this valley are using to support their values. Would you want to spend $100 to hear this unhinged radical spew out untruths? —Rodrik Brosten, Bigfork

Speaker will just polarize us more

I read in the paper that Mr. D’Souza is coming to speak in Bigfork and that Jerry Molen has been working to organize the event. As a resident of Bigfork I’ve known Jerry for many years. At one time our families were good neighbors and friends. I also know that Jerry is politically very conservative. I am not, I consider myself a Democrat.

So when I read that Mr. D’Souza claims that the “Democratic left has an ideology virtually identical with fascism and borrows tactics of political intimidation and political terror from Nazi brown shirts,” I was really shocked at the extreme nature of these allegations. Allegations that apparently describe me.

This kind of name calling, labeling and fear-mongering has got to stop. If it doesn’t we will be building more than a wall between Mexico and the U.S.; we will be building walls between good neighbors and friends. —Marcia Peck, Bigfork

Will Congress ever get to work?

There comes a point in time when we must really ask ourselves, “What is going on with our Congress?”

We have problems going on in the Middle East and a very good chance of war between Israel, Syria and Iran. We have a 34-year-old nut case in North Korea who threatens the entire Pacific Region with his build-up of a nuclear weapons program. We have Russia, China and a few other countries interfering in our electoral process. We have half a dozen committees investigating Russia collusion and Uranium One, and both the House and the Senate tied up in the “Dreamer problem.” Not to mention the Sexual Slush Fund for members of Congress and all the allegations that have somehow seemed to have been swept under the political carpet.

But as I write this letter, it is Presidents Day and where is Congress? Why, they are out taking pictures with all the kiddies and giving public addresses about how great this country is. Well, Congress, if you are so proud of this country, then why aren’t you back in Washington, D.C., doing the job you were elected to do?

Folks like me wonder why nothing gets done. Well, here’s the answer to that question:

Dec.-Jan. … Christmas and New Year’s ... two weeks off. Feb. … Presidents Day … one week off. April … Easter Vacation … two weeks off. May … Memorial Day … one week off. June ... 30 days’ vacation. July … Fourth of July … one week off. Aug.-Sept. … congressional break … six weeks off. Oct … Columbus Day … one week off. Nov. ... Thanksgiving ... one week off.

Now wouldn’t it be nice if we all had a job like that? But unfortunately for most of us, “We” have to work for a living. How about Congress? —Jim Garvey, Kalispell

Weapons are not the problem

It is a tragedy to hear and see the devastation caused by another mass public shooting. I would hope that all Americans would share the sentiment that we are tired of raising our flag to only half staff. It is time that we as individuals and as a community are honest about the core of this issue.

Unfortunately it is very disheartening to see those that would actually use the victims of such an atrocious act to push a political narrative. Please, if you want to have a political conversation about the Second Amendment, don’t stand on the graves of innocent victims to proclaim your politics or use the surviving high school children as your prop to make your agenda heard.

Now is the time to address what is going on in America. Since 1982, there has been 97 mass shootings, with 58 occurring since 2006. In the same time period, government gun restriction has grown tighter with federal Second Amendment restrictions in the form of the Gun Control Act of 1968, the Brady Bill, Gun-Free School Zones Act, to name a few. In the last five decades, gun laws have tightened while gun violence has increased.

Maybe it is not so much the weapons that are evil but the people propagating the evil action. History does not support the idea that the only evil in a mass shooting is the weapon. It is like trying to fight childhood obesity by eliminating spoons. We have to go beyond the surface and critically think. Ask ourselves the question: Have we as a society had a shift in the past 50 years as to what we value and how we think? From ignoring basic human biology to questioning the centuries-old structure of marriage, how we as a society think has ramifications.

I do agree with former President Obama when he stated “I came to understand the importance of fatherhood through its absence — both in my life and in the lives of others. I came to understand that the hole a man leaves when he abandons his responsibility to his children is one that no government can fill” (obamawhitehouse.archives.gov). We as a state and a nation are in a battle for what is more valuable than Wall Street and more costly than any infrastructure package. We are in a battle for the fabric of who we are and who we will be. We must love and invest in the next generation of our children or this trajectory of pain will continue. —Matt Regier, Kalispell

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