Thank you for your editorial opposing the ban on Muslim immigrants from the seven countries selected by the Trump administration. I, like so many others, have found this ban appalling, dishonest and un-American. I am glad you do as well. At 71, I have opposed many things that my government has done, and applauded some, but I have never been left with such feelings of utter dread. It is not just the individual actions of this new administration, but the fact that our government is being reduced to the decisions of one man and his small group of advisers. This was what our Constitution was supposed to provide protection against. I hope it works or the people make sure our country’s principles of equality and justice are protected.
Maryann Collins, Humboldt Park
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A nation in danger
The Quebec Mosque shooting was quickly blamed on a Muslim. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer and Fox News used the incident to re-enforce Donald Trump’s crackdown on Muslim immigration.
Six died and eight were wounded in the shooting. The initial “suspect” was actually the one who called 911. Once the smoke cleared and facts overcame fake news, a real suspect was identified. He is a white French Canadian with a reputation of being a far-right troll with a history of online hostility to immigrants. As I write, Fox News has not yet retracted its initial incendiary and self-serving statements.
With the beginning of Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency of the United States, white nationalist, anti-immigrant and other groups have felt empowered to express their prejudices and hate with words and actions. They care little about the ones they hurt. Sadly, Trump has done little to dial down his rhetoric or to ask them to respect the rights of others.
Until the atmosphere in the United States turns from blaming “the others” for our problems and, instead, directs efforts to solving problems for all of us, our nation is in danger of becoming like Germany and Italy before World War II.
We live in a dangerous time. We must work tirelessly to prevent the forces of exclusion and isolationism from taking over our nation. Otherwise, our nation may survive in name, but our precious heritage will die on the ash heap of history.
Karen Wagner, Rolling Meadows
America should strive to resemble the diversity of vegetable soup, where all of its ingredients (e.g., peas, carrots, corn, beans, etc.) get along well with each other. No fighting — just pleasant interaction, togetherness and fulfillment. No competition. Just put the spoon in your mouth and enjoy it.
Leon J. Hoffman, Lake View
Bless everyone in Chicagoland growing increasingly upset by the gang-related shootings giving our city a bad name. Letters to the editor name fighting over illicit drug turf as the key cause, and urge 100 percent interdiction to end the street warfare, seemingly oblivious that for some in those jobless neighborhoods, despicable as it is, drug dealing becomes the default employer of last resort.
But hasn’t interdiction been the heart of former President Richard Nixon’s “War On Drugs” since 1968? Has it succeeded? We spend billions of tax dollars annually modulating the inflow, and punishing, unable to stop it. The demand is so strong that drug dealers brave the gunplay like bootleggers did throughout the Prohibition years, with carnage that ended only by again legalizing liquor and taxing it.
When government applies the same logic to drugs, regulating and taxing as is already done with marijuana in many states, the end of profit would end street dealing. And gunplay.
Needed: Organized citizen support strong enough to push D.C. politicians to disregard specious objections and change our drug laws as we did our liquor laws. The newfound nationwide sympathy toward opioid addicts already signals receptivity to such a change.
Then, city fathers, let’s create the jobs in the job-starved inner city so the peace stays permanent.
Ted Z. Manuel, Hyde Park