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Letters for March 16, 2023

Repeat felons should stay behind bars

Mark Yeager, a 20-time convicted felon, was a passenger in a car pulled over by deputies. He refused to comply with officer demands after they saw his .45-caliber gun. A convicted felon is prohibited from possessing firearms. He was subdued but still tried reaching for a deputy’s gun. He is being held on $50,000 bond. A convicted felon! Why not $500,000? Who was the judge that was OK with $50,000? One of his friends could easily come up with the $5,000 for him to be released.

I’m not picking on Yeager so much as a system that isn’t concerned for law-abiding citizens’ safety. His ilk should be permanently behind bars. What happened to three strikes and you’re out? How many felonies do you need before a prosecutor and judge say, “No more”?

Habitual offenders keep getting released and what do they do? Reoffend! Does the justice system not realize this? Had he been locked up for good after 10 felonies, he wouldn’t have committed the next 10.

How many officers’ lives were at risk each time they had to arrest him? Here’s a thought: Keep career criminals in jail. I think we may have a weak prosecutor and judge problem.

Remember the definition of insanity is … “When you keep doing the same thing over and over and expect a different result.”

Greg Schuster

Spokane

Bill would hurt property values

I was concerned when Leonard Christian and Suzanne Schmidt were elected to represent the 4th District. What they just voted for (HB 1110) is total idiocy and they’re breaking the hearts of all vested residents in Washington state. They are driving all of us out of this state before our property values decline. They do not seem to be able to see the writing on the wall. It is too late to set their stupidity on the right path.

Maybe it’s possible to encourage their Democratic colleagues in the Senate to vote no. (I thank The Spokesman-Review for the March 8 front page article, “House OKs bill that would up housing density.” For those reading this, all you need to know is it only takes one developer to purchase a property in your neighborhood at an outrageous price to begin increased housing density next to your home. The cancer will spread.

This bill still must pass the Senate to become law. I urge you to contact your legislator(s) at app.leg.wa.gov/pbc/bill/5190.

Nancy Miller

Spokane Valley

Misnamed $3 trillion ‘cut’

The Washington Post’s article on the President’s budget (“Biden fires $6.9 trillion salvo to open budget showdown with GOP”), reprinted on the front page of The Spokesman-Review on March 10, was objective and informative. Credit to the Review for carrying it.

However, there is a crucial fact that the Post’s story reports but fails to explain. The Biden administration touts that the president’s budget would “cut the deficit by $3 trillion over the next decade.” That sounds great, but it’s only true in an almost surreal sense. This “cut” is relative to what the deficit would be if current fiscal laws were put on autopilot.

In reality, the budget’s deficit would be higher in 10 years than in 2024, $2 trillion in 2033 vs. $1.8 trillion in 2024. Only in Washington, D.C., could a $200 billion increase be spun into a $3 trillion cut. The budget’s future deficit increases translate into a staggering level of growth in debt held by the public (us) from $27.8 trillion in 2024 to $43.6 trillion in 10 years, a 57% increase.

This debt, as a percent of national wealth (GDP), grows steadily in the budget’s own projections from 102% in FY 2024 to almost 110% by 2033. Pakistan, that model of fiscal responsibility, now stands at under 80%.

With “sustainability” now a mantra in progressive circles, an infusion of sustainability into the nation’s treasury would be welcome to people of all political persuasions.

Bryan Smith

Spokane

Dropping ‘Dilbert’ was wrong reaction

Eugene Robinson’s opinion pertaining to the cancellation of Scott Adams’ cartoon “Dilbert” conflates protected free speech with freedom of belief. Although his diatribe wandered a bit to include Elon Musk, MAGA and white supremacists as justification to cancel Dilbert, it failed to identify any racist content in the cartoon. He referenced Andrews McMeel Universal, which syndicates the cartoon strip, quoting its rationale, “We will never support any commentary rooted in discrimination or hate.” Again, no connection was made between the cartoon and its content to any discrimination or hate. I have to admit I have not read the Rasmussen Poll, nor Adams’ resulting comments. However, they are irrelevant to my enjoyment of “Dilbert.”

I did find it interesting that purportedly Adams’ YouTube point of view eerily mimics but in reverse, comments made by Malcolm X made decades earlier in which he expressed the opinion that Blacks and whites could not coexist and therefore the two groups should separate from each other. However, he was not canceled following those comments.

No, the mass cancellation of “Dilbert” does not so much provide an example of free speech at work as it does purges in Russia and China to silence any who don’t spout the party line. Once upon a time in this country, people would loudly proclaim that they may not agree with your point of view, but would readily fight for your right to have and express it.

Clearly, we have lost our way.

Mark Jackson

Spokane



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