Letters

Posted: February 8, 2018 at 2:51 a.m.

Lacks understanding

Carroll Quinn Martin's recent letter shows a serious lack of understanding of the property-tax situation as it exists in the northeast. He says he does not know anyone who pays that much, and that someone who does would have to have an income into six figures. As a longtime resident of New York, I can say with certainty that such tax amounts are not uncommon.

Real property tax in New York generally is broken out into town, county, and school district taxes, school taxes making up about 2/3 of the total. There is no personal property tax, as in Arkansas. The average single-family home in Westchester, Nassau and Rockland counties paid, respectively, $16,500; $12,300; and $11,232 in real property taxes in 2016, all well over the new $10,000 limit. Suffolk was not far behind at $9,333. My brother lives in north Jersey; he tells me the situation is similar there.

A $100,000 income in the New York metro area does not make one rich, just middle class. Most of those folks are getting by OK, but they are hardly in the country club set.

While I suspect those governors are suing the feds with an eye toward their state and county budgets, which will take a hit if property values stagnate, they are right to protect their constituents, most of whom, in the counties I mention, tend to vote Republican.

THOMAS A. BECKETT

Siloam Springs

Immigration thoughts

Seems that everyone has an opinion about how to handle our immigration problem. So I guess I am entitled to my opinion.

First, I want to say that I am a conservative. But I think it is folly to even think about rounding up millions of illegals and sending them back to wherever they came from. Besides, who would replace the hundreds of thousands of hotel maids, gardeners, etc.? The illegals should all register and be provided a pathway to citizenship.

The feds should take control of all illegals who are criminals. If the sanctuary cities oppose this, force should be used if necessary. Along with this, a wall must be built. In Congressman Joe Kennedy's Democrat rebuttal to President Trump's State of the Union speech, he said if the wall is built we will tear it down. Scary.

A country without borders is, in my opinion, no longer a country.

The feds should take control of criminal illegals in all jails--including the sanctuaries.

RUSS BAILEY

Little Rock

Entitlement on parade

I have recently heard that our president wants to have a massive, grand military parade to prove to the world that the United States knows how to throw a bigger and better parade than the French, Russians or North Koreans. I would propose that the parade be held on June 14 to honor the Dear Leader's birthday.

On second thought, maybe instead of using all this excess money on a parade, these funds could be appropriated to pay entry-level military personnel a living wage.

RANDY BLAKEY

Cabot

Citizenship a privilege

During the first year of World War II when Germans invaded Poland, the Nazis invaded our humble farm and gave my family only hours to vacate the beloved land that they had worked so hard to maintain. This was in the middle of winter, my mother pregnant with me, and with three small children. We were transported by train to Germany where Father was to become a farm laborer for the Germans. After 4 ½ years of surviving the war in a small village thanks to the ingenuity of my parents, we became DP (displaced people) yearning to find a country that would accept us. After being shuffled through eight DP camps and five years later, we were sponsored by the Polish Home of Alliance in New Jersey.

After intense mental and physical examinations of our by-then family of nine, our long wait and patience were finally rewarded. Our 10-day trip in a military transport ship, the USS Blatchford, brought us to the foot of the Statue of Liberty on Dec. 22, 1950. I still vividly remember as a 10-year-old leaving the camps and entering this beautiful country, which was like coming from hell to heaven.

We all quickly learned the language and customs. We embraced this country with love, and we all have contributed positively for the betterment of this wonderful land.

I personally served 27 years in the United States Air Force and, after retiring, have a successful business. I proudly wave the American flag on a 25-foot pole in front of our home. Anyone who was born in or migrated legally to this country should consider themselves blessed to live in this great country.

Our immigration system should be based on how our country will benefit. Immigrants must assimilate and learn the language, be productive and love this country. And yes, enter legally. Becoming a U.S. citizen is not a right. It is a privilege and it must be earned.

JOHN F. KAROLSON

North Little Rock

Stance disheartening

David Brooks' recent column advising the Democratic Party on abortion was disheartening. While citing striking scientific research that more and more confirms the humanity of the unborn child, what counsel did Brooks offer Democrats? Give up your support for late-term abortions and you will gain votes with millennials.

Not "Oh my gosh, these unborn kids really are human beings!" No, it was basically, "Cut the killing of unborn babies back to 20 weeks and you can win Congress and the presidency."

Really, David? I thought you, as the author of The Road to Character, might possess the moral spine to stand up for something more than a political win ... something that's now as clear as unborn human life. But I was wrong.

ROBERT LEWIS

Little Rock

On lowly infantrymen

I read a second letter over the weekend concerning Mr. Paul Greenberg's use of the phrase "lowly infantryman." I believe the two writers may have misread Mr. Greenberg's meaning.

When I joined the Air Force some 40 years ago, AB Higgs was a "lowly airman basic." Mike Higgs wasn't a "lowly" anything. I believe Mr. Greenberg's reference was to the rank in comparison to that above it, not the individual holding it. Hope this helps.

MICHAEL HIGGS

Fayetteville

Editorial on 02/08/2018