Congress passed law
Whether or not you agree with President Donald Trump's ban on immigration from certain Middle Eastern countries, I am under the impression that a law that was passed by Congress all the way back in the 1950s gives that authority to the president.
As far as I know, it was last used about 1980 by then-President Jimmy Carter against Iran after they stormed our embassy. Therefore, I believe that those people who want to act like he can't legally do that are sadly mistaken.
North Little Rock
Reject safety-net cuts
It's amazing how a school can come together to help the community, and absolutely staggering how many people need to be fed. So, it is truly puzzling that our politicians are gearing up to attack the very programs that low-income, hardworking people depend on, like Medicaid and SNAP (what we used to call food stamps).
Sleeping on a buddy's couch is a normal part of the college experience, and we all know the starving student trope. But for a surprising number of students, finding the next meal and a place to sleep is a serious concern. While I am lucky enough to have strong financial support from my family, some of my friends have to bounce from couch to couch, rely on churches for food, and even camp out in the woods.
Last year one in seven Arkansas residents depended on SNAP to put food on the table at some point. But now some members of Congress are talking about cuts or "structural changes" to these safety-net programs--which is code for gutting them. I'm seriously hoping Sens. John Boozman and Tom Cotton will reject these proposals that would make life worse for so many Arkansans.
Only two commands
This letter is in response to that from Al Garrett Jr. published on the Voices page. Mr. Garrett comments on a statue on the Capital grounds that lists the Ten Commandments. He remarks that there are an additional 603 commands and that they could be listed on an additional statue. Those commands are in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible. Those commands are aimed at Jews, who practice the religion of Judaism. Contrary to what Mr. Garrett may think, Judaism is not the majority religion in the USA.
In the New Testament book of Matthew, quoting from Jesus the Christ, are two commands that have replaced all the others for practicing Christians. We are to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." Second we are instructed to "Love your neighbor as yourself."
Mr. Garrett can take comfort knowing that those two commands can be easily displayed on any proposed new statue.
Ignorance of history
Jason Rapert believes the Ten Commandments to be the supreme authority of law and justice. This false concept is due in part to ignorance of history and of the more antiquated sources the Jews borrowed from to write their myths and fables. Unfortunately, those who believe its authority go no further than their Bible for their knowledge of man's moral development.
While the story of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai is quite compelling and brilliantly told, is it far from being unique. Long before anyone heard of Moses, the Assyrians' Mises wrote his laws on two slabs of stone. Dionysus, the Greek lawgiver, engraved his laws on two stones. Minos, King of Crete, received his laws from God on Mount Dicta. The Persians make the same claim, and Zoroaster's book of the law (Zend Avesta) was given to him by God on a high mountain amid thunder and lightning. Hammurabi's code, "laws of righteousness," antedates the Mosaic code by more than a thousand years.
I believe there is nothing miraculous about the Ten Commandments except that they are still considered by some to be the height of morality.
Mr. Rapert, you should know our government has nothing to do with religion. It is purely secular. The purpose of making man worship this or that god is of the same spirit that built the dungeons of the Inquisition, and that kindles the fires of religious fanaticism.
An infinite god ought to be able to express himself without going into partnership with state legislators.
Keep out immigrants?
A few days ago, Sen. Tom Cotton indicated that he would co-sponsor a bill to curtail or in some cases get rid of immigration completely to the USA. Obviously, he lacks full knowledge of the history of immigration, and the value of contributions made by immigrants in the past.
One has to consider what the immigrants brought to this country during World War II when Hitler of Germany compelled many scientists and others to leave Germany. These exiles came to this country to find a living. Those immigrants had made significant contributions to art, music, literature, science, technology, business, and many other fields of importance to this country.
By turning away immigrants through a bill, this country will miss out using the skills, knowledge, and talents of future immigrants. Moreover, Senator Cotton argues that the wage savings of future immigrants could be used to increase the wages of the American workers. When the Republicans are up in arms against increasing the minimum wage for the current labor force, this notion of increasing the wages for the work force when the immigration law is implemented appears to be in direct contradiction to what Republicans believe.
Where is the need for Senator Cotton to come up with this idea? No one knows, but it certainly is a bad idea.
Editorial on 02/11/2017
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