Verify what you read
Recently I read a letter written by a gentleman declaring himself to be a Christian (not a "Bible-thumper"), believing that all humans are equal despite our God-given color, and a political moderate. He points out that he heard one party left out the phrase "under God" of the pledge of allegiance during its convention. He takes great exception, so much so that he will likely vote for the other party. Philosophically, I agree with most of what he said except for believing anything that starts with "I heard."
It seems that honesty, especially in politics, is rarer than hens' teeth. I've learned to fact check almost every story I read. Unfortunately, too many people take things they've "heard" as factual, or read items from sources that are known to have a political leaning (they all do) without bothering to investigate a bit further. I'd be lost without Google, Snopes, or FactCheck.
In this case, a two-minute Google search led me to videos and additional articles debunking the myth that the Democrats removed the phrase "under God" from the pledge during their convention. This story was perpetuated by President Trump himself. He tells lies repeatedly and then when he's caught, labels reports as "fake news." And far too often, he gets away with his lies.
But the other party isn't necessarily honest; I've proven a few of their stories to be exaggerated or completely false. And as if partisan politics couldn't be ugly enough in 2020, now U.S. Intelligence is telling us that Russians are actively manipulating the flow of information, stories, etc., on Facebook and other social media, apparently trying to influence our vote.
So I'm asking everyone to please take each story you hear of or read with a bit of skepticism, even if you feel like you got it from a good source. Take just a moment to validate the truthfulness. Personally, I feel like it's my duty as a citizen to be as informed as I possibly can be. This is always important, but especially so when your vote is on the line.
Alternative on ballot
I keep hearing that Tom Cotton is too big for Arkansas and that as one of the "conservative" senators in Washington, D.C., he's bound for bigger and better things. It seems they managed to secure his future by making certain that no Democrat is running against him this November.
I want to make certain that Arkansans know that he is not unopposed. We have a choice. As one of Trump's blind minions, his lap dog, and self-proposed heir, Tom Cotton does not deserve another six years. Are we better off now that we were four years ago? That's the test. For four years Tom Cotton has cozied up to and blindly supported Donald Trump, leading us into this awful mess we're in.
I plan to vote Ricky Dale Harrington. He's on your ballot whether you vote in person or by mail. He's much more of a common man, focused on the needs of Arkansans, and much much less of a Trumpian fool. And he deserves our support. Senator Cotton does not.
Court fights to come
Does anyone remember the last time the Democrats accepted as legitimate the election of a Republican president? Perhaps Bush in '88? Certainly not since then. The lawyers are being hired and the lawsuits prepared. Any and all adverse outcomes will be challenged regardless of merit.
Welcome to the Brave New World.
Hill cares about vets
It's hard to describe how much Congressman French Hill's help meant to my family and me. Recently, I lost my husband, a Navy veteran who served during World War II. I wished for his funeral to include the honors he deserved, but we needed his DD214. Time was of the essence. One call to French Hill's office, and the next day we had what we needed. Even the funeral director was surprised!
I wasn't, though. I know how much French Hill cares about veterans--he has four of them on his staff. And I know how much he cares about the people of central Arkansas--all of them. On behalf of my husband, my family, and me, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you, Congressman French Hill.
State deserves better
Growing up in the Jim Crow South, I developed a thick skin. When I was integrating my high school, time and time again I saw the powers-that-be bend the rules and slant the truth to keep me down.
That was in the 1960s. In 2020, it's despicable that we're seeing the same kind of race-baiting falsehoods in the race for Arkansas' 2nd Congressional District.
French Hill has repeatedly chosen lies over truth and fear-mongering over meaningful discourse. Arkansans deserve better than someone who will do this to cling to power.
Congressman French Hill has released two separate attack ads that flat-out lie and put politics over public safety. Recently, Congressman Hill released a blatantly manipulated, false Facebook ad that played the race card to instill fear in the hearts of voters. He used a picture of me from the November teachers' rally and Photoshopped it, claiming it was from a recent, fictitious riot.
This paper's own editorial pages have come to my defense, correctly stating my opposition to rioting and defunding the police.
Arkansans deserve better in Congress than someone who plays the race card to lie and scare voters.
Before that, Congressman Hill attacked me for joining Republicans and Democrats to vote for a Republican-written bill to save our endangered 911 system. The bill's Republican sponsor was quoted in this paper saying it "had overwhelming support from basically every county judge and sheriff and person involved in law enforcement and emergency services in the state."
Arkansans deserve better in Congress than someone who chooses politics over a critical public safety measure.
Don't worry about me. I've faced deceitful, desperate attacks like this before. I'm worried about the people of central Arkansas. It's time we had a representative in Congress who stood for truth over lies and people over politics.
Not making it great
A Southern senator, Mitch McConnell, denies a Supreme Court appointment to a Black president offering an excuse. He subsequently offers a Supreme Court appointment to a white president ignoring the original excuse, which is even more applicable.
We have some great documents underpinning the politics of this country. However, this is the way we have operated from the beginning. We must be the laughingstock of every literate nation. Is this type of behavior making this country great again?
OTTO HENRY ZINKE