Good to be the queen
Yes, Philip Martin, our governor's scorn is all too real. Any behaviorist will confirm that it is very difficult to alter our nonverbal communication because it is primarily unconscious. Her sneers, eye-rolling and pouts are physical manifestations of true emotions. In fact, it is wiser to read these nonverbal cues than to listen to her words.
Maybe she is smart and at one time was a pleasure to be around. But people do change, and I imagine that she did. I like to think it happened when The Donald dragged her along to Buckingham Palace to a fancy state dinner with the Queen of England. You can just imagine this young woman from Arkansas opening up her eyes wide at all the glitter, pomp, and circumstance. She got the message; it's good to be queen! Then she went out and found a way to become one right back where she started.
She's not here for us
Good heavens, Philip Martin, of course Sarah Sanders is not stupid. You spent almost an entire column praising her, yet I have read no sane comment that posed such, but I have read many that claimed she came to Arkansas as a stepping stone to a national office. That idea seems more nearly to describe her and her behavior here. She demonstrates daily that she cares little to nothing about Arkansas and its people. Her rhetoric decrying the woke left, vermin or whatever else she espouses is designed to play to the lesser informed and those enamored of her.
Your opinion is as good as anyone else's, but surely you are not deceived by the face she puts on every time she speaks. Follow the money (lectern, appliances, trips, etc.) and see if you still think she is here to better the circumstances of either Arkansas or its people.
Worth the paycheck
I really enjoyed Philip Martin's column Sunday about Sarah Sanders.
He is not being overpaid.
Must annihilate them
Gene Pfeifer's eloquent opinion piece in the paper recently was right on; reminding us of Kristallnacht is so important. Antisemitism can be insidious in the beginning, but now it is more and more prevalent and it seems the antisemites are emboldened because our government turns a blind eye. People must distinguish between the the people of Gaza and Hamas and call Hamas what it is: a group of violent terrorists!
I am baffled by people hating the Jews through the centuries. Jews are such a small group of people and yet have been persecuted since Abraham. Hamas will continue terrorizing unless the people of the world step up and help Israel annihilate them.
Lately we have seen far too much hatred, intolerance, and violence, often even leading to mass shootings. I don't claim to have all the answers, but we can point to at least two correctable factors.
First, too many politicians, almost exclusively Republicans, have taken to calling people with whom they disagree enemies, haters of America, or worse, even suggesting violence. Their speech gives people permission to use any means necessary to squash these enemies. Even though most gun owners are responsible and don't approve of this behavior, some of these leaders pose for photos holding assault rifles, glorifying and even encouraging the use of force to get their way. While the vast majority of the supposed "enemies" are Americans who simply have a different opinion, it is sad that most mainstream Republicans won't demand an end to this violent language and imagery by their colleagues.
Second is the blatant effort to reduce mutual respect and understanding. Generations of Americans have learned compassion for the humanity and struggles of others through history, literature, theater, and art. These can teach us empathy for the complex challenges of rural America, hunger, homelessness, mental illness, the Israeli-Palestinian problem, or just being different. We are witnessing another upswing in banning exposure to certain viewpoints and facts in libraries, schools, and colleges, and even to require teaching only what those in charge want people to know. This promotes misunderstanding and intolerance.
The combination of loss of empathy for the experiences of others, referring to others as "enemies," and glorification of violence work together to worsen our current situation. I implore our elected representatives to support mutual understanding and tolerance, and to call out their colleagues who create more division, demanding they stop the violent and intolerant rhetoric. Fixing these two issues won't solve the problem, but our leaders could move the needle.
Last call for letters
Thanksgiving is only two days away, and we want to hear from you. Have you started your preparations yet? Are you planning on a small gathering or a large crowd? Tell us if you haven't had a letter printed in the 30 days preceding Nov. 23, and we'll do our best to get it in.
Keep it under 300 words, and send it by email to [email protected]; or through our Voices form at arkansasonline.com/contact/voicesform. The deadline for Thanksgiving letters is 5 p.m. today.