The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

January 6, 2013

Letters to the Editor 1/6/13

The News Courier

The News Courier encourages letters to the editor. Submissions should be no more than 400 words and should include a name, address and telephone number for verification. Submissions that do not meet requirements are subject to editing. Send letters by noon on Thursdays to P.O. Box 670, Athens, AL, 35613, or email to

Abortion: What are we doing about it?

Dear Editor:

I am shocked that we have allowed abortion to go this far.

When before in our nation’s history did we legally allow the murder of over 3,000 of our children a day? When did we last give someone the so-called “right” to have power over another individual to decide if they die or live?

We hear in our churches and amongst our friends that abortion is a bad thing, and that over 56 million precious lives have been lost to its cause, but what are we doing about it?

We ignore it.

We turn our back to the truth and deceive ourselves into believing that everything is OK. Well, it’s not. Everything is far from OK.  Mass murder is happening in our country, and we care more about the next movie coming out than we care about more than 3,000 little babies die each day. And no, it is no excuse to say you are “personally” pro-life, but you would not push it on someone else.

If you are personally pro-life, you are not pro-life at all. To be pro-life is to care about the over 56 million babies that have died. You do not care about those babies if you will not “push your belief on someone else.”

It is time to stop playing the blame game. Something has got to change. Can you imagine if everyone in our nation who cares about the lives of millions of babies gathered together and started actually practicing what we preach? It would be amazing. It would be revival.

How can we make this change? You may feel like your voice is small, but it is not. As an American, you have a voice, and there are many options on how to voice it.

But don’t just read this and go back to what you were doing. That is why babies are dying. Do something. Babies’ and women’s lives depend on it.


Claire Carpenter, age 14


Citizen participation important

Dear Editor:

During 2013, citizen participation and involvement in their local government’s operation is particularly crucial in relation to maintaining and improving Athens quality of life.

The reason for this is city government is about to undertake a significant project in January which will eventually determine Athens continued development and its future land use policies. This project will determine the best use of our land over the next few years as we grow and expand.  As an initial part of this project, the city will ask for your participation in a survey soon to be announced that when completed will result in a vision for Athens.

This survey will directly support the creation and planned implementation of our future direction and the type of city we want Athens to become.

I watch our citizens become involved and participate in every manner and form of organization, except when it comes to the continuing operations of our city government.  People vote and believe they have done their duty until the next election.  

We vote and then turnover the complete management, administration and operational responsibility of the city to professional politicians and career civil servants and we never look back — a huge mistake. Without continuing citizen involvement, how can they truly understand what the correct path for Athens is to be going forward?  Without adequate citizen input, politicians will make decisions regarding what they believe is correct, (right or wrong).

To prevent this, we must actively participate in our local government’s administration and daily operations. We must have a continuing say regarding the direction and future of Athens, and insure our tax dollars are expended appropriately in support of our requirements and quality of life desires.

Stay involved and participate. We can’t allow the input from politicians, business interest groups, unconnected civic organizations, lobbyists and/or civil servants to be the only ones to provide our direction. Don’t let Athens be governed only by a minority of multiple diverse special interests.

Please believe me when I say what goes around comes around.  If you don’t participate, there is a strong possibility we will end up living in a city with less than what we expect and deserve.


Ralph Diggins


Taking guns away not solution

Dear Editor:

Nobody knows where evil like the Newtown incident comes from, but it’s out there and is responsible for some truly awful things. 

But, for everyone who acts out and damages somebody, there is someone who has had the same childhood who never acted out and never hurt anybody.

Obviously, the constant volume of explicitly violent games and movies available, to our youth and young adults, is not helping. They have become accustomed to violence and killing without experiencing the reality of performing, or being victims, of such acts, in the living, breathing, real world.  There must be some other part to the equation.  We only have theories, and none of it really matters, in the long run, because it is not going to stop the damage.

The question is: How are we going to identify and stop the individual who has never acted out or broken the law or done something unusual that warned of what’s to come?  Most psychological or psychiatric therapists efforts come into play after the damage is done.

Taking guns away from American citizens isn’t the real solution. An assault rifle, as a rifle, is not any different from other rifles or handguns. It is intimidating looking, but there are up to 100-round magazines available for various handguns and rifles besides an assault rifle. The function is the same, but the assault rifle has more accessories on it that make it more imposing looking. There are millions of high capacity magazines for rifles and handguns already in our citizen’s possession.

We must get two things resolved to stop the hysteria about objects that are not the base cause of some of these terrible incidents.  The first is that we need parents and relatives to recognize that an individual with unusual or mentally aberrant actions should be taken, when first noticed, to a medically qualified person for consultation. It may prevent the loss of their or other’s lives. Many people do not want to deal with this psychological burden as it is considered a mental weakness that should not be discussed.

Second, we need testing in elementary and high schools of all students that show unusual behavior just like years ago when all children were tested for hearing problems. This helped their ability to learn.  Psychological testing can give disturbed students the ability to participate normally in society.


Quentin D. Anderson Sr.