Observer Forum: Letters to the editor

In response to “Fast-food workers join national strike” (Sept. 5):

$15? Unionization? Fast-food workers asking too much

I’ve worked as a certified nursing assistant for 25-plus years. When I started minimum wage was $3.35, roughly $6,900 per year. With annual raises, added skills and additional responsibilities I reached a livable income.

Today the starting salary is about $11 per hour. CNAs, nurses, teachers, etc. are not in it for the money, rather for the inner thanks knowing they’ve helped someone.

Fast-food workers are needed and valued. They do not shape or save lives. Rethink the $15 an hour.

John K. Maxwell


In response to “Higher minimum wage doesn’t bring better standard of living” (Sept. 5 Forum):

Minimum wage has inched up too slowly – $7 over 76 years

Forum writer John Scism is correct, the minimum wage has been raised 23 times – from 25 cents in 1938 to $7.25 in 2009, the last time it was raised.

That’s an astounding $7 over 76 years. Nearly 11 cents a year!

Incidentally, the richest 10 percent of Americans were the only group whose median income rose in the past three years. Incomes declined for every other group.

Roger Craig


In response to “Cost of streetcar rises by $24M” (Sept. 5):

Math on streetcar cost increase just doesn’t add up

Streetcar cost jumps from $126 to $150 million – $15.3 million due to inflation. That’s a 12.1 percent increase.

Inflation since the start of 2007 has been 11.8 percent. The budget was approved in May 2013. There’s something fishy about the math.

Dale W. Saville


I-77 monorail won’t happen in my lifetime, but I can dream

I can only hope that a few hundred years from now, the archeologists will uncover my proposal for a monorail in the median of I-77 in the NCDOT rubble.

Jack Wilson


In response to “Hagan, Tillis clash in their opening debate” (Sept. 4):

Seems Hagan wasn’t alone in casting last Obamacare vote

Rep. Thom Tillis claimed during the debate that Sen. Hagan was the final and deciding vote for the Affordable Care Act. His TV ads claim the same.

I find this very odd because in Minnesota, Sen. Al Franken’s opponent is claiming that he was the final vote.

And in Louisiana the same claim is being made about Sen. Mary Landrieu.

There can only be one last vote.

Ron Rabatsky


In response to “Takes time to develop a wise strategy: I’m OK with that” (Sept. 5 Forum):

Weak, detached president can’t commit to defeating ISIS

While President Obama “takes his time” to develop a strategy more Christians and non-compliant Muslims are slaughtered, more Americans brutally beheaded, and more Iraqi territory gobbled up for the new Islamic caliphate.

He amazingly says that he wants to wound ISIS so that it’s a “manageable problem.”

Can we imagine President Roosevelt telling our shocked nation on Dec. 8, 1941, that his goal was to turn the Japanese Navy into a “manageable problem”?

Keith T. Brittain


In response to “State approves online charters” (Sept. 4):

Nothing good will come of allowing K12 to operate in N.C.

Is the public aware that we are funding virtual schools with our tax dollars, robbing public schools, while making corporate heads rich?

K12 virtual school is a for-profit business with ties to the pro-business group ALEC which now runs our state legislature.

A New York Times investigation of K12 found “a company that tries to squeeze profits from public school dollars by raising enrollment, increasing teacher workload and lowering standards.”

Reading, math and graduation rates are dismal.

Sarah Dorenfeld


In response to “There’s a downside to reclining on airplanes” (Sept. 5 Viewpoint):

Want to recline on board? Charge an extra fee for that

I have a suggestion for the airlines. Why not charge to have the seat in front not recline?

They charge for everything else.

The recline/no recline fee would boost the bottom line for the airlines.

Bill Lane