Observer Forum: Letters to the editor

In response to “Unsung wildcard in Tuesday’s vote” (Nov. 2, Taylor Batten column):

Straight-ticket voting had benefits

I have, with no regret, done straight-ticket voting for a few decades. In past elections, it has taken me about 15 minutes to vote early. Last week, I stood in line 45 minutes before entering the voting booth. Moreover, the ballot is cumbersome. Some voters (myself included) who stand in these long lines have physical limitations.

Most Democratic and Republican viewpoints are in stark contrast on important issues: growing the middle-class, voter suppression, minimum wage, etc. Voters who stay abreast of the issues should not be forced to “slog through the whole ballot” to vote.

Elizabeth Burton


In response to “Judges should be elected, not appointed. Even local ones” (Nov. 2 Forum):

We shouldn’t taint judicial branch with partisanship

With the legislative and executive branches already compromised, ineffective and corrupt, partisan political policy of our judicial system will forever stagnate and harm America. One GOP candidate even says in his ads he will bring conservative leadership.

Judges cannot be liberal or conservative, but strictly impartial. I thought judges were interpreters of right versus wrong.

Patrick Morgan


In response to “Understanding the Extremes” (Oct. 30 Viewpoint):

I’m a moderate who’s not ceding what power I have

Michael Smerconish points out that the 20 percent of Americans on the extreme political fringes are the most likely to vote, donate to campaigns and participate directly in politics. He then asks why 80 percent of Americans are willing to cede so much political debate and power to this minority.

The answer is simple: our 80 percent majority, the moderates who want thoughtful, reasonable candidates who will put the greater good above their own agendas, have no representation. Partisan redistricting and endless private interest money means that no independent or free thinker has a chance.

I will vote Tuesday, but a moderate independent has very little power these days. And I haven’t ceded it willingly.

Phil Evans


In response to “Gettleman’s gambles central to struggles” (Nov. 2):

Panthers’ on-field issues can be traced to general manager

Sportswriter Joseph Person hit the nail on the head. This mess is on Panthers General Manager Dave Gettleman. Whenever a team – whether it is in manufacturing or football – which was once running like a well-oiled machine – suddenly stops working at all, you can trace the problem back to a change in management.

Sheila Burleson


In response to “A Texas sized tussle” (Nov. 3):

Tussle a reminder of what fans enjoyed about NASCAR

Sunday’s NASCAR Cup series race at Texas Motor Speedway was like the shootout at the OK Corral. Brad Keselowski gave Jeff Gordon a little tap going for the lead and fisticuffs broke out after the race.

Fifty years ago, fans filled the stands to see a good race and a few punches afterward. NASCAR should have no driver fines, drink some sweet tea, watch the grandstands fill again and let boys be boys.

Jim Cherry


In response to “Softpedaling at UNC” (Nov. 1, N.C. Opinions):

Here’s one way to legitimize student-athletes

Maybe one way to “fix it” would be for schools to offer a degree that takes into consideration the time, level of stress and physical demands that are unique to those who participate in intercollegiate athletics.

Athletes could opt for what would be a specialized degree that doesn’t demand as much academic rigor as a “real” one, but isn’t a free ride either. That might serve the purpose for some athletes and prospective employers and legitimize the term “student-athlete.”

Phil Clutts