Donald Trump, the shooting star


To the Editor:

Donald Trump can be likened to a shooting star. Today the talk is about his power/influence. Will he remain relevant? No! He has had four years to “Make America Great Again.” He failed miserably because he refused to protect/unite Americans. “Loser”? Here’s a short list of his losses/failures:

Political novelty and flamboyance;

An incumbent who lost the 2020 election;

The advantage of a hobbled opponent in 2016;

Impeached by the House;

Ability to hide classified information;

Cannot handle a crisis;

Attempt to overturn 2020 election;

Claim to be the only “fixer” for America;

Trust of many world leaders;

Time on earth. Trump will be 78 in 2024;

Protection from indictment and prosecution (This must hang very heavy over Trump);

Refusal to acknowledge Russian interference in 2016 election;

His tweets will be merely personal (not presidential).

Reminds me of a haunting song by William Bell from 1969. The gist of the song: “Everybody loves a winner. But when you lose you lose alone.”

Each shooting star makes only one streak across the night sky. Trump has made his.

Dave Waldrop, Webster


American minds seem to be closing


To the Editor:

At 73, I am old enough to remember when the adjective “liberal” was a positive thing and I (for well over half a century) resonated with the idea of being free and open to other ideas; broadminded and tolerant of other people and other races and cultures.

Today, I am experiencing anything but a positive application of the adjective “liberal.” Today, in the final days of the year 2020, any attempt to openly discuss differing opinions can get you “canceled” and actually banned from voicing your personal opinion in a public setting or on social media.

Martin Luther King Jr.’s plea for all Americans to judge each other by the content of their character rather than the color of their skin has found no place in our prevailing culture that is attempting to focus everyone’s energy on discovering which socio-economic group needs to be defended and raised up and which group needs to be trampled down and forced to bear the burden of reparations for the economic disparity created by “who knows what” or in most cases; “whatever!” 

Personal responsibility and the satisfaction and pride of achieving success by one’s own efforts has been replaced by a demand for handouts and debt forgiveness for young folks who are deeply in debt and totally unable or unwilling to pursue a career that will enable them to make their own way in this challenging world we are facing.

Will our current liberal activists ever realize that the massive majority of Christians, who are authentically conservative, do not worship Donald J. Trump? For conservative Christians it has never been about the man, Donald J. Trump, and has everything to do with changing the free-fall direction of our United States of America into a divisive chaotic social structure where personal freedom and liberty from the tyranny of “big government” is destroying us from within. Dare I suggest that the socialist governments of China and Russia are more than willing to help greedy career politicians, in both main parties, to divide and conquer us? We need look no further than some of our state and local officials to discover who and why our little mountain community is dying economically, educationally and socially; and why generations of native Jackson County residents, of every representative race, are slowly losing their confidence in the democratic republic that millions of Americans have fought and died to protect and defend for ourselves and our progeny.

My final plea, to every patriotic American residing in Jackson County, is for you to research the “Great Barrington Declaration” at and watch Larry Elder’s documentary, “Uncle Tom.” I am not asking you to agree with me; only to listen with that long-lost beautiful liberal concept of being open to differing ideas and perspectives.

Lorraine Arnold, Sylva


Heartily recommends Sea Scouts


To the Editor:

I joined Sea Scouts when I was 14. I’d always been interested in kayaking and canoeing and Sea Scouts is an organized and safe way to explore that.

Our skipper, Robin Pope, keeps things organized and safe while letting the ship be mostly Scout-led. On top of the fun activities, Sea Scouts gives me an opportunity to build upon teamwork and leadership skills.

I started with easy river kayaking and short lake trips, to whitewater and two-hour lake outings. Kayaking never gets boring because there are always skills to build upon and more challenging runs to take on.

In Sea Scouts there are different leadership positions held by the scouts. Every 6 to 12 months an election is held to change the scouts occupying the positions. This allows people without much leadership experience to have the opportunity to gain it, and those with leadership experience to build on it. They will start from a role with less responsibility and work their way to roles with more obligation to the ship.

One of my favorite trips has been a whitewater kayak trip where we did some surfing, and I’ve enjoyed learning first aid, even if I haven’t had to use it in the real world. Learning knots has been very useful in several situations and gives me more options when securing my kayaks. Sometimes Sea Scouts can be hard work, but it’s always worth it.

I have a few years before I age out of Sea Scouts, but I know how time flies so I’m still working hard, and I plan to enjoy my last few years in the program. When the older scouts age out we need newer scouts to take their place. Sea Scouts is an amazing program and a lot of fun. If you’re over 14 you should join, and if you’re getting close to 14 you should consider joining when you can. If you end up not liking it, you can always find something else you like instead. Join Sea Scouts today.

Parker Smith, Sylva