This should also be a “predictable response” since egregious accusations and distortions of the truth should not be allowed to go unchallenged. As in my previous letter, I will not only support each statement I make with sources for that information, but in the interests of time and service to the community, I will outline the process for checking on these facts as well as any further false statements in any subsequent letter to the editor. It was not and is not opinions or suggestions that I refuse to let stand, but rather statements that are not true. The truth is always worth defending. It is the open-minded that I appeal to, which is distinguished from the empty mind that blindly accepts what a person sees written or broadcast by the mainstream media and its lackeys.
First, I never “throw in words”. Each word I use has a precise meaning and is used to convey a specific idea. When I describe the attributes of our republican (note the small “r”) form of governments and justice systems, it is to reinforce what should have been taught in our schools about our country, what principles is was founded upon, and what has been great about our country- not the lies and distortions that are being promulgated through the 1619 Project, sponsored by the New York Times, the Smithsonian Institute, and the teachers union. When there have been failings, such as President Jackson’s Trail of Tears for several Indian tribes and Jim Crow laws in the South, they too must be admitted, put into context and used as lessons learned so that our country can move to even greater achievements in the recognition of the rights of man and the responsibility and dignity of the individual. This is not achieved by assigning people into groups based on race, creed, sex, or country of origin and basing their worth (or “guilt”) on such assignments.
I highly recommend the book, A Patriot’s History of the United States by Larry Schweikart and Michael Allen, which lays out the history of our nation from Columbus’s discovery of the New World to the present. The book refutes the errors and outright lies of Howard Zinn’s book, A People’s History of the United States, which was used as the basis of the 1619 Project. Each chapter has extensive first-hand sources and references to support every claim made in the book. It gives the good and the bad that has happened here in the United States. An honest reader will note that there has been so much more good than bad, which has made the USA an inspiration to the world and an immigration destination for responsible, freedom-loving individuals.
Now to address specifics. The actual statement about a month ago by the Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Jr. is that President Trump could be investigated, based on public reports, for potential criminal conduct of the Trump organization. Importantly, the Supreme Court has ruled that a sitting president is not immune from subpoenas by local and state agencies, so the idea that President Trump needs to seek re-election to prevent this is patently false. The Supreme Court also stated that President Trump could challenge the subpoena in lower court, which is in process. So, the status at the date of my letter was as I stated: the local DA was looking for a crime, (with no evidence that a crime has been committed) to see what new smears might be leveled against President Trump. (Confirmation of this came September 27 in an article (based on an illegal leak of President Trump’s tax returns) by the New York Times headlined as “18 Revelations from a Trove of Trump Tax Returns”- none of which were crimes!)
The review of President Trump’s tax returns by proper authorities that I mentioned are those federal, state and local agencies to whom the tax returns were sent! This whole matter is a distraction from the many positive accomplishments for America that President Trump has achieved during his first few years as president, despite the continual, hate-based harassment he has faced since he took office.
Next, the “6% of total reported COVID deaths due solely to COVID” is not something I “chose to say”. It is the actual information published by the CDC after an examination of the cause-of-death information submitted to them by the various state health agencies. This was reported on August 31 by NBC, MSN, WebMD and others. Unfortunately, the CDC has again changed how the numbers are reported. The CDC no longer reports those deaths due solely to COVID-19 but lumps them in with the much more prevalent pneumonia and influenza.
Let’s examine the question of President Trump’s actions as related to the Post Office funding and mail-in voting. Yes, Trump did say that he opposed additional funding for the postal service and that he wanted to make it less likely for voter fraud through mail-in voting. Those were only two of his reasons for opposing the $3.5 trillion-dollar proposal from Speaker Pelosi that included trillions in dollars for other pet projects of hers. In context, a reader would see that President Trump’s reason for his opposition to the additional funding for the USPS is that additional money had already been authorized this year, and he wanted to see the USPS take appropriate business steps to get some fiscal responsibility into the organization. His concern about voter fraud with the types of mail-in voting has been shown in recent weeks to be quite valid: Shannon Brown, Gregg County Commissioner, has been charged with 23 felony counts of vote-by-mail voter fraud (9/24/2020); in Virginia, just recently over 1,000 voters received 2 absentee ballots; Sherkia Hawkins, the Democratic clerk of Southfield, MI, is going to trial on 6 felony counts of voter fraud for editing 100’s of ballots. There are also problems with the system of validating mail-in votes in Pennsylvania, California and other states: disposal of mail-in votes for President Trump, no removal of deceased people from the rolls, no check that only U.S. citizens receive such ballots, no check as to whether a registered voter moved elsewhere (11% of people move each year and California has had quite a number leave its state this year!) Refer to my earlier letter on the dangers to our republic if there become questions about the validity of an election and the threat that unvalidated mail-in voting processes represents.
Finally, as far as President Trump removing some mail boxes, that is true but incomplete. Mail boxes are taken out of service and replaced every few years due to wear and tear. As a point of reference, President Obama removed over 14,000 during his tenure in office.
As a reasonable person can see, it is essential to collect all of the facts on any given story. The important points were, as elsewhere, (1) who is the source of the information, (2) what is the person’s credibility and (3) does the person have an agenda of financial stake in partial or slanted presentation of information. I always cross-check information for confirming primary sources and just because a source was correct about one topic does not make the person someone who can always be trusted. I use Duckduckgo.com as my search engine. While not perfect, it does give the broad spectrum of articles on a given subject, unlike Google, which has been shown to use a search algorithm which de-emphasizes conservative sources and views. Self-called “fact-checkers” have also been shown to be biased. Once the appropriate search engine provides possible sources- use the most local source for the most believable representation of the event. Also check to see if the whole story is included in the report- not just one person’s view or a quote taken out of context. I know, it is more work, but when a person is making decisions (voting) that will influence one’s health decisions or the course for the country, such effort is the small price one should be willing to pay.
Frederick J. Dechow, Ph.D