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Letter to the editor: Following conscience is patriotic

Letter to the editor: Following conscience is patriotic

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Editor:

It’s not even hidden. Republicans say to win elections they must restrict voting. They shun and threaten all not totally loyal to Trump, those following their conscience. I think of Nuremberg trials against those loyal to Hitler, those with no conscience.

Seven courageous Republican senators and 10 representatives (not our Stefanik) voted their conscience, voting to impeach. I kept thinking, “How could others not see” what’s evident? Then I remembered Jim Crow South — all-white juries finding a Black man guilty with no evidence, or a white man innocent who clearly killed a person of color, facts unimportant, only loyalty to their “cause” — violence, dogs, courts, police enforcing power.

When the Supreme Court gutted parts of the Voting Rights Act, some states rushed into high gear: limiting voting access, demanding identity cards, limiting polling places, purging voter rolls, gerrymandering districts, ensuring Republican control of state legislatures. But many worked diligently — registering voters, establishing early and mail-in voting, making voting accessible to all. It worked — more people voted in this fair election than ever before. But still the big lie, people raging that the election was stolen, attacking the Capitol. What was stolen: reason and morality.

Republicans once had a vision: fiscal conservatism, limited government, adherence to the Constitution, individual freedom. But their tax bill benefiting the very wealthy created huge deficits; total subservience to Trump’s dictatorial power, suppressing the vote, lying, threatening dissent damaged democracy; religious right’s vendetta against gays, lesbians, transpeople and women’s reproductive choices ignored real sins — poverty, racism, injustice, violence, war.

I called Democratic managers, thanking them for consciousness, respect and knowledge of history and our constitution, rule of law, accountability. And called the Republicans — most of whom hold views different from mine — thanking them for integrity, courage. Differences and debate are good. But sneering, threatening, cheating, willful ignorance to preserve power are criminal.

Bernice Mennis, West Fort

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