Letters to the Editor

Voice of the People - December 7, 2008

Nation soon in its death spiral

There are many who, for self-serving motives, are more than happy to destroy America as we know it. Greed is the motivating force, whether it takes the form of capitalism or political desire for power.

So-called free trade through NAFTA and other international pacts is nothing but a move to destroy the industrial base of America, thereby enriching the already rich through slave labor by manufacturing goods cheaply and reselling the goods for high American prices, sometimes realizing profits measuring upward to 300 percent or more for a common shirt or dress.

The idea is to make America dependent on foreign goods for survival, even for the most basic items. It is indeed a rare occasion to find a product made exclusively in this country. The engine in my Chevrolet was made in China, the transmission in Japan, and the car assembled in Canada.

Both parties are self-serving and don't have enough sense to determine that an unemployed American citizen will not be able to purchase even a cheaply made Chinese toothpick. When all are finally put out of work, who then is left to support the greed of the industrialist?

Eventually, the cry of the American public will cause our political elite in Washington to do something to appease and deceive the voters. In the name of patriotism, Barak Obama will push for and achieve through a Democratic controlled Congress a national tariff on foreign goods.

This tariff will not bring jobs to Americans but will funnel train loads of tax dollars into the national treasury since it will be needed to replace the tax dollars now in existence from what industrial base we now have left but which will leave this country to escape his brand of socialism.

The resulting downward economic spiral will bring America to its final death throes, reducing us to the level of Third World countries and leaving the common man living on the streets. But not to worry, since greed cannot be satisfied, and when we are down to our last morsel of bread, the politicians will have mercy and take the bread to relieve us of the burden of having to carry it.

William W. Ferguson Sr.

Indian Land

Moving beyond partisan bitterness

In his recent letter, Wayne Clark states that he used to travel abroad as a Canadian to avoid anti-Bush tirades by locals. This is an unusual statement because similar sentiments are shared by many York County residents. In fact, Mr. Clark himself has authored several anti-Bush rants that he now claims to avoid. Michael Long's letter on the same day is another hate-filled example. This kind of partisanship serves no constructive purpose.

These letters are a stark contrast to the front-page photo and article about President-elect Obama and Sen. McCain. They were meeting to find bipartisan solutions for problems that affect all Americans. Thank goodness these politicians have enough sense to know when the campaign is over! This makes me hopeful that we can move beyond bitterness and division.

Steve Knowe

Tega Cay

You can help others by ringing a bell

Can there be a better sign that Christmas is coming than seeing the volunteers ringing a bell and tending the kettle outside your favorite store?

The kettles were started by the Salvation Army Capt. Joseph McFee in 1891 as a way to raise money to feed the poor people of San Francisco a Christmas meal. The idea originated in Liverpool, England, where a large pot was used to accept charitable donations.

The kettles today still serve the same purpose. The homeless are invited to a Christmas dinner and party to show them that someone still cares for them.

I first met the Salvation Army after Hurricane Hugo struck Charleston and then proceeded to pay us a visit in Rock Hill. Our National Guard Unit from York County was activated and sent to Charleston. We set up camp under the Hagood football stadium. We had people doing all sorts of jobs throughout the region so we were coming and going at all hours of the night and day. The only constant thing throughout the two-week period was the Salvation Army food wagon. There was always someone on duty to fix a sandwich or hot dog always with a smile. When I got home I read about all the other groups who had helped in Charleston, but not the Salvation Army. But, for us who had worked those days and nights, we knew who had been doing the most good.

I got involved with "ringing the bell" for the Salvation Army in York. As a member of the board for the Army in Rock Hill, I spoke up for western York County, and was given the responsibility of finding the best location. Wal-Mart became our gracious host. Each year from the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve the sound of the bell ringing brings in the spirit of the season.

Ringing the bell is such a blessing of course you see the occasional Scrooge, but most people are glad to see you. The people that look like they can afford the least give the most. Many times I hear the same story. "Once I was down and out and the Salvation Army helped me get back on my feet." Then they empty their pockets into the kettle.

A couple of years ago, a little lady noticed that I was about to freeze as I rang the bell. She spoke to me on the way into the store. In a few minutes she came back with a cup of hot coffee. I don't know where she got it and I didn't ask, but I hugged her and thanked her.

Many clubs and groups look for projects this time of year. You could find no better project than ringing the bell for the needy.

The Christmas Kettle and bell ringing volunteer stands as a symbol of service to others, a refreshing reminder during all the rushing around at Christmas that people still do care for one another.

We need volunteers to help in ringing those Christmas bells. Call us at 803-324-5141 if you can help the Salvation Army.

Cecil Pruette

Rock Hill