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Letters to the Editor: Dec. 14, 2016

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Debating hate

I am a bisexual, 19-year-old white female who supports the rights of everyone, no matter the skin color. I support LGBT rights and will not change. Love is love, no matter what the gender you are. If two men or two women of any color want to marry each other, go for it! Invite me to the weddings — I will attend them.

Yes, I follow in the LGBT and believe in God, but I don’t want to have a religion shoved down my throat just because I am “going against your beliefs.”

I believe in having your own opinion; I just don’t have to follow it. If I don’t believe in what you do, leave it alone, because what you’re doing is going against what I believe in because you want to “prove a point.”

I support Native Americans who are peacefully protesting, not rioting. People who call peaceful protestors “rioters” are people who watch too much Fox news and support the troll lord Cheeto too much.

But spraying objectors with gasses and hitting them with rubber bullets and water? Are they the ones starting trouble?

Black people are being killed and accused of having weapons on them (some who have died weren’t armed). It’s history repeating itself.

To kids who think putting swastikas on everything is funny or that representing the KKK is great: It’s not funny or cute. Anyone saying history that happened “back then” doesn’t affect you now needs to pick up a book and read it.

Anyone who believes history doesn’t mean anything should learn more about at what your ancestors went through to get where you are today.

You are sick if you believe that killing, harming or thinking like that is what helps “make America great again.”

Amber Chastain Oklahoma City

Here’s to you, Mrs. Anderson

I wanted to respond, if I could, to a writer from the November 23rd edition of Oklahoma Gazette, a Mrs. Julie Anderson of New Hampshire (Opinion, Letters, “Processing the election”), a retired public school teacher from Edmond. I just wanted to say thank you.

Her perspective on the state of the country after this year’s election is so refreshing. I grew up in an upper middle class, mostly white family (my mother, brother and I are significantly Native) that worships whatever right-winger is in the White House.

They defended the bumbling fool George W., and now they’re telling me that all the horrible things that Donald J. Trump has said and done (that are documented!) aren’t true or are misconstrued by the “liberal media” and that I need to “educate” myself.

I’m attending the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications and I am aware of how the media works, and I am still terrified of the next four years.

Why am I thanking Mrs. Anderson? Because it is so refreshing to see someone in her economic class and situation recognize what electing this man means for everyone in this country.

She’s worried about not just the here and now, but for future generations, minorities and people whom she may not even know. She exemplifies what we need to see more of in this country.

It would make sense for a person in her situation to not care for others, as is the norm for most economically comfortable white Americans, but she instead chooses to recognize and empathize with all humans. That’s beautiful. That’s amazing.

After Election Day, I woke up crying, too, for many of the same reasons, but most importantly because I’ve been trying to help my Native brothers and sisters in Standing Rock, North Dakota, from here in Oklahoma by educating others and writing my own blogs and stories, and I know that Trump will not respect our treaties — our basic human rights — because he’s all about profit and companies. He doesn’t even believe in global warming.

It’s heartbreaking for everyone who fights to protect sacred land and water.

I know this letter is a bit long, but I truly wanted to thank Mrs. Anderson and tell her how much reading her letter meant to me, a lower-income Native female scared of the next four years. It is so nice to know that there are people out there who truly know the consequences of what we’ve let happen to our country.

Here’s hoping we’re all wrong about our fears of the future.

Christen Powell Yukon

A student’s perspective

I am writing in response to the article “State Question 779 sparks debate over sales tax” (News, Education, “Yes or no,” Aug. 10, Laura Eastes, Gazette).

Something has to be done to fix the educational funding problems in Oklahoma. Not only the schools but also the students are suffering from budget cuts that never seem to end. As a high school student and a concurrent student, I have experienced the effects of the budget cuts firsthand.

My high school could not afford to buy its own copy paper, so students had to supply it. We also shortened our school year so the school can save money. At the end of last year, 15 teachers lost their jobs due to the district not having enough funds to pay them. I believe that if something is not fixed soon, my school’s advanced placement classes will be cut next. The students who are suffering from education budget cuts are our future, and they are getting less of an education because of these cuts.

Teachers are also being hit hard by budget cuts. Many do not want to teach in Oklahoma because the pay is so much lower than in other states. Last year, one of my classes had a student teacher, and after she finished college, she moved to Texas because the pay was so much higher there. She told me she would be getting paid more in her first year of teaching than our teacher who has been teaching for over 30 years.

I think the only way to fix the budget problems in the long run is to cut some of Oklahoma’s other areas of spending and invest that money into education.

Jacquelyn Powers Shawnee

Correction

A Nov. 30 Oklahoma Gazette story (Arts & Culture, “Coming together”) misidentified Richard May’s role with Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund. May helped cofound the nonprofit and served as an early board member.

Oklahoma Gazette provides an open forum for the discussion of all points of view in itsLetters to the Editor section. The Gazette reserves the right to edit letters for length and clarity. Letters can be mailed, faxed or emailed to jchancellor@okgazette.com or sent online at okgazette.com. Include a city of residence and contact number for verification.

Opinions expressed on the commentary page, in letters to the editor and elsewhere in this newspaper are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ownership or management.

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