Old Mail : Letters and Envelope

October is Domestic

Violence Awareness Month

Since the pandemic hit, there is a surge in domestic violence in Maricopa County, as reported in a weekly update by District 5 County Supervisor Steve Gallardo. 

Wearing purple Oct. 22 is one demonstration of our commitment to end domestic violence. Encouraging anyone you know who is in or is vulnerable to domestic violence to seek help is another. 

The National Hotline 800-799-7233 is open at all times. Due to limited resources, the local area chatline 602-279-2980 is only open during normal weekday business hours, yet does have both English and Spanish advisors available. 

-CJ Briggle

 

Political sign destruction is suppression of opinions

Once again election season is upon us.  It is unfortunate that too many Americans have little understanding or regard for one of our greatest rights, Freedom of Speech.  Driving down Ray Road and 27th Street, I witnessed a man get out of his blue SUV and start pulling political signs of a party he clearly disagreed with out of the ground.  

This is becoming more common and is clearly evident around the Chandler and Ray interchange.  What makes our Republic great is the brilliance that the founders had in constructing our Constitution.  The acknowledgement that we have inalienable rights. 

We need constructive dialogue and an exchange of opposing ideas. We do not need the suppression of opinions. The rights of the minority must be protected no matter who is in the minority.  Politicians today are fanning the flames to change the checks and balance system in our government to push their agenda and silence the opposition.  

The path some are advocating is the 50-percent-plus 1 rule. 

 This undermines the basic foundation of our government and will lead to tyranny. Packing the courts, eliminating the filibuster, eliminating the Electoral College and creating new states all with the intention to suppress the opposition will have no good outcome.  

Our country is fairly evenly divided in Congress.  This is what we want. This forces compromise when adults are in office. Right now we have a collection of children who have little interest in working for the good of the people.  

Everything has to be political and their vitriol spurs people to try and suppress the rights of others. Our Republic is at stake.  

Citizens need to stand up and defend the rights of all Americans whether you agree with their position or not.  

-Bob Keller

 

Past student presidents support Armando Montero

As students, leaders in our communities, and past/present student body presidents of Tempe Union High schools, we know the importance of the election for the Tempe Union High School District Governing Board.

Oftentimes, we as students are not included in important conversations when it comes to the decisions being made about our schools which directly impact our daily lives. 

That is why we are excited to join together, spread our voice, and proudly endorse Armando Montero for the Tempe Union High School District Governing Board election this year.

We, along with many other Tempe Union students, stood alongside him as he fought for more social/emotional wellness resources in our district all throughout high school – introducing and passing a resolution at the board level, sparking a statewide conversation around mental health, and testifying in committee at the State Legislature to ensure our voices were heard. 

We have seen his ideas being implemented district wide and witnessed the positive impact they have had on the student body. 

Students will finally feel as if they have a more direct voice on their school board and a seat at the table during important conversations which is needed now more than ever. 

Students are excited to see the change that Armando will bring to the school board. He is the only candidate who has sat alongside us in the classroom and who has walked alongside us in the hallways, and in recent years. Armando knows what issues we face.

Armando understands what needs to be done and how to best meet the needs of our students – a fresh perspective that we feel has been missing from the Governing Board. 

He has seen the impact of the school board as a student, a community member, and a leader. 

Students will have a closer working relationship with the school board because of their trust in a recent graduate on the board and give them the opportunity to feel connected to the district. 

He always has and will continue to put students first. 

This election is special for so many students across the Tempe Union High School District.

 As past and present student body presidents, we speak for many students in the district when we say that Armando’s voice is one of the most important ones we can bring to the table this year. 

We are proud to join the many national and local endorsements he has received as they see the importance of bringing this fresh voice to the Tempe Union High School District Governing Board. We hope you join us as well.

Editor’s note: The letter was signed by the following student body presidents: Morgann Kelly, Desert Vista, 2020; Haruka Margaret Braun, Desert Vista, 2019; Cris Navas, Desert Vista, 2021; Elyssa Goswick, Desert Vista, 2018; Johanna Crowl, Desert Vista, 2017; Brach Drew, Marcos De Niza, 2020; Braylen Drew, Marcos De Niza, 2017; Jayda Bebee, Mountain Pointe, 2020; Isabel Warriner, McClintock, 2020; Meghan Iris McCain, Corona del Sol, 2020; Carlos Cazares, Compadre, 2020.

 

Keep Sandy Lowe on the TUHSD Governing Board

Sandy Lowe is worthy of your vote for re-election to the Tempe Union High School District Governing Board.

The Nov. 3rd ballot is going to be crowded. As a result some important positions will be buried at the bottom. One such buried position will be the critical race for Tempe Union High School Governing Board.

I urge everyone to keep Sandy Lowe on the board. She has tremendous institutional knowledge, sound judgment and commitment to the students and families. We need Lowe’s knowledge, wisdom and experience.

Sandy has served eight years during very challenging times with a clear sense of integrity, leadership, knowledge, vision – and a whole lot of hard work.

Sandy’s priorities include academic success for each student, safety at each school, mental health support for students and staff and fiscal responsibility. 

During the 10 years that I served on the board, I worked with Sandy on many district committees and clearly recognize that she possesses the qualities needed to fulfill these priorities.

 I urge citizens to vote for integrity and experience and re-elect Sandy Lowe.  Learn more about her at sandylowe.com.

-Zita Johnson

 

Responds to criticism of County Recorder Fontes

I am writing in response to a recent letter regarding Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes.  Let’s set the facts right. Thinking back to four years ago, our elections in Arizona were a mess.  

The failed Presidential Preference Election, a 34 percent decline in voting locations despite Maricopa County being the fastest growing county in America; incorrect ballots being printed not once but multiple times in the same election; voters being told to cast ballots in the wrong location resulting in their votes being thrown away; and private personal information (like Social Security numbers) being posted on the open internet by the Recorders office.

And worse, once the new recorder was installed in office, we learned a terrible working relationship existed between the Recorder’s office and the County Board of Supervisors.

Thanks to the hard work of former Marine, prosecutor and attorney Adrian Fontes, the Maricopa County Elections office is considered a model for every county in the United States.  How did he get us there?

  He and his team have worked to make sure the election systems and voter records are safe and digitally secure.  As a Marine, Fontes was entrusted with secure information about our national security and he has publicly stated that the security of our elections and voting to be the single most important part of his job as County Recorder.

  Fontes and his team have fixed our precinct problem.  They created new precincts and rebalanced existing precincts, reducing wait times for voters across the county, especially in the fastest growing areas of Maricopa County.  

  Fontes has also made voting easier for citizens. He’s added new voting centers across the county so people can vote at their convenience, either by dropping off their early ballot in person or by going to any voting center and getting a ballot to vote, no matter where in the county they live.

But perhaps the most important accomplishment Fontes has achieved has been repairing the relationship between the Recorder’s Office and the County Board of Supervisors.  

Working closely with the Republican board, especially former Chair Bill Gates, Fontes and the board have restructured the Maricopa County Elections Department for the first time in nearly 70 years, dividing it into two teams, one focusing on registration and early voting, the other election day and emergency voting.  

The Recorders Office is now responsible for voter registration and early voting, while the board of supervisors oversees election day and emergency voting. This bi-partisan team approach should be an example to everyone how Republicans and Democrats can work together to fix problems and make government work. 

We don’t need strident ideologues in government, we need pragmatic problem solvers who work with everyone.

I was an active Republican for 34 years, working on campaigns across Arizona and elsewhere in the United States. Although I left the GOP, I still believe that government needs to be efficient and bipartisan to get things done. 

 That’s why I am voting for Adrian Fontes for Maricopa County Recorder and encourage everyone to do the same. He’s proven that by working across party lines, you can make life better for those of us who live in Arizona.

-Mike Schiller

 

Voter suppression results from poll site moves

When County Recorder Adrian Fontes decided to change the where to vote, the new program was not explained enough to voters so they would know how to find a center near them.

In LD18, over 50 voters that we know of went to the church on election day to vote. They had always voted at the church and they were used to voting and then going to work.

When it was explained to them this was no longer a voting place and they were given other centers to vote, most didn’t have time to drive to a new place they did not know and get to work on time. So, they didn’t vote in the primary.  

That was just one center.  No one knows just how many people went to their old voting place to find no one there and not know where to go.

I have already had calls about where people can vote and are the centers

 the same.  

Zip code 85044 has only 1 voting center and it’s not that easy to find.

No other center is very close or convenient to use and go to work. You cannot keep changing where people vote and expect to not lose voters.  

Yes, you can vote at any center but most people like to vote at a consistent place and not have to worry if it will change for the next election.

I consider it voter suppression if people can’t count on a consistent place to vote for each election. 

For anyone who is not sure where to vote or wants to talk about options you can always come to the LD 18 Republican office and we’ll help you.  Address is 11011 E 48th St., 85044.

-Nancy Dombrowski

 

Integrity should replace

incumbent County Treasurer

It’s time to change Maricopa County Treasurer. I’m voting for Dan Toporek.

Maricopa County is the fourth most populated county in the U.S., with an annual budget over $3 billion. If managed more effectively, those dollars could go farther to serve all of us. 

That’s why I want to replace the incumbent County Treasurer who has no financial experience and who hired Russell Pearce (tainted recalled State Senator who authored SB1070) as his deputy.

Dan Toporek is running to restore integrity to this office and will hire and manage a qualified team to invest our monies wisely. Dan is a retired Army helicopter pilot with 34 years of military service and leadership. He has a master’s degree in public leadership and has proven management experience to understand the needs of this important office. 

-Salli Nelson

 

Proposition 208 is not a

solution for education

 So why would we not want to invest in education? Arizona pays its teachers the worst in the nation, right? Our education system is failing our children and we need more money to fix it.

 I get it. And I agree we need more funding for our school system. Opponents of 208 say we need to be more efficient. The administration is stealing from the classroom and it can be run better. The money is already there. We have all seen the ads. 

The reality is government is never efficient and there will always be challenges getting money to the classroom.

My problem with Proposition 208 is it targets a specific group of individuals to carry the burden of funding our schools. It will raise the top individual tax rate from 4.5 percent to 8 percent. A significant increase. All neighboring states, with the exception of California, have rates of under 5 percent, Nevada and Texas are 0 percent.

In fact, 23 states have maximum tax rates of 5 percent or less and 7 states have no income tax whatsoever. And who are these people we are proposing to raise their taxes? 

Small business owners in large part. Not corporations, not a sales tax where everyone pitches in but specifically business owners in Arizona. 

For those of you who do not know, a business owner has to claim the profits of their business as income on their personal taxes. Yet reality is they do not actually receive all of those profits as income but rather reinvest the majority of the monies back into the business. 

They hire new people, give raises and bonuses, buy new equipment and expand operations as well as give back to the community. Local business owners need our support, not taxation and extra burden.

 Proposition 208 will put an unfair burden on local business owners and drive them out of Arizona or stifle their ability to grow their business. We need to find a better answer for our schools because 208 is not it. 

Say no on Proposition 208 and support local businesses.  

-Chris Wagner

 

McSally may be a girl but she

is not a senator

Martha McSally has managed to offend at least a third of the human race in one brief statement. In a current commercial, she climbs into a fighter jet as though about to take off. 

She burbles on with negative rhetoric about her opponent, ending with “I’m your girl.” 

That remark offends me as a woman.

I sure as heck don’t want her making decisions for me in the Senate. Vote for Mark Kelly. 

-Judy Wade

Not sure Democrats live in her country

Reading the letter “Terrified at the Prospects posed by Democrats” by Jan Johnson, made me question if I was living in the same country as Jan, let alone the same township.  

Twice in her letter she mentions that she is terrified to live in a “communist” country, projecting that a Democrat as President or senate would turn this country to a communist country. If that is the case, then even I would not want to live in it.

 However, I know otherwise. Just four years ago (and before) we did have a Democrat in the White House. Were we a communist country then, Jan?

 Yes, you didn’t like Obama because “he took us in the wrong direction.” Really? From what I remember he inherited a recession with the housing crisis and then worked us out of it in eight years with the highest employment we have ever seen. 

If anything, our current POTUS, inherited a growing economy and has now driven us into a COVID-19 crisis, 211,000 needless deaths and a tanking economy. Even a Communist country like China has only 5,000 or so deaths and is back to normal. We are a joke on the world stage. 

Speaking of Communist countries, Trump’s lover-boy Kim runs one such country in N. Korea. Maybe you should address that love relationship to us common folks, Jan.

Trump lies constantly and it is not just some general media which has been keeping track of that. 

You may prefer to just listen to certain talk shows which carry water for Trump but the sad truth is that by some reliable accounts his list of lies now go into thousands. 

Which brings me to my own story about an Obama hater at work. Twelve years ago, Kevin stated, during a lunch meeting, that our country would never see an election again – meaning that Obama would turn our country into a “communist” country. 

I immediately took Kevin up on it and challenged him to a $2,000 bet to put his money where his mouth is. Kevin obviously did not take the bet and four years ago when I met Kevin in the corridors, he very quickly avoided me and kept avoiding me. He was dead wrong! 

Wanna place a bet Jan? I have $2,000 sitting right here for the taking.

-Stanley D’Souza     

Shared taste for the tasteless just the beginning

It is always a pleasure to see a letter from someone who knows to cut through layers of pretense and go straight to the heart of today’s USA. In fact, so much do I appreciate such insights that I want to allay all fears of the country becoming a truly Red state. 

Having visited Communist countries in Europe and studied their ways a little, I can report that nepotism, steering wealth to the powerful elites, intolerance of any idea that does not exactly echo the official position, extreme glorification of the nation’s leader and an obsession with media control are standard features. 

So, anyone comfortable with the nation’s present administration should have no cause for concern. 

And just to offer a visual embellishment, a comparison between Nicolae Ceausescu’s decadently gilded palace in Bucharest when he was Romania’s president and Donald Trump’s bedroom (easy to find with an online search) shows they share a taste for the tasteless and almost look as though they used the same interior designer.

-David Chorlton

 

Fire the coronavirus task force, go alternative

I am very surprised that the president contracted coronavirus. This tells everyone how lousy our mainstream medicine is. 

You would think that the President would protect himself so he couldn’t get a disease, but this would mean that the FDA would have to use alternative medicine because alternative medicine has nutrients that will protect you.

 My wife and I take nutrients to ensure that we can’t contract any disease. This is better than contracting the disease, then try to cure yourself of the disease like the president is doing.  

Our coronavirus task force should be fired for their approach to eliminating the virus.  

-Don Crook

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