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Your Views: Progressives haven't taken us forward
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Dear Joan King: Your column which appeared Tuesday deserves a response. You stated, "Our country's proudest achievements are all progressive" and then listed achievements that took place at least 50 years ago.

Haven't "progressives" had an achievement or an idea worth mentioning since the Second World War? In my opinion, "traditionalists" are the people with progressive ideas and "progressives" maintain the status quo; that's today, not 50 years ago. Allow me to list a few examples:

Following the Republican takeover of Congress in 1995, President Clinton was brought kicking and screaming into acceptance of the welfare overhaul bill. Democrats (progressives) wanted to continue the same failed system we had for 50 years or more. Republican traditionalists insisted on placing time limits on welfare recipients. Since then, welfare roles have declined by 50 percent or more, with most of these people having learned skills that have made them productive.

President Reagan, the traditionalist, refused to accept the long-held concept of mutually assured destruction. He increased defense spending, proposed the so-called Star Wars system, bankrupted the Soviet Union and ended the Cold War. Once again Democratic progressives were loudly screaming about what a terrible, dangerous thing this was to do.

Reagan's administration also ended the long-held concept of Keynesian Economics which had resulted in many years of boom-followed-by-bust economies. By installing a stable monetary system controlled by the Fed, he ended a generation of inflation, gave us low interest rates and set our economy on a course of steady growth with only a few mild recessions since. Our economy has at least tripled in size since the Reagan years. Once again, "progressives" were loudly objecting.

Then there is immigration reform. "Progressives" apparently see no problem with overcrowded schools and emergency rooms or competition for unskilled jobs for wages that are falling. They are willing to let millions more cross our borders hoping that, with just one stroke of the president's pen, they will become legal residents.

"Traditionalists" realize this must stop and see the need to end the status quo. What do you say to those people who have filled out all the forms, jumped through the hoops and have patiently waited in line for years to immigrate legally? Just jump the fence like everyone else and come on in?

Then there's the big one: Taxes. "Progressives'" answer to all of society's problems seems to be higher taxes and more government involvement. Doesn't sound very "progressive" to me. Almost never do you hear a "progressive" use the word "freedom."

The Bush administration deserves a lot of criticism but it did get one thing right. Like his predecessors Reagan and John F. Kennedy, President Bush realized that lower tax rates generate higher tax revenue. What's sad is that "progressives" probably realize this also, but lower tax rates mean more freedom for the individual, so don't expect them to agree.

Following Sept. 11, 2001, and entering a wartime economy, the deficit skyrocketed. It gets little publicity, but in the years since, despite huge increases in spending, the deficit has lessened due to increases in government revenues.

In all of these examples, "progressives" were (or are) the ones fighting change and "traditionalists," were pushing new ideas.

Though you ask us to reject labels and embrace forgiveness, it is obvious you persist in the illusion that people on the right are anti-immigrant, think the poor are lazy and believe all Muslims are terrorists. It seems to me that you have your own labels.

I guess you believe we should all be more charitable with our thoughts and ideas. "Traditionalists" are the most charitable people in the world where it counts: with our wallets.

Don Stone
Gainesville

Hall EMTs' actions saved accident victim
At 3:31 a.m. Nov. 14, my husband was on his way to work when he was T-boned at the intersection of Atlanta Highway and Hog Mountain Road. He suffered multiple trauma, including broken vertebrae, three broken ribs, a punctured lung, a large scalp laceration and smaller broken bones in his back.

After the accident occurred, not realizing the extent of his own injuries, my husband got out of his truck and attempted to walk over to check on the other driver when he collapsed in the crosswalk. This is where the A shift of Station 5, Hall County Emergency Services, found him unresponsive and feared to be dead. They worked quickly to stabilize him and, within minutes of arriving on the scene, had him on his way to Northeast Georgia Medical Center. They had tried to get a helicopter to take him to Grady Hospital but none were available that night.

With all thanks and praise going first and foremost to God, my husband has suffered no paralysis and is alive to tell of his miracle. He will have to endure a HALO and be out of work for months but, all things considered, he is doing great.

We both believe that the team of EMTs that handled his call were God's earthly angels sent to save his life. They did, indeed, save his life! Had the EMTs not been so well trained and professional, our story could have had a much worse outcome. Christopher Reeves, who played Superman, broke the same vertebra and everyone remembers the challenges he faced for the rest of his life.

We feel that so many times our emergency medical teams don't get the recognition they deserve and we wanted to share our story as a tribute to the men and women who save lives daily.

Stephanie Pinto
Flowery Branch

Deadly Chinese imports likely are no accident
I know everyone thinks it was just a simple mistake that the toys coming from China had some lead in the paint. Wake up America: They want to kill us! They want world domination. Sound unlikely? Not at all. Not only do the toys contain lead, but makeup, glazed pottery and even card games have significant amounts of lead.

And if lead was not enough, they are putting chemicals in the products that interfere with the learning process and also the reproductive process. These chemicals are also cancer-causing.

Next time you are in a store which sells Chinese imports, take a good whiff of the air early in the morning before the fans dilute the smell. We could repeal the NAFTA treaty; it's not too late. Or we could let these Chinese imports rot on the shelves.

How about this for a New Year's resolution: "I refuse to buy toys that are imported." Find out where the toy is made and start buying things made in America. That's about all we can do; those in power have put us in this position. God bless America!

Roger Keebaugh
Gainesville

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