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Letters to the Editor

Secede? We already have

Ron Ferrell December 5th, 2012

In response to Mike Brake’s Nov. 21 Oklahoma Gazette commentary, the headline, “Oklahoma’s postelection rise,” is quite accurate. In my opinion, the rise started long ago, and Oklahoma is now proudly known as the reddest state in America. I would say the social dynamics of the Old South that many states have worked hard to eviscerate from their history are now proudly resurrected in Oklahoma.

Mr. Brake, Oklahoma is on the rise in many enviable categories thanks to our current leadership: the number of citizens with zero to marginal health insurance, poverty, child hunger, racism, high obesity, diabetes, and smoking rates, high teenage pregnancy rates despite intense fundamentalist religious dogma, restrictive reproductive laws, a low-skill workforce, outrageous incarceration rates in general and specifically for women, pro basketball and college football, to name but a few. I know, the last two don’t really fit, but they are certainly priorities in this state to the exclusion of other sensible expenditures that would elevate us all.

I’m sure Mr. Brake, based on his editorial, is all for states’ rights. Some states — like, say, Massachusetts — choose to elevate their state in the form of socialized health care, education, same-sex marriages, medical marijuana and have said that no, corporations do not get to claim “personhood.”

Our state chooses a governor who boycotts a presidential visit and then petitions the Federal Emergency Management Agency for financial aid after fire and tornado disasters. FEMA being yet another example of a federal program that Mr. Brake and our governor claim that we can no longer afford to fund.

I think New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie had his mind changed about FEMA funding by a little storm called Sandy. How ironic.

So, by God, let’s just “secede from the Union” so we don’t have to play by any rules except what our state leaders dream up. Folks, we already have.

—Ron Ferrell, Oklahoma City

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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