Letters to the Editor: Oct. 19, 2016 

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Warming to reality

In dismissing global warming and environmental concerns as the imaginary theories of hysterics (Opinion, Letters to the Editor, “Chicken Little dunces,” Sept. 28, Oklahoma Gazette), Mickey McVay has summarized the perspectives of the fossil fuel industry and America’s Republican Party.

The Republican Party platform extols coal, oil and gas production for energy independence and economic growth and pledges to accelerate coal mining and pipeline construction.

Nevermind that leaders of 195 nations at the Paris Climate Summit in December agreed to formulate national plans to reduce emissions of CO2 and methane, the two leading gases implicated in the greenhouse warming of the atmosphere.

The Sixth Great Extinction ridiculed by Mr. McVay has begun due to growing human numbers and growing human consumption of resources on our small and finite planet.

Humanity is well on the way to seriously damaging the living systems that sustain life on earth. On this, 95 out of 100 scientists agree.

Nathaniel Batchelder Oklahoma City

Special interests

Please vote no on all state questions this November. They are all designed by special interests for special interests. They are promoted by corporations and big businesses and special interests and just make their noose tighter around our necks.

For example, the question on liquor (I apologize for not knowing offhand these question numbers.) is just a way for Wal-Mart to take over the liquor/wine/beer business in Oklahoma and ship all its profits out of state while leaving state mom-and-pop businesses in the lurch.

The farm bill allows further takeover of farming in the state by the corporations. The question to raise our sales tax is a way to let the state’s right-wing legislators off the hook for destroying education by decreasing taxes on the rich.

Please hold their feet to the fire on this issue and let them take the blame.

Jay Hanas Edmond

Funding education

I agree teachers need a pay raise! David Boren has said the education system is broken but we do not have time to fix it. Before I vote yes for a 1-cent sales tax increase ($600 million per year), I think taxpayers should see a spreadsheet on how much the Oklahoma Legislature, lottery funds, casino funds, federal funds, grants and any other sources of funding go to education. Then break down all school districts and how many schools and students each has, as well as colleges and universities, and see how the money is distributed.

Let’s find the waste and correct that before handing a blank check to the Legislature. A six-month tax increase would pay for teacher pay raises; are they going to get $5,000 raises every year?

I do not think so. Where is all the money going to go? I hope the voters of Oklahoma are smart enough to stop this emotional issue and hold the Legislature accountable to correct the problems in the education system and give teachers a raise without putting the burden on the taxpayer.

Ken Seibel Oklahoma City

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