The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

October 16, 2013

Readers' Forum 10-16 | President brings shame upon America

Submitted by Readers

JOHNSTOWN — President Obama and his staff have reached all-time lows by holding the American public and military hostage during the government shutdown.

They close all veterans affairs services. Then national parks, along with unmanned ones have been deliberately barricaded, to include war memorials, even parking spaces that are used to view Mount Rushmore, and rest areas.

National Park Service rangers were told to “make life as difficult for people as possible.” However, for illegal aliens, (excuse me, undocumented) the National Mall  was opened for a rally for immigration reform. If you are an American citizen, supposedly represented by the president, you cannot use, much less visit, our national parks and monuments. But an illegal alien can.

This is not the worst outrageous act this administration has pulled. The worst is sending our military troops into combat and not paying them until the shutdown is resolved, thus causing undue stress on military spouses left at home to maintain households. And then, God forbid, should the military member be killed, the government was withholding death benefits and insurance payments to surviving families.

That was beyond outrageous. It was as low an act that I have ever heard. To withhold death benefits for a fallen soldier is an act that should cause this president to hold his head in shame and apologize to America.

However, we know our dictator in chief won’t and the drive-by media won’t make much of an issue about it. Shame on you, Mr. President. You should resign.

Evan Klein

South Fork

Republicans’ tactics likened to blackmail

In the Readers’ Forum letter by Barry Billings on Oct. 11, “Republican Party must stand firm,” it states the House has passed legislation that funds all government but provides no funds for Obamacare. He also states the Senate and president refuse to accept it.

Obamacare, as you Republicans call it, is law.

Billings, do you obey the law? If you don’t, you’re a criminal.

I did not hear the Republicans say what they would give up to get Obamacare stopped. They did say if Obamacare wasn’t stopped, they would shut down the government. That’s blackmail – also a criminal offense.

Fred Ponczek


Uncle Sam, Aunt Sally in family tiff

Our Uncle Sam is a Democrat. He’s a lovable guy who just wants to be nice to everybody. He uses his credit card to pick up the tab at restaurants and drug stores, to pay for heating bills, and he even pays the premiums for insurance. You name it, he’s involved. He even does this for nonfamily members, strangers that he doesn’t even know.

The entire family knows that Uncle Sam is on the wrong track and threatening the family’s good name. Some even suspect he might be an addict the way he spends.

Aunt Sally, at a tea party, was reviewing the family’s budget.

Total annual family income (all figures with eight zeros removed): $21,700 (tax revenue).

Money the family spent: $38,200 (budget).

New debt on (maxed out) credit card: $17,000 (new debt).

Outstanding balance on credit card: $142,710 (national debt).

Aunt Sally wants Uncle Sam to go on an austerity program and start paying off some debt before spending more, but Uncle Sam says he has a printing press and creates money out of nothing to pay his bills. All he needs to continue this is for Sally to agree. Sounds almost too good to believe doesn’t it?

Sally doesn’t think continuing on this course is going to end well.

For that, she’s called a Nazi, a tea-party terrorist, hostage taker, obstructionist or just stupid.

Richard Gregory


Area blessed with cultural opportunities

I often wonder if we, as residents of the Johnstown/Somerset area, realize what marvelous communities we have that provide us with the arts, excellent musical concerts and a myriad of educational programs for everyone.

Once again, the Somerset auxiliary of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra was privileged to sponsor the second Taste of the Laurel Highlands fundraising event – which was a huge success last year.

Green Gables Restaurant in Jennerstown was kind enough to offer its facilities. There were 18 different restaurants from the surrounding areas offering samples of their best dishes, along with a Chinese auction, a silent auction, door prizes and a cash bar.

Our artists, musicians and children deserve our respect.

Rebecca Bracken