The Norman Transcript


June 28, 2013

Writer should have made arguable points



Officers and enlisted personnel lived close to one another in similar neighborhoods. Their kids went to the same schools and everyone had good health insurance and secure employment. Nobody was getting rich and nobody was really poor. Everyone was serving their country instead of themselves. I don’t know what Mr. Melton would call it, but I call it socialism.

The world I lived in 50 years ago was a lot different than today’s world. The country’s industrial base had yet to relocate to the third world to avoid paying decent wages. Everyone seemed to be doing OK. That’s not how it is now.

I’ve just retired from a teaching career spent in mainly low-income schools. I’ve attempted to teach too many kids who were poorly clothed and fed and lacking access to decent health care. Teaching a kid who is hungry or cold or wheezing from untreated asthma because he can’t afford an inhaler is difficult.

At the school where I taught this final year, we had kids lined up every morning from the front to the back of the building for the free and reduced breakfast every morning. The government could provide a little less socialism and they could all starve, though I doubt any of us would want that. It could provide a little more socialism by lifting the minimum wage and providing single-payer health care so poorer people could actually take care of their kids. I’d like to see that.

From where I stand, the rich continue to get richer while the poor are getting poorer. I really don’t know why Mr. Melton thinks the president is a socialist. I really don’t.   

About the only thing that I could understand from Mr. Melton’s letter is that he is upset. Aren’t we all?

One of the things that frightens me the most is that the right and the left inhabit alternate conceptual worlds. We spend our energy screaming at one another across an ever widening gulf. Insults don’t communicate. They alienate. If we lower the volume, we can narrow the gulf. Then perhaps we can hear one another.

Mack Paul


Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Marijuana a gateway for new OK voters

    A poll this past year showed significant Oklahoma support for legalizing the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. The poll showed that more than 71 percent of those surveyed thought medical marijuana was appropriate for patients who ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Expansion effect evaluated

    Editor, The Transcript: The effect of the Medicaid expansion rejection and acceptance on hospitals’ uncompensated costs are now being evaluated....

    July 31, 2014

  • America paying the piper

    Every third American you pass on the street has debts that have been turned over to a collection agency whose 140,000 workers are keeping the phones ringing....

    July 31, 2014

  • State is No. 2 in barbecue

    Americans love the marriage of smoke, fire and meat, but geography plays a part in how strong the passion is. Estately Blog has created a map charting which states are home to the most barbecue enthusiasts. Oklahoma comes in at No. 2 in ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Community Action mostly closed due to cutbacks

    Editor, The Transcript: The Community Action, at 1155 E Main St. in Norman, for decades has served Cleveland County with the following everyday services: a food pantry, short-term housing for the homeless, providing rides for those without ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Keep guns off campus

    Some Oklahoma lawmakers just won’t let the issue of allowing handguns on campus to go away. A joint legislative study will take a look at campuses around the nation to see if there is a way to accommodate faculty, staff and students who ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Improving children’s lives

    Social service organizations that have long-term debt for their headquarters and operating needs often spend much of their fundraising efforts meeting those obligations....

    July 29, 2014

  • Nutritional article should be accurate

    I read with interest the July 13 article “Are low-carb diets really healthy?” by Cassidie Day. Unfortunately, a number of statements in this article were incorrect. The first problematic statement was, “Carbs are an essential nutrient ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Hospital story headline was too sensationalized

    Editor, The Transcript: On July 18, The Transcript ran a front page article with the headline “Lawsuit filed against Norman Regional — Civil suit alleges improper billing practices by NRH and contracted physicians groups.” As a first page ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Congress should close gaps

    Of all of Edward Snowden’s revelations about electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency, the most unsettling was that the government was accumulating vast numbers of records about the telephone calls of American citizens. In ...

    July 27, 2014