This is in response to your article "so liberal and other FAQs" in the Aug. 12 paper.
Yes, I think you are liberal. And I suspect that your reporters and yourself may think the liberal side is the only side worth printing. However, you have the only daily paper in Houma or Thibodaux, and I appreciate the opportunity to stay current on what is going on in our community, albeit from a liberal point of view. I understand, in this day and age, limited resources limits everyone. Please keep the paper coming.
But you did ask for input, so here are my opinions, on different areas.
Reporting news as it happens: On more than one occasion over the years, I have called after hours because of an accident on the Intracoastal Canal at the twin spans area where I live. I have left a messages on the newsroom answering machine. I have no idea when a person actually received them and decided what action to take, if any.
In general, if it is after hours, I no longer bother to call, even though canal safety is a major issue with me and should be for all others along the canal.
In the most recent case for after-hours news: On July 19, around seven in the evening, a person was screaming for help, crying, and shouting, "I can't swim!" from the canal. I grabbed a rope from the porch and went to the bank. A person was in the water on the Houma side just North of the East Park bridge drifting slowly with the current northward. The person had been thrown an orange life ring and gotten into it, but had not been able to paddle themselves to the bank.
Within minutes the Houma Police and fire departments were on hand. Houma has really good response time. The group of residents on the bank had coached the person to paddle to the bank to stop drifting, a ladder had been lowered into the canal, and the fireman were getting the person to safety.
It appeared to be a great teaching and news moment in canal safety, but I do not know any of the details because to my knowledge it was never in your paper.
The upcoming vote to require all jury votes to be unanimous, which you have supported, is incomplete. Your justification for this seems to be what 48 other states do and because of the manner and purpose that the current law was adopted in 1898. In the real world someone always finishes first and someone else last. We have the best people and the best food in our nation. I do not want to be like everybody else, and it really should not concern us why a law was put on the books 120 years ago. The real issue is whether it should be removed because it is redundant, or should it be left because it is now needed?
The correct answer lies not in this law but the results on our crime rate after the recent criminal justice reforms. Those laws have released a huge number of people by reducing their sentences and spent the money saved on social programs that supposedly will prevent these individuals and others like them from breaking the law again.
There was some indication that the program has not been
totally effective and people have been victimized by some of the ones released.
I think the proposed law, at the very least, which makes it more difficult to put people into jail should be turned down or delayed until the full effect of the so-called reforms can be adequately evaluated. To do otherwise would seem to be premature.
The public should not be endangered unnecessarily.
On the rule of law versus social justice, figuratively speaking the largest and strongest foundation block that our great country sits on is the rule of law. It is written down, it is only changed after much discussion and deliberation, it provides due process, and it has served us well.
The lynch mob mentality of social justice without all of the facts and due process needs to be stopped. Preservation of the rule of law is absolutely necessary to the preservation of America.
Many years ago when I lived overseas with my family in a country that was supposed to be stable, and was except for one failed coup attempt, I learned firsthand how important and necessary such a foundation block is to a country.
It is the one thing we should not take for granted. Thank you for the opportunity to put in my two cents.
W. Alex Ostheimer lives in Houma.