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Blame parents, not government

Regarding the article about the federal employees at the Lompoc prison, the union leader has to realize the reason they bring up the Border Patrol and ICE and their opinions on the wall is because one side keeps making statements that make it appear as if the Border Patrol and ICE agents are our enemy.

They are not our enemy. They have been tasked with enforcing the law, protecting our border, and they keep getting portrayed as the bad guys. People put their children in harm's way, the kids die, and somehow it's someone else besides the parent's fault. I'm afraid not. It's the parents’ fault.

The big reason this issue is coming to a head now is because nothing has been done for 30 years. Somebody is making a lot of money off these people, otherwise they wouldn't still be here.

Boris Roberts

Santa Maria

Character building from Theodore Roosevelt

I have felt for the past two years that we Americans have been insulted by our current President in so many ways. The stature of the office of President as well has been insulted by this school yard bully. So many of our previous presidents have dignified the office that surely this president could have learned how to behave and present himself from at least one of them. Below is a speech by Theodore Roosevelt in 1901. Most of us will recognize at least a few key words. I quote:

"Speak softly, and carry a big stick. Right here let me make as vigorous a plea as I know how in favor of saying nothing that we do not mean, and of acting without hesitation up to whatever we say. A good many of you are probably acquainted with the proverb, 'Speak softly and carry a big stick - you will go far.' If a man continually blusters, if he lacks civility, a big stick will not save him from trouble, and neither will speaking softly avail, if back of the softness there does not lie strength, power. In private life there are few beings more obnoxious than the man who is always loudly boasting, and if the boaster is not prepared to back up his words, his position becomes absolutely contemptible. So it is with the nation. It is both foolish and undignified to indulge in undue self-glorification, and, above all, in loose-tonged denunciation of other peoples. When on any point we come in contact with a foreign power, I hope that we shall always strive to speak courteously and respectfully of that foreign power […]"

President Roosevelt made clear, I believe, that how we speak, the courtesy, respect and civility afforded others, speaks volumes about one's character or lack there of it.

Jim Welch

Santa Maria

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