Letters to the editor: 07-23-2013

July 23, 2013 

Zimmerman case shows media bias

Remember the terrible riot after the O.J. Simpson trial? Why Los Angeles burned to the ground.

Wait, no they didn't riot; 86 percent of the people believed the physical evidence in that trial and felt terribly wronged by the verdict. No white community activists shouting no justice, no peace. No T-shirts saying "Simpson Wanted Dead or Alive." No one beat up in the name of Nicole Brown Simpson or Ron Goldman. No attorney general sitting down with his son telling him that he should be careful around black people.

NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, all had a hand in misinforming the public. They lied by omission when they edited the 911 call, which made Zimmerman look racist. When they found out he was Hispanic on his mother's side they, they invented the white Hispanic.

So does this make the president of the United States a white African-American? Zimmerman took a black girl to his high school prom, Zimmerman was mentoring black kids. Did they report that? They need turmoil. It's ratings, and if it makes some think they are an underclass, great! One political party could not exist without a group of people believing they are an underclass.

NILES SUTTON, Meridian

Judges and Social Security

As an advocate who represents people with disabilities, I found the recent AP article "Judges: Social Security pushes approval of claims" the Statesman ran extremely misleading. In fact, administrative law judge allowance rates have fallen significantly since 2007.

To explain, there are a number of legitimate reasons why ALJ's reverse state agency disability determinations. Most claimants wait a year or longer for a hearing; in most cases, new medical evidence is generated since the last determination by the state agency.

I have represented Social Security disability clients for more than five years in 49 states and have come to know many hard-working people who have applied for disability benefits. The image The Associated Press article creates, of scores of people being granted disability unworthily as an expedient to reduce the backlog, is simply untrue.

I have also spoken to many an administrative law judge. While I would agree that judges are strongly encouraged to reduce the backlog, I have never heard a judge express frustration over being pressured into granting benefits. The article's assertion that it is significantly easier to grant a claim than it is to deny a claim is untrue, since the claimant bears the burden of proving disability.

MATT STEEN, Meridian

Economy

A nation's economy and economic system is a "reflection" of the people and business attributes - melding and progressing through a timeline, parallel to money, the medium of exchange, to provide for the nation's desire and demands, in each era, coupled through systems progression within and through its own industry (production, manufacturing, service, and use and consumption).

Thus keeping pace with the people's desires and demands in a time base within work routines by job activities in productive activity.

A) System has structure, it contains parts (or components) that are related to each other; B) System has behavior, it contains processes that transform inputs into outputs (material, energy or data); C) System has interconnectivity: the parts and processes are connected by structural and/or behavioral relationships.

There are three types of consumers, 1) supply, production, manufacturing, 2) service types, 3) the ultimate consumer - people - who create continuity for the economy, through economic system, within the profit and loss sheets (system - the most quantitative and qualitative, important word in economics).

The system's structure and behavior is composed via subsystems and subprocesses to elementary parts and process steps, through the GDP.

JOHN WEST, Emmett

Voting rights

Tex Beauchamp, in his letter of July 10, either doesn't understand the Supreme Court's decision in Shelby County (Ala.) v. Holder, or he believes no one ever changes. Regardless, he is wrong.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 determined, using a formula developed then, nine states and parts of nine other states must get permission from the U.S. Department of Justice before making any change to their voting laws, even moving a polling place across the street. The court majority argued such an otherwise unconstitutional federal intrusion into a sovereign state's business must be based on current, not 50-year-old, information. States targeted under the VRA have better records for minority voter registration and minority voter turnout than many untargeted states like Massachusetts. The court majority added Congress can update the law.

Mr. Beauchamp claims laws requiring photo identification to vote are proof of racism. Hmmm, we require photo ID to cash a check, buy alcohol, rent a car or board a plane. Is that also racism? Targeted Georgia and untargeted Indiana passed photo ID, and minority voting there actually increased.

Most people, even committed segregationists like George Wallace, can change with time. Most. Mr. Beauchamp is stuck in the past.

JONATHAN KAHNOSKI, Meridian

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