The League of Women Voters is elated to celebrate our 93rd anniversary. However, while we celebrate our successes, we are concerned by stark challenges.
In the upcoming Supreme Court case Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder, the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965 will be reviewed. The VRA ensures every American citizen, regardless of race, has an equal right to vote. Should the court rule against the VRA, which prevents states from passing discriminatory voting rules, the right to vote for millions of Americans would be at risk.
The thought that the Supreme Court might soon overturn the Voting Rights Act and limit voting rights should send a chill down the spine of every American. The League believes we should be expanding voting rights, not curtailing them, and working to make elections free, fair and accessible to all eligible citizens.
The League has been committed to protecting voter rights since 1920. The upcoming Supreme Court review of the Voting Rights Act shows that even 93 years after our founding, the League’s work is needed more than ever.
The League of Women Voters of ODC is one of nearly 800 Leagues in all 50 states that works to protect voters’ rights. We respect all points of view, and never support or oppose candidates for office, or political parties. This is what sets us apart from so many organizations, and it is why we welcome new volunteers to take part in our work.”
Membership is open to men and women of all ages. For more information, visit lwvodc.org
. The League’s next event, free and open to the public, features Commissioner of Insurance Wayne Goodwin speaking on the Affordable Care Act’s implementation in N.C. It will be held at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27 at Extraordinary Ventures, 200 S. Elliott Road in Chapel Hill.Brenda Rogers Leader, League of Women Voters of Orange, Durham and Chatham CountiesHit and run mystery
You are never supposed to leave the scene of an accident. In fact, in North Carolina, fleeing the scene of an accident is a misdemeanor or felony (depending on whether the victim is injured). But I can tell you, from personal experience, that there appears to be little to lose, at least in Carrboro, for fleeing.
I was stopped at a stoplight early one Saturday, facing west. A Saturn sedan in the perpendicular north-bound lane, tried to make a right turn, but plowed into my minivan instead. I could not only see the driver’s face clearly, but see that she was gesturing and acting bizarrely. A passing driver witnessed the whole thing and stopped. As I was getting the witness’ phone number, the Saturn took off. But not until after both the witness and I copied down the Saturn’s license plate number.
My car was totaled, but I managed to drive it off the road to safety. Both the Carrboro police and AAA responded quickly. The police officer looked up the license plate number on her computer and showed me a photo of the owner. It was definitely the hit-and-run driver. That day, the officer visited the owner’s address and saw the Saturn parked in front with a busted left front fender. Within a week the hit-and-run driver admitted responsibility to the insurance adjustor and, in another couple of weeks, I had my full reimbursement.
So what happened to the driver? I wanted to know, and after repeated calls and emails, I was told that the police officer was not going to press charges because she didn’t see the accident. I pointed out that (1) there was a witness; (2) I could identify the hit-and-run driver from her photo; and (3) the driver admitted liability to her insurance agent. After complaining, the police officer took the case to the magistrate, who, apparently, wouldn’t give her a warrant because the officer didn’t see the actual accident.
I still don’t understand why a hit-and-run driver could get off Scot-free when there is so much evidence against her. I also think it is the responsibility of the Carrboro police to help keep drivers like this one off of the roads. But, at least in one case, they are not trying.Steve Meshnick Chapel HillSupport the library
It’s been fun having the Chapel Hill Public Library at its temporary location at University Mall. Our librarians have done an amazing job serving the public in such cramped space. The Library will soon return to expanded facilities at Pritchard Park with doors scheduled to reopen in early April.
Fortunately, thanks to the fundraising efforts of two dedicated support groups – Friends of CHPL and the CHPL Foundation – we’ll enjoy many features beyond the town’s budget: a digital media lab; a mobile computer lab; thousands of new books, audiobooks, music, and movies; a tutoring service; furniture throughout; and a Michael Brown mural, making our library inviting, resource-rich, and state-of-the-art.
Unfortunately, under the town’s contemplated budget current levels of library service won’t be possible. Without additional staff, the library cannot maintain the hours, services, and programs we count on and enjoy. Specifically, the library would be open 14 fewer hours per week (later openings, earlier closings, five fewer hours on Saturday). This means less time to help patrons find information, longer lines, and no weekend programs. With an expected 20 percent surge in visitors – beyond the 1,100 people now served each day – in a building more than twice the size, library staff will struggle to meet demand.
If additional funds aren’t included in the town’s budget for library operations, cuts in service will affect people of all ages and income and education levels. If you don’t want to see cuts in library service, please contact Town Council members now. Martha Diefendorf Chair, CHPL Board of TrusteesHeartless legislators
If the N.C. legislators had ever given any indication of a plan, or desire, to develop any way to provide health insurance for the N.C. uninsured, their argument for fiscal sanity maybe would make sense. But they, at least the Republican side, have never given any indication of considering it.
The same holds true for unemployment benefits. Apparently their opinion of North Carolinians is so poor that they cannot be counted on to work if they are able and can find a job. They give no ideas, or offers, of how to survive.
I don’t like to pay taxes any more that anyone else, but if a tax increase, state and federal, would provide for the less fortunate, as in health care and temporary help for the jobless, I would not complain.
I believe “heartless” is the correct term. I cannot imagine how their “Christianity” can possible support such actions. If I was responsible for such behavior, I would fear meeting my maker.Fred Norman Cary
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