Dems work diligently for veterans

In response to William Algard’s Jan. 24 letter, I’d like to point out that the Democratic Party does stand with veterans. The situation is not either/or — no one needs to make the choice between helping immigrants or helping veterans. Right now there is a lot of focus on immigrants because they are being threatened by ICE, by the end of DACA, and by a general upswing in racism in this country. Perhaps that has overshadowed the Democrats’ commitment to our veterans.

The Democratic Party platform explicitly states that it works to ensure world-class treatment of veterans. It promises to work toward “efficient delivery” of health care and pension benefits for veterans moving to civilian life after active duty. It also speaks to the importance of mental health care for veterans afflicted with PTSD. Furthermore, the Democratic Party platform outlines the benefits of the G.I. Bill, which enables our veterans to seek education after their service.

Finally, members of the Democratic Party are veterans. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii), Tammy Duckworth (Ill.), John Conyers (Mich.), Tom Carper (Del.), and Anthony Brown (Md.) are just a handful of the Democrats serving in the Congressional Veterans Caucus. Right in our own backyard, Maryland District 1 Democratic candidate Jesse Colvin served as a U.S. Army Ranger. Throughout the country, Democrats are grateful for the service of our veterans, so please don’t accuse us of otherwise.

This appeared in the Cecil Whig under the name Kara Welker. Kara is a friend who submitted it so that I don’t look like a crazy person who constantly writes letters to the editor, which is what I plan to become.

Special interests trump residents for Harris

I have my reasons for being against House Resolution 38, which moved through the House of Representatives at breakneck speed. I believe we need tougher gun control, not weaker. I believe that we have the right to bear arms within reason, because the Founding Fathers did not envision bump-stocks and semi-automatic rifles entering the hands of mass murderers. Those are my beliefs. I don’t expect Rep. Andy Harris to share them.

But I do expect Harris, as someone from a party that values a smaller government and giving more power to individual states, to vote against something like HR 38 on the premise that it takes away from states’ rights. Maryland limits who can receive a concealed carry permit, but other states do not have rules as thorough as our state. If HR 38 becomes law, residents from states with lax laws will be able to waltz into our communities with concealed weapons.

Harris has proved time and time again that he does not value the health or safety of his constituents. With his votes to overturn ACA and most recently his vote for the controversial tax bill that will hurt health care and benefit billionaires, Harris has shown that special interests trump the residents of the First District.

Lindsay Bergman-Debes is a member of the Cecil County Democratic Central Committee.

This first appeared in the Cecil Whig.