Keep the pressure on

To the editor:

Thank you so much for your continued follow-up and reporting of Shining Rock.

As a parent in Haywood County, I feel it is very important for this institution to be held accountable for the tax dollars they receive.

Keep up the good work and requests for documentation.

Susan L. Painter


Wake up, Dems

To the editor:

I call on all Democrats: local, state, and national, to wake up. As a party, we need to focus and agree on who we are and where we’re going.

Having “anti-Trump” as your dominant strategy shows an alarming absence of a workable plan for the future.

To those running for office: Are you paying attention to what your supporters want and need? Or are you making empty, unrealistic promises?

The ideas of “free” health care or education are unworkable and unachievable both financially and politically. There is no free lunch, or anything else for that matter.

C’mon, Democrats. Stop the internal bickering and posturing and start acting in a unified, purposeful, and yes, progressive manner.

Here, progressive means being open-minded to change, tolerant of others, and sensible about problem solving. If we organize, compromise and cooperate we can get things done. Let’s stay calm, let’s unite and let’s persist so we can we move forward in a positive, enlightened direction.

History shows that radical, extremist, liberal activists have toppled kingdoms. Today, we can replace an inept, unstable, erratic President as well as dysfunctional representatives by being conscientious, thinking and active voters.

Bill Lusto


Healing community

To the editor:

My higher power is my best friend. The LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual +Allies) communities are a mixture of every demographic. We are all races, walk all religion/spiritual paths, represent every socio-economic status, are every ethnicity, and ability. We are a people-first community. To learn more about racial equity visit

People can become isolated, shameful, and fearful when separated from knowledge about themselves, others who are different from them, spiritual practices, and accepting and safe community. Being LGBTQIA+ is a miracle.

A supportive community is the only type of community that has a positive impact on LGBTQIA+ people’s health. LGB youth seriously contemplate suicide at almost three times the rate of heterosexual youth (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.)

These numbers are even greater within the transgender community. “Transgender children should be supported, nurtured and cared for, whether in their homes, in their schools or through policies enacted at the state and federal levels.” (The American Academy of Pediatrics.)

I pray to live in a community and a world where we all can be ourselves, safe and accept each other while respecting our differences.

According to the adverse childhood questionnaire there is a direct relationship between childhood experiences, addictive behaviors, and health outcomes later in life such as diabetes, cancer, and self-harm.

Suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 34 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017.)

Our trauma connects us. We can all begin to heal. The outcomes of ACES can be changed by making eight major therapeutic life styles changes which are: exercise, nutrition and diet, time in nature, relationships, recreation, relaxation and stress management, religious or spiritual involvement, and service to others. To learn more about ACEs visit

If you are transgender and want support please contact transformers, a support network for individuals located in WNC who are nonbinary, gender non-conforming, transgender, those who are questioning or exploring their gender identity, and our friends, partners and families.

Transmission strives for a diverse, welcoming, safe group that represents many portions of our extended community. Contact

Jeremiah Ethan Maitri


Statues are history

To the editor:

I noticed that a new statue had been placed on the courthouse lawn of a patriot of the American Revolution. This is a statue of a soldier.

What I don’t understand is why have some of the statues of confederate soldiers been ruined? Can the liberal protesters not understand that all of this is heritage? Why are they trying to change history?

Wake up folks. If you’re not for America, you must be against it.

Roger Surrett


Trump is a uniter

To the editor:

Trump defended his rhetoric claiming instead that he “brings people together.”

Actually he is right — and we all can name the hate groups involved.

Bob Wright


Nuclear danger is higher now than ever

To the editor,

“Hiroshima Day 2020” is correct and timely to point out that nuclear war is more likely now due largely to nuclear weapons policy of the Trump administration.

Most people figure that by now surely we must have a reliable Star Wars type of shield to protect the U.S. from incoming nuclear weapons bearing missiles. We do not.

The two nuclear weapons detonated in early August, 74 years ago, were much weaker than the warheads of today, yet demonstrated the effects of blast and radiation. It is now apparent that the detonation of even a small fraction of today’s much more powerful nuclear weapons would cast a huge amount of dust into the atmosphere, blocking the suns rays over wide areas for several years and lead to crop failures and mass starvation.

A few hundred weapons detonated over the U.S. would devastate Western North Carolina. Thus, prevention of nuclear war means protecting our own families, children and grandchildren. The risk of Russia or the U.S. using such weapons is greater than ever today.

No longer do the two countries trust we would not start a nuclear war. Rather the President Trump-led U.S. policy keeps the other side guessing. This puts us at increased risk of nukes being fired on the basis of a misinterpreted radar warning or a false alarm created by cyber-terrorists.

This risk can promptly be reduced by passing the two sensible bills in Congress, House Bill 921 and Senate bill 272, that would return the U.S. to the posture of giving our word that we will not use nuclear weapons first but rather only use if we are certain that we are under nuclear weapons attack. I urge you to contact your Senators and Representatives to support these two bills.

Terry Clark, MD


President sacrificed much to serve

To the editor,

So you all, The Mountaineer, are still publishing letters from the Maggie Valley minion and the Maggie Valley mushroom.

These two claim to be educated and thoughtful men, but their writings put them slightly below the thought processes of a bag of rocks. Their writings are nothing but unsupported insults and asserted conclusions. Neither of them seem capable of a rational argument supported by fact.

Both of these “trump haters” scream, gnash their teeth and tear their clothes while screaming insults at the president of the United States. However, neither of these hate-mongers can list a single fact to support their published drivel.

I would suggest that the MV minion expand his social circle beyond his hate-filled Internet sites and talk to some of the real people around the Waynesville area. Maybe even have a thoughtful discussion with a normal person that might possibly contain a fact or two about the President.

As for the MV mushroom, he needs to come out of his dark, dank and damp hiding place and look beyond the lies of the lawyers that dominate the socialist-communist groups that rail against our president.

It is a pity we share a world with such pitiful creatures who are capable of doing nothing more than spewing hate and insult about a man sacrificing so much for the United States. President Trump was living a life of luxury and freedom when he gave it all up to serve our nation.

The minion and the mushroom have much to be ashamed about.

Much of the evils of today’s world can be traced to people just like the minion and the mushroom.

Sam P. Morgan Jr.


Dogwood Trail residents need road

To the editor:

The letter is in regard to a story in the Aug. 7 issue, “Slippery slope: Landslide damage persists.

The first sentence in the story states a landslide buried a steep, winding road. In fact that portion of Dogwood Trail is flat.

You mention only about 20 homes involved, nearly all of them seasonal residents. In fact, at least 10 of those households are year-round residents and most of us have jobs we need to get to.

So, it isn’t just an “inconvenience.” When there is just the slightest amount of snowfall, the only open portion of Dogwood Trail is not usable and most snowfall in the past they don’t/can’t plow that portion of the road.

We all have to go the long way to get to Eagle Nest Road to have any chance of getting off the mountain. That’s not to mention the difficulty of emergency personnel getting to us.

We taxpayers of Dogwood Trail, Hummingbird Lane and Skyline Drive do not want to be “sentenced” to the current situation. Your article reads like it is merely a luxury to have two ways in and out. I assure you it is not.

Matthew Neubert


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