George H.W. Bush put country over self

In the winter of 1992, I was interning as a legislative assistant for my congressman in Washington. One of the more exciting parts of the internship was attending the State of the Union address given by then-President George H.W. Bush. Though I disagreed with him on just about every single policy position (He did get “voodoo economics” right.), I respected his history of service to our country. President Bush served as a World War II naval pilot, a U.S. representative for Texas, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, CIA director, vice president and president. Throughout his lifetime of service, he embodied dignity and patriotism.

Later that same winter, I went on to campaign throughout New Hampshire for the Democratic candidate who prevented President Bush from serving a second term. Still, at the news of his death, I find myself remembering these moving words on diversity from him: “We are a nation of communities ... a brilliant diversity spread like stars, like a thousand points of light in a broad and peaceful sky.” The Guilford County Democratic Party extends our condolences to President Bush’s loved ones. His life is a testament to the ideal of country over self.

Nicole Quick


BJ Barnes was a fair, dedicated sheriff

The Sunday (Dec. 2) article on former Guilford County Sheriff BJ Barnes was thoroughly researched and well-written. In my view, it accurately depicts BJ’s energy, relentless attention to detail, and sense of dedication and fair play toward his staff and citizens. He was also diligent in complying with legal requirements.

The references to his predecessor, Walter “Sticky” Burch, were also apt. Sticky was fastidious and left BJ with a strong organization. Burch is also, at age 100, one of the finer gentlemen you will ever meet. The bar has indeed been set high for our new sheriff. Godspeed.

Jonathan Maxwell


BJ Barnes served with character, integrity

We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to publicly thank BJ Barnes for his 24 years of service as the sheriff of Guilford County. He has served Guilford County long and well. BJ is a man who didn’t give up and he got things done. He did what he said he would do, even when it was difficult and when faced with obstacle after obstacle. Highly respected by his peers, he will be missed by many. We hope BJ will consider serving Guilford County in some capacity in the future. We need men of his character and integrity.

Thank you, BJ Barnes, for being our sheriff. We appreciate your dedication, the sacrifices you have made, and all that you have accomplished and done for the people of Guilford County.

Gary and Janice Carter


Some nerve of felon to sue for pension

Regarding the article about convicted felon Laura Riddick suing to retain her state pension (Nov. 27). Seriously? She has got to be kidding! Did she miss the morals and ethics class?

Not only did she betray the taxpayers’ trust while stealing their money (as Wake County’s register of deeds), but now she wants to do it again by claiming a pension?

I wonder where she got her overlarge sense of entitlement to the public’s money.

Her greed, contempt and disregard for the people of North Carolina disgusts and outrages me.

Kathy Warner

High Point

Socialism, capitalism both have their flaws

Regarding the Dec. 2 column by Romaine Worster: While socialism is in its pure form not practicable, as shown historically, many elements of socialism are desirable and have in fact been incorporated in this country — i.e., Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid.

This harkens to the ridiculous report by Trish Regan of Fox comparing Venezuela to Denmark, one of the most successful countries of the world. Pure socialism is no more practicable than pure capitalism, lest we forget past horrors like the Great Depression, which saw people starving to death in this country, and which also probably influenced Ms. Worster’s father to adopt his socialist views. The middle ground is once again being chipped away at by extremist views, which seems to be, sadly, in vogue right now.

Ralph Lichtenstein


Cyclists should warn walkers on greenways

We are so fortunate to enjoy the greenway on a daily basis. I have a concern that with little effort we can alleviate. If the cyclists, when approaching from behind, would give an audible heads-up they were coming, a bell or a “passing on the left two riders” and the walkers would gather dogs or children on one side , all would be safer. Groups walking are talking and walking abreast, dogs are frequently on extended leashes, children are just being children.

We always thank the bikers for their heads-ups, we don’t always just hear the wheels of the bike. This courtesy may save both of us. Thanks.

Donna Bates


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The writer is chair of the Guilford County Democratic Party.

The writer is a former attorney for Guilford County. His letter is reprinted from Wednesday’s editions because an editing error deleted a phrase.

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