Couple suffered hardship; don’t deserve scorn

To the editor:

As I read Donald Schoengold’s letter to the editor (“No sympathy,” Saturday), I could not help but wonder if the man had ever been the victim of an unscrupulous salesman or con artist.

Mr. Schoengold was criticizing the Claytons, who were featured in a story about the local foreclosure epidemic we are experiencing in Southern Nevada. But the Claytons put a face on the problem.

During the housing “boom” in 2005, greedy out-of-state investors helped drive housing prices out of the reach of many hard-working Nevadans. At that time, many lenders and real estate brokers told people if they didn’t get into a house right away, “They might not ever be able to.” Small wonder that Nevada families are paying the price today.

I watched Rochelle Clayton perform an extremely physically demanding job while undergoing a year of grueling, strength-sapping, intense chemotherapy, doing everything she could to honor her financial obligations. She did not choose to “walk away” from her home — it was a last resort. If Mr. Schoengold is ever faced with such a tragic situation, I wonder if he will have even one-tenth of Ms. Clayton’s strength and determination.



Taxing influx

To the editor:

Recent Review-Journal articles indicate the Democratic Party is growing in Nevada. We shouldn’t be too surprised.

Having spent seven years in Oregon, 11 years in Washington and now 15 years Nevada, I have seen many changes in the demographics of the three states, particularly in growth. And the majority of the migration has been from California and its tax-and-spend environment.

Of course, this influx caused an ever-increasing willingness at the polls to “tax and spend.” I suggest excessively. Instead of a low-tax state, Nevada now ranks No. 5 in total local/state/federal taxes as a percentage of state income (source: Tax Foundation and U.S. Department of Commerce).

While everyone has every right to move to Nevada (as I did), we should at least understand the political and economic realities. Welcome to the New Left Coast, perhaps?

Murray M. MacDonald


Death penalty

To the editor:

Well, now that the ACLU has played divine intervention by stopping William Castillo from being put to death (Review-Journal, Oct. 16), I hope the group is very happy trying to live other peoples’ lives.

Personally, I believe that all of those associated with this group should get real jobs and stop saying what other people should and should not do.

Castillo was ready to die, but the ACLU said he might suffer too much. Heaven help us if he should suffer some. Let us not concern ourselves with how much his elderly victim suffered. That means nothing to the ACLU.

Herb Milbrat


District abuse

To the editor:

An article in the Oct. 19 Review-Journal stated that the Clark County School District is proposing that current teachers pay $30 a month to cover health benefits for current retirees. Let me get this straight: My pay raise this year was $74 a month, and now they want to take back $30 of that?

This is another example of this district failing to reward good teachers and make us want to stay in Las Vegas. As a 24-year veteran of this district, I am furious with this proposal and am contemplating leaving to go where teachers are not considered the lowest scum on the food chain.



Petty attacks

To the editor:

In the Oct. 13 Review-Journal article “Three camps join forces against Clinton,” Democratic presidential candidates Barack Obama, Bill Richardson and John Edwards accuse Sen. Hillary Clinton of not upholding the “pledge” to campaign only in the DNC-schedule-approved states because she had not removed her name from the ballot in Michigan. They also questioned her commitment to Nevada. I believe this type of petty sniping reveals the frustration and desperation on the part of Sen. Clinton’s rivals.

Sen. Clinton has run a campaign in Nevada that has focused on the issues that concern most Nevadans — a plan to end the war in Iraq, affordable health care, lowering the cost of college, energy independence using renewable resources, and stopping nuclear waste storage at Yucca Mountain. Although I am certain Sen. Clinton will honor her pledge and not campaign in Michigan, I could not care less whether her name is on the ballot in that state.

Unfortunately, her rivals have set their sights on a lower standard. I believe the only candidate to have broken the “pledge” is Sen. Obama when he recently held “an impromptu” press conference in Florida. Also, as far as a commitment to Nevada, Sen. Edwards pulled staffers out of the state last month and moved them to Iowa. Sen. Clinton’s presence in Nevada remains strong and continues to grow.

I hope that Sen. Obama, Sen. Edwards and Gov. Richardson stop these ridiculous petty attacks.

Dina Gerber


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