LETTERS: On discrimination, put the past behind us

Ending discrimination

Clyde Dinkins’ letter (“Race in Las Vegas,” Sept. 10 Review-Journal) got me to thinking: If I were black, would I be preoccupied with the history of my race — slavery, desegregation and discrimination? Would I be bitter and have a negative attitude? Would I be quick to suspect discrimination and often feel that I am not getting a fair shake? Would I often suspect discrimination in police treatment of blacks?

To all of the above, the answer is probably yes. But it would not be healthy, and it might adversely affect my quality of my life.

I would be better off to let the past go, put on a happy face and realize that, to a large degree, my attitude affects the way people treat me. Yes, my race was treated badly in the past, putting it mildly, but that does not mean that all whites treat all blacks unfairly now. Unfortunately, consciously or subconsciously, everyone discriminates. And discrimination is not limited to just race. There is also discrimination based on gender, size, age, disability, employment, language, nationality, religion, sexuality and so on.

Because there will always be discrimination, we must have laws to try to control and limit it and its consequences. Further, we as individuals should strive to control and limit our natural tendency to discriminate. Beyond being self-assertive in seeking fair treatment, we shouldn’t get too hung up on subtle acts of discrimination. We should ask ourselves, “Is there anything I can do about it?” If not, move on.

A “Mother Goose” rhyme says it best: “For every ailment under the sun, there is a remedy, or there is none. If there be one, try to find it; if there be none, never mind it.”

Roger Witcher

Las Vegas

Highway robbery

I read the article stating I should expect to pay more for my gas because of production problems in California (“Lower Las Vegas gasoline prices likely by late fall,” Sept. 6 Review-Journal). According to other items I have read, the national average for standard unleaded gasoline is about $2.49 per gallon. That’s roughly 60 cents less than the $3.15 average here in Las Vegas today.

Does the oil industry think people here in the Southwest are idiots? I’m not a mathematician, nor do I have the vaguest idea of how many gallons of fuel are consumed by drivers in Nevada, California and Arizona each day, but I would make a rough guess that it is in excess of 2 million gallons per day.

So if I take my handy-dandy calculator, using a very simplistic approach, I multiply 2 million times 60 cents and come up with a figure of $1.2 million daily. Those folks holding stock in the oil industry must love those numbers. And I would be willing to wager $10 against your dime that 90 percent of those “good folks” in our national government are holders of oil stocks. So is it any wonder they are not concerned in Washington, D.C., with the highway robbery taking place right before their eyes?

Does this smell like something is rotten in Washington? Sen. Harry Reid, what kind of double-talk answer do you have for this problem? As I finished writing this letter, I looked at the gas prices nationwide posted on CNN, and guess what? They’ve gone down even more in other areas.

Bill Golas

Las Vegas

Metro’s priorities

The Metropolitan Police Department finally got enough votes from the Clark County Commission to approve the More Cops tax (“More Cops tax hike OK’d,” Sept. 2 Review-Journal). Now I see why the department had such a hard time getting it through.

What is the first agenda item for Sheriff Joe Lombardo to fix? One would think it would be to stop these senseless killings of 84-year-old women or 72-year-old men. Or maybe trying to stop these heartless break-ins in the middle of the day. Or maybe trying to get more officers on the streets to stop all these pedestrians or bicyclists who are run down and left there to die. Or maybe to catch these entrepreneurs putting underage children on the streets to sell for sex.

No, Sheriff Lombardo wants to get these dearly needed officers out there to help people with meaningless traffic accidents — people who were finally getting used to just exchanging information and going to the police stations themselves. Wow, thanks sheriff. I doubt if you will ever get another tax increase through for more officers.

Bill Curnow


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