Editor, Gazette:

I am a senior citizen and I have been blessed to have lived nearly all my life in Bedford County. In my 81 years of life I have seen and experienced many influences both good and not so good. What we are experiencing at this time is pretty unique and very difficult to wrap our minds around. Thankfully we are seeing an uptick in our coming to terms with how to handle our responsibilities to ourselves and others regarding staying safe and healthy. My heart goes out to those who are grieving the loss of loved ones or who are themselves dealing with the health issues connected with COVID-19. My thanks go out to all those who have stayed the course and kept some sort of normal life for folks like me.

Being retired I do not have to worry about losing my job or paycheck. I understand the making of decisions that affect us all is a difficult task but I am saddened by our political leaders who take the stance that wanting and needing to return to a job or open once again their business to be able to pay the bills are referred to as cowards and quitters. In a complete lack of compassion we hear threats of withholding payment, license and operating certificates and even fines and incarceration.

We the people have responded in a positive manner and have followed the directions given regarding the behavior necessary to combat this virus. Our leaders should give us credit that we will continue to act in a responsible and sane manner if for no other reason than our own self preservation. We have done all this through the quagmire of many conflicting mandates and opinions, add to that the uneven playing field we have been given. I give credit to our local leaders who, being closer to the ground, have been aware of the needs of the people and have acted accordingly.

I am also saddened there are those who would use a crisis situation such as this to advance their own visions and ideals. I am conservative and therefore lean to the Republican side of politics. Our election process in this great country of the United States of America gives everyone of us the opportunity every so many years depending on the office in question, to not only elect persons to fill that office but also to support and/or abide the decision of the majority, not promote hostile challenges, hateful opposition and distractions to the fulfilling of the obligations of said office. As I stated I am a Republican. I abided 8 years of Barack Obama as president of the United States.

I did not support his ideals but I did not dispute the fact he had been elected by due process. I did as we are mandated and made myself known through the election process. I urge everyone, use this election process to make yourself known in this time of political turmoil. We, the public, have a trust issue with our political system today and we are in danger of losing this very important foundation block of our country. I urge everyone to be sure you can participate in every election this year and years to come. I do not agree with ballot by mail. I believe, except where not able, voting should take place in a voting booth and identification should be mandatory. Stay safe. Be blessed. God bless the United States of America.

Jim Miller


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