Letters to the Editor: Church Burning and Swine Flu

Letters to the Editor: Church Burning and Swine Flu
November 10
05:15 2016


Investigation needed regarding burning of church in Miss.

To the Editor:

We are deeply concerned regarding last night’s [Nov.1] attack on Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Greenville, Mississippi.  We are even more concerned that this church, a cornerstone of this majority-Black community located in the heart of the Mississippi Delta, was vandalized and targeted on the eve of the upcoming 2016 general election. The toxic rhetoric of this election cycle continues to cast a dark cloud over this election cycle.

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law urges the U.S. Department of Justice to bring its expertise to bear in a full investigation of this incident to determine if this was indeed a racially-driven hate crime and to identify the perpetrators behind this attack.  The investigation and prevention of church arsons must remain a national priority.  Our country has scars, both old and new, from attacks levied against Black churches and other houses of worship.  These incidents tear at the fabric of our nation and should be condemned in every respect.

Kristen Clarke

President and Executive Director

Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law

Note: About the Lawyers’ Committee

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Lawyers’ Committee), a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, was formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to involve the private bar in providing legal services to address racial discrimination. Formed over 50 years ago, we continue our quest of “Moving America Toward Justice.” The principal mission of the Lawyers’ Committee is to secure, through the rule of law, equal justice under law, particularly in the areas of fair housing and community development; employment; voting; education; and criminal justice.  For more information about the Lawyers’ Committee, visit

Be careful or children can get swine flu

To the Editor:

I’m especially relieved that I didn’t take my children to the North Carolina State Fair now that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released a report indicating that pigs at fairs are responsible for infecting children with swine flu.

I wouldn’t have wanted my kids to get sick, like many of the children who attended agricultural fairs in Michigan and Ohio did.

North Carolina fairgoers have gotten sick, and worse, from casual animal contact in the past.

For example, a 2-year-old boy died and at least 106 other people became ill with E. coli after visiting a petting zoo at the 2012 Cleveland County Fair.

The CDC advises parents not to take strollers, bottles, pacifiers, sippy cups, or toys into animal areas, and suggests that children younger than 5 avoid petting zoos altogether.

An editorial in the News & Observer concluded that petting zoos “have caused too much pain and sorrow for too many youngsters and their families in this state.” But you can have fun without putting your child’s health at risk or supporting cruelty to animals: Go hiking, camping, birdwatching, or simply enjoy the pool, park, or any other animal-free activity.

For more information, visit

Christina Matthies

Associate Director, PETA Foundation Norfolk, Virginia 

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