October 1 Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,

Attack, attack, attack. Is there anyone left to attack? Since the Republican Senate refused to remove Trump from office following impeachment, Trump has become unhinged. On the stump and in his midnight tweets, the president attacks the media (now including Fox), former members of his own administration who either left willingly or were fired, women (especially accomplished women like AOC and Hillary Clinton), the authors of tell-all books about Trump, and even his own niece. On and on it goes. Imagine if Trump is re-elected. Will the attacks stop or escalate? Trump’s conduct is the sign of an extremely insecure man, and given the power of his office, he is dangerous.

The eternal enemy, foreign or domestic, that is perceived to pose a threat to the nation is a defining characteristic of fascism. Does Trump offer his followers a better America or does he just praise himself for his imaginary achievement in office? Will the nation become more united in a second Trump term? No, that should be obvious. Will Americans have better health insurance? Will our children have better schools? Will America have an infrastructure that ensures our international competitiveness? Will we have foreign allies who support us internationally, or will we have foreign leaders who view our president as a bloviating fool with makeup?

In Trump’s Manichean view of the world there are only good people and evil people, winners and losers. The good people are those who support him and praise him and pay exorbitant prices to stay at one of his properties. The evil people are those who criticize him or remind him of his compulsive lying. Some of the good people today will become evil people in Trump’s world tomorrow. Such is the case with those generals who agreed to serve in his first term despite their misgivings about his character. The final straw for me and for many vets is Trump’s reference to those who gave their lives in military service to the country as “losers.” I often wonder how many of his most avid supporters have ever served their country. Membership in a private militia group or in Trump’s private army does not count as patriotic.

In my opinion Trump is the biggest loser of all. There can only be one rational choice in the coming election: anyone but Trump.

Thank you.

Joel Gormley



Dear Editor,

On September 28, 2020, Fort Davis County’s Commissioners Court met. One of the items on their agenda was the declaration of a retroactive state of COVID emergency from September 15, 2020 onward. At that time, Fort Davis County had flourished without such a declaration since September 14.

I was curious as to how this body could declare an emergency retroactively. An emergency is “an unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action.” At the time of this session, the emergency had taken a two week holiday, with no one calling for immediate action. This is a contradiction in terms. There was no emergency and the facts supported this assertion.

Had anyone in the county died of COVID-19 in that period? The answer is no. Cumulatively, Jeff Davis County has had a total of 14 cases, with no deaths whatsoever. Our last case was reported on September 4.

The story was similar in the rest of Texas: on the last day I looked at that had complete data, September 11, there were 57 fatalities statewide that day and the trend line was headed toward zero. Cases were a different story. On September 26, Texas had 3,283 new cases; but cases are not deaths, and often represent nothing more than a positive result on a test noted for its inaccuracy. Even the new case trend line was going down. There was no further need for masks, social distancing, self-isolation, the crippling of our economy or the restriction of our personal freedom.

In particular, Fort Davis didn’t need to spend another nickel of taxpayer money protecting itself from a nonexistent threat. Further such expenditures would border on disaster fraud. This madness must end.


Frank McElhannon

Fort Davis


Dear Editor,

I am writing this letter to the reader. My name is Sam Salazar, I am a Marfa native, I’ve lived here my whole life. I’m reaching out hoping to find a reader like me, a young person who has been frustrated and confused with politics. I don’t think this only pertains to my demographic; it IS frustrating and confusing! It’s also intimidating if you don’t know where to start. I have found myself in conversations with friends about voting who share the same disappointment.

I’ve learned there is a massive disinformation campaign to make us confused, discouraged, and even impelling us not to vote at all because of these issues. If my generation were to vote in this election, we would outnumber the voters over 40 years old. This realization energized me; in the midst of all the confusion there is hope, and we can be the change we wish to see!

The last day to register to vote is October 5, it’s right now. If you are not registered, please do it today. You can start online or do it in person, but it needs to be submitted or postmarked by October 5. Beyond this action, I want to extend a hand out to anyone who needs help to register, talking through the steps or even printing out your registration form. I am just a normal person, I am not involved in politics. I just want us to be represented, I want change, and I want to help.

My email is salazarsam21@gmail.com

Thank you,

Sam Salazar



Estimado Editor,

Escribo para el lector general. Me llamo Sam Salazar, soy de Marfa, y he vivido aquí toda mi vida. Escribo esta carta en busca de lectores como yo, un joven que se siente frustrado y confundido con lo político. Creo que este sentimiento no pertenece solamente a mi demográfico; la situación es frustrante y TODOS están confundidos! También es difícil saber cómo empezar. Me he encontrado con personas que comparten los mismos desilusiones. Y he aprendido que hay una campaña de desinformación masiva para confundirnos y desanimarnos; estamos desanimados de votar por la misma razón. Pero, si mi generación votara seriamos mas numerosos que los los votantes mayores de 40 años. Esta realización me dió cuenta, en medio de toda la confusión hay esperanza, y podemos ser el cambio que deseamos ver!

El último día para registrarse para votar es el 5 de Octubre. Ahora mismo. Si no estás registrado a votar, ¡hazlo hoy! Puedes hacerlo online o en persona, pero tendría que tener matasellos de 5 de Octubre. Más allá de esto quiero extender la mano a cualquiera persona que quiere ayuda en el proceso, hablando de los pasos, o incluso imprimir su formulario de registro. Soy una persona normal, no involucrada en lo político. Solamente quiero ser representada, quiero un cambio, y quiero ayudar. 

Mi correo es: salazarsam21@gmail.com


Sam Salazar



Dear Editor,


Trump’s exhortations applauding extra-judicial (illegal) measures emboldening agents provocateur and/or individuals IS violence. Unidentifiable federal goons pulling people into unmarked SUVs and intimidating them for 1st Amendment conduct IS violence.

Words have consequences. Murder and serious injuries by radical right-wingers are off the chart. Those labeled left-wing aren’t a radar blip, according to research into politically motivated attacks in the United States.

Protesting generations of injustices and the wrongful death of Breonna Taylor, a black woman in her Louisville home, is NOT violence. Graffiti on public buildings, throwing debris or setting small, easily contained fires isn’t comparable with enumerated criminality of radical, right-wing gangs and rogue federal agents.

Making this perfectly clear: “Violence is not condoned!” Where probable cause exists, an arrestee is entitled to full Constitutional due process. Punishment is NOT the domain of a lawless mob!

Try explaining to Trump and supporters the U.S. is a “Rule of Law-Due Process” nation. His re-election places that in doubt.

Here’s where we find ourselves: The pandemic’s 200,000+ deaths are another consequence of Trumpism’s formula for disaster, aggravated by conservative ideology’s 40+ year charade of supply-side (voodoo) economics and deregulation policies contributing to the average person’s hardships.

A serial liar and dangerous authoritarian in the Oval Office brought us to the precipice. That’s too close for any nation’s well-being and too close for any individual’s peace of mind.

Rev. Barry Abraham Zavah