What's the biggest threat to America? Some say it's illegal immigration, growing at one million-plus/year. This unchecked influx of migrants is changing the demographic proportion of Hispanics, whites and blacks. This country could be torn apart into warring factions, each group siding with its racial or ethnic identity.
Others disagree. It's the unsustainable national debt of $22.5 trillion. According to the US Treasury Department, it will come whisper-close to adding $1 trillion more in 2019. Everyone knows that this will end, and end badly.
A third group believes the most significant danger to America is China. The yellow star rising in the East threatens America's dominance in economic and industrial power as well as its prominence on the world stage.
But according to the leading candidates for the Democrat nomination for the presidency, they're all wrong. Let's take a look at the seven Democrat front-runners for president and see what they say is the No. 1 threat to the USA.
Joe Biden. "We have a lot to root out, most of all the systemic racism that whites don't acknowledge even exists, but it's built-in every aspect of our system." Saints preserve us! It's a Caucasian epidemic. Whites must have the courage, as Biden does, to admit it.
Elizabeth Warren. Warren promises action. "As president of the United States, my Justice Department would go after white nationalists with full prosecution." Presumably, that includes the president which she, together with Bernie Sanders, call a "white supremacist." Nationalists, white supremacists, and racists are interchangeable. To be guilty of one is to be guilty of all.
Beto O'Rourke. Beto bemoans the fact that he is a white male, which is part of the problem. Oh, the irony. "I'm a white man, and if people vote against me because of my race or sex, that's a legitimate decision." That's big of you, Beto.
And Beto agrees with the other candidates that "the president has made it clear that he is a white supremacist." He admits that he is a white male fighting against white male nationalists. But Beto humbly apologies for being a white male; he can't help the accident of his birth. The third strike against Beto's common-man appeal for the Oval Office is that he is a multi-millionaire. Poor Beto.
Andrew Yang. Yang's assessment of the president is evidence-based. "According to his words and actions, yes, he's [the president] a white nationalist." "White nationalist terrorism," says Yang, "has accounted for over 70 percent of terrorism-related deaths in the US over the past decade." Lest you wonder, Yang has disavowed the support of this terrorist group.
Pete Buttigieg. He would "declare war on white nationalists similar to combating the threat posed by the hate and gun lobby." Humm, would that include the president, too, Pete? Candidate Buttigieg has called out "Trump for condoning white nationalism at the highest levels of government and called the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton [government] terrorism."
Kamala Harris. She wants to "confiscate firearms from all [suspected or potential] white nationalists based on a red flag law." Good thinking, Kamala. Why wait for a crime to be committed? Arrest these would-be criminals before they commit a crime; such a saving on attorney fees and court costs.
Cory Booker. Not to be outdone, Booker charges that Trump is "worse than a racist." Booker wins the ad hominem contest. I can't imagine what could be worse than a white racist, but it's pretty bad.
And that's the problem. No one has defined what a white nationalist or white supremacist or white racist is except that they are all white. Open-ended crimes can have an ever-changing definition, if any definition at all. It's hard to defend ones-self when you're not told what you're accused of doing.
What, then, is the greatest threat to America? Now we can posit the real answer to this question.
Could it be the Democrat Party? Try to imagine one of the seven candidates critiqued in this letter as president of the United States. It's a possibility. Could you conceive of a greater menace to the Republic than turning the White House over to one of these Left-wing hysterics?
Bob Scroggins, New Milford, PA
I made one of my few visits to the Transcript building less than a week before the fire that you have all heard about by now.
Looking through boxes of old newspapers, I started a process of filling in my own records and earlier research on the history of Susquehanna Sabers football by looking through old copies of newspapers from a half century ago.
While looking up game stories, I stumbled across an item by former owner/publisher Louis Parrillo. In the 1971 newspaper clipping was the first reference to my place in a business that I formally became a part of a decade later. In the hard-to-read, shadowed picture I snapped of the clipping, Parrillo thanked my father for writing stories about Sabers games and me – then 7 years old – for compiling the statistics that were used in stories written by my father, Parrillo and writers from the Scranton and Binghamton papers.
I remember a lot from those days, including going on WCDL radio in Carbondale at halftime as a 7 or 8-year-old to provide statistics and be interviewed by Paul Oles and Joe Martin. I did not, however, recall what had to be the earliest print reference to what became my profession.
As I did my research, I came across references to my late father, my brother, many cousins and some of the older boys in town who I looked up to as a youngster because of the way they performed on the football field. I looked forward to the return trips and reviewing more of the old papers. I knew they would help me reminisce while confirming or adjusting some of my earliest memories. Maybe there would even be other surprises.
And, I thought about getting sidetracked long enough to find a short item about my Little League triple play.
The treasures in many of those boxes will never be able to be reviewed again. Records of far more important items than football games have been lost for parts of the Transcript's lengthy history.
Through the years, I had lost direct contact with my hometown newspaper for nearly two decades, but my father had remained involved on-and-off during that time.
Then, I found myself with a decision to make nearly 20 years ago.
When my father decided he was done writing the weekly sports contributions for the newspaper, I had to decide whether it made sense to add duties for my little hometown paper with the books I was writing and editing and the national websites and regional daily newspapers to which I contributed.
It did not take long for me to realize I had made the right decision, not just at that time but for the long-term.
The Labor Day fire brought a different type of uncertainty. Like many of the comments I read from people posting on Facebook, I was not sure what to expect next.
Now, I am able to hold another copy of the Susquehanna County Transcript, the first produced after the fire, in my hand.
I've never been prouder to be associated with the Transcript, with Chuck and Rita Ficarro, their small, part-time staff and the handful of other freelance correspondents who produce news about the county each week.
With changes in technology and reading habits, it is not easy to produce a newspaper in the 21st century. Here's a salute to Chuck and Rita for making sure that despite the potentially devastating developments, Susquehanna will not join the growing list of communities without local news coverage.
Tom Robinson, South Abington Twp., PA
Dear Chuck and Rita,
There are no words that can appropriately express how sorry I feel for what you are faced with. No one can really understand what a business owner goes through on a daily basis, unless they have walked a mile in your shoes. I can only pray that you will find the strength to handle this loss.
God bless and good luck. You have brought something special to our community.
P.S. You made Lou Proud!