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Housing's connected

I am so tired of seeing Arkansas' rankings in the lowest of the low in so many areas. I am an advocate for affordable housing; housing that is of good quality, decent, safe and appropriate. Affordable housing resources are significantly interconnected with so many other real-life factors: health care, education, crime and corrections, opportunity, and economic growth. We can continue to expend funds for education, health care and economic development, etc.; however, until we provide support for affordable and suitable housing, these expenditures may be in vain.

Arkansas has not prioritized housing in its past, and where is it ranked in so many areas? There is a connection. Industry may choose not to locate in Arkansas due to lack of available, suitable housing; health issues related to inadequate, unsanitary living conditions contribute to our low ranking on health care; the local economy is driven in part by developers, builders, suppliers, Realtors, bankers--all interconnected with housing. A fully funded Housing Trust Fund will help our local economies in rural areas where need is greatest, as well as in our urban areas.

Our state and local elected leaders need to recognize the connection with affordable, appropriate housing and these critically important other policy areas and give equal priority to funding the existing Arkansas Housing Trust Fund. Arkansas is one of 47 states with a Housing Trust Fund and is one of seven currently without a permanent funding source for their Housing Trust Fund.

During the interim period between regular sessions of the General Assembly, I hope that our elected leaders will reflect on and recognize the important, vital connections between housing and these other significant policy areas and then develop viable solutions to provide permanent, sustainable funding for the Arkansas Housing Trust Fund.

RICH ROY

Little Rock

State of music today

Whatever happened to America's "popular" music, once the envy of the world? More important, what has happened to the American people, to whom today's musical equivalent of raw sewage is apparently so readily acceptable?

Sixty, 70, 80 years ago, America's popular music was a healthy, wide-ranging admixture of vocal and instrumental music of the highest order and topped off with a generous helping of humor. Yes, in those far-off days there was actually room at the top for music and songs to make us all laugh.

Now, apart from its appalling lack of creativity and poor musicianship, today's popular music is entirely without humor. Ironic, is it not, that performers so bad should take themselves so seriously? In "ancient" times, the songwriters and balladeers of the day were of the highest order, the instrumentalists the best in the land, and all so very distinctive and instantly recognizable.

My argument is not about generational differences or changes in musical taste but, instead, very much about former musical excellence versus current musical banality. My modest plea is for a return to musical sanity.

All of today's "screamers" and "screechers" should listen long and hard to truly gifted performers like Vic Damone, Judy Garland and Sarah Vaughan and then, suitably humbled, consider a change of career.

WILLIAM G. CARLYLE

North Little Rock

Love can conquer all

For those of us that were not literally affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Jose, we became bystanders that could only imagine the hurt and suffering that we were and are viewing. We all have family and loved ones that care deeply for our well-being, even our very lives.

There are times it seems that the darkness and the hate that exists in the world is winning the battle over love, but thanks be to God, he loves us all in spite of our differences, social status, political affiliation, race, gender or religious beliefs. God does not check with us before he allows events to unfold. We all that live in the United States of America still live in the best country on the face of the earth. When God allowed these storms to unleash their power, especially back to back, maybe we as his creation should learn the deeper meaning of why we are still living.

The balance of life reveals our existence because of his love for us. The amazing love he has for humanity is a come-to-Jesus moment. Maybe he allowed this to show us: In spite of our differences, we are our brothers' keeper. We should all try and be better stewards over those things we are able to control.

It's very troubling to see the looting and greed that exist in the middle of so much pain and suffering, even more disturbing to see major companies price-gouging the common hardworking people just trying to make a life for their family. Let's all work harder as Arkansans and people of the world to leave the planet a little better for our children, grandchildren, and generations to come. God help us.

JACKIE PAUL JOHNSON

Scott

Nothing can dissuade

You know you're in The Base if you think like this: There are only two sides to every question--right and wrong. Everything is about politics, and politics is war.

Pick your narrative, and never change it (saves energy). You know you can define words better than any highfalutin dictionary. Democrats are socialists and socialists are communists.

The Bible agrees with your opinions. Your chosen leader can do no wrong.

Scientists get a lot of money from the hoax of global warming. Half the country is on the dole.

A good way to learn history is to drive past a mass-produced metal statue of a military leader on a horse. If you don't like what you hear, it's fake media. Black people and illegal immigrants cause all the crime. The 10 years of Radical Reconstruction, when blacks voted and ran for office, were the worst thing that ever happened to a losing side in a war.

America was founded as a Christian nation. Christians are persecuted by having to serve customers they disapprove of. People become moral from seeing postings of the Ten Commandments.

You can't have too many guns or military weapons. All our wars were fought to preserve America's freedom. Other countries are jealous of us.

If you hear information that contradicts yours: Ignore it, deny it, shout them down, and dig in.

CORALIE KOONCE

Fayetteville

There's that, at least

Re the UA-TCU game: At least Frank didn't have to watch the game ...

BOB CARNATION

Austin

Editorial on 09/14/2017

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