LETTERS: On humanity, Trump, RGV growing pains and concealed carry laws

Who’s safe any more?

The Jan. 4 front page of The Monitor in large headline print read ‘No protection for us.’ The quote was part of what Border Patrol Agent Sean O’Loughlin said. The entire quote read, “We’re out in the open, no protection for us. I mean at any given moment someone could pop out and throw a rock or take off a shot.” The risks of the agents patrolling the river were listed in quite some detail.

The story gave me quite a bit to think about. But besides the dangers to the agents on the Rio Grande, I thought there could also be another story under the banner ‘No protection for us.’ I’m thinking particularly about the people who are living in fear that at any moment either they or some member of their family could be seized and deported. I’m also thinking of border crossers who end up in cold holding cells while waiting to be processed. I’m thinking of local workers who are cheated in their pay. As I said, “the story gave me quite a bit to think about.”

David Jackson, Edinburg

Just ride away Trump

I look at the president of the United States, leader of the free world, most powerful man on Earth, a billionaire, a beautiful wife, great children, doesn’t worry about changing oil in his car, doesn’t have health problems, gives away his salary to charity, always has money to pay taxes. But if you listen to Nancy and Chuck, he is going to be better off with the new tax plan passed. All this man needs is a good horse!

Clint Williams, Edcouch

Growing pains in RGV

All of us complain when road construction slows us down. But I want to take the time to thank the Texas Department of Transportation and the Rio Grande City Police Department.

At the end of the workday on Dec. 22, 2017, a contractor had closed off all north and southbound traffic at the intersection of US 83 and Redwood Street in Rio Grande City. This is Phase 1 of the re-routing of Alternate FM 7555 for the new Loop 195 from RGC to Roma.

An alert office manager, Sofia Cantu, working for Border Pacific Railroad saw the traffic already backing up in both directions on US 83 throughout the city. Phone calls to Roma TXDOT Engineer Eduardo “Eddie’ Gracia, and Pete Alvarez, TXDOT district engineer in Pharr, found that they were aware of the problem. Mr. Gracia was on site.

A quick fix seemed futile due to the late hour of the day, the weekend and upcoming holidays. Be it luck or by providence, Gracia was able to find another work crew and resolved the problem.

The entire Rio Grande Valley is one of the fastest growing areas in Texas and continues to be a shining example of what cooperation can bring to our vibrant Valley communities.

Happy New Year and a special well-deserved thanks to all those dedicated citizens and public officials who make it all “just” happen.

Jose A. Escamilla, vice president, Border Pacific Railroad, Rio Grande City

Concealed carry laws

Recently in Pharr there was an incident of a person with a concealed carry license who’s handgun accidentally fired after being dropped in a grocery store. A female customer was wounded in her lower extremities, according to the report. I guess some people who have concealed carry licenses are not educated enough on the seriousness of concealed carry. I have argued in regards of not having a bullet in the chamber when you conceal carry to avoid an accidental discharge and I usually get hammered over it. My reasoning is if you don’t have a bullet in the chamber you can be 100 percent sure that you will not have an accidental discharge even if you drop your handgun. But, some of the mentality is, you need to be combat-ready and it cannot be done with an empty chamber in your handgun. My point of view is, we are not at war in a combat zone and to be combat-ready on a daily bases means something is going to go wrong at one time or another. Too many people are being hurt or killed over this issue. It’s time to put common sense on the table instead of an imaginary combat zone mentality. I have seen some people open carry with elastic shorts and holster and gun about to bring those shorts down, if they only knew how ridiculous they look and what a danger to the public they are. People will be people, I guess.

Rafael Madrigal, Pharr

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