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Letters to the editor

Dear Editor,

There you go playing the victim again. I'm sure if you and your friends the Seriously Stupid 7 were in court in front of a judge there was a reason... Your story about the six-year-old boy who was arrested and taken to juvenile court for pulling up a flower was a bit over the top. That's too young, but what happens if we become a nation without laws?

Since you think you have the answers, what do you suggest?


Dear L.P.,

No sir or ma'am, I don't have all of the answers, but I know that juvenile court is not the place for a six-year-old child. Should a child be punished for pulling up a flower?

Only if you specifically tell him or her not to. Even then, if the child shows an interest in plants, maybe you have a future botanist on your hand, and her or his interest should be cultivated, not punished.

A fringe member of our group growing up was fascinated with snakes, would go up to one in the woods and pick it up, examine it and then put it down and let it slither away. I've always thought that if given a chance, his interest in reptiles might've led to a career in research or medicine, and he could have possibly discovered the cure to something or the other. Instead, he caught a juvenile charge, was sent to Morrison Training School and never got his footing in the adult world.

Dear Editor,

Why are you always bragging about getting in trouble? I love reading your columns, but through the years you seem to take pride in getting in trouble when you were younger. What the hell are you thinking? I think you are setting a terrible example for young kids who might look up to you as a role model.


Dear S,

On the contrary, I do not brag about getting into trouble. If anything, I brag about surviving having gotten into trouble, something too many young kids never get a chance to do. If any child chooses to view us as a role model, I hope they take away from our stories the fact that just because you do something wrong - or catch a charge - you don't have to see yourself as a bad kid. Except in rare instances, no one should be judged by the worst thing they've ever done.

Back when I was allowed to visit and speak to prison inmates - can you imagine being barred from entering prison? - I used to tell them that, in many cases, the only difference between them and the people looking down on them is that some people can run faster or hire better lawyers.

One of my favorite crime novelists, Elmore Leonard, once said "Not even bad guys are bad 24 hours a day."

Something else to remember, S: Not even good guys are good 24 hours a day, either.

Dear Editor,

When are you going to write something good about our Lt. Governor? You are always talking about black this and black that. Here we have the second most powerful politician in the state (of N.C.) is a "brother" and you haven't said a thing about him. Is it because he is a conservative Republican? I'll bet you if he was an Obama-loving liberal who believes in welfare and abortions you would have written about him by now. But because he loves God and his country, you ignore him. Typical libtard.


Dear N.W.,

You do know that Barack Obama hasn't been president for nearly five years, right?

Also, my motto has always been - *looks around for impending lightning strike* - if you can't say something nice about someone, don't say anything.

Dear Editor,

Thank you for the story about the man whose truck broke down and people stopped to help him in Durham. It's sad that we live in a world that doing good is a big deal, but that is the kind of world we live in, it seems.

I am glad you made a big deal out of it, because that incident reminds me of a story my mother told me many, many years ago when she lived in Chicago. She said it was a Saturday night and she was dressed in a short skirt and high heels for a night on the town. Late at night while she was driving home, her car broke down. Two big black men in an old pickup truck pulled up and asked if she needed help. She said no but they figured out she was lying.

My mother said the two men, who were brothers, wouldn't leave her there alone, so they put her in the pickup truck between them, and drove her to one of their homes, where his wife and children were. They got tools, left her there with his family and went back and fixed her car and brought it back to her.

So yes, there are good people in the world, but you can never write too much about them.

Angela E.

Dear Angela,

I definitely agree that we need more good news. Thank you for passing along this one. We at The Saunders Report are always in the market for stories that will put a smile on readers' faces, in their hearts.

As I write this, I'm listening to Jackie DeShannon sing What the World Needs Now is Love.

1 comentario

Dear Barry, The story about the people who stopped to help the man with the broken truck reminded me of my own story from back in the early 1960s in Rocky Mount. I was driving home down Thomas St in the family '51 Chevy wagon when it suddenly cut off. I coasted to the curb, got out and opened the hood. I was clueless. Shortly, a car with three black guys pull over, got out and took a look. One noticed that a wire had come loose from the coil. He reattached it, and the car started up. I thanked them and they jumped back in their car and went on their way. Which reminds me of another earlier incident…

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Meet Barry Saunders

For over 20 years, Barry was a columnist for The News & Observer in Raleigh, NC. He also wrote for other publications, such as the Atlanta Constitution and the Richmond County Daily Journal. Often described as powerfully honest and illustratively funny, Barry's writing is both loved and hated by readers- sometimes simultaneously.  


Want more? Get your own copy of one of Barry's published books featuring reader favorites (and not so favorites) from his years writing columns for The News & Observer. Titled "Do Unto Others...And then Run" and "...And The Horse You Rode In On Saunders!", they're full of guaranteed entertainment. 


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