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A heartfelt 'thanks'

Dear editor:

As we enter the special time of year traditionally associated with giving and thankfulness, I wanted to take a moment to recognize our team of dedicated health care heroes at National Park Medical Center.

It is difficult to imagine a more challenging time for our community than what we have faced over the past eight months of the COVID-19 pandemic. This public health crisis continues to take its toll on our community; demand even more of our energy and efforts to keep ourselves and others safe; and, quite frankly, change life as we know it.

In my view, the brightest ray of sunshine and hope through this ongoing storm is that we have an incredibly talented, committed and courageous team fighting this virus on the front lines at NPMC every day. You can rest assured that our heroes are hard at work caring for you and your family, friends and neighbors around the clock -- and I truly hope that fact gives you some peace of mind.

Every one of our colleagues -- whether providing direct patient care or supporting those who do -- plays a vital role in helping ensure our patients receive the best possible care. I am so grateful for their extraordinary efforts during these demanding days, their passion for serving others and their ability to keep a positive outlook despite such trying times. I simply cannot thank our providers, employees and volunteers enough for the countless ways they contribute to our mission of Making Communities Healthier -- and the way they always do it with compassion and a smile.

There is no doubt that we have felt so much love and support from our community since the beginning of the pandemic. It has been humbling, to say the least. As our battle continues, I sincerely hope you will keep our team in your thoughts and find a way to share your gratitude for a health care worker you appreciate. Your support continues to fuel our team and lift us up more than you can imagine, so thank you for standing by us. And, of course, please be diligent and do your part by continuing to wear your mask, wash your hands and keep your distance from others. We are all in this together, and we will get through this together.

As always, we are here for you whenever you need us. There is no doubt that we are in the middle of an unprecedented moment, but we are confident that our talented team will continue to rise to the challenge. Even in these uncertain times, the one true constant has always been -- and will continue to be -- our team of heroes at National Park Medical Center.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Scott Smith, CEO

National Park Medical Center

'Thanks' to a leader

Dear editor:

The Hot Springs Jazz Society would like to thank Gretchen Miller (formerly Taylor) for her outstanding service to the Jazz Society as executive director for the past 15 years.

Through several changes of board members and presidents, Gretchen has helped the Jazz Society through many transitions, through growth, through the economic ups and downs. She juggled a marriage, raising a family and working a second job while successfully serving as executive director of a busy nonprofit foundation.

Since completing her advanced education, Gretchen is leaving to move on to another phase of life and career. We will miss your hard work and support. Thank you for being the face of this organization for so long. It was a long but enjoyable ride.

We wish Grethen every success in her future.

Vicki Crisp

Hot Springs Jazz Society Board

Censoring the conversation

Dear editor:

There would be public outrage if The Sentinel-Record would censor or label as incorrect commentaries from its readers.

So why is it that other media, such as Facebook and Twitter, are allowed to do just that?

On Tuesday (Oct. 18), the Senate Judiciary Committee required the testimony of Twitter's Jack Dorsey and Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg on why there is political bias within the social media companies. The U.S. senators asked them about complaints of censorship and anti-conservative bias of the two very profitable companies that dominate social media.

Sen. John Kennedy from Louisiana put both social media executives on the spot when he asked them if they believed everything they read. Both Zuckerberg and Dorsey replied, "No." Kennedy continued by asking them if there is someone on their staff who filtered what they read. And they both replied they did not.

"If Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg don't employ staff to block them from reading certain material, why don't they let their users also exercise their own good judgment without censorship?" Sen. Kennedy wondered.

What Sen. Kennedy was saying is that people are not stupid. People have the intelligence to know fact from fiction.

Zuckerberg responded that Facebook used the Poynter Institute for Media Studies as its fact-checker.

Who is Poynter? It is a fact-checking group that some say appears to be left-leaning and has had its own credibility problems recently, my Google searches found.

Poynter is mostly funded by liberal-leaning organizations, including its major contributor George Soros' Open Society Foundation, a major supporter of progressive and liberal causes.

Although Poynter is a fact-checking organization, it admitted its facts were wrong last year after it published a list of 515 news websites as "unreliable" and asked advertisers to blacklist the websites. Poynter admitted that there were inaccuracies and "weaknesses in its methodology" to create the list, apologized and retracted the list.

One of the news organizations listed was The Washington Examiner, a conservative-leaning competitor to The Washington Post. A member of Poynter's board is from The Post and other East Coast-elite members of the media.

We get our information from numerous sources, Facebook, Twitter, Google and The Sentinel-Record. The standards for excellence in journalism should be the same for all and to deny readers the opportunity to read all sides is censorship.

We are lucky here that The Sentinel-Record allows its readers to rebut commentaries the newspapers publish. That is not censorship. That is conversation.

Jim Keary

Hot Springs

It makes no sense

Dear editor:

Please help me understand. ...

Two recent headlines in The Sentinel-Record caught my attention. First, "HSV man arrested after allegedly shooting his girlfriend's brother." A young man was arrested and charged with felony first-degree battery and first-degree endangering the welfare of a minor after he allegedly shot his girlfriend's brother in the chest and the arm during an argument ... in front of the victim's juvenile daughter. Bond was set at $7,500 and scheduled for district court.

Second headline, "Indiana man arrested after allegedly passing nearly $2K in counterfeit bills." This individual visited Walgreens, Dollar General, and Walmart where he purchased gift cards with counterfeit $50 bills. He then attempted the same thing at Kroger, but they checked the bills and he fled the scene. He was arrested shortly after and charged with five felony counts of second-degree forgery and four misdemeanor counts of theft of property under $1,000. His bail was set at $50,000 and scheduled for district court.

Help me understand how someone shoots another human being in the chest and arm in front of a child and bond is set at $7,500 versus passing counterfeit $50 bills meriting a bond of $50,000. I'm told that the district attorney's office is who sets the bond amounts. Are there guidelines on how this is determined? Please help me understand! This makes absolutely no sense to me.

Melinda Thornton

Hot Springs

Don't despair

Dear editor:

Christian conservatives, do not despair. That is not a plea; it's a statement.

While I hope and I pray that we will live to see law and order restored to our USA, we don't despair because we know what lies ahead for us.

I've been thinking about the left's (Biden, Harris, Pelosi, Schumer, and the rest) thousands of lawbreakers in our cities, for months, and what their lives must be like. No joy, no peace, no self-respect or any of the God-given rights for every person to live a life of fulfillment and blessing. Think about it.

We say that the lawbreakers won't ultimately get away with what they are doing -- and neither will those who own them, today's "slaves."

If God had decided on Hillary, instead of Donald, in 2016, we Christian conservatives would have taken it on the chin and kept our unwavering faith in Almighty God. To question God, one would have an empty upper chamber in their noggin.

If God thinks America "deserves" what's been going on in our streets with the left's lawbreakers, He may give us Biden and Harris.

If, in his mercy, he wants us to continue with a pro-life, pro work, pro-law and order President Donald J. Trump, he'll bless us with four more years of Donald and Mike. We pray, and never give up hope. Big tech can't cancel G-O-D!

A man recently walked up to President Trump at a rally and said "You are the most important man in the world!" Trump replied to him "No I'm not, Jesus Christ is the most important man in the world and I'm not a close second!" I hope you got to hear that as I did. What a testimony!

And what a blessing was the front-page coverage of our patriotic H.S. Boy Scouts on 11-11 and the great vets on 11-12, all saluting our beautiful stars and stripes, Old Glory. Who wants the bums who burn and refuse to stand with their hands over their hearts for our anthem and flag, and the political party who refuses to condemn them? These scouts and vets show the kneelers for what they are -- losers! Thank you for your patriotism and thank the S.R. for the tribute to you.

Back to the "lawbreakers" seemingly getting away with it. For the most part, (except for the "leaders") I believe they are merely "pawns," in the hands of the left, socialist Democrat Party, who I believe will pay the much bigger price, ultimately.

Romans 14:12 says "So then, every one of us shall give account of himself to God."

Trump's enemies can't admit the strength this man has shown in the face of their attacks since 2016. That's OK -- Donald knows it comes from Almighty God. God bless President Trump!

Mary Robinson

Hot Springs

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