To the Editor:

Each of us is critical to the U.S. Census.

As we shelter in place and practice social distancing, we are also experiencing American compassion. Members of the League of Women Voters of Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Area are practicing these measures for the safety of all. And, we continue our efforts to defend our democratic rights and responsibilities.

One very important responsibility is the 2020 Census mandated by our U.S. Constitution. This count of every person in our nation, Beaufort County included – citizens and noncitizens – will bring federal money to our community for education, healthcare, infrastructure, state and federal representatives in our legislatures, and more.

No one in our community should fear completing the Census, since the Supreme Court ruled that there would be no question on the form about the citizenship of people living in a house, and there isn’t. If parts of the community do not participate in the count, we won’t get federal dollars to move us ahead.

Don’t fail to participate in the 2020 Census, respond by April 1:

• online at 2020census.gov

• by calling 844-330-2020 for English and 844-468-2020 for Spanish, from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m.

• by mail if you received the short questionnaire

Our community is counting on you!

Patricia Felton-Montgomery

President

Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Area

League of Women Voters

To the Editor:

When this is all over, I hope that we can all sit back and take a hard look at why this pandemic happened and why many infectious diseases have been happening with increasing frequency since the 1970s.

The origins of the COVID-19 virus, the influenza each year, SARS, AIDS and other respiratory infections are all the same. And those diseases will continue to plague us until we as a society recognize their source and begin to make changes.

That source goes back to the growing and slaughtering of animals for food. The processes are too complex to describe in this short letter, but suffice it to say, we will have more of these pandemics and stronger pandemics than this one if we don’t change to a more plant-based way of eating.

Fortunately, the food industry has been stepping up, perhaps in recognition of this danger, and is now offering more plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy products. We need to start taking advantage of those offerings or we will continue to see repeated episodes of pandemics like the current one.

We’ve known this for sometime. Scientists have been publishing studies and articles about it and the World Health Organization has been warning about this for more than a decade. Terms like “social distancing” and “self isolation” were not new with this pandemic. They’ve been around in public health circles for a while now.

The future is up to us. I believe that to be “woke” in the future is going to mean being plant-based. Our economy and our sanity cannot survive another shutdown like this. The time for all of us to begin eating plant-based is now.

J Lanning Smith

Okatie

To the Editor:

The 20th year of the 21st century is shaping up to be like no other we have lived through. The question is why?

Could it be that our Creator said “Let’s stop what we are doing and take a deep breath?” Our nation was founded on a Judeo-Christian value system that we have lost in recent years. We have slid into a secular world order – a world that rejects God and, for Christians, Christ as it’s Savior. Maybe it is time to be saved again.

Without going into detail, the world has become a greedy, more sinful place. In the United States, we are now a “me” society. It is all about “me” – with no regard for others.

Our political leaders are so absorbed with hate for each other and our once great country is declining into the abyss.

In the St. James version of the Bible, the Book of Mark says that Jesus taught, “Love your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. Then love your neighbor like yourself. There are no other commandants greater than these.”

Today the world is standing still, waiting for us to heed the Lord’s teachings. Hopefully, we will emerge from this shut down in a direction of rebirth and our world will become a much better place to live. Amen.

Donna P. Bryant

Bluffton