Archived Opinion

For the common good, please check ‘facts’

For the common good, please check ‘facts’

To the Editor: When letter-writers lambaste a political party or official by repeating terrible accusations, they spread lies that can get criminals elected and people maimed or killed. Just last night, U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s husband was injured by a man who broke into their home asking “Where’s Nancy?” 

This week Washington, D.C., Police Capt. Michael Fanone’s assaulter pleaded guilty and earned seven-and-a-half years in prison. He grabbed Capt. Fanone around the neck and dragged him, choking, into the MAGA mob, which beat him unconscious and tasered him, causing a heart attack and leaving permanent brain damage. The January 6 mob murdered and maimed other police officers. 

Whenever newspaper letter-writers or others make inflammatory judgment statements without evidence, be suspicious. We readers can look for primary sources such as government documents and testimony under oath. When a letter-writer attributes controversial ideas to a public figure, we can go to the source, that person’s speeches and writings, online and in print.

We can also consult independent fact-checking organizations. One unbiased site is of the Annenberg Public Policy Center. It catches leaders of both parties in mis-statements as well as outright fabrications.

One official document crucial to our 2022 mid-term elections is the U.S. National Intelligence Council (NIC) report of March 10, 2021. It remains relevant because disinformation continues to infect some voters. The title is “Foreign Threats to US 2020 Elections.” It is available at

Most alarming, the report cites multiple U.S. intelligence agencies’ conclusion that Russian officials and their U.S. proxies had spread and continue spreading lies to undermine U.S. national security, our economy, and our personal safety. Less effectively, Iran, China and North Korea attempt the same. 

What easier way to destroy another nation than to make it self-destruct? Russian officials planted lies still being spread by some gullible U.S. media personalities and politicians. One lie concerns violent crime. found rising violent crime from 2017 on. “Experts say there are several factors that may explain the rising number of homicides, but the president is not one of them – regardless of party.” 

On Russia’s trying to throw the 2016 election, to quote the former president on stage with Putin in Helsinki, “Why would he do that?” Our National Intelligence Council’s report answers Trump’s question in full: Putin saw Biden, and Democrats in general, as threats to Russia’s “global interests” (oligarchs’ wealth and re-conquest of Ukraine and other former Soviet bloc countries). 

Putin saw Trump and his circle as malleable. Trump’s fawning on Putin in Helsinki, on live TV world-wide, proved Putin correct. Putin wins with every lie repeated about the 2020 and now the 2022 election. 

Ours was the safest and fairest election in our history, as Republican Secretaries of State who had been Trump supporters certified; and as top Trump appointees including former Attorney General William Barr testified under oath to the January 6 Committee.

A potentially nation-destroying lie has infected our U.S. Senate candidate Ted Budd and U.S. Rep candidate Chuck Edwards. I watched the attempted insurrection on television as it happened, thanks to live news reports and rioters’ cellphones. As of October 17, 417 Trump supporters have pleaded guilty for January 6 crimes. 

The Business Insider tracks all the trials and guilty pleas. Online, click on a name to read indictments and outcomes, including plea agreements: Their admitted guilt proves the falsity of claims that the violent MAGA mob were plants from “Antifa” (which means anti-fascist).

For the sake of U.S. national security and our own personal safety, let us check facts and condemn those advocating violence.

Mary Curry 

Haywood County

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