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Crisis beyond the presidency?

Democrats accuse Republicans of obstructing justice to protect a corrupt president. Republicans accuse Democrats of attempting a coup to overthrow the elected government.

If polls and voter anger are reliable forecasts for possible widespread violence after the general election, what will encourage acceptance of election results and avert a red vs. blue civil war?

The cause of our impending crisis goes beyond the president. U.S. household income inequality is now the greatest since 1967. Divorce causes household incomes to plunge. Our middle class needs strong whole families to survive.

Reliance on capitalism, socialism or promises from any politician or candidate will not correct any unethical or incompetent government that fails to represent the true temporal and eternal interests of American voters. Guidance from Scripture and faith is a solution.

Bruce Allen, East Naples

Impeachment and four senators

It’s a hopeful sign of some degree of sanity in the impeachment of President Trump that at least two Republican senators are expressing concerns over the way Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is treating the process as an exercise in raw political power devoid of fundamental fairness.

First, Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska indicated she was “disturbed” over McConnell’s unabashed “coordination” with the White House. Later, Susan Collins of Maine expressed end-ofthe- year misgivings on how McConnell and his leadership cronies are trying to ram through the constitutionally mandated “trial” devoid of witnesses.

But it’s troubling that Florida’s two senators remain mute about these and other related issues. It's about time for Marco Rubio and Rick Scott to make a New Year’s resolution to challenge the absurdity of how McConnell intends to orchestrate the proceeding and try to create harmony, rather than cacophony in it.

Marshall Tanick, Naples

Democrats' impeachment a 'facade?'

The socialist Democrats have fired their last shot at deposing our legitimately elected president. Pelosi, Schiff and Nadler proclaimed their two weak resolutions were solid and perfect.

They had eliminated the phony, unsupported other charges, knowingly embarrassed. So laughable then when Sen Schumer refutes them, asking for four more witnesses, and 'fairness,' which his cohorts did not extend to the GOP in their closed-door meetings and hiding their whistle-blower.

Violating the rules for impeachment and ignoring the Constitution is their protocol. Nowhere does the Constitution stipulate witnesses be called by the Senate. A rule passed by the Senate during the Clinton impeachment, with different intent, can be changed or eliminated by a simple majority.

Pelosi, Schumer and the Dem presidential candidates hang by a thread, hoping to drag out the two managers needed to forward their facade to the Senate until November, shouting 'the GOP is unfair.'

During this distraction, the media did not cover VP Joe Biden's involvement under Obama in the Ukraine quid pro quo, to protect his son and the billions of money laundering by Burisma. Note that Trump as president had a right to ask about Biden's interference with the prosecutor, 'to enlighten us' (our country) and Biden held up more than $400 million then.

Burke Cueny, Naples

‘Smarter than the voters’?

Why is it that elected “officials” automatically feel they are smarter than the voters who elected them to office?

Why is it that they surrender their morals at the door when they take the oath of office?

When it is plainly evident what the majority of the voters wish for, but the more intelligent office holders think they know better, what are our options? Wait for their terms to expire?

These elected officials represent the people, not their campaign sponsors, and need to pay attention to the voters! Too many ignore them after taking office.

Bill Ainslie, Naples

Resolve to make diet plant-based?

The holidays seem to whiplash us from one extreme to the other: Eat, drink and be merry vs. the customary New Year's resolutions — reduce social media use, reduce weight, and embrace a plant-based diet.

One-third of consumers already report reducing their consumption of animal foods. Hundreds of school, college, hospital and corporate cafeterias have embraced Meatless Monday. Even fast-food chains Chipotle, Denny's, Panera, Subway, Taco Bell and White Castle are rolling out plant-based options.

A dozen startups, led by Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, are creating healthy, eco-friendly, compassionate, convenient, delicious plant-based meat and dairy alternatives. Meat industry giants Tyson Foods, Cargill and Canada's Maple Leaf Foods have invested heavily in plant-based meat development. So have a number of Microsoft, Google, Twitter and PayPal pioneers.

According to Plant-Based Foods Association, plant-based food sales have grown by 20% in recent years, 10 times the growth rate of all foods. Sales of plant-based cheeses, creamers, butter, yogurts, and ice creams are exploding at a 50% growth rate. Plantbased milks now account for 15% of the milk market.

The plant-based New Year’s resolution requires no sweat or deprivation — just some fun exploration of your favorite supermarket, restaurants and food websites.

Allen Orkin, Fort Myers Beach

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