Lots of feedback on several different topics to get through this week. So, without further ado, let's get at it.
Responding to news that a federal court had appointed a special master to analyze and perhaps redraw the state's legislative districts, TonyD writes: "Let's hope we can beat these crooked Republicans. Their tyranny and skullduggery have dragged North Carolina down to the lowest level. These fanatics need to be kicked out on their ass. Their stupidity and greed will destroy the very fiber of our society. The Republicans are the embodiment of evil. McCrory found out how voters get even—his ass is gone. Too bad gerrymandering has left us with these other useless taints in Raleigh. Maybe we can get rid of them in the next election."
Regarding our endorsements in Chapel Hill, Jennifer Van Winkle argues that we made a misstep: "I urge your readers to look at Allen Buansi's credentials, which are readily found online. He has a long, impressive list of service to Chapel Hill and North Carolina and a depth of experience making him exceptionally qualified to serve. The INDY missed the boat by not endorsing him with clarity and enthusiasm."
On the INDY's recent reporting on property-tax subsidies offered to some residents of Durham's Southside neighborhood, Durham 451 writes: "Isn't the point of city-funded revitalization efforts to make areas more attractive, livable, and valuable? Why are people shocked when it works? Taxes are a burden for everyone. The average property in Durham County increased in value by 14 percent in the 2016 revaluation. If your property value went up by that 14 percent average, your taxes did not change. If your property value went up by less than 14 percent, your taxes went down. If your property value went up by more than 14 percent, your taxes went up. That's called fairness. People with fast-rising property values should pay more because they will make more if they sell their property. If your taxes went up by $349, that would indicate a 40 percent-plus increase in the value of a $100,000 home. You don't need a subsidy."
On the recent controversy over donations Raleigh mayoral candidate Charles Francis accepted from an Amendment 1 advocate, which cost him the endorsement of Equality NC's PAC: "If Francis really cared about the LGBT community," writes JerryG, "he wouldn't be taking money from bigots. No self-respecting Democrat would do this."
On that electoral contest, commenter Black Raleigh argues: "Black Raleigh wrote the book on being marginalized in Raleigh, and even though this isn't the Marginalized Olympics, we understand that the quality of life many poor and working-class folks who Francis will represent, as he has done as an attorney for years, will continue to go ignored if he isn't elected. Nancy [McFarlane] is about business, not people."
Some Confederate sympathizers got hot and bothered by a recent story on the value of the monument that demonstrators tore down in August: "A monument to law-abiding defenders of our community is of a much greater value than the lives of a lawless mob of idiots bent on destruction of peace and tranquility and the value should be determined by those who are hurt by its destruction not the defenders of a mob!" writes Sam Burch.
A guy (presumably) who styles himself Robert E. Lee adds: "This is pure corruption. This monument was obviously priceless. If you had to put a dollar amount on it, it would clearly be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. This is no different than the D.A. letting his buddy off with petty theft stealing the Mona Lisa because corrupt politicians say it is only worth the wood, paint, and canvas it is painted on."
To which Vidvis responds: "Hey, y'all. The statue was a cheap piece of crap erected primarily to demonstrate a continuing commitment to white supremacy. Every person in the crowd that pulled it down is more worthy of honoring than every member of the Confederacy."