Letters to the editor 11/9

Nov. 08, 2013 @ 03:56 PM

Turn down insurance companies

It’s a real shame Gov. Pat McCrory passed on the Medicaid expansion for North Carolina.

Sure, depriving 500,000 North Carolinians of healthcare is unconscionable and sending our hard-earned tax dollars to cover expansions in other states is an act of pure fiscal insanity, but by opting out, it now seems, we are missing out on the only aspect of the Obamacare rollout that is not an unmitigated trainwreck. In forward-thinking states, the sign-up process for this government-run program is tooting along just fine -- thank you very much. It’s the private insurance part of Obamacare that’s hit the wall! 

Why is this so difficult? The Marist Poll indicates 70 percent of tea party supporters want to protect Medicare (another government-run plan). And we know how progressives feel. So let’s roll everything into one plug-and-play single-payer plan (Medicare-for-All) and be done with it. 

As for health insurance companies, they’ve been turning us down for decades. It’s well past time we turn them down -- once and for all.

Lou Meyers

Durham

Destructive speech not ‘free’

In response to Frank Hurley’s blatant revision of HIS-story regarding slavery I will say only three things: 

1. I would like to echo the need for Hurley to read the Bible.  Not only  did he miss and twist  Biblical and world history in his attempt to repaint the lies of white supremacy, black inferiority and old racist propaganda  regarding the notion which suggests blacks were saved by the rape and robbery of our white oppressors;  Hurley should  read it as the rightful source to reinvigorate our general need to inspire the power of truth over lives, love over hate, and sound-mindedness over mental blindness.

2. The Herald-Sun should have a policy which prohibits the promotion of the same types of white supremacy and race-baiting lies which cost millions of Africans and African Americans their lives.  It is time for American media sources to become as sensitive to the irreparable and brutal losses suffered by Africans and African Americans through the Western  Slave Trade, as we are  to  the horrific atrocities suffered by our Jewish brothers and sisters through the Holocaust.

3.  There are enough examples throughout our  history to prove how media’s powerful platform has been historically used to exacerbate racist views which have been the driving force behind domestic terrorism, assassination, black-owned business demolition, and land-takings carried out against countless African Americans. “Free speech” which causes physical,  emotional, spiritual, economic and cultural destruction toward others is not “free”.  

Rev. Curtis E. Gatewood

Oxford

Alcohol ads wrong for kids

A report published by the Centers for Disease Control Thursday looked at the 25 largest television markets in the country and concluded that 29 percent of programs in the Charlotte market were airing advertisements that exposed youth (ages 12-20) to alcohol ads beyond the industry’s self-imposed standards.  The alcohol industry’s standard is to not air alcohol advertisements during programs that have a youth audience that makes up 30 percent or more of the total viewership.

More than a dozen longitudinal studies have shown that youth exposure to alcohol advertising increases the likelihood that youth will begin drinking -- and drink more if they do -- leading to countless negative consequences including sexual assault, brain damage, car crashes,  suicide  and ultimately -- later in life -- addiction and cancer.  The researchers at Johns Hopkins concluded that if the industry standard were actually enforced it would reduce youth exposure to advertising by 1/3.
Gov. Pat McCrory has taken a strong stand against underage drinking and the myriad consequences it leads to.  As this administration tackles underage drinking I urge them to address the advertising issue.  Let’s face it, kids and alcohol ads are an inappropriate combination.

Dylan Ellerbee

Durham