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Letters to the editor published in the February 16, 2011, edition of The Explorer.

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Posted: Wednesday, February 16, 2011 6:00 am

Pulling for Giffords’ full recovery

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords has become a well-known statewide, national and even worldwide figure. As a U.S. Representative, she is intelligent, hardworking and caring. Gabrielle listens to the people, especially to her constituents. She works across the aisle and makes decisions in the best interest of our country.

Her staff continues to provide quality services. They are currently working on hundreds of constituent cases. As a nation we are pulling for Gabrielle’s full recovery. She is a shining light in the dark political scene.             

Christine K. Dayton, Oro Valley


GOP thanks Kyl for years Of service

Like many of you, I was surprised to hear (last week) that Sen. Jon Kyl will not be seeking reelection in 2012. Sen. Kyl has been a stalwart advocate for the people of Arizona, and I trust he will remain an active and vocal force providing wisdom and guidance to his successor. 

Pima GOP thanks the senator for his many years of service to the people and state of Arizona. Sen. Jon Kyl epitomizes the spirit of honorable representation that everyone elected to public office should strive for.

Brian Miller, chairman, Pima GOP


Does health care reform law make sense for us?

Before passage of the Health Care Reform Law, most Americans would have agreed that our health care system was flawed, citing high premiums, rapidly rising costs, insurance companies denying coverage at their discretion, and millions of United States citizens unable to afford quality insurance. So why the cry to repeal this law, which appeared to have remedied many of those flaws?

Both political parties share responsibility for the flapdoodle, with the roots of the problem incubated before the bill was passed. Among them were the lack of objective debate, ambiguous wording of the 2,000-page bill, and the inability of the President to frame the objectives for reform in easy-to-understand language.

To add insult to injury, we are now bombarded with misinformation about this law. If Mark Twain were alive today, his diagnosis of the problem might be, “What gets most Americans into trouble in this health care law debate is not that they know so little but that they know so many things that ain’t so.”

Polls show an alarming number of Americans believe these things that ain’t so, which include fabrications such as the new health care law covers illegal immigrants, Americans have no choice in the health benefits they receive, and death panels will decide who lives.

During the 2010 elections, the Tucson landscape was besieged with billboards claiming that (political leaders) forced Obamacare on Arizona voters. And per PolitiFact, the number one that ain’t so for 2010 was: the health care reform law is a “government takeover of health care.”

The facts show the 2010 Health Care Reform Law does not allow the government to operate the health care system. The truth is: the current law provides (95 percent) universal coverage through regulated private markets.

So what do we do? Accept the Law as currently written? Tweak it to improve it? Repeal it? And if so, what do we replace it with?

Whatever answers we eventually embrace as a country, it’s important for well-informed citizens to honestly debate health care reform. But, before axing the law — if that’s our country’s choice — we need to objectively identify its pros and cons. To demonize it as “Obamacare” or “the work of liberals” does not make for constructive dialogue.

If someone wants unbiased information about the 2010 Health Care Reform Law, The Kaiser Family Foundation, Families USA, AARP, and Docs for America can help.

Richard E. Kelly, Tucson


Legislators need to stop political grandstanding

Arizona’s legislators are fiddling while Rome burns. The state faces an immense budget shortfall. Proposed cuts to health care and education will be draconian. A structural deficit will ensure at best in good times the budget may balance; in bad times we will have serious problems. Many of our legislators have signed a no-tax pledge and refuse to consider looking at increasing revenues to the state.

Meanwhile, the legislature is hard at work on such important issues as rights to carry guns on campuses, denying citizenship to babies born to illegal immigrants (a function of the federal not state government), and a proposed requirement (that candidates) to produce a birth certificate to be on the Arizona ballot.

Moderate voters need to wake up and send a message to the legislature that they need to quit the political grandstanding and get down to solving the serious problems that this State faces.

If Arizona is to develop a sustainable productive economy that generates jobs and wealth for its citizens, we need to fix our tax structure, provide adequate resources for an educated workforce, and provide adequate social and other government services expected by companies who might be interested in moving to or starting operations in Arizona. Please contact your state representatives and senators and let them know that Arizona’s citizens expect action with positive results for our state’s future rather than more, and sometimes expensive, political posturing.

Sally Clement, Tucson


Stop littering our world

What gives you the right to litter up my world? Yes, I followed you west on Calle Concordia on Friday… As we waited for southbound traffic to pass so that we could make our left turn, you proceeded to throw your cigarette butt, which appeared to be about a quarter of the cigarette, out your window and onto the road. How were you brought up, anyway? I wonder what your home looks like? Don’t you have an ashtray in your car? If you don’t, you could certainly carry some kind of waste container with you.

That’s one of my biggest gripes about smokers. Most of you believe that you have the right to just toss your cigarette butts out on the streets and sidewalks of America, creating a mess for the rest of us to look at. Wake up. Think about what you’re doing.

We all have to share this Earth. It is my home too. I wouldn’t walk into your living room and throw trash around so please don’t do it in “our” living room. The fact that you’re choosing to smoke is your business but the fact that you’re choosing to litter is everyone’s business. Keep it to yourself. Your cigarette, your garbage.

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