June 23, 1997 in Nation/World

Letters To The Editor



Spokane, you’re doing fine

I commend the staff and friends of The Spokesman-Review for your research, diligence and stamina regarding the River Park Square Park project. Fortunately, you haven’t stopped there.

There will always be dreamers, leaders and followers, pessimists and pessimists. It’s good to question if one has all the facts and can offer possible solutions. We cannot dwell on only one issue, though. Compromise may be one option, but it shouldn’t stop us from looking further into the future.

The Spokane Market Place, with your considerable financial and moral support, is just one more example of your continued dedication to our community, hopefully, of some benefit to all. There will always be rough edges to be refined. Change in the norm isn’t always easy but can be very rewarding.

Your exemplary diligence should be acknowledged. If people would realize what your firm and others - Washington Water Power Co., Fairchild AFB, Kaiser, to name a few do for us, just maybe they’ll appreciate more the great area we live in.

Last but not least, let’s not forget the caring individuals of this area who continue to give and share, even though they themselves may not have much. Not only do they offer monetary support, but also that of shelter, food, a warm heart and a listening ear. What better use of love than this?

No, ours is not a perfect community, but sometimes a kind word, deed or just a smile without any strings attached can make for a kinder and gentler society, with the future in our hands. G.H. Strenge Spokane

Evey idea needed - approve it

The June 11 Spokesman-Review included article on Stuart Evey proposing to do a much-needed service. It appears city officials are turning thumbs down on the proposal. The reason? Unions and the Civil Service Commission.

If the unions and civil service people are so concerned about these jobs, why haven’t they proposed something like this?

This service is perfect for privatization. I’m certain many people would like to work part time and be on straight commission (so much per ticket written). Spokane County could certainly use the same program.

You can be in a parking lot and see someone stop in a handicapped zone and run into a store. If you say something to them, they get mad and say something like, “I just stopped for a minute, to get a pack of cigarettes.”

I hope the City Council and the county commissioners approve Evey’s proposal. Edwin O. Weilep Spokane


Partial birth abortion unnecessary

Many people are ignorant about partial birth abortions. Here are the facts:

The American Medical Association has declared that this procedure is never medically necessary. It requires turning of the unborn baby to the breech position, which is risky for the mother. The feet and torso are delivered while the baby is still alive. Before the head is delivered, the base of the skull is punctured and the brain is suctioned out, resulting in immediate death. The only purpose for this procedure is to absolutely guarantee a dead baby, since other late-term procedures risk a live birth. It’s always done for elective reasons.

Former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop states, “In no way can I twist my mind to see that the late-term abortion as described … partial birth, and then destruction of the unborn child before the head is born - is a medical necessity for the mother.” (American Medical News, Aug. 19, 1996)

Dr. Pamela Smith, obstetrics and gynecology education director at Chicago’s Mount Sinai Hospital, said in congressional hearings, “There are absolutely no obstetrical situations encountered which require a partially delivered human fetus to be destroyed to preserve the health of the mother.”

Dr. Warren Hern, a late-term abortion specialist, said even he would not perform a partial birth abortion because it’s unsafe for the mother.

Advocating “the right to choose” partial-birth abortion indicates ignorance of the medical facts or the presence of evil. Paula Cullen, R.N., and Alfred Derby, M.D., OB-GYN Crisis Pregnancy Centers of Spokane


Firmness needed to protect children

We absolutely agree with the editorial, “Good people must go on the offensive,” (Our View, June 17). Women who live with, and/or leave their children with, men who are obviously potential child abusers must be held accountable.

Not only should the men who cause the damage face consequences severe enough that it will make moms think the next time they are warned by family or friends that the guy is dangerous. The women who let it happen should also.

Prosecutors and judges will have to change their views and punish men who abuse children.

Recently, the Post Falls prosecutor wanted to plea bargain down a child abuse case to “disturbing the peace.” Thankfully, Judge Quentin Harden from Bonner County would not accept the plea bargain and gave Robert Hawkins the option of pleading guilty to injury to a child or go to trial. Hawkins chose trial.

This judge gets our vote for standing up for the rights of children. More should follow his lead. If we look the other way when mothers won’t protect their children, who will protect them?

If these cases are not followed closely and everything possible done to see the men punished, more children are going to die. Seldom does the child get horribly maimed the first time. There are warning signs.

If there is proof, such as witnesses or pictures, the abuser should be punished to the maximum so he can’t continue the abuse. We cannot just assume the judicial system is going to act in the best interest of the children. Margaret C. and Bill M. Wright Hayden Lake, Idaho

Most single moms doing a good job

Re: Syndicated columnist Jeff Jacoby’s June 15 commentary, “A matter of beating the stiffest odds.”

Too many times I’ve heard that children from single mom homes are headed down a path of crime, drugs and promiscuity.

I’m a single mom and have two fantastic kids. Both excel in school, always receiving A’s and B’s. My daughter is amazing when it comes to sports. My son is very artistic and always receives praise from teachers, friends, and other mothers for being kind, respectful and compassionate. Their attitude toward alcohol and drugs, sex and gang violence is one of disgust.

Jacoby’s opinion that kids from a single mother home are prone to use alcohol and marijuana is way out of whack. I have dated men who are into these things and they were all raised in typical nuclear families (with both a mom and dad). I have even been beaten. Is this the type of father Jacoby would like to see in the home to raise children?

I have a hard time being a single mom, but I have the best kids in the world. The do not fit the so-called prophetic profile of kids raised only by their mother.

I can guarantee you that there are more single mothers out there with great kids. All of them will grow up to be the strength and backbone of our society. Stop being negative and start showing the positives of single motherhood. Lori L. Belnap Spokane

Don’t leave kids in the car

Here’s a letter for parents who leave their kids in cars and go shopping:

Do you realize your children are easy prey for any child molester or kidnapper walking down the street?

Do you realize how uncomfortable it is to sit in a car without air conditioning on a hot day?

Do you realize your children are screaming outside while you are in shopping, oblivious to everything? The next time you go shopping, you sit in there with the kids for 20 minutes. See how you like it. Not fun! Beth A. Heath Spokane

Rosemond methods for dogs, not kids

Re: “Children can participate in own upbringing” (parenting column, June 16)

I didn’t pay much attention to John Rosemond’s column until several readers suggested that you discontinue it. They are right.

Rosemond’s notion of authority and leadership is strange: parents do not have to explain their orders, and by the time children are 3 years old, parents have to be the center of their attention.

Real authority, respect and attention - be it with children or anybody else - must be earned. Yes, there are loose cannon children, but they very often have loose cannon parents. If a child yells and has tantrums, chances are, he or she saw that type of behavior somewhere.

If you give an order to your child and you answer “Why?” with “Because I said so,” you are saying to your child: “Reasons don’t matter. What matters is force.” You train them to be intellectually lazy.

Rosemond, however, calls this leadership. To me, it sounds more practical for dog training. But maybe we want to make upbringing an obedience school? Peter C. Dolina Veradale


Newspaper people ‘out of touch’

Ever notice that the editorial staff at The Spokesman-Review is about 180 degrees off from what the citizens of Spokane County think?

Many examples exist: Increased property tax for roads, potholes; approval of the Seahawks Stadium (no brainer); the science center; Lincoln Street Bridge, Salty’s, Ronalds’ property; purchase of parking garage. Lots more examples exist but you get the point.

Is this award-winning editorial staff out of touch with reality? I know they are out of touch with the citizens of this area, since their opinions rarely reflect those of the majority of the people of Spokane and the surrounding area. H. Wayne Lythgoe Colbert

Animal control preference troubling

Would somebody please explain why the city is so adamant about combining city and county animal control - and equally adamant about keeping every other activity separate?

It is said that a lot is revealed about a person’s character by the way he or she regards animals. What does this say about the City Council? M. Louise Long Spokane

Attorneys general cave in to industry

Tobacco industry negotiators involved in the sellout-settlement talks with the state attorneys general certainly deserve the 1997 I Love Cancer award.

While banning smoking in most workplaces, the plan they propose would allow smoking in restaurants and bars. It’s hard to understand how the serious threat to the lives of nonsmoking bar and restaurant workers caused by cigarette smoke could be ignored. The density of cancercausing cigarette smoke in smoking sections of restaurants is 20 times higher than in the typical office, which would be covered by the ban.

Experiences in California and several other states have shown that there are few, if any, adverse economic effects from banning smoking in restaurants. This is yet another example of how the tobacco cartel sneaks in regulations to protect a large market for its addictive and deadly product.

Those who are interested should contact Attorney General Christine Gregoire immediately. Dennis W. Biggs Jr., M.D. Spokane Unit of the American Cancer Society

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