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Letters for May 15, 2022

Cerner problems at VA

James Alto’s letter to the editor (“VA health care problems,” May 2) ends with blaming President Biden. I guess he also blames him for weeds in his yard and power outages leaving him in the dark.

I too use the Mann-Grandstaff VA for my health care. I too don’t like what Cerner has caused at the VA. But I guess James Alto hasn’t read all the great VA informative articles by Orion Donovan-Smith that have described the origins of the Cerner system.

I am also guessing that Mr. Alto has not done any research on Robert Wilkie who on his first day as Secretary of Veterans Affairs, signed the contract with Cerner. The previous Sec. of VA, Robert Shulkin warned against this no-bid contract and Trump fired him for this action. This is where any blame should be focused.

I must also say that the employees at the VA are just awesome! They have succeeded in keeping the quality of health care at the same high level despite all the problems Cerner has caused them. They are “Super Troopers.”

Jason Ernsting


Both sides of the issue

In response to a letter to the editor written by Alice Galeotti (“Glad to see Roe v. Wade likely reversed,” May 10):

Alice, what happened to you as a young girl was heartbreaking. The trauma your mother experienced with an unwanted pregnancy influenced her decision to seek an abortion for you after you were abused by a neighbor. As a mother of two daughters, I hope I never have to navigate a nightmare situation like the one you experienced. Your body autonomy was not respected, your choice was removed from the equation by someone who thought they knew what was better for you.

Millions of women in this country are again about to have their body autonomy taken from them arbitrarily because of what side of a state line they live on. History tells us what will happen if we return to pre-Roe days. Abortions will continue, with more dead women and young girls as collateral damage. More trauma, more child poverty, more inequality. We know that when women and families are given safe, equitable access to health and reproductive care, abortion rates go down.

Isn’t that what people on both sides of the issue hope for?

Emily Grizzell


Roe v. Wade

Republicans proudly cling to “keeping big government off our backs.” They have no problem allowing big government into my womb.

Kate Jones


If it were men

If men could become pregnant there would be an abortion clinic on every corner.

Donald Clegg


Angry and scared

This isn’t about protecting life. It is about control!

I had two abortions, neither of which I wanted but needed. First, I had been trying to get pregnant for many years. However, my first pregnancy resulted in ectopic pregnancy. To save my life, I had an abortion.

My second pregnancy was a mole pregnancy. The placenta was consuming the embryo, it was also going to destroy my uterus and could have ultimately taken my life. So what life are you trying to save here by denying me this procedure? Both of these situations could have led to my death. Had I not had access to this care, I never would have had the two beautiful children that I would later have. One, who is a now captain in the U.S. Army and one of the hardest working people I know. The other is sweet and loving son. The world is a better place because of them. They only could have happened because I had immediate access to lifesaving abortion.

The Republicans are hypocrites. I have spent the past two years hearing about them not wanting to be told to wear a mask or have a vaccine, but it is OK to dictate what I can or can’t do with my own body.

Who do you think you are, Republicans? You want more say about my body than I do or my doctor does. You say it’s about saving lives. I call bull. It is about control.

Allison Sharp


Mother’s Day paper

It is quite ironic that on Mother’s Day that there is a front page story on Mother’s Day and the multiple articles throughout the paper on abortion. I fail to see how abortion celebrates Mother’s Day.

Larry Wiley


A compromise

Reflecting on Mother’s day and all of the kindness mothers bring into the world, I sadly found myself reading The Spokesman-Review article referencing the Taliban on May 8 where it was noted “The decree says that women should leave the home only when necessary,” a policy established by a conservative, male-dominant leadership party. I found myself comparing the many female mandates being promoted by the conservative male-dominated political parties in the United States, I landed on what might be a compromise to the anti-abortion debate.

If a woman is not allowed to have an abortion based on the sole protection of the child, it seems apparent that the involved male should be held accountable for the financial support of the child until they are 18 years of age, whether the child is raised within the family, foster care system or adopted. I would encourage federal legislation that would require child support payments from the father in the amount of $1,500 per month until the child turns 18, adjusted of course based on inflationary factors. This will not only provide some support for the child and perhaps the mother of the child, but would reduce the burden of payment to the taxpayer.

Michael Pearson

Coeur d’Alene

Elon gives us hope

Elon Musk gives responsible Inland Empire citizens hope that The Spokesman-Review can be purchased by a person or a group of investors who share the political views of most of its citizens. Currently, The Spokesman is notorious for its very far alt-left bias that has been described by some as grotesque.

The vast amounts of misinformation, disinformation and anti-white racist hate speech published by the paper is obviously pro-Democrat propaganda. The hate speech regularly spewed by Shawn Vestal, Leonard Pitts and others are clear examples of the bias. This needs to be changed.

The paper’s staff appears to be made up of mostly self-hating, woke, white journalism majors. The only way this can be corrected is a new publisher/owner who will completely change the staff of writers to give a more balanced view of state, national, and world events. Until then, sadly, the region’s residents must endure this grotesquely biased monopoly.

Jon Hall


God bless America

I used to be a blindly partisan voter, but about two decades back I established a new habit: I vote against incumbents. If an incumbent is unopposed, I leave the box blank. You might call this stupidity, and you may be correct. However, of our 537 D.C.-elected, I cannot name one I unequivocally trust. I can, however, name four I consider pathological liars at the top of their game … Pelosi, McConnell, McCarthy and Schumer. So what? Vote’m back in!

God bless America, and God bless our military.

Steve Brixen


Brothers and sisters

Downtown I noticed a man standing with a backpack and sleeping roll at his feet. I offered to share my shopping. He said yes to hot soup, then asked, “Can I give you a hug? I get so much negativity. I am afflicted with a positive spirit and not many people will let me share that with them.”

I said yes and, in the arms of a stranger, I thought: This is my brother. My Biblical brother who could easily have been my blood brother Greg, whose kind, open spirit many likely ceased to recognize once he developed schizophrenia and sometimes sought help at the House of Charity.

I thought: This man is one of us. Enlivened by a friendly conversation. Delighted by a gift. Comforted by a hug for no particular reason.

On that bustling downtown street, I said a prayer of thanks for Rob McCann of Catholic Charities for his commitment to that man and to me, should I ever lose access to a roof of my own ( “McCann chooses to step outside the argument and focus on the possible,” April 29).

I’m not suggesting you walk around hugging strangers. I am telling you about my brother the stranger I met today; my brother the son of a decorated Air Force pilot and veteran; my brother the son and brother of two generations of Spokane social workers. I am telling you how grateful I am Rob McCann is furious and furiously in love with my brothers and sisters. I am telling you I join Rob in his fury and his love.

Jean Brookbank

Liberty Lake

Strong mayor

Have you wondered why it sometimes seems so hard to get things done in this city? Consider a front page headline in the May 3 Spokesman: “City council urges mayor to purchase east Spokane property.”

Prior to the change to the current Strong Mayor form of government, an initiative which only narrowly passed, we functioned under the council -manager form where the council was the policy-making body and the city manager did its bidding – or else. That headline would have read: “City Council directs the City Manager to purchase east Spokane property.” That’s how you get things done. We tried the strong mayor form. I’ve seen enough.

Phyllis Holmes


Pledge of Allegiance and God

In response to “Why I stand for the Pledge of Allegiance” (letters, May 7), I offer the following comments.

I too honor and stand for the Pledge for most of the reasons cited by McKenzie Harkness. However, I do not recite the words “under God,” and haven’t done so since I was about 16 years old.

I know that many, if not most, of the Founding Fathers were of various religious persuasions, most with some Christian commonality. However, it is common knowledge that in an act of rejection of substantially religion-dominated governments common to most of their European roots, and also due to their inability to agree upon what would be the best “state religion,” they founded our nation on a secular, nonreligious basis. This was their effort and intent to assure that religion would not have influence upon or authority over the new government they were establishing. As a secular humanist of over 60 years, I agree with and respect the founders’ wisdom.

Furthermore, I know that the two words “under God” were added in 1954 during the Cold War/‘McCarthy’ era. At that time, many Americans wanted to distinguish the United States from the state-atheism promoted by Marxist-Leninist countries, primarily the USSR. This view led to legislative support for the words “under God” being added to the Pledge of Allegiance. The Pledge, in one form or another, had previously been around since 1892 without the words “under God.”

Thomas Mosher


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