Letters to the Editor: Dec. 8: Medicare costs, Critical Race Theory, immigration, Border Patrol agents – Arizona Daily Star

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Letters to the Editor: Dec. 8: Medicare costs, Critical Race Theory, immigration, Border Patrol agents

President Joe Biden says his social agenda legislation will deliver tangible savings on prescription drugs for all Americans. Biden says one in four Americans who take prescription drugs struggle to afford them.

Rising Medicare profits for insurance cos.It is disgusting that Medicare premiums will be raised to cover a drug that is not proven to aid anyone as yet but only might do it at a cost of $56,000 a year. This is supposed to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Most seniors do not have this disease anyway. Why should all of us have to pay outrageous prices for an unproven drug that might possibly benefit a few of us a little bit? Most of the insurance company Medicare supplements will not cover the cost of any drug until it becomes a generic anyway. If they do, the co-pay is very high as well. There is no reason to raise the cost of Medicare to pay for this except to give the drug manufacturer and insurance companies a windfall.Bette RichardsNorthwest sideCritical thinking a mustRe: the Dec. 4 article “Enough race drama; teach our kids to read.”In his article, Jonathan Hoffman attacked Critical Race Theory, then insisted our education system focus on teaching kids to read instead of teaching “anti-American” propaganda. I assume most Trump supporters can read. It’s what we read and believe that matters as much as being able to read; for instance, reading a whitewashed, “pro-America” history of the U.S. fosters the beliefs that drove the Jan. 6 insurrectionists. Here’s the latest missive from our former President. Readers beware!“Friend, have you noticed that the Radical Left is now admitting I was right about everything they lied about before the Election? Hydroxychloroquine works. The China Virus came from a Chinese lab. Schools should be opened. Critical Race Theory is a disaster for our schools and our Country.”Now if only Trump’s more literate partisans would master and employ another skill: critical thinking.Jefferson CarterMidtownBring rationality to the immigration issueRe: the Nov. 8 letter “What about the ones released?”This letter’s vague remark that “the Biden administration is packed with migrant activists” brings to mind infamous Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s baseless claim in February 1950 that the State Department was infested with communists. We seem to be regressing to the paranoia of the 1950’s.Maybe it is time to take a fresh and more rational look at the immigration issue. Employers are desperate to find workers, while many migrants would be pleased to receive the opportunity to work.Hard-working migrants may be beneficial and even necessary to replace anti-social anti-vaxxers who are committing suicide by COVID. Then our nation could be built back better, and America would be greater in many ways.Ronald PelechMidtownRepublicans hate local controlArizona Republicans don’t like the federal government telling them what to do, but they love forcing local governments to do exactly what they want, with the usual threats of withholding funds.Now state Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita wants to force school boards to hold partisan elections. Never mind that the Arizona Supreme Court already declared that the state cannot tell charter cities like Tucson how to run their elections. Donald Trump proved that Republicans don’t give a hoot about court rulings.Before you vote for a Republican next year, remember that Republicans only want to govern by threats and intimidation, never seeking common ground or compromise. They want to tell you what to do with your school, your body, and your local government, while complaining about federal intrusion. Why don’t they rename themselves the Hypocrite Party and exhibit a small degree of honesty?John VornholtNortheast sideWar on drugsThe root cause of the appalling situation at our southern border is our 50-year war on drugs. We have been trying to solve a public health crisis (drug addiction) with the criminal justice system. It does not work and never will. Prohibition was a similar failure and was repealed after 13 years.U.S. demand pulls narcotics north of the border. Money and guns flow south. Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador are now narco states where the cartels have more money and firepower than the governments. The cartels terrorize people, causing them to seek asylum in the U.S.A smarter solution would be to focus on treatment and rehabilitation. This would decrease the demand for narcotics and diminish the revenue of the cartels. Will we ever wise up?Gary ThackerMidtownDeaths of Border Patrol agentsRe: the Nov. 22 article “COVID top killer of border agents.”It was sadly reported on Dec. 3, that Supervisory Border Patrol (BP) Agent Martin Barrios, assigned to the Tucson Sector, had died in the line of duty. Also, on Dec. 3, it was reported that BP Agent Salvador Martinez, assigned to the El Paso Sector, had died in the line of duty, In neither case was a cause of death reported. So far this year, Customs and Border Protection has reported about 30 agents, who died in the line of duty, about 20 in 2020, four in 2019, one in 2018, and two in 2017. The majority having been Latinos. So what has happened since pre 2020? COVID, and a massive influx of people entering the country illegally, a record number of almost 1.7 million apprehended by BP agents in FY 2021. Some were carrying COVID. The Star recently did a story citing COVID as the number one cause of death among Border Patrol agents, inferring their fault for not getting vaccinated. Just where did they get COVID?Linda KellyEast sideJust put the baby up for adoptionI had doubts about the judicial qualifications of Justice Amy Coney Barrett, but that changed during the Supreme Court’s oral arguments on Mississippi’s abortion law. Her solution to the decades-long debate on abortion, best characterized as “the baby drop off” gave me new insight into her legal acumen. She reasoned that the inability to parent a child was not legal justification for an abortion, as new mothers could utilize a system of anonymous safe harbor baby drops. Yes, I say, the idea is brilliant. But, why stop with the baby drop off? Just think how this judicial logic could be applied to other issues. Say, voting. Why couldn’t the United States adopt a national system of ballot drop off boxes? Where there would be no need for voter ID, your ballot would anonymously be dropped off into boxes, which would be available 24/7 during elections. I’m with you Justice Amy, who could argue against this enlightened approach?It’s too late Mitch, you put her on the bench!Edward HellerNorthwest sidePartisan school board election proposalI’ve lived 26 years in the Tanque Verde Valley where people with school-age children choose to reside because of the quality of the schools. Tanque Verde Unified School District board elections have tended to be fairly low-key events and I’ve mostly been unaware of the political leanings of candidates or serving members. TVUSD, in a fairly Republican enclave in Democratic-leaning Pima County, seems to run pretty well. Now state Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita from Scottsdale proposes to make Arizona’s school board elections partisan, forcing candidates to run in primaries to qualify as candidates of their party in general elections. Given that primaries attract a party’s base, it’s a good bet that radicals of left and right may become our November choices. With our Republican registration advantage, might that mean a school board dedicated to making America great again? The exact opposite result is likely in the larger Pima County districts. We the people don’t need more wedges.Frank BergenNortheast sideSpending money when broke?The current administration believes that you can spend your way out of debt. My parents taught me that this is a horrible idea.Why are we spending trillions with a T during a time when inflation is burning our house to the ground.We are told by group speakers that this spending will cost us nothing.Who are we to believe? Those who are realistic or those who have caused inflation to spiral by printing more money during this time.Do they believe this is a sane approach to economic policy? We are taxed by increased fuel prices and energy prices.A long winter lies ahead.I disagree with those who praise the current administration every time I pull up to the pump, every time I buy groceries.Rich BarnesEast sideGOP propaganda machineBob Dole’s passing has caused me to reflect on the unraveling of the GOP after he left office. In this century, the GOP propaganda machine has powered a takeover of elections throughout the country. A few examples: George Bush claimed Iraq had developed “weapons of mass destruction.” He would invade that sovereign nation and make things right; Trump claimed the Dem’s “War on Christmas” was won by him; Trump claimed the Dems stole the 2020 election and he would fight back and regain the White House.The big picture is that the GOP is a master manipulator of the facts. Their current mission is to take over the government and install a populist leader. As the pope recently pointed out, this is a formula for losing our democracy. No more majority rule, civil rights, free press, or rule of law.Robert MannNorthwest sideSeparate walkers and ridersSome years ago my wife and I went to Campeche in the Yucatan in Mexico. We visited many Mayan sites and enjoyed the city. Something of note was the Malecon along the shoreline of the city. Every early evening, it seemed the entire city went to the Malecon to unwind and socialize. The Malecon had two paved paths. One path was for bicycles and a separate path for pedestrians. Everyone rode or walked to the right of the path designated for riding or walking. The people of Campeche know that bikes and pedestrians don’t mix. Let’s put a second walking path next to the bike path. Let’s make the walking path out of materials that bikes won’t want to use. This will make it enjoyable and safe for everyone to use the Loop. The Loop is Tucson’s best idea. Two paths on the Loop would also save editorial space in the newspaper.Richard BechtoldWest sideCost saving for Tucson WaterTucson Water is hellbent on raising rates for customers living outside city limits, yet won’t address cost-saving measures. Tucson Water has shelved an opportunity to implement their new AMR electronic water meters to satellite reading, thus eliminating the need for meter readers, their supervisors, vehicles, and equipment. A cost savings. Tucson Water relies on TEP to power their numerous well sites, pumps, boosters, and plants. When TEP experiences a power outage, Tucson Water customers experience water outages until power is restored by TEP. Tucson Water does not have emergency backup generators in place that would automatically start in the case of a TEP power outage. Tucson Water could and should invest in solar power which would eliminate the need of relying on TEP to power Tucson Water’s equipment, save costs on electric bills, and they could even sell any excess power back to TEP. The Central Arizona Project will receive some power from a new 30-megawatt solar installation.Max LaPlanteSoutheast sideRittenhouse acquittalWhen the Rittenhouse killings took place, conservatives immediately called him a hero and liberals, a mass murderer. I have no doubt that without the video evidence, Rittenhouse would have been convicted of murder. But, like in the George Floyd case, the video made all the difference. During a night of lawlessness, he was attacked by a person with a known history of violence, who knocked him down and was about to kick him, before Rittenhouse fired. A second person, with a history of violence, hit him in the neck with a skateboard, and was about to hit him again, before Rittenhouse fired. The third person approached him with a gun in the air. Rittenhouse didn’t fire until the man pointed the gun at him. What the jury had to decide was whether Rittenhouse had a reasonable expectation that his life was in danger. They did so.Al WesterfieldSouthwest side

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President Joe Biden says his social agenda legislation will deliver tangible savings on prescription drugs for all Americans. Biden says one in four Americans who take prescription drugs struggle to afford them.

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