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September 4, 2013 at 11:34 AM
Catholic health care is dignified
I read with stunned disbelief Tom Preston’s guest column. [“Defend death with dignity in Catholic-run medical facilities,” Opinion, Sept. 2.]
I was particularly amazed at that last line: “A peaceful death, surrounded by loved ones, is a choice that should be respected, honored and treated with the dignity every person deserves.”
That is exactly the kind of care a dying person receives in a Catholic hospital!
That is the whole premise, the underlying principal of Catholic health care. The dignity of the individual, as a child of God. Part of that dignity is not actively killing a person before it is their time.
But it does mean relieving their pain and providing them with loving, caring support in that most important moment of their going forth from this life.
I, for one, am grateful for our Catholic health-care system, and all those caring individuals who lovingly, competently support the sick and dying and their families.
Peggy Anderson, Kirkland
July 10, 2013 at 7:00 AM
It is time to act
The time is now. Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, is the most expensive disease in America. By 2050, it could bankrupt our health-care system.
I live with Alzheimer’s every day, both personally and professionally. My mother lived with dementia for nearly 20 years before her death. Like more than 50 percent of those currently living with Alzheimer’s or dementia, she was never formally diagnosed. My father, now 97, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s 15 years ago.
I am not alone. In 2010, there were approximately 110,000 Washingtonians living with Alzheimer’s disease, being looked after by more than 300,000 caregivers, mostly unpaid family members. We expect those numbers to triple by 2050. Alzheimer’s is now the third-leading cause of death among seniors in Washington.
We are at a critical moment in the Alzheimer’s epidemic. It is incumbent upon our nation’s leaders to ensure the promise of the country’s first-ever National Alzheimer’s Plan. Sen. Patty Murray is a leading advocate for improved health-care quality and coverage. Please join me in urging her, as a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, to support full implementation of the National Alzheimer’s Plan with vital resources for Alzheimer’s research, education, outreach and caregiver support.
Bob Le Roy, president and chief executive officer, Western & Central Washington State Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, Seattle
June 18, 2013 at 8:00 PM
Cyclists were put in harm’s way
I was not surprised to read of this incident. [“Teen cyclist hit, killed in charity ride,” NW Monday, June 17.] I would not have been surprised to see several other accidents or deaths related to this event.
I was driving east on Pioneer Highway at 9:15 a.m. Sunday and found myself amid dozens of bicyclists. The cyclists were riding as if there were no cars on the highway; in many instances, four or more abreast.
There are stretches of this road that have speed limits of 50 mph. These bicyclists rode without regard to the dangers of mingling with the vehicle traffic.
I was surprised there were no advance notices or signs. There were no safety monitors, just hundreds of cyclists intermingled with the Sunday traffic.
I suggest the organizers of this event share much of the responsibility for this poor boy’s loss of life. Attempting to take over several major arterials in Snohomish County without significant advance notice and planning is irresponsible and should have much more oversight from county officials.
Frank Finneran, Seattle
May 16, 2013 at 6:02 AM
Don’t blame the state
My heart goes out to the Owen-Mayer family for their loss and devastating injuries, but to blame the state for their own actions is wrong [“Family files claims against state over crash,” NWWednesday, May 15].
There were warnings issued and heavy news coverage of the weather conditions. If the state protected them from all weather conditions, the roads would be closed every time we had high winds, snow or ice.
When we do have bad weather, people are urged to stay off the roads, but they still go to work, shop and ski. Don’t expect others to pay for your bad decisions.
Kathy Butler, Shoreline
May 6, 2013 at 7:03 AM
Alcoholism must be treated like a disease
In my opinion, implementing stiffer DUI penalties, such mandatory jail time, is not the answer for drunken drivers [“Despair. Pain. Resolve.,” page one, May 1]. I want to preface my comments by saying I had a brother who was an alcoholic and ended up committing suicide, and now a family member who got picked up for DUI.
Breathalyzers, financial penalties and jail time are neither the fix nor deterrents. I can guarantee my brother wouldn’t have cared.
Alcoholism is a disease and needs to be treated as such. It’s like cancer; early detection and treatment may save the person. How about making every place (like bars) require people to take a breath test before leaving? How about more education about the effects of alcohol shown in schools?
We’ve become a nation that romanticizes drinking. Look at any ad for alcohol; it shows the person having fun or finding a beautiful person.
Spend money for mandatory treatment centers — rehab centers to specifically treat the problem. Deep down, alcoholics have no intention of hurting anyone. They’re just not cognizant of their situation.
Take a look at Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn He got a DUI; do you think he really intended to be driving?
The actions being talked about for DUI aren’t going to fix the problem. Take it from someone who has seen the worst with alcohol. It’s a disease, so attack it as such.
Richard Charlson, Curlew
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