Letters for July 3, 2014
Needs more facts
Re “No kid gloves for them” (editorial, June 19):
While the editorial regarding the pay and benefits for Reno police officers and firefighters was interesting and brought much valid information to Reno citizens, it was somewhat misleading in the comparison with military members and their pay. The editorial implies that military pay is similar, if not even greater, than police and firefighter pay. Nothing could be further from the truth. Comparing starting salaries and salaries throughout the time of the career of these professions, the members of the military enlisted is on average less than half over a 25-year career span. The article should have included the pay scales so that a valid comparison could be made by the reader.
This letter by no means is questioning the other valid points made by the author of the editorial as to the fair compensation that should be paid to the members of both dangerous professions in the city of Reno or for any other city in this nation. There is also no question that the members of the military profession that face the dangers of wars and ongoing training under dangerous conditions are not paid enough. Frankly, I believe that neither of these professions can ever be compensated fairly for the dangers they face.
Street smarts (or not)
Re “Climate change—true or false?” (Street talk, June 19):
Climate change, the actual warming of the planet, shouldn’t even be a question. It is established in ice core samples, vegetation changes, glacial melting, and dozens of other means of physical proof. I can only hope that those participants who answered in the negative were responding to the manufactured debate that is happening politically: Is man responsible for climate change? I say politically manufactured because even that isn’t debated in the scientific community. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states unequivocally that current climate change is accelerated because of human activity.
Humans are the only animal to have had such a global impact in deforestation, atmospheric composition, and declining biodiversity. Meteor impacts have done worse, but that’s about it. The only people still arguing against mankind’s direct attribution to climate change are either misinformed or reimbursed for that opinion. Asking people “on the street” about whether climate change even exists can only be a way of shaming those misinformed, using them for lazy news filler, or to stretch out the real debate that is happening in Washington: What do we do about climate change?
Re “Election could turn on Affordable Care Act” (Let freedom ring, June 19):
Brendan, you missed it! Here are the highlights of the 2009 Republican Health Care Reform Act:
Most health care would be financed by for-profit insurance companies. They’ll charge as much they possibly can, but pay for as little care as they can get away with. They’ll be able to arbitrarily drop anyone’s coverage at any time; they won’t have to cover anyone who’s already sick. Older people and the poor will still have Medicare and Medicaid—for now. About 45 million people will be left out of any program. Look for them in the ER when they get sick. A million and a half people—many of them insured—will file for bankruptcy each year because of medical bills. No one will keep records in any standard format, and 45,000 Americans will die each year because they lack (or lose) a way to buy care. Every year this “system” will kill 15 times as many people as the 911 hijackers did.
Rep. Heller and his GOP frat brothers waved copies of this plan at that joint session in 2009. After the address, Rep. Alan Grayson walked over to retrieve one. It was a blank sheet of paper.
High job satisfaction, too
Re “Did you see our crack item?” (Letters to the Editor, June 26):
There is no correlation between sexual abuse and adult film industry workers. Many people who suffered abuse don’t grow up and star in pornography. The Journal of Sex Research published the most comprehensive study done on the matter, you can find it online. The study compared people in the adult industry to matched people from airports and universities. The conclusion was not that adult film stars have a higher incidence of childhood sexual abuse or that they are less psychologically healthy. It found many were happy and healthy—not just by their own standards but by completely objective measures. It also found they had higher levels of self-esteem, positive feelings, social support, sexual satisfaction and spirituality—quite contrary to the belief that a legal industry is full only of people lacking self worth who are forced into it. It’s about one’s own beliefs and morals and perspective. If the hot days, hotter nights didn’t make me laugh out loud, I would have been more uptight about the suggestion to smoke crack.
Eat your veggies
Re “Veg out” (Arts & Culture, June 26):
The recent RN&R article on vegetarian cuisine in Reno was truly pathetic. Two of the six recommendations are massive chains, another is an unremarkable sports bar, another is in Carson City, and another is in California. In fact, Reno has a great and growing selection of vegetarian options. In the Midtown district, Süp, Great Full Gardens and Laughing Planet all have delicious and versatile vegetarian options. In terms of burgers, the Great Basin’s black bean burger, Midtown Eats’ portobello burger, and Burger Me’s veggie burger are all vastly superior options to the recommended Red Robin Gardenburger. If driving to Carson City for sushi isn’t in the cards, Sushi Lover has an entire menu of vegetarian and vegan rolls. This is only a smattering of great places for Reno vegetarians; there are also sandwich shops (Rubicon Deli, Michael’s Deli), cafés (Homage, Café DeLuxe), and food trucks (Electric Blue Elephant, Gourmelt) that have lots to offer vegetarians. I expect better from the RN&R—especially when it comes to supporting small businesses.
Editor’s note: With all due respect, the story was about vegetarian options in restaurants where you wouldn’t expect to find them, not the great vegetarian options in places that we’ve frequently written about.
The song remains the same
Re “Missing case” (Letters to the Editor, June 19):
A letter you published from Daniel Duckworth of Scottsdale, Ariz., referred to an article I wrote for this newspaper March 8, 2012 (“Top 10 Worst Supreme Court Decisions”).
The writer said that my list was “just not serious” because I omitted Buck v. Bell (1927). That infamous opinion, written by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes justifying forced sterilization, declared that “three generations of imbeciles are enough.”
The ruling, as outrageous as it was, did not make my list because other decisions were far worse. Nevertheless, as Justice John Harlan II remarked in an obscenity case: “One man’s vulgarity is another’s lyric.”
Free speech zones
Since the Supreme Court has now said that protesters have the right to get in the face of the people they’re protesting at abortion clinics, does it also mean that cities and political parties can no longer restrict political protests miles away from political conventions, gatherings of the rich and powerful, etc.? We’ll see.
Editor’s note: I had the exact same wonderment.