Letters for Saturday, January 19, 2013

• A critical look at gun control, Obama Care • We should teach mental health in school

A critical look at gun control, Obama Care

I am writing to say that Republicans and some very conservative Democrats are on the wrong side of gun control and “Obama Care.”

First, I know everyone has heard about the tragic killing of the grade school children and the adults in Connecticut. Even though the killer had two hand guns, I believe that he used the AR-15 assault rifle to do most of the killing. If I am not mistaken, these assault rifles were banned for 10 years up until the mid 2000’s.

Now most Republicans and very conservative Democrats seem to be just fine with the current laws. I ask you, why does anyone, outside of the armed forces, need an assault rifle of this killing capacity ?

The public who want these rifles say they like to target practice and hunt with these rifles. There are hand guns and other kinds of rifles that can do these same things! Again, why allow assault rifles to be owned by the public? I say these kinds of rifles should not be allowed!

Second, I believe the Republicans and very conservative Democrats need to study “Obama Care” much, much more. I believe conservatives are supposed to be against the free giveaway programs like Medicaid. I have heard the president say himself that all, but the very poor citizens, will have to be on some kind of health insurance and/or pay the government some money to buy insurance from the government!

I ask you, isn’t this a way to eliminate some of the current “give away” of Medicaid? I personally know families that had ALL of their children using Medicaid. These families pay a net of no income taxes and get a large sum of money back by using the child tax credit and the earned income credit! Wouldn’t “Obama Care” get rid of some of this outrageous government giveaway?

I ask you, please ponder these two subjects to see how you really, really feel about these controversial issues!

Timothy Monroe Bledsoe, North Augusta, S.C.

We should teach mental health in school

Back when Gov. Abercrombie was running for office I spoke with him in person here on Kaua‘i and emphasized what I feel is a great need in schools, which is that the “health” classes teach not only athletic health but mental health as well, what it is to be mentally healthy, such as trying to resolve issues without violence or criminal behavior.

This issue of mental health is typically relegated to psychology courses, which stigmatize it in terms of disorders and severe disorders. We need to teach our children to be proactive about their own mental health, to know what it is to have a good attitude and affect, and to seek help when help is needed. I don’t think our conversation is even remembered by Gov. Abercrombie, but it’s time to remind him as he is calling for action on the part of violence prevention.

Barney Blankenship, Kapa‘a


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