Health Department fails Nevadans

I remember the Fallon leukemia cluster and the state’s failure to deal with it. I, too, am not surprised that the State Health Department is in worse shape now (RN&R, Nov. 1) than it was then. My relatives were state employees so I know that Nevada budgets the way people play Whack-a-Mole. The state throws money at agencies who aren’t able to do their jobs and then takes the money away when another agency is found wanting. As long as Nevada relies on sales taxes to make ends meet, we’ll never fund agencies properly and will always be a “third world” state. Make the big industries like casinos and mining pay their fair share and we will be able to pay for the services we so badly need.

Malcolm O’Brian, Sparks

Nation needs universal health care

When I was working at the hospital in Truckee years ago, I was sent to the ER and found a young woman with severe abdominal pain.  She was sobbing.  I drew her blood for the tests that were ordered and did what I shouldn’t have done.  I asked her why she was crying.  She told me she did not know how she was going to pay for her ER visit.  She said she worked very hard but had no insurance.  I was overwhelmed.  That stuck with me to this day.  I knew she would be charged the full amount the hospital charged and that her debt would be sent to collections.  Nothing has changed.  We could do what the other industrialized nations do.  I don’t think America cares. 

Don McKechnie, Sparks

GOP manufactures hatred

Republicans argue that inflation is due to Democrat spending and policies. It makes a good bumper sticker or hat label, but it’s simply not founded in facts.

The inflation caused by the Democrat’s emergency spending during Covid was known by the Democrats to be potentially inflationary, but it kept people afloat and alive during the very real pandemic that Republicans ignored and denied. The alternative would have been significantly more deaths, more failed businesses, and more suffering in general.

The Democrats had plans to manage that small inflationary bump but those plans got voted down by two rogue Democrats and all the Republicans who planned to use the failure they created to whip up outrage for the midterms.

The majority of today’s inflation originates from ongoing supply chain issues (China is still our biggest supplier of most things and they’re still not at full production, for example) and gas prices which are a direct result of the Ukraine war and Russian decisions. And there are a LOT instances where companies are pricing things based on maximizing profits independent of value or actual costs. But that doesn’t fit on a bumper sticker or hat.
Democrats, without a veto-proof majority in the Senate, have done a lot for working Americans in just two years. Republicans spent the time making people hate and/or fear each other based only on who they are, denying election results despite having no proof, and not acknowledging Jan. 6 for what it was. The bottom line is that Republicans don’t believe in government. That being the case, why would anyone believe they can or want to govern?

Mike Rottmann, Virginia City Highlands

Celebrating Nevada passing the ERA

Nevadans for Equal Rights is thrilled to see the overwhelming show of support from voters across the Silver State in favor of equality finally enshrined in our State Constitution. Supporters, volunteers, and member organizations across all 17 counties watched as their hard work and dedication have led to extra protections for all Nevadans, particularly those most directly impacted by discrimination who’ve been told they must work twice as hard for the same opportunities. On election night, Nevadans have decisively rejected hate and unequivocally declared that our differences should be celebrated and protected under law. Victories like these do not happen in a vacuum. From the start of our campaign, our efforts centered on communities that are too-often overlooked and engaged the community organizations that support and uplift them.

“We celebrate the passage of Question 1, the Equality for All constitutional amendment,” said André Wade, Director of Nevada’s statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organization, Silver State Equality.

 “This has been a long and hard-fought battle, as has every other case in the struggle for civil rights. …We passed the nation’s most comprehensive and far-reaching ERA law, which now includes the addition of sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression as protected categories. This historic vote ensures that all Nevadans are treated equally under the law, and that only the vote of the people — the same people who passed this constitutional amendment with more than 50% of the vote— can change that; it is not subject to the whims of the Supreme Court, elected officials, or shifting political winds… We have demonstrated that Nevada is a welcoming community. This is a big step toward true equality and I couldn’t be more proud of our Silver State.”

Nnedi Stephens, Reno

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