We encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues of interest to East Valley residents. Submissions should be no longer than 300 words, factually accurate and original thoughts of the writer. Please be brief and include name, address, city and phone number for verification. Letters and call-in comments may be edited for clarity and length.
Police chases — Stop rampages cold
On Dec. 5, I saw live the tragic end of a high-speed pursuit of a bank robbery suspect as he rammed his car head-on into an innocent motorist’s vehicle. It was a horrific sight to behold. Just moments before I had the dreadful premonition that this chase was indeed going to end tragically. Clearly, justified use of deadly force should have been employed, in my estimation.
Had the bank robbery suspect run into a mall and started threatening citizens with a firearm, I do not think that there is a civilian, police officer or security officer who would disagree with using justified deadly force to stop his illegal actions against the populace. However, somehow when the felon is in a motor vehicle he receives an invisible blanket of protection by law enforcement supervisors. In other states, for instance, the pursing officers are actually held at fault for chasing the criminal.
It is ludicrous to allow these criminals to rocket down our streets and freeways without stopping them cold. This can be accomplished in two main ways. Along with radioing ahead roadblocks, stop sticks, initiating the PIT maneuver and continued helicopter surveillance, officer shotguns should be deployed with .12-gauge slugs into the radiator and engine block to disable the vehicle. Furthermore, the suspect should be shot with these same shotgun slugs.
Perhaps, if justified deadly force was used on fleeing felons in vehicles as a matter of standard operating procedure, more innocent lives can be saved. And one permanent deterrent would be available for potential felonious drivers to seriously consider before threatening and killing us with their vehicles in the future.
Presidential race — Hope Thompson’s judgment improved
I read with great interest the Tribune’s Nation and World profile on Fred Thompson, (Nov. 29), “Thompson awash in opportunities.” I was impressed greatly with Thompson’s credentials as a young whippersnapper, hotshot lawyer, who successfully defended a 35-year-old single working mother of three against a corrupt governor’s office that had fired her for her refusal to go along with corruption and bribery in government dealings. I also give kudos to Thompson for his work on the senate Watergate committee back in 1973, and hearing who knows how much horse manure from Watergate figures like G. Gordon Liddy and his cohorts, just in order to try to get to the bottom of one the nation’s ugliest scandals of the 20th century.
However, all that aside, I’m greatly concerned with a sentence that boldly claimed “getting his girlfriend pregnant when he was 16 may be one of the best things that ever happened to Thompson.” When I read that statement, I nearly fell out of my wheelchair. Does Thompson not realize the moral implications of such a brazen statement, that any 16-year-old male with raging hormones could take to mean it’s perfectly fine to get his girlfriend pregnant and the results shall be a baby first, then a successful legal or acting job will come along and everything shall be all pie in the sky? In my own personal view Thompson seriously needs to eliminate altogether any statements to sway possible public support in his bid to become Americas next president. I could be wrong, of course, but it is my opinion that the American voting populace will never support Thompson for president unless he corrects the manner in which statements come across in his profile, especially his image to the youthful of America to whom are our future voters.
Racial profiling — Take the Fifth
Only you can prevent the police from profiling by race and nationality.
While it is legal for the police to ask you any questions they want, you have ever right to refuse to answer any questions they ask. It’s called the Fifth Amendment right against being forced to testify against yourself.
So whites, blacks, Indians, Latinos, Americans, Mexicans, Europeans and all other people, remember, you can stop racial and nationality profiling by taking the Fifth and refusing to answer any and all police questions about your race or nationality.
Medicare — Stop pain management cuts
I write to you as a physician as well as a concerned citizen, again urging you to take steps to stop the pending physician reimbursement cuts and the draconian ambulatory surgery center (ASC) cuts for interventional pain management procedures.
I ask you to imagine how you would survive on a 15 percent to 20 percent increase in health insurance premiums with declining benefits, 6 percent to 10 percent increase for employee costs, 5 percent to 10 percent increase in the cost of supplies, etc. These proposed cuts to physician reimbursements will have devastating consequences to physicians across the country and consequently, to staff, community and most importantly the patients.
The second issue of concern is the ASC cuts for interventional pain management procedures. ASCs offer the most effective venue of service for interventional pain management, along with appropriately equipped offices.
Unfortunately for the patient, these cuts will likely stop many of them from providing services and prevent scores of those who suffer in needless pain from getting treatment. Thus they will be forced into a more expensive and less effective setting, if they receive treatment at all. The present formula for ASCs awards some procedures with a 200 percent increase, whereas 92 percent of the interventional pain management procedures face cuts. My belief is that these cuts will put many surgery centers out of business.
Please act immediately as this is important for the American public. Once again, thank you for all your help.
In appreciation — Grateful for CARE dental clinic
I want to show my gratitude to CARE Partnership. They run a dental clinic, and I have never met nicer people. Everyone goes out of their way to be kind, courteous and warm-hearted to their patients.
They will accept any donations, for your information.
They are located at 466 S. Bellview in Mesa; (480) 962-5197.
Thank you so very much.
New Year’s wishes for E.V.
As New Year’s Day approaches, we are giving Tribune readers a chance to share their wishes for the East Valley and its residents in the coming year. We will publish a collection of reader essays in the Dec. 30 Perspective section. Submissions should be no longer than 50 words and should be focused on what the writer wishes for the betterment of the East Valley in 2008.
To have your essay considered for publication, you must provide your full name and city of residence for publication, as well as your street address and phone number for verification (address and phone number will not be published). The deadline is noon Friday, Dec. 21. Suitable entries not published in the print edition will be posted at www.eastvalleytribune.com. Send essays via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org; by standard mail to New Year’s Essays, The Tribune, 120 W. First Ave, Mesa, AZ 85210; or by fax to (480) 898-6362.