published Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

Letters to the Editor

Closing lactation unit a disservice

When my husband and I were looking to choose a hospital to have our son, we decided to take some classes at Parkridge East. We found the classes to be very informative and the instructors to be very knowledgeable.

Part of the education that was provided to us in the classes was by the lactation specialist, Shari Hicks. Shari was in large part one of the reasons we were swayed to deliver at Parkridge East.

The hospital has decided to close its lactation center. I am disappointed that new mothers will not have the educational opportunity that this center provides nor will they have the support that many so desperately need. Many new mothers cringe at the idea of breastfeeding, or try it and easily give up due to frustration or being overwhelmed, not realizing the benefits to the health of their baby or the valuable savings.

Parkridge East is by far a great place to have a baby. It is saddening, though, that new mothers will not have the same support I had from the lactation center. The hospital is doing a disservice to new mothers by no longer making this valuable resource available in the community.

KRISTAL SHERRILL

Ooltewah

East Ridge can’t afford legal fees

I went to the special called council meeting in East Ridge last week with anticipation that things in East Ridge might actually change. After the meeting I was totally dejected.

The meeting started off with Jim Bethune setting forth a very articulate non-personal reasoning that the city of East Ridge could no longer afford the exorbitant legal fees being paid to John Anderson. Mr. Bethune assumed the role of the spokesman for the citizens that has been so lacking in the past and made a motion to terminate Mr. Anderson.

Prior to the motion, Mr. Anderson was given the opportunity to work for what the city had budgeted.

Denny Manning then stepped up to the plate and made the citizens proud by seconding the motion to terminate.

My hope is that when this matter comes up at the next meeting, this council will finally see the city can no longer afford these outlandish fees.

JACKIE FULKS

East Ridge

Nursing babies a natural thing

In answer to the uproar over the closing of a nursing clinic and what new mothers will do without it:

I have given birth to four children and breast-fed each of them for three-four months. Dear nurses and nurse’s aides showed me what to do. Children all grew to be healthy adults. It was an absolute joy to know that through my efforts these precious babies had received needed nourishment naturally.

There were no clinics or classes or specially trained nurses to “teach” us how to nurse. Mothers have done it for thousands of years!

Yes, others gave me hints and encouragement but it was the most natural thing in the world! It was a time for just me and my baby to be together with no other person involved.

I loved the song “Moon River,” and it became my “nursing song.” I sang it to all my children. When nursing ended, the babies and I were always relaxed, and then we had little conversations — one-way, of course!

Nursing a baby is not for all mothers, but you will be missing a great experience if you don’t try — you can do it!

JUDY LYNCH

Whitwell, Tenn.

Council has chance to cut expenses

The East Ridge City Council will meet again tomorrow.

I would like to ask all our East Ridge City Council to please think how far in debt East Ridge is and vote to rid our city of the high-price attorney! This would cut a lot of expense.

Please ask yourself “If this was my business what would I do?”

I believe all of you would cut expenses to the bone! We put our trust in you!

You have another chance to do the right thing and most important what the citizens of East Ridge want — Anderson Gone!

EMILIA A. GENTER

East Ridge

Secularism needed in Muslim world

Will there ever be an end to autocratic regimes in Muslim countries?

Almost all the Islamic world is ruled by autocratic regimes. Turkey is the only Muslim country that has formally adopted democracy.

Islam has been removed from the Turkish constitution, and the Sharia is no longer a part of the law of the country.

The truth of the matter is that Islam will never achieve democracy if it insists on the application of the Sharia and as long as there is no separation of religion and state. The duty of obedience to the established authority is constantly emphasized in the Quran, “Obey Allah, obey the messenger, and those of you who are in authority.” For most Muslims legitimate authority comes from Allah alone, and the ruler derives his power from Allah and the holy law and not from the people.

If the Western-style democracy is desired in the Muslim countries, secularism is absolutely necessary, especially for those societies threatened by any kind of authoritarian and medieval way of thinking. Since the Muslim world is still in the Dark Ages, secularism is needed more than ever.

How to eliminate autocratic regimes in the Islamic world? Allah only knows how!

AMOS TAJ

Ooltewah

State should invest more in education

I urge our governor, state senators and representatives to oppose proposed legislation designed to weaken public education.

This state needs to invest more in education rather than seeing it as an unnecessary expenditure. It is now obvious that most of the planned legislative actions, in this and 12 other states, are coordinated and are largely supported by Republicans and tea party Democrats.

Organized labor and collective bargaining have long been rights in this country and have been the major contributors to our middle class. The weakening of organized labor, in the public and private sectors, would lead to even more corporate influence with undisclosed and unlimited contributions. Our country would no longer be democratic but would instead be a “corporatocracy” with “representatives” purchased by large corporations through contributions (bribes).

We are just beginning to escape the grasp of a major depression. Please be supportive of what is best for our state rather than the interests and benefits of corporations. Too many of us are suffering from inadequate support for education, unemployment, underemployment, inadequate housing, income and health care.

Those who support education are to be applauded. Please be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

DR. COLBERT W.

WHITAKER

Fiscal ‘conversion’ is just disgusting

The “conversion” to the religion of “fiscal responsibility” of so many of the folks who were more than happy to go to war, passing tax cuts at the same time so the war was unfunded, is just disgusting.

I don’t dispute that the government must address the current debt. I favor fiscal responsibility. I’m just amazed that the people who shout it the loudest think it’s perfectly OK to cut education and myriad services that affect the poor and the middle class. Yet they support continued tax cuts that have been touted as imperative for job growth from the time they were passed in 2001.

Guess who benefits from those tax cuts. Not the poor. Not middle class. And where are the promised jobs?

They want to gut the health care bill. Yet we pay for health care one way or the other.

Folks without health insurance often end up leaving the hospitals with debt that has to be passed on to consumers.

People without adequate health care are more likely to cost employers with time off for illness.

We enforce people having to have liability insurance if they drive an automobile. Why shouldn’t people have to have health insurance?

KATE STULCE

Ooltewah

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bookworm said...

people who believe that they have a right to not buy health insurance also have the right to pay their bills in cash out of their pocket when they get sick.

March 9, 2011 at 4:42 a.m.
frankfeeny said...

Good letter, Kate. When Bush 43 became president, we were on track to pay off the national debt in a few short years. Then he and the Republican Congress (with the acquiescence of too many Democrats) cut taxes in 2001 and 2003. We can cut spending until the cows come home, but to trim the debt we also need to raise some cash.

March 9, 2011 at 2:14 p.m.
Rivieravol said...

Good point bookworm. I think Health Insurance should be required unless the person signs a waiver that they are responsible for ALL of their health bills.

March 9, 2011 at 2:49 p.m.
aprilsumner said...

I wanted to comment to Judy on here. I am glad nursing your children worked so well for you. It is not "natural" or easy for ALL babies and mothers. I am guessing none of your chilren were low birthweight or premature? That makes a huge difference when it comes to the ease of breastfeeding. I gave birth to twin boys who were premature and one was low birthweight. Premature babies have trouble latching on and are not as hungry as full term babies and it is no easy feat trying to make a baby eat when they are not interested or too weak to try. A low birthweight baby has to start gaining weight immediately or get very sick so if nursing does not work immediately, then you have to give formula to that baby to start weight gain. I am guessing you also did not have any problems such as PCOS? I did. Women with PCOS have hormone problems so that their body might not be producing the proper amount of hormones to produce enough milk. That was another problem I had to deal with along with when your babies are not nursing right away it will impact your production.

My point being I know multiple women who had many difficulities nursing their babies for various reasons out of their control. The lactation consultants were important to them because they needed all the help they could get. I again am so glad it worked so well for you and your children. But, don't get smug about the fact that just because you didn't need help from a lactation consultant, that it would be the same for everyone.

March 19, 2011 at 2:11 p.m.
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