Letters to the editor (7/11/12)

Other nations offer health care to all -- U.S. should follow suit

Health care access should be extended to everyone in America. We still have millions not covered and they are among America's hardest workers -- small family farmers, self-employed, those who care for our children, clean our homes, landscape our yards, repair our cars, etc.

Japan, Canada, Cuba, Norway and all other industrialized countries have figured this out. They all provide quality health care in some universal form to all.

Canadians, when I randomly polled 247 of them over the past two years, favor 20-to-1 their current health care.

America should be ashamed for giving health care randomly to some -- no more deserving than those who go bankrupt trying to pay for medical care. And the "high cost of university tuition" is not an excuse for our medical professionals earning huge incomes. We are also the only industrialized country in which that is the case.

-- Linda Sharp, M.Ed.


Predators won't get chickens if cluckers can use their instincts

Mr. Williams' war on chicken-eating critters needs rebooting. Having raised chickens in the Talkeetnas above the Little Su in the '80s and '90s without losing one, I have suggestions. Clear that jungle! They need at least 75-100 feet clearance so they can see threats, and threats get shy. Enlist chickens' survival traits. Mine ranged free without fencing, and when a predatory bird appeared, they disappeared into holes, under buildings, and whatever was handy. Poof! Get Banties who will raise the alarm first (and sit on theirs and anybody else's eggs too) for those Barred Rocs and New Hampshires. They have more ancient instincts and reproduce their own for fryers too.

Have smart dogs who leave chickens alone, (German shepherds worked for me) but bristle at predators. Chickens go in a secure coop at sundown. Good 'ol incandescent bulbs help them stay warm and laying in winter. They love waste meat and bone chopped small, prefer bugs to grain -- and protein makes more eggs.

Enlist the animals' smarts instead of expensive technology. And good luck.

-- Bruce Orton


Appreciative of pit bull info

I want to thank Kathryn Hawkins for her letter about pit bulls (June 29). Hawkins is a veterinarian and she wrote that pit bulls are attacking from instinct, not training. Thank you, Dr. Hawkins, for caring.

-- Chaille Yasuda


O'Malley shouldn't blame Inlet Inn for people's problems

Julia O'Malley's "No Accommodation" article on downtown's Inlet Inn (July 7-8) lacked a noticeable angle: how the Inlet Inn benefits the working poor.

There are many hard workers in the seasonal seafood and oil industries. We need the Inlet Inn to get by on the downtime -- especially during the tourist season when all others jack up their prices and rent. O'Malley's questioning why the working poor don't move into homeless shelters made me cringe. I like it here; she can move into a 30-day maximum homeless shelter if she wants.

The hit piece ran Sunday calling the Inlet Inn a chronic haven for crime, filth and bed bugs. This is not an Inlet Inn problem, this is a downtown problem. From my window in my bug-free room, I see emergency vehicles travel to the downtown bus station almost daily. And now the city is considering taking the property away from the Inn? Let the city get its own transit system secure before they consider taking someone's business on prime real estate. They can't because the problems are not confined to a building; they are in the people themselves.

-- J.D. Hawk