Redefining marriage is not equality

To the editor:

Columnist Steve Sebelius asserts that Nevada Senate Joint Resolution 13 moves “equality” forward (Wednesday Review-Journal). I’ve got news for Mr. Sebelius: Redefining marriage is not moving equality forward. Marriage has long been defined and regarded as the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex, as husband or wife, in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law.

What’s fair or equal about changing a definition regarded by many as sacred? Why couldn’t this whole movement have been defined as recognizing a union between two people of the same sex? If you don’t like the term “civil union,” then perhaps a better term could have been found to express the act of recognizing a union between two people of the same sex, recognition that many of us have long favored.

Secular progressives associate those of us whose values are identified as being conservative as bigots. They believe we oppose gay marriage based on bigotry motivated by revulsion for gay people. Nothing can be further from the truth.

I’m among the many other Americans who strongly support equality for gay people. Many of us champion it. We oppose the redefinition of marriage. By considering the proposed constitutional amendment to redefine marriage as a move toward equality, Mr. Sebelius and others insult us. His concept of equality detracts from our understanding.



Heller’s vote

To the editor:

I want to express my disappointment in Nevada Sen. Dean Heller’s vote against mandatory background checks (“Las Vegas protesters criticize Heller’s stance on gun background checks,” April 21 Review-Journal). Why would anyone allow criminals or the mentally ill access to a gun? The next mass shooting, which will happen, Sen. Heller and others who voted “no” will have blood on their hands.

If Sen. Heller doesn’t wish to make our country a safer and better place to live, then Nevadans should focus on blocking his re-election. So many of our elected officials have no spine to do what’s right. The rest of the world laughs at us, and this constant opposition to pass any sensible legislation makes me sick.



UMC’s woes

To the editor:

The request to raise property taxes to cover University Medical Center’s financial problems is more than bad medicine (Thursday Review-Journal). In fact, it’s malpractice. UMC’s financial woes are nothing more than a sign and symptom of poor management, not the panoply of problems which Chief Executive Officer Brian Brannman has manufactured for the County Commission.

The fact is that paying health care consumers (a far better word than “patients”) choose not to go to UMC. This is a conscious decision. It’s a decision driven by the doctors in our community. As a result, unlike all of the for-profit hospitals in the metropolitan area, UMC loses money. Why? Because UMC cannot recognize that it’s the doctors who drive business to hospitals, and that you need to respect all of the physicians in a community, not just the good ol’ boys who may be in power today. In catering to the good ol’ boys, UMC has run too many doctors out of its halls. It has destroyed and continues to destroy the careers of good physicians and surgeons. Doctors do not want to go there because they are scared of the repercussions, which may occur as a result of UMC’s politics-over-medicine culture.

Injecting more money into the system from private taxpayers will not solve the problem. It will only allow the problem to grow. What UMC needs is better management and respect for this community’s physicians and surgeons.