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R-J columnist offered a lesson about labels

To the editor:

In her Wednesday letter, “It’s not a race thing,” Ardelle Bellman bemoans the decrying of CNN’s use of the term “dark-skinned” by Review-Journal columnist Xazmin Garza.

There is much competition in presenting the public with opinions as well as news. We are a nation of labels. Euphemisms and labels are an attempt to gain interest, but often may cause one to take umbrage and criticize their use when it’s felt the label is not needed or is tasteless. Ms. Bellman says she knows CNN meant no ill will. I do not know.

I do not know the messages in the tweets Ms. Garza received, but I would be surprised if some did not contain vitriol, as some would assume from her name that she’s a person of color.

Ms. Bellman’s point is well taken, but in our society, labeling an innocent can be detrimental. Unfortunately, to many, “dark-skinned” has a negative connotation. It is difficult for one who has never experienced racism to understand why a writer would compose a diatribe about a slight, real or imagined.

Ms. Bellman concludes “each person stands on his or her own deeds.” If only this were true. Lots of innocent people are jailed and killed because of labels. We have come a long way in improving race relations, but were the writer to walk in Ms. Garza’s shoes, a better understanding of labeling might be gained.

WILLIAM V. LOFTON

NORTH LAS VEGAS

UMC and immigration

To the editor:

Month after month we continue to get complaints and/or nonsolution solutions to the financial drain at UMC, our only public hospital. Thursday’s letter to the editor (“Privatize shooting range? What about UMC?”) again provides a partial solution to a much larger problem.

Though I agree UMC could be more efficiently operated, as a public institution the major money drain is illegal immigration. They use the emergency room and hospital facilities at no cost to themselves but a very high cost to the taxpayers. Unless we get the illegal immigration problem under control, privatizing UMC will only shift the problem to private hospitals and, in the final run, will still have to be subsidized by the taxpayers.

Until our politicians acknowledge the root of UMC’s financial problems, we the taxpayers will continue to be extorted of our earnings.

As was wisely stated in the movie “A Few Good Men,” our politically correct public officials just can’t handle the truth.

JOHN J. ERLANGER

LAS VEGAS

TV vs. newspapers

To the editor:

Recently I completed a Nielsen TV viewing diary. Nielsen invited me to comment on the quality of TV in general, and this is what I wrote:

“I usually watch C-SPAN one, two and three more than is reflected in this week’s activity. Most popular TV is mindless, as it has been since the 1950s. TV news, except for ‘PBS NewsHour,’ is simply a sales tool of the ruling class of America to instill fear and misunderstanding in the masses. The advertisements are pure fantasy that sell this make-believe world to American citizens.

“The United States pharmaceutical industry is a prime example of creating fear to peddle products for imaginary illnesses. The ill-gotten gains from this mass marketing run into the billions of dollars. Even when dangerous drugs are pulled from the market, they’re quickly replaced by a new snake oil. These ‘forces’ are more successful in 2013 than ever in American history.”

Review-Journal readers are an integral part of this process. Just think about it and keep subscribing to the old-fashioned newspaper, where the pursuit of truth still matters.

PATRICK J. HOOVEN

NORTH LAS VEGAS

Entertainment tax

To the editor:

An entertainment tax? Are you kidding me? Should Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick and her cronies have their way, they would tax every aspect of our lives. Oh, wait a minute, they already do (“Legislators clash over tax on ‘family fun,’ ” Wednesday Review-Journal).

Las Vegas has one main attraction: tourist entertainment. Is Ms. Kirkpatrick trying to convince us that up to now that entertainment has been tax-free? Is the AFL-CIO’s Danny Thompson, her ally, trying to say that up to now no one has been paying for our failed educational system?

I seem to remember us voters approving a healthy tax increase for our educational system, and those funds largely went to the administrators, not the kids. So Mr. Thompson, don’t try to convince us, with a tear in your eye, that we don’t support our kids’ schooling. Those in Carson City who support these increased taxes need to consider getting off this more-taxes bandwagon and do some serious soul searching with spending cuts that we can all see.

JIM ANDREAS

LAS VEGAS

Hatred, forever and ever

To the editor:

We hear about Benghazi almost nonstop. Benghazi is just another word for hatred. This planet has been full of hatred for my 79 years and centuries before.

When will mankind and womankind ever learn that hate begets hate? As a child I hated the Germans because they killed my uncle during World War II. I hated the Japanese at the same time. When I was in the Korean War, I hated the North Koreans and the Chinese communists. I hated the Russians during the Cold War.

When the Europeans came to America, they in time hated the Indians, and vice-versa. The colonists hated the English. The North hated the South during the Civil War.

As I am writing this letter, many countries in the Middle East hate each other — and us. Last, but not least, many American citizens in and out of politics hate our president, his wife and children because they’re black.

When in God’s name will all this hatred end?

JOHN TOMINKSY

LAS VEGAS

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