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PRACTICING MEDICINE A PRIVILEGE, NOT A RIGHT

To the editor:

In your May 29 editorial, “Indentured servants,” you imply that doctors, based upon their religious beliefs, have a right to refuse to provide services to some people.

Licensing by a state is an earned privilege, rather than an inherent right. That privilege is granted to doctors (as well as lawyers, pharmacists, etc.) based on the assumption that they will not refuse to provide their services because of a patient’s sexual orientation or religious beliefs.

A doctor who will provide services to heterosexuals but refuses to provide the same service for gay patients should not have the right to a state license, which gives state approval for them to practice their profession equitably.

The editorial’s metaphor comparing doctors to indentured servants makes no sense. Indentured servants could not choose to revoke their agreements, but doctors can always choose to give up their state license.

States should not grant licenses to professionals who choose to unfairly discriminate in choosing who will be the recipient of their services.

Mel Lipman

TAMARAC, FLA.

THE WRITER IS A FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE HUMANIST ASSOCIATION OF LAS VEGAS AND IS CURRENTLY PRESIDENT OF THE AMERICAN HUMANIST ASSOCIATION.

What sickness?

To the editor:

In her Tuesday letter to the editor, Dr. Lindsay Rhodes cites the Declaration of Geneva (which replaced the Hippocratic Oath) in her criticism of the California doctors who refused to artificially inseminate a lesbian patient. Those doctors were subsequently sued for discrimination.

Now, using logic instead of sentiment, what exactly was the sickness of that lesbian patient which the accused doctor refused to treat, thus breaking his Hippocratic Oath, or for that matter, the Declaration of Geneva?

Marc Jeric

LAS VEGAS

Gossip as news

To the editor:

Everyone at the Review-Journal recently gave their take on the coming divorce of Gov. Jim Gibbons.

Given that the New Jersey governor has departed because he was found with a live guy in bed, and that New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer did his “pay as you go” bit and his replacement was hanging with a co-worker during his marital “difference” period, shouldn’t sex gossip be as common as “dog bites man”?

Not so in Nevada.

Columnist Jane Ann Morrison contributed a meaty piece on Monday based on third-party hearsay and a hooker’s intuition and best guesses.

But that’s not as bad as Erin Neff, who on Oct. 29, 2006, used her husband as a confirming source for a column on the alleged assault of cocktail waitress Chrissy Mazzeo by Gov. Gibbons.

Review-Journal Editor Thomas Mitchell had his say Sunday by suggesting a Supreme Court review of Nevada’s law on the sealing of divorce cases not only has merit, but should go forward. His reference, however, is a California case. But do we really need to waste the court’s time with this drivel about promiscuity?

Then there was Review-Journal Publisher Sherman Frederick’s Sunday column, which asked whether this divorce is really that newsworthy.

A few years back, Maureen Dowd, attending a Daily Kos convention here in Las Vegas, was disturbed by what was said and heard. She exited abruptly, realizing that the blogger’s journalistic standards are too similar for what passes as news. Gossip is in.

Alden Smith

HENDERSON

Education waste

To the editor:

The Sunday letter by Las Vegas math teacher Mark Jimenez, which called for the elimination of the state-funded teacher training center known as the Regional Professional Development Program, makes perfect sense. It’s a recommendation that I have had for many years.

Does anyone not realize how much financial waste there is within our school district to pay for middle management, development programs, specialists and the like? And, as Mr. Jimenez states, these programs are primarily, if not completely, staffed by teachers — many awarded these plum positions specifically to relieve them from their classroom duties, the very profession they chose.

So, with math and reading scores at among their lowest levels ever, why not put these teachers back in the classroom to teach, for God’s sake, instead of putting them on pedestals for the unworthy teachers to watch and adore?

When I went to school, we had a stern little old lady as principal who scared everyone because we all knew of the big paddle hanging on her door in her office.

Why does any school need more than a principal, a secretary, a nurse, dedicated teachers, a cafeteria staff cooking home-made meals every day and a janitor? What’s with all the extra staff taking up space and needlessly spending tax dollars that are mainly producing ignorant, unruly children? Get back to the basics.

As someone who pays a pretty hefty property tax each year for such incompetence, I demand this waste be stopped and ask everyone demand the same from our so-called leaders of public education.

But, alas, the teachers union is so strong and determined to be right (meaning left) in their way of doing things, these changes will never happen.

Has anyone ever heard of the old saying, “Actions speak louder than words?” It’s why I sent my children to private school.

Cherie S. Wood

LAS VEGAS

Where are the parents?

To the editor:

In response to your Wednesday article, “Gun-toting young adults targeted”: Where are the parents of the kids who are bringing guns and other weapons to schools? Do they take the time to find out what their kids are up to and what they have in their possession, or are they oblivious to whom their son or daughter is bullying or intending to hurt?

It isn’t up to the public or police or teachers to keep these young people from committing a crime, it is up to the parent. If these kids get into trouble, the parents should be held responsible, too. If my kids would have gotten into trouble, they not only dealt with the authorities, they had to deal with us, the parents.

When kids are arrested today, the parent is in disbelief: “He or she is such a good child — I can’t believe he or she would do something like this.” It is about time to get to know your children, where they are and what they are doing every minute of every day and whom they are associating with.

Once they hurt someone, it is too late.

You brought them into this world, now teach them right from wrong. It isn’t right that some innocent person gets hurt or killed because up didn’t do your job.

Beverly Frase

LAS VEGAS

Obama’s agenda

To the editor:

Now that Sen. Barack Obama has clinched the Democratic presidential nomination, I hear every Democratic politician echoing the party line that a November vote for Republican Sen. John McCain is vote for another term of President Bush’s agenda. Another example of “the big lie” at work — say it loud enough and long enough, and someone will believe it.

The truth is that Sen. McCain has a 30-year voting record of battling for change. Yes, he supports continuing in Iraq until a successful conclusion. So what? He’s right.

What will we receive if Sen. Obama is elected president? Not hard to figure that out. He has the most liberal voting record of any U.S. senator, supporting policies and programs that have failed time and time again — or not voting at all in order to conceal his real agenda. His economic and social policies are a repeat of the ’60s, and his foreign policy is right out of the ’30s. His ‘mentors’ for the past 20 years have been a group of U.S.-hating, white-hating radicals.

So if he’s the choice of the people, the people will be getting what they deserve: Cut and run from Iraq, allowing the Middle East to destabilize, Iran to have nukes, no increased domestic energy production, higher taxes, higher gasoline prices, less interest in our national defense and more programs that pay everyone to vote for Democrats.

John Frisby

HENDERSON

 

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