Letters to the editor October 20, 2011 edition

There’s strength in unity of the un­em­ployed

In the year 1979 there were 6.2 mil­lion un­em­ployed work­ers in the United States and the num­ber was grow­ing each year.

In 1982 Phil­adelphia City Coun­cil pro­posed Res­ol­u­tion 747, which sought to pro­tect Amer­ic­an work­ers from un­fair for­eign com­pet­i­tion, and sent it to the pres­id­ent in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. Un­for­tu­nately, the res­ol­u­tion was ig­nored by Pres­id­ent Ron­ald Re­agan.

Today there are well over 11 mil­lion un­em­ployed work­ers in the United States and the vot­ing clock is tick­ing loud and clear by un­em­ployed work­ers and friends cam­paign­ing in the streets against Con­gress in Wash­ing­ton and cor­por­a­tions in the United States.

These un­em­ployed work­ers with their fam­il­ies and friends be­lieve that their votes will be valu­able in the Novem­ber 2012 elec­tion. It’s true.

Mul­tiply the num­ber of un­em­ployed work­ers, their fam­il­ies and friends and your cal­cu­la­tion will quad­ruple the vot­ing fig­ures that the un­em­ployed will need to win in the elec­tion.

With today’s tech­no­logy in com­puters, cam­paign­ing for Elec­tion Day will truly be an ex­per­i­ence for any elec­ted of­fi­cial in the United States to win votes on Elec­tion Day against un­em­ployed work­ers.

Wal­ter Pieczyn­ski

Ox­ford Circle

Sandra Stew­art can help save our dy­ing city

I am not a Demo­crat or Re­pub­lic­an, I am an in­de­pend­ent. I am dis­gus­ted with both parties and there­fore have no af­fil­i­ation with either.

With the fall elec­tions ap­proach­ing it ap­pears the city wants to keep busi­ness as usu­al and elect ca­reer politi­cians that only care about their own polit­ic­al am­bi­tions.

The North­east sec­tion of Phil­adelphia is fall­ing apart, and if we keep drink­ing the Demo­crat Kool-Aid, noth­ing will change. In fact it will get much worse.

City Coun­cil’s 6th dis­trict is up for grabs, and I have to be hon­est, I don’t trust Demo­crat­ic can­did­ate Bobby Hen­on as far as I can throw him. I did my re­search on him and he ap­pears to be just an­oth­er politi­cian.

I also got to know Sandra White-Stew­art, the Re­pub­lic­an can­did­ate, and al­though I am not a big fan of Re­pub­lic­ans, she is a really genu­ine per­son that truly cares for the North­east and wants to make life bet­ter for the res­id­ents.

She has dis­played a strong in­terest in her neigh­bor­hood by be­ing a mem­ber of Ta­cony Town Watch, and at one point run­ning the Qual­ity of Life Com­mit­tee that heard neigh­bors’ com­plaints and did everything she could to fix them, all without polit­ic­al gain or pay.

Stop drink­ing the Kool-Aid and vote with your heart, not along party lines. Vote for someone that truly cares for the North­east and is not just try­ing to fur­ther their own polit­ic­al ca­reer.

Don’t be stu­pid, people. Don’t prove to these typ­ic­al politi­cians that you are noth­ing more than cattle that will fol­low them based on what they say is best for you.

If you want real change, if you want someone that really will fight for your neigh­bor­hood, that really does care, vote for Sandra Stew­art.

The North­east is dy­ing, so stand up, join your loc­al Town Watch and civic group and vote for real people like Sandra. If not, you will only get what you al­ways got — noth­ing.

Timothy Ro­gers


Meth­adone saved her life

I’m hav­ing a hard time un­der­stand­ing why any­one would be against treat­ment for al­co­hol­ism/ad­dic­tion, es­pe­cially if you walk around the area of the pro­posed meth­adone clin­ic on Frank­ford Av­en­ue that’s be­ing put down by op­pon­ents.

Open your eyes, people. We ab­so­lutely know the drugs are here, so why not of­fer treat­ment where it’s needed? The crime and pros­ti­tu­tion along this strip of the av­en­ue may cease to ex­ist.

Second, people need to be edu­cated on how clin­ics work. They do not hand out pills, and they are run un­der fed­er­al and state reg­u­la­tions. They are ac­cred­ited by the Sub­stance Ab­use & Men­tal Health Ser­vices Ad­min­is­tra­tion and/or Com­mis­sion on Ac­cred­it­a­tion of Re­hab­il­it­a­tion Fa­cil­it­ies, who reg­u­larly pay vis­its. People just take their med­ic­a­tion and then leave (be­cause there are guards and staff to make sure no one hangs around). They also have groups and one-on-one coun­selor ses­sions every week.

I am a re­cov­er­ing ad­dict and I am sober go­ing on five years. If people aren’t do­ing what they are sup­posed to do, they can get a rap­id de­tox or even get ar­res­ted. Meth­adone saved my life and my child’s life.

Nancy Tarlini


Loc­al phar­ma­cies are just what the doc­tor ordered

Oc­to­ber is Amer­ic­an Phar­macists Month, a time that re­cog­nizes the im­port­ant con­tri­bu­tions that all phar­macists across the coun­try make as part of their com­mit­ment to pa­tient care.

While many have a vari­ety of doc­tors, from gen­er­al prac­ti­tion­ers to spe­cial­ists, most likely they only have one phar­macist, ded­ic­ated to mak­ing sure that all of a pa­tient’s dif­fer­ent med­ic­a­tions work to­geth­er.

A bill cur­rently in the Sen­ate and House would make it easi­er for phar­ma­cies to bet­ter serve the com­munit­ies in North­east Phil­adelphia..

The le­gis­la­tion would stop in­sur­ance com­pan­ies from man­dat­ing people to get their pre­scrip­tions through mail-or­der and al­low them to get the same medi­cine from their com­munity phar­macy, right down the street, for the ex­act same price. The choice where they fill their pre­scrip­tions should re­main with the pa­tient, not their in­sur­ance com­pany.

Since pre­scrip­tions ac­count for 90 per­cent of a loc­al phar­macist’s busi­ness, the im­pact of this le­gis­la­tion would be tre­mend­ous. Statewide, the pro­posed bill would keep over $7 bil­lion of eco­nom­ic stim­u­lus in Pennsylvania, sav­ing more than 26,000 jobs. Still, these num­bers can­not truly define the real value of work­ing one-on-one with a loc­al phar­macist.

Loc­al phar­macists have the abil­ity to per­son­ally in­ter­act with their pa­tients, us­ing in­tern­al checks and know­ledge of an in­di­vidu­al’s med­ic­a­tion his­tory to identi­fy is­sues and deal with emer­gen­cies quickly and with a ho­met­own touch. An es­tim­ated 100,000 people die each year due to ad­verse drug re­ac­tion.

I urge in­di­vidu­als to con­tact their le­gis­lat­ors to sup­port House Bill 511 and Sen­ate Bill 201, which levels the play­ing field for the count­less loc­ally owned phar­ma­cies throughout Pennsylvania.

To identi­fy your le­gis­lat­or, vis­it ht­tp://www.le­gis.state.pa.us ••

Barry Jac­obs

Ex­ec­ut­ive dir­ect­or

Phil­adelphia As­so­ci­ation of Re­tail Drug­gists

Ac­cess to primary care faces great chal­lenges

A re­cent Uni­versity of Pennsylvania pi­lot study ex­amined the lack of ac­cess to primary care in North­east Phil­adelphia. The pi­lot study put in­to stark num­bers what I hear time and time again from my con­stitu­ents in the North­east: ac­cess to neigh­bor­hood primary care is an enorm­ous chal­lenge and one that hurts the res­id­ents of North­east Phil­adelphia.

It is a par­tic­u­lar is­sue fa­cing our seni­ors, many of whom suf­fer from chron­ic dis­eases, such as dia­betes, arth­rit­is and high blood pres­sure. Man­aging chron­ic dis­eases is es­sen­tial, not only to the health of Amer­ic­ans, but to the fisc­al sta­bil­ity of our health care sys­tem. Many of these ill­nesses, which can be ef­fect­ively pre­ven­ted, treated or man­aged by a primary care phys­i­cian, are cost­ing the Amer­ic­an eco­nomy $1.3 tril­lion per year in health care costs and lost pro­ductiv­ity.

Primary care is at the core of Amer­ica’s health care sys­tem, yet primary care is where we face the most acute pro­vider short­ages, here in North­east Phil­adelphia and across our coun­try.

In Con­gress, I am work­ing every day to strengthen our primary care work­force. I led an ef­fort that se­cured bil­lions of dol­lars to grow our primary care work­force through new schol­ar­ship, loan re­pay­ment pro­grams and oth­er meas­ures.

Not only is this vi­tal to ex­pand­ing Amer­ic­ans’ ac­cess to qual­ity health care, we can also strengthen Amer­ica’s eco­nomy by cre­at­ing tens of thou­sands of private sec­tor jobs in the health field, such as doc­tors, nurse prac­ti­tion­ers and phys­i­cian as­sist­ants.

This ef­fort is just one part of what we must do. I’ve also worked to provide pa­tients with bet­ter qual­ity care through a team-based ap­proach in which primary care doc­tors co­ordin­ate with oth­er health care pro­viders to en­sure the pa­tient’s unique health care needs are met. This type of care co­ordin­a­tion is a vi­tal func­tion of primary care pro­viders and should be highly val­ued.

We must also work to en­sure that our cit­ies, such as Phil­adelphia, have the tools that they need to be able to ad­dress the severe lack of primary care ac­cess in tar­geted neigh­bor­hoods, such as the North­east.

These types of ini­ti­at­ives will not im­prove our short­age of primary care pro­viders overnight, but they are a vi­tal first step to en­sur­ing that all Amer­ic­ans have ac­cess to af­ford­able, qual­ity primary care re­gard­less of age, in­come or geo­graphy.

U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz

Rep. Schwartz, a Demo­crat, is serving her fourth term in Con­gress rep­res­ent­ing Pennsylvania’s 13th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict. She is a seni­or mem­ber of the House Budget Com­mit­tee, vice chair­wo­man of the mod­er­ate New Demo­crat Co­ali­tion and a mem­ber of the House For­eign Af­fairs Com­mit­tee.

He longs for the days of the nuc­le­ar fam­ily unit

As I look for­ward to the 2012 elec­tion sea­son, I see the need for an early “heads-up” for voters. This time it con­cerns our erstwhile con­gress­wo­man, Allyson Schwartz.

Re­cently, and march­ing in lock­step with what might be called the Demo­crat­ic Party’s hy­per­nookey bri­gade, Allyson signed on as a co-spon­sor of the latest mis­be­got­ten as­sault on tra­di­tion­al val­ues, a piece of ideo­lo­gic­al fluff called the stu­dent non-dis­crim­in­a­tion bill (HR998). This pro­pos­al, should it be­come law, would turn Amer­ic­an schools in­to bas­tions of thought con­trol and polit­ic­al cor­rect­ness. And, yes, this is the same Allyson who (in 2007) re­fused to sup­port a house res­ol­u­tion hon­or­ing Christ­mas! 

The bill would re­quire schools to teach ap­palling ho­mo­sexu­al acts in “tol­er­ance” classes. The bill would al­low ho­mo­sexu­al teach­ers to subtly pres­sure im­pres­sion­able stu­dents ex­per­i­en­cing con­fu­sion over their sexu­al iden­tity and eth­ics to “ex­per­i­ment” with the ho­mo­sexu­al “life­style.” And private or re­li­gious schools would be forced to teach a pro-ho­mo­sexu­al cur­riculum and purge any ref­er­ence to re­li­gion if a stu­dent claims it “dis­crim­in­ates.”

Ho­mo­sexu­al stu­dents would also be ex­empt from pun­ish­ment for har­ass­ing or even sexu­ally as­sault­ing class­mates, and all in the name of the most warped ver­sion of non-judg­ment­al­ism since, well, since the 1960s, whence all this phony new mor­al­ity and cul­tur­al rot sprang up.

Hope­lessly misled by this silly ideal­ism from a by­gone era, the Dems have torn apart the tra­di­tion­al fam­ily and cre­ated single-par­ent fam­il­ies (many liv­ing be­low the poverty level), latch­key kids, ju­ven­ile crime and preg­nancy, and a host of oth­er so­cial ills. And their fix is al­ways more gov­ern­ment, more spend­ing and taxes, more pro­grams, and more per­missive­ness, in spite of a moun­tain of re­search that shows the tra­di­tion­al nuc­le­ar fam­ily is the best way to grow pro­duct­ive cit­izens and strong com­munit­ies.

People, be­fore you vote in com­ing elec­tions, re­mem­ber and un­der­stand the three “Rs” of lib­er­al­ism: Whatever lib­er­als RUN, whatever lib­er­als RULE, they RU­IN!

It’s time for Allyson to de­part the stage of his­tory. In the mean­time, I urge all cit­izens in the North­east who un­der­stand the need for, and the im­port­ance of, tra­di­tion­al val­ues to let Allyson know as loud as you can that you op­pose HR998!

George Tomez­sko

Fox Chase

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