Letters to the Editor

We can fix government

To the editor:

We all know that the county government is in serious trouble, and things need to change. This year, on the back of the ballot, we have a chance to change it. It's called the proposed county charter.

The charter would finally give us a chance to choose someone to handle the day-to-day administration of the $100 million county government. It would reduce the size of county government. The more I have read about this proposal, the more it makes sense to me. The more I read about the way we do things now, the more shocked I am we haven't already changed it.

The charter isn't an another layer of government; we've already got a county government. The charter is a chance to fix government and put in back in the hands of the people.

The charter won't solve all our problems, but it will make government more responsive, more efficient, and cheaper. It sets us up for success rather than failure. I hope you'll join me in voting yes to the charter.

Krystle Colamarino,

Amsterdam

Not worth the turmoil

To the editor:

After the first presidential debate, I was left, by President Obama, with a feeling that Obamacare was not worth all of the political and emotional turmoil which has ensued since the bill's passage in 2010. The president said the ACA was about keeping kids insured until they were 26 and a prohibition against denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. Seems like not much after all the conflict and anger for the past few years

However, recently there was published the results of a program started by the ACA which will have a profound effect on our national discourse with respect to woman's health care. Dr. Jeffrey Peipert of Washington University in St. Louis reported on a two-year study wherein 9,000 poor and uninsured women were given access to free contraceptives. They were offered the IUD device, the pill, and intradermal time release implants. These women experienced far fewer pregnancies. There were 6.3 births/1,000 teenagers, compared to a national rate of 34/1,000 teenagers. There were also substantially lower rates of abortion 4.7 to 7.5 per 1,000 verses the national rate of 20 abortions per 1,000 women. Abortion is not a rare event. Which is only argued about by politicians during election season. Three out of 10 women will have had an abortion by age 45. (Gutmacker Institute.)

Teen pregnancy is a tragedy which has long-term consequences for our society. The young mother usually has to drop out of school, and if not well off or cannot afford child care, goes on public assistance. Without a HS degree the earning power of the young mother is diminished. Without a HS degree the attitudes of respect and reverence for education never are transmitted to the child and failure and not finishing school is accepted as normal, leading to further unemployment and poverty.

Free and universal access to contraception is one of the most bitterly contested Obama administration policies, however this study foreshadows the potential impact of this new program in which millions of women are beginning to get contraception without a co-pay.

Philip Lyford,

Amsterdam