Letters to the editor - 4/23/03

April 23, 2003

Jail the protesters

To the editor:

Myself and the majority of Americans are fed up with the low-life protesters, and those protesters in California who were carrying a sign saying our troops should turn around and shoot their commanding officer. They are a disgrace to this country.

I would take an Iraqi into my home before them. Between them, the Hollywood crowd and the French, I hate them with a passion. Where is all the money coming from to support these protesters? From people like Ted Turner and some Hollywood cronies and a lot from the left. These protesters are costing the American taxpayers a small fortune. Just in Washington, D.C. the federal government has given D.C. over a hundred million dollars - your tax dollars - to pay the D.C. police department.

The protesters have the right to voice their opinion, but when they disturb and cause disturbance that is when the protesting should stop. They are arrested, slapped on the wrist and then let go.


What should happen when they get arrested is that they should get a $500,000 fine and six months in jail. That would stop a lot of problems. Also this week in D.C. they are protesting the World Bank meeting.

It is sinful that those trying to get to work must put up with those protesters blocking roads and causing problems.

What we need to do is get in touch with our elected officials and say: Enough is enough, start controlling the protesters, put high fines and jail time when they persist in causing disturbances.

As far as France is concerned, remember we have more than 56,000 Americans lying on French soil from World War I and II. I say to our president, don't dare let France have anything to do with the rebuilding of Iraq.

Tell them we also want the millions of dollars they owe us from the two World Wars and as far as what we can do, don't buy anything from France and don't travel to France. We must stand together and show them they have stepped on us for the last time. God bless America!

Dennis Fandl

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Hospital has bigger problems than trauma center

To the editor:

As an employee of Washington County Hospital for 27 years, and working on the trauma unit since its inception, I find I must respond to the editorial in The Morning-Herald dated Wednesday, March 12, written by Bob Maginnis.

The "wrangling" Maginnis refers to would be: The mediators hired by WCH attempted to solve the problem by proposing a Level III trauma center, which was turned down by the surgeons. Not until the "$1.7 million to be on call" was added to the deal was it accepted. Does the money make the "80 to 100 hours a week" away from their children more palatable? Just because one of the state lawmakers' family was affected, why should it become the responsibility of the legal driver to financially support the physicians and hospitals providing treatment of trauma patients?

Maginnis states the increased revenue will "save lives." This will only occur with the appropriate application of the funds. As a patient-care provider I believe the proper application would be on staff retention and equipment. The real problem the community needs to be concerned with regarding the care of patients, not just trauma, is the staff that not only saves lives but maintains them. The nursing staff at WCH. These are the nurses, nursing assistants and unit secretaries who care for your loved ones on a minute-by-minute basis, anticipating and meeting their every need.

Every day experienced nursing staff, some in excess of 20 years, are leaving WCH because they care deeply about their patients. Why are they leaving if they care so deeply?

Because a person who has dedicated their life to helping others is often asked to provide the needs of seven to 12 patients each, or up to 37 if you are the unit secretary, in one shift.

This is an impossible task if you wish to care for and about them. The nursing staff cannot face what they believe to be their own inadequacy in taking care of the sick, suffering and dying people of our community. However, it is not the inadequacy of the nursing staff but the inadequate supply of staff and equipment.

Maginnis states "$9 million" will "prop up a system that was in danger of collapse last summer." This statement implies all the $9 million will be sent to WCH since it was the only system in danger. Perhaps the $9 million could be used to "prop up" the very real problem of staff retention. The nursing staff is spending more and more time away from their families to work long or extra shifts each week, just like the surgeons.

The regular nursing staff at WCH is trying to take care of you the community and are paying the price of physical, emotional and family problems due to the issues listed above, as well as others.

A new year of graduating nursing students is about to join the workforce. Let's hope WCH can offer them what they need to say "Yes, I want to work at WCH." Perhaps a plea could be placed to the board, senior and middle management of WCH to please help the current employees of WCH by addressing the problems causing the daily departure of experienced staff.

In the meantime, please be patient when you or your loved one is waiting for your call light to be answered, for help to the bathroom or a nurse to arrive with your requested pain medication.

Your nursing staff really does care about you and are responding as fast as they can.

Bonnie Hanft

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