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Letters to the Editor - March 27

March 27, 2011

The time to respect the environment is now

To the editor:

There’s no excuse for willful ignorance. Yet, this blissful state is all too commonly practiced by many of our local citizens in Washington County and around the nation. Practitioners include those who continue to deny the unmistakable evidence that our climate systems are changing because of human interaction with the natural world.

 As an article in the April 2011 issue of National Geographic magazine points out, ocean acidification provides key evidence for us to heed. Careful observations by scientists on opposite sides of the globe — in Italy and Australia — have documented the gradual demise of coral reefs upon which ocean ecosystems depend. Reefs are destroyed when seawater becomes more acidic while absorbing the tons of carbon dioxide we humans pour into the atmosphere, going about our fossil fuel-based lives. One-quarter of all species in the oceans depends on these reefs.

Instead of pretending climate change is not happening — in the face of myriad evidence to the contrary — we all must take action to slow greenhouse gas emissions. We need to respect science and stop spouting nonsensical opinions based solely on hot air. Drive less, in a car with better gas mileage. Make your home more energy-efficient.  Use less. Recycle more. Help your kids understand the world they will inherit, and our place in it. We simply do not have time for anything else.

Heidi Welsh
Boonsboro


We should be able to end our lives with dignity

To the editor:

PBS on Tuesday, March 22, televised the program, “Frontline.” It was a story of Mr. Craig Ewert and his terminal illness. It is a story of a man who faced his future with ALS, better known as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease.”

This disease affects the wasting of the muscles and has about a 10 percent run in families. After suffering for an extended period of time, he was informed of an organization in Zurich, Switzerland, that assisted in ending one’s life with some dignity. It is a very moving and personal story that has a serious effect on your feelings.

I wonder what can be done for our country, America, to allow this way of ending our life with dignity. It is my firm belief that an individual should have the right, under certain situations and conditions, to end their life when and how they see fit. People are living longer and in many situations not in very good physical or mental health. Before it gets to the point of loss of mental faculties, we should have the right to end our suffering. With our modern technology, it is so easy to end one’s life with dignity.

We have more compassion to allow the ending the life of our beloved pets, than human beings’ lives. It would be a humane service if assisted living rest homes in this country could allow the option to end one’s life with dignity.  

Tom Wilhelm
Williamsport


Let’s name South Hagerstown facilities for two great coaches

To the editor:

All South Hagerstown High School alumni, with the celebration of our 55th anniversary, I think it’s time to honor two great SHHS coaches.

Let’s name our stadium Doug Cochran Stadium and our gym Nick Scallion Gymnasium. What better way to give these two men the honor and respect they deserve.

Let’s get on the school board to accomplish this.

Jimmy Black
South Hagerstown class of 1964

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