“Food fight erupts in area,” your July 16 article on the feud between the Washington County Food Bank and the Great American Food Drive, was very depressing to read....
I found the Monday article, “Heroin replacing prescription drugs as choice for addicts” to be dangerously one-dimensional.
There are hundreds of drug addicts who are in recovery and leading healthy, productive lives right here in Washington County. Your article ignored the recovery community and focused on creating more stigma for addicts who are struggling to recover. Nowhere in the article was there a mention of the possibility of recovery. The stigma of addiction is alive and well, and your article further demonized addicts.
The accompanying front page photo was pure sensationalism. The online comments by readers following your article were both ignorant and heartless, with some calling for all the addicts to just go out and die. People love to make moral judgments on the sick and suffering addicts who have a brain disease.
According to the Pennsylvania Recovery Organization Alliance, “Every dollar spent on addiction treatment saves $7 alone in reduced crime, criminal costs and theft. Every dollar spent on addiction treatment saves $12 on health care costs. Every dollar spent on addiction treatment yields undetermined economic benefits in the workplace. The total cost to society of addiction and alcoholism is nearly 25 times what the U.S. spends on treatment.”
Addiction is a threefold disease: spiritual, mental and physical. It is classified as a mental illness and a brain disease. However, recovery is possible.
Not to sugarcoat the severity of the problem, but the stigma of addiction doesn’t help society, parents and loved ones to understand the problem any better and it certainly doesn’t encourage the addict to love themselves enough to seek recovery.
The letter on U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy that was published in July 17’s Observer-Reporter, “Following the parade, not leading it,” could not be further from the truth.
There is no better advocate in Congress for veterans and military members than Murphy. In 2013, when the 911th Airlift Wing was threatened with closure, Murphy successfully led the charge to keep it open.
In Congress, Murphy is a strong voice for accountability from the Department of Veterans Affairs when it comes to the care for our nation’s veterans. Murphy sounded the alarm during the Legionella outbreak and brought the House Veterans Committee to Pittsburgh to fix the problem. He fought for an end to the outrageous VA bonuses, and uncovered the lengthy waiting lists in Pittsburgh for veterans to see their doctors.
In addition to being a congressman, Murphy volunteered to serve in the Navy Reserves as a lieutenant commander in the Medical Service Corps to work with our returning heroes from Iraq and Afghanistan needing care for post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries. It was Murphy’s legislation that required the Department of Defense and the VA to get more mental health providers caring for our returning veterans. Sen. Bob Casey has been absent when it comes to working on these issues.
As a veteran, I could not be more honored to have someone like Murphy, who fights for us, in elected office.
In reference to the Observer-Reporter’s July 19 article about the need to upgrade locks and dams in the area, I have a question: Were the nearly 16 tons of goods moved through the Elizabeth locks coal produced by Tennessee Ernie Ford?
I’m a retired teacher and very concerned about Gov. Tom Corbett’s cuts in education, especially the salary and pension reductions for teachers. But it’s my understanding that state Sen. Tim Solobay voted to increase his own pension 50 percent and also voted to raise his own pay 45 percent. When my call was put through during a telephone town hall meeting July 16 and I asked him myself, his response was to laugh at my question and dismiss my concerns.
It’s unreasonable to expect to ask educators and others to bite the bullet when legislators aren’t willing to take the first step. I want to know how we can expect to attract the brightest and best to a teaching career with this kind of policy?
On June 12, the Observer-Reporter published an editorial with the headline, “Cantor defeat bad news for GOP.” Reading this collection of absurdities caused me to laugh so hard that I severely injured myself and my recovery was a long and arduous process. Finally, I feel fit enough to......
Two and one-half years ago, I was elected to borough council after living in East Washington for 22 years in the hope of making positive changes, many of which I feel I accomplished. Those included the updating of Memorial Park, sidewalk repair, new trees and some updated ordinances, including a......
I am really weary of Pennsylvania. We have lived outside Amity for 15 years, and we have never had a summer worse than this. The fracking is out of control, as the huge trucks ruin bridges and pollute our air, not only with the gas but also with the diesel fuel, as over 200 trucks pass our home......
Among other catastrophes, too much carbon in the atmosphere is acidifying the oceans at an unsustainable rate for life. “Murphycare” and the Environmental Protection Agency’s “war on coal” are headlines in U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy’s recent mailing, as Consol......
I wondered when you would condemn the U.S. Supreme Court over the Hobby Lobby decision. The newspaper’s editorial said it would create a slippery slope, but it was Obamacare that caused that slippery slope to be created by involving the government in people’s lives. What should scare......