Letters to the Editor

O'Reilly hypocritical with view on political hatred

So, Bill O'Reilly longs for the days when political debate excluded hatred, does he? ("Mistakes were made, but extreme left's claims of Iraq 'lies' ring hollow," Perspective, May 27) Well, he certainly has an odd way of showing it.

Immediately after declaring the "American way" is to remain friends after a disagreement, he uses "fanatics" and "irresponsible America haters" to describe not just public figures, but every U.S. citizen who disagrees with him. Hardworking parents and veterans are irrational, insane and "despise their country" if they don't agree with his personal viewpoint.

Gee, Bill. Some of this hatred we see has a rather obvious source.

Blasting elected officials has been an American pastime since the first election, but there's a disturbing trend toward verbally attacking private citizens. This, sadly, isn't limited to hate-for-profit demagogues like O'Reilly.

Falsely accusing individuals of the Capitol crime of treason ("Critics can't oppose the war and also support our troops," To The Editor, May 24) just isn't the way to promote a viewpoint. When cruely insulting those who helped maintain and defend this country is required, your position requires significantly more thought.

I look forward to the day, may it come soon, when hatemongers and slander are replaced with facts and sound logic.

Lawrence Major


HPV vaccine can save lives

It appears that now Georgians will be the latest to have their freedom of health choices trampled upon by the religious conservatives. The recent news that the routine vaccination against the human papillomavirus (HPV - which is a contributing factor to deadly cervical cancer in women) has been derailed is devastating. Our daughters deserve to have access to any medical breakthroughs which may, in fact, save their lives.

My dearest friend, a 32-year-young mother, recently was diagnosed with HPV. Talk about a religious conservative: she's a Catholic woman who married her first love (the only man she's ever slept with), had three children, regularly prays and attends church activities - and contracted HPV. She was just diagnosed last month and it was a complete shock to her. She had been careful; she had played by the rules. And still she has unknowingly risked her health.

She told me yesterday that she is definitely planning to have both of her daughters vaccinated when they are of the age to receive the shot - whether or not insurance or the state will approve.

Vaccinating girls against a virus that is transmitted sexually is no more encouraging promiscuity than requiring seat belts encourages reckless driving. It is protection for our future mothers, wives, sisters and friends. An early vaccine would not only protect those who may engage in sexual activity earlier, but it will also prevent infection of women who, years later, marry and start a family.

So, I will continue to pray. I will pray that the religious right will stop controlling our access to protect our health. I will pray for my own children that they will not contract these potentially life-threatening viruses. And, I pray that, at the very least, these and other vaccines will be made available - even if only by choice and not by law.

Kimberly Towne

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