The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


June 10, 2014

Readers' Forum 6-10 | Transplant operation, care should be free

JOHNSTOWN — Is the Donate Life PA Act missing something?

Every person, not only in Pennsylvania but throughout the United States, who needs an organ or tissue transplant of any kind should have no expense whatsoever associated with it.

The transplant, follow-up care and all medications can be free of charge. If not, then only those of means – the wealthy – would benefit from this act, and that would be discriminatory, wouldn’t it?

Solution: Cease all state and federal bonuses paid to employees. Place the allocated funds into one account. To that account, add 2.5 percent of salaries from elected officials at the state level, and 5 percent at the federal. Kindhearted souls will also contribute. They always do.

Considering Pennsylvania has the second-largest population of retired persons, over the next 20 years, we could be the mecca of organ recovery.

The government’s failure to curtail our statewide and nationwide drug epidemic may contribute to younger donors.

The choice, the decision made with mind and heart that gives freely to others for organs and tissue donation, will be replaced by a government act that takes.

Organ and tissue transplants can enhance, extend and contribute to saving lives. But make no mistake, they cannot give life. Only God can do that.

Rose Fritz


Our future lies with renewable energy

This letter is in response to numerous letters written to the Readers’ Forum recently on the subject of coal power and climate change.

It is true that the earth’s climate fluctuates over time, naturally, in patterns of cooling and warming. However, following those patterns, the earth should currently be in a period of cooling. It’s not.

Since the industrial revolution, our planet has been warming exponentially. This warming, coinciding exactly with increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, has increased deforestation and the burning of fossil fuels. While proving that humans are causing climate change is impossible, the evidence overwhelmingly supports it.

We may choose to ignore facts that do not support our opinions for political reasons or short-term economic benefits, but that ignorance will not change the facts.

Coal is not our future. It may be our past, and the only way we are currently equipped to fuel our country, but it is finite. If we are to build an America that will prosper long after the coal is gone, we must begin to move away from this nonrenewable energy infrastructure, creating jobs and an economy built around renewable energy technologies.

I write not as some Obama-loving enviro-nut bent on destroying America, but as a young adult soon to enter the job market, concerned about the sort of world I and future generations will call home.

Rebecca Dilla


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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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