Letters to the Editor

Would more black babies survive if NC expanded Medicaid?

NC infant mortality gap raises questions

I read your editorial about the rise of black infant mortality, even as the mortality rate among white babies dropped. (“A startling gap between black and white babies,” Jan. 24 Editorial)

Terry McDonald
Terry McDonald

A five-fold gap is staggering and shocking, but the fact that this gap increased over the last six years is even worse and it puzzled me. This coincides precisely with how long Obamacare has been around. Then I remembered: North Carolina did not expand Medicaid.

I wonder what the correlation is between Medicaid expansion and infant mortality. I know the research is pretty clear about health care – lack of insurance is associated with higher mortality rates.

My question is: Does that apply to babies too?

Terry McDonald, Charlotte

Frustrated by Dems’ stance on the wall

In response to “I don’t understand Republican thinking” (Jan. 29 Forum):

Bill Kniegge 2018
Bill Kniegge

The Trump administration tried numerous times to pass a budget bill to fund the border barrier.

Having a majority in the House and Senate doesn’t mean you have enough votes to pass everything the executive branch wants to pass. All the Democrats stood with Nancy Pelosi.

In 2006, even Chuck Schumer voted to pass a $600 million bill for border security that included a “wall” of fencing. What changed Chuck?

Hopefully one day Pelosi and Schumer will reveal to us their steadfastness for people who are not citizens and thus essentially deserve nothing.

Bill Kniegge, Waxhaw

Intel chiefs should call out Trump

Last week I watched members of the U.S. intelligence community brief Congress on live TV regarding intelligence about ISIS, North Korea, and Iran that contradicted what President Trump would have you believe. He called it “fake news.”

How gullible does this man think the people of this country are? It was broadcast on live TV and he wants me to believe I didn’t see it?

How is it possible that none of those who spoke to Congress had the courage to call Trump out for what he is – a liar?

Richard French, Davidson

On guns, don’t sue; seek reasonable laws

In response to “If Meck bans guns, my group will sue” (Feb. 1 Forum):

Please, Forum writer Paul Valone, go back inside your house and stop yelling at the kids to get off of your lawn.

Instead, use your dwindling influence and power, along with that of the increasingly unimportant NRA, to close the gun show loophole, ban bump stocks, and place reasonable monitoring measures in place for both gun and ammunition purchases.

Fred Caudill, Charlotte

Prevent raiding of school building fund

In response to “NC Senate GOP offers no-borrow plan that would build, fix schools” (Jan. 31):

Richard Alsop
Richard Alsop

The N.C. Senate and House proposals for a significant increase in school construction and refurbishment funding were a great start to our 2019-20 legislative session.

As Director of Advocacy for the N.C. Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, I observed that when Rep. Dean Arp proposed the State Capital Infrastructure Fund in 2017 – the basis for the Senate initiative – the expressed concern was not so much that the fund would dry up in an economic downturn, but that it could be raided for other uses if not tightly controlled.

Reaching agreement on language that keeps the fund focused on the ever-present needs in our schools is going to be the real workout of what could be the defining achievement of this legislative session.

Richard Alsop, Charlotte

Sending mixed messages on alcohol

Frank McGuirt
Frank McGuirt MLewis

Alcohol is our society’s drug of choice. It’s legal, but it’s deadly and we continue to send mixed messages about it to our youth. The Feb. 1 article “Charlotte area will see a 6-pack of beer fests before spring’s arrival,” is a prime example.

Parents lecture their children about the dangers of drugs and then go use one. To worsen things, the drug is glorified in the entertainment media. The TV commercials feature beautiful people, catchy tunes and inviting scenes.

In the meantime, we will hear or read news reports of yet another fatal car crash, another teen death due to alcohol poisoning, or another spouse abuse case involving the drug alcohol.

I am not advocating prohibition, that didn’t work. But I do advocate common sense.

Frank McGuirt, Wingate