Viewpoints

Wed
11
Sep

Letter to the Editor: What lies beneath: The stigma of mental health issues

To the Editor:

We all wear masks in various aspects of our lives to fulfill our daily roles, to be professional, to meet expectations. For people who experience mental health difficulties, including anyone with an eating disorder diagnosis, the mask is one that they often struggle to discard. The idea of being completely honest about who we are, admitting that we have struggles and difficulties is often overwhelming. We all want to fit in; to belong, and exposing ourselves as somebody who is struggling or less than perfect brings significant turmoil, angst, and distress. People may struggle with coming to terms with a diagnosis of mental illness and a journey to recovery which may not be straightforward.

Wed
04
Sep

Letter to the Editor: Parents and adult fans: The biggest challenge facing high school sports today

To the Editor:

Inappropriate adult behaviors at high school athletic events across the country have reached epidemic proportion.

When more than 2,000 high school athletic directors were asked in a recent national survey what they like least about their job, 62.3 percent said it was, “dealing with aggressive parents and adult fans.”

And the men and women who referee or umpire those contests agree. In fact, almost 60% of new officials registered in Iowa in 2016-2017 did not return to officiate in 2017-2018, and unruly parents are often cited as a major reason why. As a result, there is a growing shortage of high school officials here in Iowa, and in baseball, football, track and field, and wrestling, the IHSAA is seeing record lows. No officials means no games.

If you are a parent attending a high school athletic event this fall, you can help by following these six guidelines:

Wed
04
Sep

Letter to the Editor: Support our local hospital and be part of the political process by caucusing in 2020

To the Editor:

How about some good news? Here’s some! At our own local hospital, Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH), anyone can go to the Wellness Clinic, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., for very inexpensive and comprehensive lab tests. It took me 15 minutes last week for a complete package of lab tests. Call 563-568-3411 for more information.

What a great way to help support our small, hometown hospital, instead of “big box” clinics which charge over $1,000 for fewer tests! Of course, Medicare helps pay for us seniors, but isn’t this part of the reason we hear Medicare is having trouble?

Wed
28
Aug

Letter to the Editor: Concerned with USMCA and Big Pharma

To the Editor:

Senator Joni Ernst has stated that she is prioritizing lowering prescription drug costs for Iowans. She is also an ardent supporter of USMCA and has stated that Iowans need this legislation. In supporting both bills, Ernst has put herself in quite a conundrum.

The USMCA would protect pharmaceutical companies from generic competition. At issue is a section of the USMCA that would protect pharmaceutical companies with new biologics from generic competition, so-called “biosimilars.” Those most likely to be affected are receiving treatment for cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. Even though only two percent of patients in the U.S. use biologic medicines, they represent 40 percent of the total prescribed drug expenditure.

Wed
28
Aug

Letter to the Editor: Benefits of keeping the Lansing swimming pool open

To the Editor:

The people of Lansing wish to express their appreciation to the Park and Rec Board and the City Council for getting the Lansing swimming pool up and running this summer. This is the 50th anniversary of the pool. And as we all know, when you hit 50 (or even sooner), things don’t work quite like they used to.

Although it was a late start, due to technical difficulties, the pool was a godsend for many during the hot days of the last half of the summer. We appreciate  the lifeguards, and past and present pool managers for all their dedication, especially Patty Olson, Beth Galema, Spencer Colsch and Chloe Severson, plus those who work at maintaining a safe pool, like Rick Welsh, who has kept the chemicals and maintenance of the pool up-to-date for 20-plus years.

Running a summer pool is an expensive enterprise and we know that the income from the pool can never equal the expenses created, but there are untold values in having a community pool.

Wed
21
Aug

Word for Word 8/21/19

Rev. Ron Pederson
Rev. Ron Pederson

How Can We Be Ready To Meet Our Maker?
    
Jesus said:  “Because I live, you shall live also” (John 14:19)

Certainly we cannot make ourselves alive spiritually. That would be impossible. For in order for us make ourselves spiritually alive we would have to keep all the commandments perfectly. God’s Law demands that we be perfect. God is perfect and He demands no less of us. Jesus said: “Be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” All it takes is just one sin and we stand condemned before God.  Jms writes: “Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” And even if were able to avoid outward sins, God’s Law demands that we must be sinless in all our thoughts too. And that means we must never have one thought of lust, revenge, or jealously, or hold any grudges against anyone.

Wed
21
Aug

Letter to the Editor: The fight to save the Affordable Care Act

To the Editor:

The fight to save the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and affordable healthcare isn’t over for Iowans. This time the Trump Administration is trying to repeal the ACA through the courts. The case is currently before the 5th Circuit of Appeals and the health care of hundreds of thousands of Iowans hangs in the balance.

If the lawsuit is successful, Iowans will be affected by higher premiums, loss of protections on pre-existing conditions, and a rise in prescription drug charges. We cannot return to a time when women pay more, seniors pay more, and young people are no longer covered by their parents’ insurance. The health care of 187,000 Iowans is at risk.

Wed
14
Aug

Word for Word 8/14/19

Fr. Mark Osterhaus
Fr. Mark Osterhaus

In late July, Dr. Michael Luick-Thrams gave a presentation at St. Patrick Church in Waukon.  He covered two themes:  anti-German hysteria during World War I, and Ku Klux Klan activities in Northeast Iowa during the 1920’s. Dr. Luick-Thrams had given other presentations in our community over the summer, including a Memorial Day presentation on POWs from the Midwest in German POW camps during WWII, as well as their German counterparts held at camps near Clarinda and Algona, Iowa. Dr. Luick-Thrams gave example after example of how easy it is to pick a race, an ethnic group, or religious group and use them as scapegoats for what ever we think is wrong with our society. The presentation reminded me of when I was in high school, we told “Polack” jokes. While the dominant group can say this is all “in good fun”, the wounds delivered by our comments and actions can last a long time.

Wed
07
Aug

Letter to the Editor: We are supposed to be a united nation

To the Editor:

What is the meaning of equal? To some it is just a five-letter word with no meaning!

It should not matter if you are Democrat or Republican. It should not matter your skin color, your religion or your nationality! It should not matter if you are a man or woman. It should not matter if you are a single homeowner or a large company! Equal should mean the same for everyone and everyone should be treated as such!

Can there be any respect for those that know the meaning of equal, but do not think it applies to everyone?

Let me refresh them about the meaning of equal - alike in quantity, value, rank, ability, etc., even, one who or which is equal!

There needs to be a change! Maybe there are other words they need help with the meaning! Knowing the meaning, I guess, does not  mean they are honest enough to follow that meaning!

Honest: without deceit or fraud; upright; sincere.

Wed
31
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Continuing to work to assure the long-term viability of VMH

To the Editor:

This letter is in response to Mayor Pat Stone’s column in the July 24 issue of The Standard.

As a councilman for Waukon, I have been involved in the monitoring of the developments related to the economic situation with Veterans Memorial Hospital since I took my seat just over a year ago. The hospital is in the midst of a several year financial downturn due to many different factors.

VMH’s financial struggles are not foreign to critical access hospitals. VMH has outperformed other critical access hospitals of similar size and type. That level of hospital is averaging -10% outcomes on their budgets.

Fortunately, the majority of the council (Hatlan, Rausch and Ellingson) has shown a strong commitment to support VMH, its board, and staff through these times of struggle.

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