Del Norte Triplicate Readers

When has Indian mascot ever been derisive?

Thank you, Dave Boker, for pointing out the obvious but ignored aspect of the Warrior controversy ("DN still in search of a Warrior symbol," Jan. 26).

The taxpayers and alumni of the community should not be held voiceless to the decision made by whatever current crop of young, impressionable students attending Del Norte at a moment in time decide when a mascot may be chosen.

I have an ongoing, 21-year commitment to Warrior sports so have a vested interest in the outcome of this decision. We have been the Warriors as long as I can remember; 60 or more from reading Coach Trone's column. When has the Indian mascot ever been a symbol of shame or derision? Why is it wrong to take pride in an aspect of our collective history that had gained respect and admiration in spite of a sometimes harsh and atrocious (on both sides) past?

Why do the minority aggrieved have the power to claim victim status and demand we all put aside our own preferences and yield to the madness that is political correctness? If we must not speak of that which offends, history is held hostage, and history held hostage is soon forgotten.

Ultimately, our collective memory will forget great American Indian leaders and their contributions, the shame of past injustices, and the lessons to be learned from both. We will not remember the brave, formidable warriors who fought so valiantly in battle against superior numbers and advanced technology, and whose indomitable spirit prevailed in gaining the admiration of even their most ferocious enemies.

Breaking out the bingo cards and pulling the slot machine handle is not going to engender the same respect in the history that will supplant the old.

Progress or just progressiveness? Madness. Is there not more than a little hypocrisy when an American Indian cannot be honored as mascot but a Greek Trojan or Spartan, English or French Knight, or Scandinavian Viking can? Madness.

A warrior's best weapon is always between his ears, but a martial implement makes him effective as well. Even the mythical Jedi with his mind powers has his trusty Light Saber. Must we hide our weapons behind trigger locks and biometric locked safes, never to be seen?

Rick Kelley, Crescent City

Regionalizing hospital would harm Del Norte

In a time where Washington politicians are telling us they are protecting the middle class from higher taxes, we see middle America families paying $2,000 to $3,000 more a year, while spending for poorly managed entitlements programs continues to protect politicians' re-election and special interests' "rice bowls."

This is exactly what Del Norte County and Curry County residents are facing from the Sutter Health organization. Sutter Health's efforts to challenge the recent injunction granted to our County Healthcare District that effectively blocked, at least temporarily, the take-over ownership of Sutter Coast Hospital and possibly reduce Sutter Coast Hospital services to merely a Critical Access facility only. This would mean eliminating 50 percent of Sutter Coast Hospital's bed capacity, restrict patients' average stay to less than four days, requirements for a physician on duty in the Emergency Room, and a general surgeon and intensive care specialist available on call.

More importantly, this regionalization of health care attempt by Sutter Health would result in patients having to travel further for healthcare, eliminate a number of current health care professional jobs who support our shrinking number of local doctors and discourages attracting other health-care professionals from relocating to our communities to provide service for our families.

Del Norte County has a huge community of older, retired and fixed income families that live from month to month. These folks simply can't afford the additional costs of travel, food and lodging that are so common when families seek medical attention out of area.

There are many organizations and professionals, here in Del Norte County, who are fighting against this power struggle by Sutter Health and these champions; like Dr. Kevin Caldwell and Dr. Gregory J. Duncan, are working for your families' health and security. I strongly urge Del Norte and Curry County residents make their voices heard with their County Board of Supervisors.

Paul Crandall, Klamath