Letters to the Editor

The press should be careful not to feed unfounded fears about vaccines

Compiled by the Star-Telegram editorial board

A nurse administers a flu shot at Perry Memorial Hospital in Princeton, Illinois, on Oct. 12, 2017. MUST CREDIT: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg
A nurse administers a flu shot at Perry Memorial Hospital in Princeton, Illinois, on Oct. 12, 2017. MUST CREDIT: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg Bloomberg

Don’t feed into anti-vaxxers

As a physician, I think it is time for the responsible press to stop referring to acute flaccid myelitis as “polio-like.” (Oct. 16, 1A, “At 5, she’s fighting off rare polio-like disease”)

The disease has no known cause but clearly isn’t polio. We have been able to identify the polio virus for decades.

Other syndromes mimic polio: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (or Lou Gerhig’s disease), Guillain-Barré syndrome, inflammatory polyneuropathy and others. None is referred to as “polio-like.”

Using this description only inflames the anti-vaccination dialogue and puts the community as a whole at risk.

Charles Andrews,

Fort Worth

Enough is enough at city hall

As an Arlington resident, I question why our city council and mayor are so riled up about the proposal on term limits in the upcoming general election. (Oct. 10, 1A, “Term-limits petition leader faces demands”)

Aren’t six years (three two-year terms) enough for an individual to serve in either of those positions?

When the mayor’s office sends taxpayer-funded letters to all our homes vigorously opposing this issue, and even threatening legal action should it pass, there may be a reason.

That reason may be that our city council has become more of a members-only “country club” than a council working for the city’s residents. Members enjoy perks such as the city’s private boxes at Rangers and Cowboys games and have avoided addressing local issues, such as banning short-term rentals, that have been dragging on for more than a year.

Vote yes on term limits.

Ron Hiett,

Arlington

This didn’t make driving any better

The addition of Republican-backed toll roads in Tarrant County was not an “upgrade.” It’s a great example of a $3.7 billion bait and switch.

In northeast Tarrant County, we were told that the project would include one toll lane and one additional free lane for Loop 820.

Proponents got everyone to agree and then built two toll lanes and no free lanes, with the promise of an additional free lane within five to seven years — about long enough for everyone to forget the “promise.”

None of the ineptly designed “upgrades” has eliminated any of the congestion.

It is time for a change at the Texas Department of Transportation, and time to remove the Republican impediment to a decent highway system in Tarrant County.

Bill Nolte,

Fort Worth

A fancy pathway to nowhere?

Fort Worth’s bond package of 2014 included $876,000 for a sidewalk on West Vickery Boulevard from Westridge Avenue to Texas 183 and Southwest Boulevard.

I attended the city’s preconstruction meeting Dec. 19, 2016, and asked why we needed a sidewalk when the money could be spent where it was needed: in street repairs.

Who is going to walk on this sidewalk?

Robert Bashein,

Fort Worth

Yes, the election is about oil

Sen. Ted Cruz has a campaign ad that succinctly sums up his priorities with the statement that “Ted Cruz is leading the fight for the oil and gas industry.” His ad also decries Rep. Beto O’Roarke for wanting to stop exporting our natural resources and to use them domestically.

But weren’t we told that the justification for poisoning rivers and farm land, polluting aquifers and seizing land through eminent domain was so we could curtail imports of foreign oil?

I’m tired of the industry frontmen in Washington not representing me, so I’ll be voting for the guy who will lead the fight for the average American for a change.

Edward C. Wyman,

Fort Worth

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