The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Our Readers Speak

April 7, 2013

Our Readers Speak — Sunday, April 7, 2013

Hyde Amendment was not part of law

Randy Crawford and Renate Pore employ a sleight-of-hand act to convince us that the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is governed by the Hyde Amendment. It is not.

As Mr. Crawford’s own research shows, the Stupak-Pitt amendment, imposing the Hyde Amendment on Obamacare, was passed only in the House and not accepted by the U.S. Senate; hence, the amendment never became law.

If the Democratic senatorial leadership had wanted Obamacare to be covered by the Hyde Amendment, the Senate would have passed the Stupak-Pitt amendment. If President Obama had wanted Obamacare to be governed by the Hyde Amendment, he would have called Harry Reid and urged the Senate to pass the Stupak-Pitt amendment.

Thus, to argue that Obamacare is “carefully structured to uphold the Hyde Amendment” is ludicrous. On the contrary, all the Democratic machinations around the narrow passage of Obamacare were “carefully structured” to prevent the Hyde Amendment from governing Obamacare.

The president’s ruse to buy votes for Obamacare with an executive order “applying the Hyde Amendment” to the law is just that, a ruse. President Obama is free to change that executive order at his convenience or simply ignore it. It is not part of the law passed by Congress.

When we must have pro-life organizations to protect our innocent unborn babies from dying such horrible deaths in a country that was founded on liberty and justice for all, it is a very sad day in America. To quote our former President Reagan, “Abortion is advocated only by persons who have themselves been born.”

Hilda Shorter

President,

Raleigh County Chapter

Right to Life

Sophia

Strip mining damages lives, property values

What more needs to be said about mountaintop removal destruction and strip mining destruction that hasn’t already been said by any and every known group and individual that has come to West Virginia to study it? It is a killer for its citizens and totally destroys the ecosystem of the affected areas.

Just recently in the paper it stated that southern West Virginia counties are the unhealthiest by far, and why? You got it, MTR and strip mining.

Just take a drive from Oak Hill down W.Va. 61 to Marmet and take a good, long hard look, or down 625 toward Mossy where coal truck after coal truck and equipment on a daily basis destroy people’s lives.

There are people out there who are so adversely affected by the industry that they have nothing at all to do with but they have to suffer because of not having any kind of protection from its elected officials because they are in the pockets of the coal industry. Entire lives are disrupted. They cannot sit on their own porches or have any kind of decent yard or cookouts or hang clothes out or have a white fence around their house.

Nasty coal dust and coal muck and mud from passing coal trucks and dust from passing train cars and the all-around bad air to breathe because of this. Property values have plummeted because of these things. You cannot give a house away if there is anything coal-related close to it or drives by it, but you still have to pay the assessed taxes on your house.

Coal is not West Virginia. It is destroying West Virginia.

James D. Atkins

Oak Hill

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