Flying the flag shows respect for US

Regarding David Rooks column in the Sept. 14 Journal: David, I usually enjoy and endorse your columns but on this one "US flag deserves our respect" you missed the mark by a country mile.

An American flag flies over the tail of my motorcycle, from the tall pole in my yard, on the back of my leather vest and various decals here and there. In every case, it is a mark of my love and pride for this great country and for the many, many men and women who have sacrificed so much to make it what it is. When I see the flag displayed on a bike, a pickup or a car, in front of a bar, a church, synagogue or mosque or in a yard I know that person loves and respects this country as I do.

If you choose to disrespect me for this, that is your problem, not mine.

Lowell Holmgren

Rapid City

GOP health care plan a step back

The Republican-controlled Congress and presidency are poised to make the biggest mistake in our country’s health care history. They had seven years to develop an alternative to “Obamacare” (ACA) and came up with nothing.

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Now is their last chance to repeal ACA this year and what’s the plan? Their plan is to “punt” the problem to mostly cash-strapped states in the form of block grants. This means it is back to lifetime caps for medical expenses, no more protection for folks with “prior existing” conditions like pregnancy and again allowing “junk policies” with their illusion of coverage but with enormous deductibles and co-payments. It means letting the “freeloaders” back in the game by allowing people with no insurance to rely on the ER when life-threatening problems occur and getting free care. Not really free; the hospital bills the county, which pays for it with tax money from “indigent” health care funds.

Finally, just ask two questions: Why are we the only developed country to not have national single-payer health care? Why has not one country ever voted to end their national care system and establish a system like ours? Answer: their systems work, ours doesn’t.

Lou Leahy

Spearfish

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