Mental illness


WATERLOO — Here’s a math challenge for you. One in five adults in the United States (43.8 million) will experience some form of mental illness.

One in 25 adults in the United States (98 million) will experience mental illness before age 24.

There also are long periods of delay (decades) between the first appearance of mental illness and when people finally get help. The number of guns in the United States as of Feb. 1 is 357 million legal and counting. So, how many guns does that give each mentally ill person in the United States?

As long as the Republicans and the gun lobby consider mental illness only after children are murdered and refuse to ban assault rifles, any attempt at positive gun control goes nowhere.

Now it’s up to you, kids.

Letter response


CEDAR FALLS — Regarding the William Witt letter Feb. 21: Mr. Witt has it backwards. Amendment II : Our judicial system shall allow supposedly mentally challenged glory seekers to mindfully pre-plan and initiate fake fire alarms, commit calculated murder, then consciously blend in with students fleeing for safety. All this will be done at the cost of fairness to the honest law abiding people who live in fear every day. I’d like to use the tired old phrase “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” and it fits now more than ever.

The people who are really doing the killing are the people who ignore the fact this country has never needed a no appeals death penalty more. If there is a lethal needle awaiting those who murder or rape, my bet is the problems will diminish greatly. This latest school shooting bad boy has admitted to everything. What are we waiting for, the next one?

I don’t own an automatic weapon, but I don’t think those who do and play by the rules should be penalized either, they’re not the ones letting these history book wanna-be’s terrorize our society.

GOP legislators


WATERLOO — There is no end to the maliciousness of the Republicans. They are advancing a bill in Iowa that would implement work requirements and drug testing for recipients of medical and food assistance.

Republicans surely know three quarters of these entitlements benefit children, the elderly and the disabled. Another 20 percent go to working households that still fall under the poverty level due to low wages. This bill is a non-problem in search of a non-solution. It reinforces ugly myths about the poor.

Why aren’t Republicans working on solving the real problems facing Iowa: low wages, lack of access to medical care, food and housing insecurity and more? Why aren’t Republicans spearheading reform of the failed experiment turning medical care over to private corporations?

Iowa can not afford a Republican-dominated Legislature. A Des Moines Register article printed April 3, 2017, reminded us the $927 million state surplus in 2013 turned into a $130 million deficit by 2017.

One exception


CEDAR FALLS — U.S. News and World report finds Iowa to be the best state in the nation.

Did they leave anything out? How about inpatient treatment for persons with mental health problems. We rank 50th.