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Don’t pay students’ debt

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ proposal to cancel $1.6 trillion in student loan debt (“Sanders would pay off all student debt,” World-Herald, June 30) is the wrong way to tackle the problem.

When people take out loans to go to school, they do so willingly, with a promise to pay them back. The government isn’t responsible for them; the people who sign the promissory notes are.

What other consumer loans would be next on the list for the government to pay off? Credit cards? Car loans? Payday loans?

I agree that ballooning student loan debt is a threat to the economy, like the mortgage crisis was, and that something should be done to fix it.

But wiping out everyone’s student loans and putting the balance on the government’s credit card isn’t the right answer.

Eric Foster, Lincoln

Not flag-counting

In response to Al Clair’s July 3 Public Pulse letter criticizing the lack of an American flag display on either night of the recent Democratic debates, I also noticed the absence of the flag.

However, like most everyone else, I watched both nights of the debate to hear what each candidate proposed to do for our country, not to count the number of flags being –- or not being — displayed on the stage.

I do not question Clair’s patriotism, and I honor his service to our country.

But if I had tuned in to witness a forest of flags and politicians shamelessly pandering to our patriotism, I could have watched a typical Trump rally.

Sue Murray, Omaha

Times are changing

Ginger Gosch of Omaha began her July 1 Public Pulse, “I’m confused. Didn’t the Democrats pass the Affordable Health Care Act in 2009?

And, now liberals are wanting to pass Medicare for all.”

And I tend to agree with her: She is confused.

The ACA option was the Democrats’ second or third choice.

President Barack Obama favored both single payer and the public option, but there was virtually no Republican support, and many Democrats wavered because of possible repercussions back home or were cautious lest they accomplish nothing.

Fortunately, times are changing. In the past 10 years, the majority of Americans have experienced health insurance and prescription cost hikes that border on the criminal.

And Americans are realizing that the health care industry is similar to a gambling casino, where the odds favor the house that does not hesitate to take everything, even bankrupting its customers.

Yes, it is becoming more and more apparent that government regulation, protection and control are needed to safeguard Americans from the hungry wolves who have taken over the health care industry.

Welfare, safety and economic security are at stake, and Republicans refuse to do anything about fixing the system.

Vote these selfish people out of office if you want to see a health care system that cares and serves all people equally.

Ron Holscher, Ogallala, Neb.

Vet appreciation

Recently my wife, Nancy, and I were at Charleston’s on First National Bank Parkway with a friend, Jack Cohen, who is from Omaha but now lives in Florida.

I had on my World War II veteran cap, which I often wear.

When it became time to pay the bill, the waiter informed us that a gentleman sitting at another table had paid it.

Since he had already left, I couldn’t thank him, so am taking this opportunity to do so.

If you enjoy your freedom, thank a veteran.

Gil Hill, Omaha

Enforce immigration laws

I am writing in response to the June 27 Midlands Voices (“Supporting Nebraska immigrants”).

I view the issue of undocumented immigrants in a very different way from the authors of that piece, State Sens. Tony Vargas and Megan Hunt.

I find it ironic that two of our lawmakers are encouraging Nebraskans to condone the illegal actions of immigrants who, by the very act of entering the United States without proper authorization/documentation, have committed a crime. Under existing immigration laws, they can be charged with a misdemeanor for the first offense or a felony for subsequent offenses.

It seem like a very easy-to-understand concept to me.

Either people enter the United States legally, with proper documentation and through a legal port of entry, or they don’t. There isn’t any ambiguity.

If we are a country of laws, why aren’t existing immigration laws being enforced?

Jeffrey S. Bird, Omaha

It’s not for everyone

One year ago, my husband and I collected signatures for Medicaid expansion for thousands of Nebraskans who needed help with health care insurance and the high costs of medical care. Enough signatures were collected, the issue made it onto the November ballot and it was passed by a majority of voters.

But the state has postponed implementation of the law until October 2020 and added complex requirements — none of which were authorized by the voters. This leaves the health of an estimated 90,000 Nebraskans, many of whom live in rural communities, in jeopardy for two more years.

At the same time, the Lincoln and Omaha chambers of commerce are advertising the benefits of job opportunities in Nebraska.

Perhaps the chambers should take a look at the bills not passed by our Legislature in support of health care, LGBTQ equal rights and voter rights and the fact that health care insurance is a right not being offered to our citizens.

With many young workers from other places being given so many options for jobs and establishing homes and roots in a community, Nebraskans need to realize that our motto has changed from the “Good Life” to “Honestly, it’s not for everyone.”

What a great recruiting tool that motto must be, but at least it is truth in advertising.

Robert Benzel, Omaha

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