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for Dec. 24, 2010


Sugar doesn't cause problems

In response to Jolly Hibbit's letter concerning biotech beets and possible sugar shortage (or) high prices, all I can say is: Are you serious?

Let me address each of her ridiculous points in the order she did.

First, she stated that because of obese Americans and fat and lazy children, the sugar shortage would be a "very positive change," saying that "overweight Americans burden our healthcare systems" with diabetes and tooth decay.

How nave can she be? I agree that an increasing number of Americans are becoming obese, but sugar is only a very small cause of this. The main cause? A change in how society thinks -- people have gotten lazy, seeing no benefit to physical activity until it is too late and they become obese. Granted, there are obesity cases that are hereditary, but there again, sugar is not the cause.

Diabetes, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, happens when "the pancreas either produces little or no insulin" and "is most often associated with older age, obesity, family history of diabetes ... physical inactivity...." Sugar alone does not cause obesity or diabetes. Get your facts straight.

She says sugar causes decaying teeth -- I say get a toothbrush. ... Anything will erode teeth if they are not properly brushed.

Last, she says farmers should grow something else, because sugar is "just empty calories." I'd like to see her eat (or) drink anything without sugar in it -- looks like she's left with water, fruits and vegetables (which all have natural sugars straight from the earth).

Andrew Wheeler

Delco, Idaho

Editorial was disrespectful

Your editorial on taxes is simplistic and shortsighted and your caricatures of President Obama and the Democratic leaders of the House and Senate are mean-spirited and disrespectful.

In a democracy, we elect our leaders to take care of the business of government. That business includes providing for public safety, building and maintaining our transportation infrastructure, regulating banking and business practices, educating our children, agricultural research and many other important services. We pay for all this with our taxes.

The ability to earn a living, to raise a family, and even to get rich comes from having a safe, civilized and educated society. The next time you plan to write such an anti-tax editorial, think for a moment what life would be like without police and fire protection, without safe roads and bridges, without schools, without financial regulation, without a USDA.

Wealthy people didn't get rich on their own, their money did not fall from the sky, they used the infrastructure and government services paid for by all the taxpaying citizens of our state and country. They profited more than others and they can pay more in taxes to help support the society that has been good to them. We can all work together or we can indulge selfishness and greed. If the latter is the case, this great country will surely fail.

Jim Gilbert

Molalla, Ore.



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