REDUCING HARM FOR THE VULNERABLE
First, cut out any derogatory, dehumanizing language about the homeless. Sue Lani Madsen's column in the Spokesman-Review (3/23/19): "We flushed out a woman and a dog sleeping in a red car, a woman crashed out on a mattress; and the pitiful 85 percent showing up nightly at the House of Charity drunk, drugged or addicted."
We are talking about human beings here. Words matter. Dehumanizing language is just wrong.
And second, regarding the blue lights installed in the Spokane downtown library to deter drug use, without a safe injection site, people in desperate situations will keep injecting in public spaces. No one mentioned that needles have now been found in the bookshelves and other very public places in that library, but at least the plumbing bills have gone down. Wow.
The article questioned whether we are creating a new problem. Absolutely. Just wait for the first innocent child to prick their finger on a needle from a bookshelf. Until we meet vulnerable people where they are with compassion and understanding, no one is going to improve. Lynn Everson at the Spokane Regional Health District's needle exchange has exchanged needles for thousands of clients for 30 years. She does not judge anyone and provides the one safety net in their life. This is where drug addicts go when they are ready for help.
As controversial as it may seem, we need safe injection sites in Spokane. Let's join the dozens of other cities who are facing this hard fact and doing something about it.
Readers respond to a New York Times report on Inlander.com about Attorney General William Bar's announcement that Robert Mueller found no collusion between Trump and Russia (3/25/2019):
Vicki Forslund Bordieri: I trust Mueller, and I want to read his words. Not Barr's.
Eric R. Wiksten: So far all we have is a situation like a street cop saying "nothing to see here." We knew Barr would pull something like this regardless of the report as evidenced by Barr's history. Until we actually see Mueller's report or he testifies in front of Congress, this is all lipstick on a pig, much ado about nothing.
Patrick Terrill: "Doesn't exonerate"? Doesn't it bother people that $25 million was thrown down the toilet investigating a crime that never happened?
Mary K. Simmons: I think we should keep investigating him like we do Hillary... Seems to be the American way. ♦