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The Journal Gazette

Thursday, May 11, 2017 1:00 am


Banks' blind allegiance ill serves constituents

Jim Banks' May 3 piece paints him as a sad and empty Donald Trump apologist. It's an embarrassing glimpse of someone who should – and who must, for our sake – know better.

Banks praises Trump's “strong course on defense.” But his explanations reveal his willful blindness to the likeliest ramifications of Trump's choices and the millions of Americans protesting his recklessness.

For instance, Banks suggests there has been universal praise for Trump's “foreign policy review process.” He doesn't even attempt to demonstrate this bipartisan acclaim because neither the praise nor the process actually exist.

The decisiveness Banks tries to paint in a positive light is actually the terrifying reality of our inexperienced president acting on his whims. Trump himself admits his decisions are absent of process: he doesn't discuss, build coalition or seek permission because he'd rather be spontaneous and surprise everyone – Americans included.

Trump has proposed increasing military spending, but would do so by reappropriating funds that would feed the elderly, educate the young, support the poor and help care for the sick. To obscure his lack of empathy, Banks employs pathetic comparisons to the Obama years, even though there is no measure by which America is stronger or more trusted now than we were just six months ago.

All Trump has achieved with his defense/military policies is the virtual guarantee of pre-emptive war during his first term. He uses the military the same way a child plays with toy ships in the bathtub, and Banks is perfectly happy to enable and defend him. He is not serving us, but rather acting on behalf of a man who screams “America First!” while stripping away domestic securities in order to inflate a global police force.

Banks appears genuinely unfit for his office and sets a bad course for himself – and for us – by defending Trump's disastrous policies, even those that threaten us with war.

Guy Spriggs

Fort Wayne

Pre-surgery time out helps assure patient safety

For a surgical patient, their family members and friends, a wrong patient, wrong site or wrong surgical procedure is devastating. As a perioperative registered nurse, I'm committed to helping reduce surgical errors and improve patient outcomes by taking a time out for every patient, every time. By taking a “time out” before operative and other invasive procedures, a requirement of the health care-accrediting Joint Commission, surgical team members confirm the patient, the procedure and the surgery.

Every year, on National Time Out Day (June 14 this year), hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers around the country are reminded to evaluate the quality of their operating rooms' time out process. Time Out Day was established by the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses to support the protocol and build greater awareness for this important pre-op step among surgical team members.

Janette Funk

Gas City

Calling it 'fake news' simply states the obvious

While carping about President Donald Trump's use of the term “fake news” in her award winning-letter (April 30), Margaret Ankenbruck perpetuated a bit of fake news herself. She contends that it's Trump who is undermining America's “faith” in “legitimate and credible news sources.”

According to Gallup data, people had a healthy distrust of the mainstream media long before Trump arrived on the scene. Starting in 2004, these so-called “legitimate and credible news sources” began to take a serious nosedive in their trustworthiness. That nosedive continued throughout Barack Obama's presidency. Today, only four in 10 Americans say they have a great deal or even a fair amount of trust the mainstream media.

What's trouble in those numbers for the Democrats and the mainstream media is that independents and Republicans poll at nearly identical percentages. Only Democrats express any level of confidence in the media. Why not, every single poll shows a bias by journalists toward the Democratic Party? The same polls show that journalists' opinions on key issues are at odds with the opinions of the majority of the American people.

If you ask me, having to insist that you are not “fake news,” as Jeff Mason, head of the White House Correspondents Association, was forced to do at the White House Correspondents' Dinner comes off like Richard Nixon insisting that he's not a crook. When journalists have to try to convince the public that they are not fake news, they have probably already lost that argument – well, at least with six of 10 Americans.

Trump didn't create America's distrust of the media. The media created America's distrust of the media. Trump is only pointing out what is obvious to six out of 10 of us.

Doug Schumick

Fort Wayne