For President Michael Graham of Xavier University to introduce Nancy Zimpher, the new president of the University of Cincinnati prior to the Crosstown Shootout was a quality addition to what is annually the most exciting two hours in Cincinnati sports. It set the tone for re-celebrating two great basketball traditions and two great schools, which we are lucky to have in our city.
Dave Schwartz, College Hill
It is time for mental health parity
I am writing in response to the article, "House: Cover mental illness" (Feb. 5). After 16 years of work on insurance parity, the House has voted to pass H.B. 225, providing insurance coverage for mental health services equal to that of other health concerns. If passed by the Senate, tens of thousands of Ohio citizens will be able to receive treatment promoting health and productivity.
More than 85 percent of persons with depression and 70 percent to 90 percent persons with anxiety recover with treatment. If the Ohio Senate passes mental health parity, Ohio will join the other 35 other states already providing insurance parity. The cost is minimal, projected to raise insurance premiums by less than 1 percent. It is time we eliminate discrimination against people with mental illness. One in five Americans will have a mental illness episode in their lifetime. That person could be any one of us.
Mary Grover, Mount Auburn, Director of education, The Mental Health Association of the Cincinnati area
Angry at Bush crony's contract
Halliburton was bad enough, but it really made my blood boil when I learned that National Media Inc. of Alexandria, Va., a firm working for President Bush's re-election campaign, was awarded a cut of the administration's government funded $12.6 million advertising effort promoting Bush's new Medicare law.
The ad, which the White House defends as an educational public service announcement, is clearly little more than a taxpayer funded political commercial, and one that is being used to help enrich a Republican media firm to boot. Yet, this is another disgusting example of Bush "crony" capitalism.
Mark Rogers, Westwood
Unhappy with helping Convergys
I was recently downtown for a job interview and only had enough change for 44 minutes on the parking meter. Having returned after 50 minutes, I found a $14 ticket on my windshield. I realized I exceeded the parking time limit, but after giving it some thought I came to this conclusion: Recently, the city of Cincinnati awarded Convergys Corporation $52.2 million to keep them downtown. As part of the agreement with the city, Convergys agreed to retain and increase their local employee base. Unfortunately 26 others and myself, who were Convergys' employees, found ourselves out of a job on Jan. 21. Ironically, the $14 I pay to the city may help keep Convergys downtown. I am suddenly bursting with civic pride.
Mike Engel, Florence
High schooler worried about morality
I'm a junior in high school, and in the minority regarding today's morals. It's sad, but true that "sex" sells and marketers fully capsize on this fact. The media and Internet help promote the latest immoral act by sensationalism.
As teenagers, we see it played over and over, which leads us to believe that it is not a big deal, not so bad, or nothing's wrong with it. Madonna can kiss Britney Spears publicly, but she does not permit her own daughter to watch television. Hollywood celebrities accept awards on live television, but they cannot control their language. If adults cannot control themselves, then why should we?
Brittany Robinson, Bethel-Tate High School
Muslims are feeling the humiliation
The letter writer ("Columnist should be outraged by 9/11." Feb. 5) missed the point of tenured Professor Richard D. Erlich's "Your Voice" column, ("Conflict with Islam holds great peril" Feb. 3).
"People with a glorious past and hope for a great future do not take well to repeated humiliation" refers to the Muslim cultures currently targeted, not America. Perhaps Erlich does not express outrage because he is an academic with knowledge of the history of the region. We should all heed his warning and not be so arrogant in our world view. Our presence in Iraq and Afghanistan and our threats towards Iran, Syria and others will only add fuel to the fire, ultimately leading to a much greater tragedy than 9/11.
Alison Guneyik, Silverton
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