Sunday, February 16, 1997
Helmet law repeal
Last week, the Senate State Affairs committee approved a bill
that would repeal the motorcycle helmet law.
The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration reports
helmets decrease the severity of injury, the likelihood of death
and the overall cost of medical care. Its study for 1995 showed
in-patient hospital charges for non-helmeted victims were 25 percent
higher than for helmeted victims.
Brackenridge Hospital in Austin says 41 percent of injured
motorcyclists had no insurance and received full trauma, acute
hospitalization and rehabilitative services. This level of care
is funded by the public.
Similar to safety belts and child restraint seats, helmets
cannot and do not provide total protection against head injury
or death, but they do reduce the incidence and cost of both.
Do we pay for people who choose to risk their health? Do we
keep people who don't wear helmets from utilizing public health
care? If so, what about people injured when they don't wear seatbelts?
Do we mandate additional insurance for riders to cover health
The questions ar complex and there appears no easy answer.
Please urge Austin to explore all the issues before making decisions.
Write Rep. Bob Hunter, P.O. Box 2910, Austin, TX 78768-2910.
Save that water
We have recently been reading in our classroom about the importance
of conserving water, and we want the people of our community to
be aware of some ways to conserve water.
The first way is by not letting the water run when you brush
your teeth. If you just wet your brush and turn off the water,
you can save nine gallons of water each time. That could be 27
gallons of water saved every day.
The second way is by filling up the basin when washing dishes
and rinsing the dishes there instead of letting the water run.
You can save up to 25 gallons each time you wash dishes. This
extra water you save could be used to wash your dog or water your
The third way is by plugging the tub before you run the water
for your bath. If you do this, you can save about three gallons
of water in just 30 seconds. You can enjoy your bath knowing you
didn't waste any water.
The fourth way is by keeping a cool jug of water in the refrigerator
instead of running the tap and waiting for it to get cold. You
will save money, water and valuable time by using this tip.
A final way to conserve water is by watering the lawn in the
morning before it gets too hot outside. If we all work together,
we will have beautiful, green neighborhoods.
We hope people who read your newspaper will begin to use these
water-saving ideas to make our community a better place.
MRS. KUNTZ'S THIRD GRADE CLASS
Bad word choice
Debra Guerra is associated with the Human Relations Committee
and the Martin Luther King Luncheon and reception and in general
always appreciates diversity of races and cultures. But she made
a bad choice of words in her Feb. 12 article, "Black History
doesn't just mean Dr. King, Rosa Park," by referring to African-American
hair in a derogatory fashion.
Debra refered to her cousin as "nappy-headed." This
was a term used to describe African-American hair when people
were ignorant of the beauty and the versatility of African-American
There is no other race with more diverse skin color, hair color
and texture than African-Americans. Stereotypes used in this fashion
are very demeaning, especially coming from someone who is outspoken
in appreciating diversity of the races.
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