If diapers are too costly, don't have a baby

Re: the July 30 article "Diaper need forces some to steal, go without food."

After reading about the 41-year-old single mom who can't work because of a disability and is sacrificing food for diapers, I wondered why she had a baby if she had no means to take care of it.

She'll probably qualify for government funds because of the baby and she'll get disability pay.

But I ask, where's the personal responsibility? Seems many people expect society, via the government, to cover their financial needs - and see it as their right. And even with all the taxpayers' funds they receive, they still complain that there are no specific government funds for diapers!

Jean Barkley

Retired, Tucson

Learning some Spanish is a tremendous asset

Re: the July 18 column "ProEnglish group speaks xenophobic language of 'The Code.' "

Terri Bennett and ProEnglish have got it backward. After being raised, educated and employed as a registered nurse on California's central coast, I was frustrated by trying to communicate effectively with Spanish-only-speaking patients, so I took several medical Spanish classes. What a gift and résumé-building choice that was!

As our population continues to become increasingly Latino (and, guess what, ProEnglish, it's well known that it is), speaking Spanish will be a huge asset for any job seeker. Bennett might be less paranoid if she knew a little of what was being discussed around her in class. Learning to be a nurse, especially in the West, is about good communication skills with a huge variety of people. Adapt or lose out on a lot of opportunities.

Rhoda Flint

Retired nurse, Tucson

Republicans represent half of the country

Re: the July 18 editorial "Senate cliffhanger only underscores its dysfunction."

The editorial calls on Senate Republicans to quit using the Senate's rules to obstruct President Obama's nominations. That is no solution at all. The Republicans represent roughly half of our country and have every right to their own voice and role in the process. Rather than the nuclear option, the proper and correct solution is for President Obama to nominate candidates who can be approved by both sides of the aisle. Only then can he be a president for all Americans.

David C. Barber

Oro Valley

Brewer's views on guns need more thought

Re: the July 17 article "Brewer: Fla. case doesn't change her mind on 'stand your ground.' "

Gov. Jan Brewer said that anyone who has a gun and a right to carry it "would be very judicious in their actions and careful." She need look no further than A5 of the same day's Star to see the folly of such a statement. The person pictured holding a gun pointed at a store clerk is a Tucson police officer, who no doubt underwent many more thorough tests, psychological and otherwise, than an average gun owner is required to take and pass.

Given the amount of gun-related violence in this country, a more appropriate response by the governor should be to begin a careful review of our gun laws, and to include when the use of deadly force is justified and lawful.

Such a serious topic mandates it not be tacked on to unrelated legislation and given a 20-second promo by a gun-rights lobbyist.

A.P. Lorenzen

Retired, Tucson

Development a threat to wildlife, ecosystem

The San Pedro River is the last major free-flowing river in the American Southwest. It provides sustenance and shelter for millions of birds and other animals and performs vital ecosystem services for the human residents of Southeast Arizona. Its continued existence is in danger as a result of the approval of a certificate of water availability issued by the Arizona Department of Water Resources for a 7,000-home development in Sierra Vista.

Watchable wildlife activities generate recurring revenues statewide of $1.4 billion every year. In Cochise County that figure is $24 million. Wildlife generates more revenue for Arizona than hunting, fishing, golf or the gem show.

Whom do we want to determine the quality of life for us? The people who live here or someone whose only interest is lining their own pockets? Please contact Gov. Jan Brewer and urge her to overturn this disastrous decision.

Jerry Cagle

Retired cytotechnologist, Tucson