Letters from the week of September 17

Janovy: “Surgery Day,” September 3

This Hurts

I just finished reading “Surgery Day.” I can’t help but be appalled by the amount of health-care campaign contributions everyone in the metro’s congressional delegation receives, not to mention all the other elected officeholders around the country. I just finished paying around $40,000 out of pocket (money that I don’t have) with thousands more in bills to come. All for a hip surgery I had to have at 24, while insured. My maximum out-of-pocket for an out-of-network procedure is $5,000, yet I have spent 10 times that much because my insurance company simply decides not to pay. Currently, my insurance company takes around $230 directly from my bank account each month yet won’t cover a serious operation that I need to function for the rest of my life. Government will never do anything that can please everyone, but someone needs to regulate these assholes that we rely on for health insurance right now.

Samantha Bernstein
Shawnee

Smooth Operator

I am relatively new to The Pitch or, more accurately, I haven’t been a reader since high school, when everyone thought it was “cool” and “rebellious” to have a copy in plain sight when the faculty walked by. I have to say not much has changed with the free-flowing, shoot-from-the-hip style of the writing. It reads just as one would imagine “things overheard on the streets of Harlem” or perhaps “what the junkie saw on her last trip to her dealer in a warehouse in Independence.” Obviously C.J. Janovy don’t understand the danger this country is in. She can’t see through the fog of the illicit drugs she’s taken, the indoctrination she’s willingly participated in. When this interloping president, er, dictator is finished “transforming” this once-great nation, she’ll be lucky to have the freedom to say what she wants — let alone have it printed and disseminated. Hope the surgery went well. With Obamacare, she may have had that surgery in the alley behind your offices.

Paul Jones
Kansas City, Missouri

Feature: “Exit Strategy,” August 27

Post-Traumatic Stress Denial

The military services (not just the Army) want to deny the existence of mental-health problems in general, not just suicide. As your article plainly shows, the denial runs deep. Post-traumatic stress disorder was diagnosed during the Vietnam era. Despite that, the military acts surprised that such a problem could affect the lives of its members. Perhaps another 50 or 60 years will pass (with uncounted casualties) prior to the “discovery” that human beings, not unfeeling machines, fill their ranks.

I found it particularly interesting that military families are left out of the loop in the diagnosis and treatment of affected personnel. Remember that the next time you hear a senior officer tell some assembly about how much the military values the support of family members.

Jim D. Nichols
Kansas City, Missouri

A Salute

Carolyn Szczepanski’s article on soldier suicides was absolutely outstanding. Thanks for writing about this tough subject and for explaining how we are working on this most important issue. Suicide is personal for me — I know her article will help prevent suicides. Thanks.

Brig. Gen. Edward Cardon
Fort Leavenworth

Café: “East by Northeast,” September 3

No Guts

Charles Ferruzza’s review of the Vietnam Cafe and Pho 97 leaves something to be desired in his enthusiasm for trying foods that are less traditional. An appreciation for classics is essential; however, the reviewer’s lack of adventure and overall unwillingness to try dishes such as the jellied desserts — not to mention the pho with tripe or anything less orthodox than pho with meatballs — leaves a disappointing taste in readers’ mouths.

Marisa Bakeman
Kansas City, Missouri

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