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Capital - 3/20/2017
As elected officials representing Queen Anne's County and Maryland's Upper Eastern Shore, and representing the only two counties in the state with no hospitals, we want to thank the Maryland Health Care Commission for its decision to grant a Certificate of Need for a cardiac surgery program at Anne Arundel Medical Center. We urge the commission to rule favorably on this matter as expeditiously as possible.
We are deeply concerned about the lack of nearby comprehensive cardiac care to serve our region. The population of the five adjacent counties of Kent, Queen Anne's, Caroline, Talbot and Dorchester now numbers more than 150,000 and is growing. This area has become a haven for retirees and for people age 65 and older - the age group that most commonly suffers from heart disease that requires cardiac surgery.
Because of its breadth of high-level specialty services - as well as its outstanding reputation - AAMC is where many Upper Shore residents turn for their care. The one missing piece in its otherwise comprehensive cardiac program is cardiac surgery. It makes little sense to Eastern Shore residents to be ambulanced or helicoptered to a heart facility in Baltimore or Washington when AAMC is so near.
We are dismayed there has been any comparison to the program at AAMC with the proposed new hospital for Prince George's County. Maryland citizens need ready, full access to heart care wherever they live, and we are confident both programs need to move forward.
We urge those who are charged with granting AAMC permission to have a cardiac surgery program to please do so promptly. Too many lives are waiting.
State Sen. STEPHEN S. HERSHEY JR.
Del. STEVEN J. ARENTZ
Change we need
Few antiquated periods in time shift the future back to the past. I think of handwritten letters and calligraphy, both of which are currently replaced by spell check and computers.
If there was any time in history most in need of change, it is now: change within ourselves, and in how we think and relate to others, not in how we change each other.
There is a shift in our universe, an unnatural progression from humanity as we once defined it to now - instant connection; gratification or defeat, pass or fail, public applause or public ridicule.
I applaud the creators of the TV series "This Is Us." With the current expectation from society to wow our senses, this show has captured and embraced the facets of humanity we so desperately need: forgiveness, kindness, respect, honesty and unconditional love and acceptance.
For those of you who do not watch this show: Take a step back to the past, take a breath and appreciate how we all once connected together and loved each other in the absence of instant gratification.
President Donald Trump hasn't been in office long enough to have deported the estimated 1.5 million to 2 million illegal immigrants who are criminals or that have substantial criminal records that he says he wants to deport. Trump has always stated he was going to deport criminal illegal aliens and not every undocumented alien.
According to government sources, the Obama administration deported 2.5 million people, more than any other president's administration in history and more than the sum of all presidents of the 20th century. That's only up to 2014 and doesn't include "self-deporting" individuals who knew their days were numbered and left before the deportation orders were enforced.
In 2011, Barack Obama issued orders stopping the processing of Iraqi refugee requests for six months. Trump's order is for 90 days. Obama's order also put Syrian admissions on hold indefinitely.
The only difference is that the Obama administration didn't tell news sources about it.
It's more than clear that not telling the press was the way the Obama administration rolled.
Isn't it more than a little hypocritical that ex-President Obama came out recently decrying immigration bans and Trump's future deportation plans - which are exactly what he did for eight whole years?