Letter: When are we going to address community’s core issues?

Graphic by Lori Deaton

There is so much finger-pointing and anger among everyday people and communities as the pandemic continues. On both sides, it has become an extremely polarizing issue, which has drawn us apart from one another. I have begun to wonder if the conversation will be had about root causes of the pandemic and, more so, the severity of it in our country.

It is easy to blame politicians for their shortcomings, but when are we going to address the fact that our private, for-profit hospitals have been intentionally under- and defunded to “cut costs” in the name of enriching hospital CEOs? When are we going to talk about the fact that the animal feedlots, where many of our meals come from, are the ideal breeding ground for the next pandemic? When are we going to air our frustrations that not only politically, but socially, we were unprepared for and uneducated about the reality that a pandemic like this was not only predictable, but imminent?

What are we going to do to make sure that we aren’t in the same situation when this inevitably happens again as a function of our intentional dispossession of functioning community dynamics, an intentionally broken food and health system, and a growing world with increasing chronic disease and wealth disparity? Are we going to finger-point at one another about masks and vaccines and blame local politicians about their policies we agree with or disagree with, or are we going to look at these harsh core issues in the face and address them with the severity and intensity that they merit?

— Noah Poulos


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Letters
We want to hear from you! Send your letters and commentary to letters@mountainx.com

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

7 thoughts on “Letter: When are we going to address community’s core issues?

  1. indy499

    Your “when are we going to talk…” questions could start with some facts to lay a foundation, instead of winging out wild assertions.

    For example:

    7 out of the top 10 most profiable hospitals in the US are non-profits. The difference lies in how the profits are to be used, not whether they are sought and/or achieved.

    The top hospitals in the US and the worst are fully represented by profit and non-profits.

    • Noah

      Thanks for adding clarity- I should have been clear that for-profit and non-profit hospitals are both enriching those at top and that each are to be looked at. Additionally, I’d be happy to talk about numbers if that’s what interests you, unfortunately the max word limit on letters prevents too deep of a dive at a time.

      • indy499

        Odd. Your letter specifically calls out private, for profit hospitals. Your argument isn’t accurate.

        • Noah

          Thanks for the input, I’d say it’s precise but not wholly accurate enough, although I believe my comment may have added to my intent. After all it’s a letter to the editor, not a dissertation

        • Noah

          Also, the overarching argument being made is not about where for-profit or non-profit hospitals are at blame, the argument is that we have systems that are not resilient that have exacerbated the pandemic and that those systems were made that way on purpose. The argument is that we need to address that theme in our community/nation/world alongside addressing acute issues like social distance/masks/etc…

          Getting hung up on the for vs non profit hospital part, which was meant to simply be an example of a broken system, is somewhat missing the point, though I do value the feedback to make my writing more accurate.

          If you disagree with the overarching theme and. It just the hospital example I’d be interested to hear any counter points you may have

  2. Enlightened Enigma

    Community core issues are much much wider than the hospital sale and CEO salaries. The evil party controls us here daily with malevolence.

    • Noah

      I was not specifically referring to the mission sale, rather more generally the conditions that have been set in motion to exacerbate this situation which includes hospital management, among a myriad of other things, imposed by the dominator mindset to the detriment of all

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.