Letters to the Editor – Feb. 15, 2023

Kudos for support of WA Cares program

As a family caregiver, I know the importance of planning for the need for long-term care. I was making a good income working as an accountant until 2016 when my sister had a stroke. Taking care of my sister is what I chose to do, it’s what I wanted to do.

My husband is still working but he is having heart surgery, so now I will have two people to take care of for a period of time. These experiences have made me confront the fact that one day I will need care myself. I joke to my son that when I can’t walk up the stairs anymore I’m moving in with him. But seriously, I want there to be support for caregivers when it comes time that I need one.

I’m thankful to Senator Kevin Van De Wage and Representatives Mike Chapman and Steve Tharinger for supporting the WA Cares program. This program’s benefits allow you to get in-home care and pay a family member for that care if you choose to do so. This program will be a huge financial help for my husband and me when the time comes.

Deborah Gomez

Port Angeles

Consider the source

Port Angeles resident Susan Shotthafer’s Feb. 1 letter (“Legislators: Repeal bills that endanger children,” Sequim Gazette, Feb. 8, page A-10) is a perfect example of why it’s so crucial to check sources of information during this age of disinformation.

In arguing that professional standards of care for gender dysphoria (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK532313) endanger children, she cites as her main source articles in the Epoch Times.

Founded in China in 2000, the far-right Epoch Times is closely affiliated with the Falun Gong cult, whose authoritarian founder wrote that being gay was “disgusting” and “dirty” (culteducation.com/group/1254-falun-gong/6922-is-falun-gong-a-cult.html).

The Epoch Times uses social media to push conspiracy theories, including QAnon, “stop the steal,” and anti-vaccine theories.

Using stories sourced from a far-right religious cult, Ms. Shotthafer demanded the repeal of a Washington law restricting the harmful, debunked practice of gender identity conversion therapy as well as laws protecting healthcare privacy. Yet professional organizations like the American Medical Association and American Psychiatric Association overwhelmingly embrace the standard gender dysphoria treatments opposed by the Epoch Times.

In the upcoming 2023 elections, our own local conspiracy theorists will be busy spreading stories taken from unreliable sources like the Epoch Times. Some of them will likely run for school board, city council, and other public decision-making positions.

Once again – and throughout this destructive era of disinformation – each of us should check the sources of stories, claims, and “facts.” And vote accordingly.

Marsha Maguire


‘Shout-out’ to Sequim seniors

Praise and Thank you for those of you who work diligently on your health so that you can be a great example to younger folks and a valued member of our community.

Good for you for eating lots and lots of veggies, for exercising daily, for challenging your brain everyday, and for greeting everyone you meet with an upbeat and kind attitude and choice of words.

Who you are will encourage others that they too can age gracefully and meaningfully.

Barbara Paschal