Dear editor:

Do the nation and our state seem off-kilter? Have we all become so numb and out-of-touch with realism that the following scenarios are common?

-Elderly senior citizens are aided by gambling proceeds for bus transport & senior centers

– food pantries and evening meals are a common thing at several churches

– canned goods annually collected for the needy at a Warren crossroads

– many schools have a majority of students receiving much-needed free & reduced lunches

-backpacks of food stuffs to sustain a child and their family for the two day weekend

-Proposed laws which allow an expansion of alcohol sales “sweetened” with the enhancement of more dollars to Commonwealth schools recently experiencing cutbacks and teacher layoffs.

– Healthcare proposals for 10% of our citizens without medical coverage criticized and demonized in every possible manner with no regard for the crises and trauma of the ill

-Refusal of Pennsylvania leadership to accept hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid to offer Medicaid expansion and blockades to setting up healthcare exchanges

-snowsuits, gloves and mittens collected for those unable to afford them each fall

-deporting immigrants whose children were born in the USA leaving the kids without one or more parents

The not-for-profits, churches and charitable groups in our county and country are performing monumental tasks and offering desperately necessary basic human necessities. When will they be stretched to the limit taking over more and more of the assistance the government used to help with-the government which is whittling away the safety net and respect due each person? When will we demand that those with much relent and do more to help those with less. People with less many times due to circumstances beyond their control.

We seem to be taking for granted the outlandish approach we’re taking in caring for our fellow Americans in so many veins. We seem to be complacent amidst it all.

When will compassion and empathy return to the fabric of our living? When will we take time to convey our demands to those in power?

Karen Davis