Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Your Views

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Your Views

Article excerpt

Human help better than a computer's

Regarding "N.J. steps up health care push" (Page L-1, |Dec. 19):

For the average citizen, computer navigating would best be relegated to the second-tier alternative for navigating health care. Well-trained human navigators are able to smooth over electronic glitches.

They don't have to begin from scratch to crack the computer maze with each person they help, because they know the computer system. Even better, they know the health system. After unsuccessfully wading online to apply for Medicare, I gratefully waited in Hackensack, where the help was kind, efficient and practical. These are good jobs for good societies.

Eliminating them harms us as much as our social programs help us. It wouldn't hurt to rethink the balance of human and computer that is best to manage our affairs. At some point the question becomes: "Are we here to help the computer industry or is the computer industry here to help us?"

Larraine K. Bogert

Oradell, Dec. 19

Ramapoughs not an Indian tribe

Regarding "New movie puts tribe on the defensive" (Page A-1, Dec. 18):

The story says that "The Ramapoughs are descendants of the Lenape Indians." Responsible journalism demands that items used as facts must be verifiable.

The Ramapoughs themselves tested this theory when they applied to the federal government for recognition as an Indian tribe. Their application was denied by Congress, and an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court failed to overturn the decision. David Steven Cohen, in his book "The Ramapo Mountain People" (Rutgers University Press), calls them a separate racial group. His extensive research leaves no room for any Indian ancestry.

Cohen traces their origin back to the days of New Amsterdam. Showing proper respect to this close-knit group of our neighbors, who have kept their identity for hundreds of years, should begin with the truth. If The Record can verify their Lenape roots, please share that with your readers. Wishing something to be true does not make it so.

Samuel Steen

Wyckoff, Dec. 18

GOP should fight, not compromise

Regarding "Opening volley of Civil War within the GOP" (Other Views, Dec. 19):

The hypocrisy of Democratic spinmeisters such as columnist E. …

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