Wallaby and elder abuse
TO see a dead wallaby hanging from a tree would be fairly unpleasant and this led to a deal of commentary last week, but disappointingly, not the revelations of the increasing incidence of the abuse of elderly Tasmanians from Dr Kay Patterson.
Australia's Age Discrimination Commissioner wrote that "Elder abuse can take many forms: financial, physical, psychological, emotional, sexual, and neglect and it can happen to anyone, regardless of their background or lifestyle''.
This being the case, adding euthanasia, by whatever name, to the mix, is to create further opportunities for abuse.
Vulnerable elderly men and women will face pressure to ask for "assisted dying".
Physical frailty or reduced mental strength or perhaps feelings of guilt or regret, allow manipulation by others to enter the picture.
They may have no options for care or housing, feel duty-bound to die so that relatives are not burdened, feel that life is not worth living or are pressured by greedy relatives.
The potential for further abuse is real.
Instead, we should be advocating for a well-funded, wide-ranging, palliative care program available throughout the state, and carried out by specially trained doctors, nurses and ancillary workers, to provide good care for the dying and their families.
Pat Gartlan, Hobart.
Buying Tasmanian goods
I LISTEN with interest to the many pleas to buy Tasmanian and get our economy back into focus.
Get the many unemployed into secure jobs and ease the burden of the homeless.
To achieve this we all need to concentrate not only on ourselves but what is good and beneficial for Tassie. I have been mystified as to why our two main supermarket chains are purchasing meat from the mainland.
Gone are the days when you could approach your friendly butcher and ask for a bit of this and that. We are now looking at this disgusting packed meat, which most looks unappetising. I will not buy it and have heard numerous complaints from would-be customers. I ask what is wrong with our produce? It is a bit of a joke and a turn off when the plea to buy Tasmanian chants by so many people. Why don't we ask for that, but I suppose it will go unheeded, as it all boils down to profit.
Jo Ford, Legana.
The demise of humanities study
IT is good that the federal government is encouraging university students to take up subjects such as mathematics, engineering and science by substantially lowering the unit fees. On the other hand, increasing fees in humanity subjects makes little sense when there is an urgent need to equip people to work in areas that are vital to the well-being and flourishing of our society.
The federal treasury's much publicised revised estimate of the cost of JobKeeper has certainly demonstrated the need for more attention to the teaching and learning of mathematics. Nonetheless, the political fallout has shown the need to undergird university degrees with a good foundation in ethics - a part of the School of Humanities which has been fiscally targeted. Unless the foundations and drainage are secured, any educational, economic, legal and political edifice will be built on the shifting sands of an economically driven neoliberalism.
Ed Sianski, West Moonah.
Smoking and vaping debate
MICHAEL Bailey points to data that shows Tasmania failing in many aspects of health and to the high level of smoking in areas of socio-economic disadvantage (The Examiner, June 23).
The National Preventative Health Agency's report "Smoking and Disadvantage" explains that there is a relationship between increased disadvantage and increased smoking prevalence.
Research shows that tobacco is a major contributor to the differences in mortality between the least and most advantaged.
As well as being economically disadvantaged, people with mental illness, severe drug and alcohol dependence, and prisoners are more likely to die of tobacco-related causes than the general population.
Smoking accounts for 17 per cent of the health gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.
We need to provide greater support to address these causes of disadvantage along with the raft of anti-smoking measures that are working. If anything, the pandemic has highlighted these disadvantages.
Raising the legal age of smoking has worked in the past and should not be dismissed so lightly and replacing smoking with vaping is no silver bullet.
Malcolm Cowan, West Launceston.
Swimming - a quiet achiever
CONGRATULATIONS to The Examiner writer Rob Shaw on your article on the back page (TheExaminer, June 22) on swimming with "Cherry Blossom" Peter Tonkin OAM who has had an amazing life.
From the Japan Olympics as a very young person where his fellow team members Including Dawn Fraser tag him with his nickname being the Japanese emblem, onto Army National Service then with partner raising many families onto stints at Halls Creek, Darwin and Alice Springs as bases in the Indigenous Aboriginal Swimming Teaching.
His awards from the government and the ASCTA are very fitting and a rewarding example to volunteers of those that put in and of course his very strong partner Jo.
Seldom does another sport push aside footy from the back page and The Examiner should become a weekly Monday write up for each sport occurring in Tasmania.
Few would know what world competitive sports including Olympic occur in Tasmania, many being funded within their sports.
These are the quiet achievers who deserve at least travel, accommodation and keep costs being found by governments.