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Monday, March 4, 2024
March 4, 2024

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Letter: State protects citizens


Although we share a last name, my opinion differs from Judith Anderson (“Freedom requires responsibility,” Jan. 21). She gives us some understanding of our freedoms under the U.S. Constitution, but leaves out important parts.

1. The Preamble, that begins with “We the People,” gives reasons for writing the Constitution. Among these reasons, it includes the statement “promote the general Welfare.”

2. States are also given responsibility for the safety and health of their citizens. The state of Washington has a constitution that governs us. Washington state law further divides this responsibility into 39 county governments. Some counties have formed multicounty health districts, so our public health system consists of 35 local health agencies.

3. The current law governing the emergency powers of our state’s governor was established in 1969 by “the people” (through legislative action) and has been amended many times.

The important issue of “when do the rights of one person exceed that of another” is not addressed. As a citizen with chronic health conditions, I will end with the patriotic flavor she gave to her letter by flipping backward the quote often attributed to Patrick Henry: “Shall I be given death so others may have liberty?”

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