Lawsuit over race death would be wrong move

I find it very sad that Peter Hass collapsed and died at the end of the Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon. But let’s not start playing the blame game and lawsuit shuffle over this man’s death.

The truth is that everyone around him when he fell could be held responsible for not calling 911. I think it would be better to have too many medics than none at all. It would sicken me to pick up the paper and hear that someone is suing the race organizers because of his death. When someone dies, they deserve more than public squabbling. My heart and sympathy go out to the Hass family.

Adrien Dion, San Francisco

Loss of education

As a 63-year-old senior and former teacher, I was alarmed to read the Sunday San Francisco Examiner op-ed stating that polls show only one of three people can identify all three branches of the federal government. I grew up and attended public schools in Illinois in the 1950s and ’60s. We were required to pass the Illinois Constitution Exam to graduate eighth grade and were required to pass the U.S. Constitution Exam to graduate from high school and college.

Lack of knowledge of the U.S. Constitution and U.S. history is a sad part of “the dumbing down of America.”

Phil Points, San Francisco

Be informed about pets

We are concerned that the Monday San Francisco Examiner article “Researchers warn against kissing pets” may lead to reactionary responses like in the early days of the AIDS epidemic when people with HIV were advised to surrender their pets and sacrifice all of the documented emotional and physical benefits those pets offered.

The health benefits of animal companionship outweigh the minimal risks in most cases. Instead of getting rid of their beloved pets and adding to an already-overburdened shelter system, we would encourage people who want to minimize the risk of getting diseases from their pets to talk to their veterinarian and also check out our online publication “Safe Pet Guidelines.” It’s easy to find at www.pawssf.org/library.

John L. Lipp, President, Pets Are Wonderful Support, San Francisco

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