The Columbus Dispatch, Nov. 4
It’s a tragedy that people needing organ donations face an agonizing wait for donations, but discriminating against people with disabilities — such as Down syndrome — is cruel and unreasonable.
House Bill 332, sponsored by Rep. Niraj Antani, R-Miamisburg, has bipartisan backing to stop this perceived practice: It would make it illegal to discriminate against someone seeking an organ transplant based solely on a disability.
Backers include families and groups that advocate for people with Down syndrome, which often is accompanied by heart defects. They don’t claim that such discrimination happens often, but they worry that some transplant programs have policies that are unclear on the issue. Or that others have no written policies.
The business of managing organ transplants requires gut-wrenching decisions. The finite number of available organs must be given out, not in an easily understandable first-come, first-served order, but according to a formula. Someone who has waited years, but develops a terminal cancer, would be ruled out. Transplanting a precious organ into someone who won’t live long is questionable.
But deciding a life is less worth saving because of a disability is an entirely different question. H.B. 332 would send a clear signal that this shouldn’t happen.
The Akron Beacon Journal, Nov. 3
President Trump wants to disrupt the status quo. If that meant bridging differences or seeking to tame the polarization afflicting Washington, his presidency would follow a better trajectory. Instead, he appears bent on aggravating divisions. His idea of disruption includes tapping as leaders those opposed to the mission of the office they would head.
Scott Pruitt presents the prime example, a climate change denier, devoted advocate for oil and gas interests, in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency.
On Wednesday, another most dismaying nominee appeared for his Senate confirmation hearing. He is Scott Garrett, a former U.S. House member selected to lead the Export-Import Bank. There still is time to keep him from the post.
The opposition to the Garrett nomination is broad within the business community. The Ohio Manufacturers Association stresses the crucial role the bank plays for its sector, helping to open export markets. The bank assists with financing, enabling other countries to purchase American-made goods, going where commercial banks will not.
The Senate Banking Committee appears favorable to the president’s nominees for the empty board positions. The difficulty comes with the choice for the top spot. The White House and the country can do better than Scott Garrett. An organization as important as the Export-Import Bank deserves a true advocate leading the board.