Utah falling behind in birth rate

I read the Daily Herald article: “Utah birth rate still on the decline even as economy recovers” (Dec 29th).

I am amazed that the state of Nebraska has now surpassed Utah as far as fertility rates and birth rates. While I have relatives in both Nebraska and Utah, I think that a lot of young women have really been drawn by the allure of financial independence; but also a few are feeling pangs of, frankly, sexual freedom by not committing, not settling down to a husband and home, and not raising kids. Granted, not everyone is cut out to be a parent.

However, I believe if positive role models were “talked up” and the virtues of larger and loving families were promoted more, the birth rate just might increase in Utah. I’m not talking Brigham Young’s fire and brimstone sermons; nor am I solely worried about economic gains by more future workers. Quite simply, bigger families can be happy ones.

James Marples, Provo

Legislature should look at IHC’s tax-exempt status

As a concerned taxpayer in a year when the legislature is looking at tax reform, I think they should look at IHC and their tax-exempt status. I see they compete with the private sector who’s paying taxes in numerous health-related businesses , but they take the windfall or surplus of revenue to our neighboring state of Nevada and spend millions of dollars to sponsor the Raiders professional football team. These dollars should be spent in Utah by the different governmental entities. Competition in business is good, but taxes and the regulations should be the same, not allow one entity to have an unfair advantage, and try to create a monopoly. It is obvious to me that the nonprofit corporation has become very profitable and should pay its fair share of taxes.

Dr. Richard A. Johnson,

Utah County Commissioner 1991-1995

Losing faith shouldn’t override integrity

Whatever happened to INTEGRITY?

A crisis of faith is a sad, wrenching thing. Honor Code not perfect. Perhaps tweaking of ecclesiastic endorsement needed. But one little matter seems to be forgotten — INTEGRITY.

BYU admission is a highly competitive opportunity for faithful members of the church. Each admitted student makes a contract with the church and the Lord. When circumstances in a person’s life leads one to break the contract, a person with true integrity just ought to leave BYU. A choice — integrity or lying, cheating, faking. Interesting that organizations have sprung up to help justify and support dishonorable choices.

They and self deception can help students without integrity to accept the honor and reputation of becoming a BYU grad under false pretenses.

And for every semester that a person without integrity remains in school after he or she has broken the contract, a worthy student is denied being at BYU. How sad.

Dee V. Jacobs, Provo