Letters to the Editor

To the Editor:
I am writing in regard to Anne C. Young's response to the articles "Exclusion No. 39" (RFT, Nov. 11) and "You're in Grabby Hands" (RFT, Dec. 2). Obviously she either works for an insurance company (maybe even Allstate) or plain old just doesn't get it.

What gives Allstate the right to be our judge and jury? (Editor's note: The writer and her husband were the subject of the "You're in Grabby Hands" piece.) They could have simply denied us months ago. Instead, they elected to drag it out for nine months, asking us to supply them with an extensive amount of paperwork that was totally unrelated to our claim, put us through a six-hour deposition and then denied us because we both have put ourselves through extensive schooling in order to better ourselves by becoming arsonists and thieves to gain $3,800? Where is the logic in that? On top of this, they will not even provide us with an explanation. In short, the "good hands" people have washed their hands.

In my research, I have found that there are class-action suits in Indiana, Texas, Oregon, Colorado, New York, Tennessee, Florida, Massachusetts, California, New Mexico, New Jersey, Washington, Georgia, Connecticut, Ohio and others. They are also under investigation by the state's attorney in many states as well. This is why I went to Jeannette Batz in the first place. If I would have had this information before we made a claim, I wouldn't have been insured by Allstate in the first place. By letting others know, then at least they have the option to research and decide for themselves. It should also be noted that even though Allstate has accused us of arson, theft, insurance fraud and the ever-present noncooperation, they continue to insure us.

My understanding is that an insurance company assesses risk and insures accordingly. That means that someone with a higher risk will pay higher premiums. All of this is calculated using probability statistics, which are based on facts such as where you live, crime statistics for the area, etc. Those that live in an area where a crime is more likely to occur will pay more and the insurance companies expect that the vast majority of those insured will not make a claim so that they can still afford to pay for those that do. That is my understanding of insurance and the basis for an insurance company being in business to make a profit. Unfortunately, the risk is there for the insurance company as well; crimes will occur and money will have to be paid out. That is the nature of their business. It is just plain bad business to make accusations that cannot be proven, and that is why I hope Allstate is going to be investigated in Missouri as well. That is why I have chosen to go public with my story, not for the welfare that Ms. Young suggests. If I wanted welfare, I wouldn't be working and paying my insurance premiums.

Kelly Mead


To the Editor:
I was pleased to read the article regarding Planned Parenthood's desire to require insurance companies to cover contraceptives ("Fertile Ground") in the Dec. 2 issue of The Riverfront Times.

I am a single recent college graduate, and I am working for a well-known clothing-store chain in a local mall. I am just starting out and trying to make ends meet. My company talks of importance to family and special circumstances it would allow if I were to have a baby; however, the insurance plan they offer does not include insurance coverage. I am in no way ready to handle the life-changing experiences that come with having a baby. I am very excited about becoming a mother someday, but I want to have children when I am financially stable and able to provide for them in a loving marriage. I want to be responsible, but should I be forced to choose between paying my electric bill and buying birth control? One of the basic ways to improve upon society is to give individuals and families the ability to decide when to have children, and this is only possible when contraceptives are widely accessible. We will all be a lot healthier when children are born out of love and desire rather than out of unfortunate circumstances.

Christine Duffy


To the Editor:
I was shocked at your "Commentary" in The Riverfront Times regarding the deer problem in Town & Country ("Send in the Doe Boys," RFT, Nov. 25). You mock the citizens there because of their income. I should imagine yours is way higher than their average income, and nobody mocks your income.

The income has nothing to do with the deer problem. Deer are running wild throughout the country. There is a surplus, an overpopulation. Thus the deer are leaving their normal abode and are rampaging.

Forget the desecration of plants and flowers and bushes. Much more serious is the great increase in car crashes, plus the incidence of Lyme disease. Deer are carriers of Lyme disease, which is not a fun sickness.

I was equally shocked by the Dec. 2 "Mississippi Mud" ("Worry, Don't Be Happy"), in which William Stage mocked the symptoms of potential heart attacks and calls those who experience such symptoms potential hypochondriacs. Talk to any medical person -- doctor and nurse -- and they will be incredulous at Mr. Stage's apparently immature medical opinion. That article does a disservice to the community. I assume Mr. Stage is a very young man to write so foolishly about that which he knows nothing.

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