Letters: Va.'s Proposed Ultrasound Law, 'Rez Life'

NPR's John Donvan reads from listener comments on previous show topics including Virginia's proposed ultrasound law, preparing your pockets for a rainy day and reservation life.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

It is Tuesday, and that's the day that we read from your emails and your comments on the Web. Last week, we talked about Wikipedia and how Wikipedia's editors gauge which articles are actually true. And one expert had repeatedly tried to correct an entry on - entry about the Haymarket's riots, but he was rebuffed. So many of you wrote to tell us how Wikipedia's system works and that it works, including Carrie(ph), who emailed from Grand Rapids and said this: Some of my artist friends did a project on Wikipedia, where they faked a country with completely fake facts, a fake flag, a fake national anthem.

They added a bunch of sources and works cited in order to make it look it more legitimate, but it was taken down within 24 hours. However, they received an email from the editor who congratulated them on having the most elaborate fake page that he had ever encountered. Well, it's down, so we're just going to have to take her word for it, though, you can listen back to that conversation on our website at npr.org. Click on TALK OF THE NATION.

We learned last week that nearly half of Americans have more credit card debt than they have emergency savings, and we asked you tell us about your strategies for saving money. On that show, one caller confessed that she is having such a hard time saving money that she gives a portion of her paycheck to her husband to manage for her. Well, that arrangement concerns Shane Snoden(ph) of San Francisco, California, who wrote: I feel worried about the young woman who called to say that she'd reached financial adulthood by giving her husband 25 percent of her paycheck and having him take care of it.

I wish a guest had gently reminded her that truer adulthood might be to arrange direct deposit of that amount to an account in her name of a type she understands with an account number and statements that she can access. Native American novelist David Treuer was on last week talking about his new book "Rez Life: An Indian's Journey Through Reservation Life." He described the beauty and the challenges of life on Ojibwe reservation. Well, Scott Lettingham(ph) wrote from Spokane to share his own experience.

He writes this: I grew up on a reservation in Washington State, in an area that was largely half-native, half-white. My dad worked for the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, but we are not native. I think it is significant that the BIA was originally in the old U.S. War Department and is now in the Interior Department, which is focused mostly on managing land and natural resources, not people and their needs. I wonder how this history affects how the federal government and non-natives view contemporary Native Americans.

Also, a correction: When we talked about the backlash against red light cameras in many towns, we overstated the evidence in favor of those cameras. At least one study conducted in 2004 in North Carolina found that red light cameras failed to reduce the number of accidents. And a final note, on Sunday, "Undefeated" won the Oscar for best documentary feature. We spoke with the directors of that film and with all of the nominees before the Academy Awards, and you can find those interviews archived on our website. Go to npr.org and click on TALK OF THE NATION.

So if you have a correction or comments or questions for us, the best way to reach us is by email. Our address is talk@npr.org. Please let us know where you're writing from and give us some help on how to pronounce your name. And if you're on Twitter, you can follow us right there @totn.

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