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Opinion: Letters to the Editor

Letters for Jan. 20: Hollywood violence tax, road taxes, criminal background checks

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Opinion,Letters to the Editor

No single database of criminal records exists

Re: "Bad background checks revealed in day care case," Local Editorial, Jan. 15

Regarding the troubling situation at the Fort Myer day care center, our association feels compelled to educate people on the critical role background checks play in protecting our most vulnerable populations, especially children.

Examiner readers should know that the FBI's Interstate Identification Index system used by DOD and other organizations is not the complete national database of criminal records many assume it to be. No single database containing every criminal record in the country exists.

Further, not all state criminal records or fingerprints meet the FBI's standards for inclusion in the system, and not all state records are submitted to the FBI.

Instead of relying on one database, NAPBS-member professional screeners utilize a variety of tools in their search for criminal histories that go far beyond just fingerprints. We encourage all employers to learn about best practices in background screening and explore the full range of options available to them.

Fred Giles

Chairman,

National Association of Professional Background Screeners

Reston

Let's slap Hollywood with a Violence-Added Tax

Any national debate over violence in America that does not include Hollywood's cash cow of glorified, romanticized human slaughter will be just another slick political exercise in hypocrisy. I spent 25 years as a literary agent representing writers, directors, producers and cinematographers in motion pictures and network prime-time television. I know how Hollywood thinks.

For proponents of redistributing wealth for the betterment of society, how about a different type of VAT, a Violence-Added Tax, on both the purveyors and consumers of violent media to help fund the mental health care system? We heavily tax tobacco to discourage smoking; we can do the same for gratuitous violence.

And let's cut through the stall tactic of pitting one scientific study against another with a simple question: Would advertisers pour billions into popular media if it had no impact on behavior?

The Motion Picture Association of America's ratings system is another false front. How many ushers are standing next to smart devices and in living rooms across America checking ID? Thanks to technology, parental control has a built-in disadvantage.

If the premise of those who want to regulate what is fed to bodies is the cost to society from obesity, diabetes and other diseases, the same argument can be made for what is fed to minds -- particularly of the young. Yet Hollywood's elite are now desperately trying to twist, turn and distract their way out of the hypocritical trap they have placed themselves in.

Since all appeals for decency and self-restraint on the part of the violence peddlers have been gunned down by naked greed, let's get real about a solution to the problem that is poisoning our culture.

Michael E. Douroux

Corona del Mar, Calif.

Everybody benefits from roads, not just drivers

Re: "Not fair to stick nondrivers with road costs," From Readers, Jan. 15

In rebuttal to Nancy Runyon's letter, I say that everyone should be supporting the roads.

Does she understand how her food gets to the grocery store and how her clothing gets to the department store?Trucks.

Everything we buy involves a truck somewhere in the delivery process.

Dave Ackerman

Vienna

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