To the Editor:

I am writing to encourage more people to donate blood on Tuesday, January 27, at the PA Club. Donating blood takes about an hour of your time, the little prick in the arm does not hurt much at all, and your efforts could save a life.

Where is the question here? Why don’t more people donate? I really don’t understand it. It actually kind of makes me mad. If you are physically able, just do it.

Young people ought to be eager to be of age to donate. Employers should make the time it takes an employee to donate as “on the clock” time, or even give a half day off. Giving blood is a good and selfless gesture. People who do should be proud to donate; those who can, but don’t, should start. In our current economic circumstances, this is something we can do without hitting our pockets – and it will have a stronger impact.

Many Island residents are proud of our community, and for good reasons. However, fewer than 100 pints are gathered at most blood drives here, on an Island of more than16,000 residents. I don’t know the percentage of people who do donate, state or nationwide. But, I do know it’s low, and that is not right. Let’s show the rest of Massachusetts we really are a good, strong, and positive, close-knit community.

Don’t be afraid of a little prick; you will feel good about yourself, and probably help a stranger. That’s pretty cool, I think.

Bill Jacob