Speak Out 7/11/06

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Feed God's creatures

TO THE woman who feeds the bird a loaf of bread: God sees you feeding his little animals and smiles. I too feed not only the birds with bread, but have several bird feeders, bird baths, wren houses and squirrel feeders. Thank you for all you do to feed God's creation. To the people attacking this good woman: You say the birds eat and then fly to you house and peck your car, house and driveway. Sounds odd that these birds head straight to your house. It sounds exaggerated.

Federal term limits

WE NEED term limits for our U.S. senators and representatives. Our presidents already have term limits. Senators should have no more than two four-year terms, and representatives should have no more than three two-year terms.

Stylish calves

THEY SHOULD name this new hairdo for men where it looks like it's totally messed up, nothing to indicate it's been cared for at all, the calf-lick hairstyle. I remember back when I was a kid and had a pet calf. It would lick my hair, and my hair would be end up about as big a mess as this new style is. So this should be called a calf-lick hairdo.

Sign test

I'M GOING to test Cape Girardeau's new sign ordinance. I'm going to put a few signs in my own front yard that say the mayor and the city council should be recalled. That would be a political sign. I may put up on my own property a few signs that say "This house is for sale because of the incompetent and arrogant mayor and city council of Cape Girardeau." Perhaps I'll put up 25 signs in my own front yard with a smiley face saying "Have a good day. Welcome to Cape Girardeau."

Freedom of expression

I WOULD suggest that our mayor, city council and especially our city attorney do more research into the constitutionality of their new sign ordinance. I would hope that our city attorney would find that freedom of expression on your own property is not the same as zoning laws for businesses or residential laws for safety and sanitation concerns.

Punctuation issue

SOME OF you English teachers help me out. Shouldn't the new Vietnam veterans memorial have an apostrophe on "nations"?

Paying taxes

I WISH the county commissioners and the proponents of the $3 million proposed tax increase would be more honest when they present their case. They try to sell people on the idea that a sales-tax increase is a fairer way to apply the tax. They fall back on the argument that people who do not own property in Cape Girardeau County are using county roads without having to pay anything for the use of the roads. I do not own property in Cape Girardeau, but I rent a luxury unit. My landlord said the property taxes on my unit alone are over $1,400 a year. I personally do not pay that tax, but I pay rent in the amount of $1,200 a month, and my landlord pays the taxes. Also, I pay personal property taxes on two vehicles. County commissioners and proponents of the increased county sales tax should stop misrepresenting the facts.

FBLA winners

CONGRATULATIONS TO Jackson and Chaffee High School FBLA participants for placing first and third, respectively, at the national FBLA competition in Nashville. Great things can happen in small schools. We have the numbers to prove that. Way to go, kids and sponsors. Fantastic job.

Thanks for purse

I WOULD like to thank the nice couple who found my purse in a shopping cart at Wal-Mart. They were nice people and an inspiration for young folks. Thank you so much for what you have done.

Too many stops

NOW ISN'T this just what Cape Girardeau needs? Another three-way stop sign, this time at the corner or the intersection of Rampart and Melrose. I have lived in this neighborhood for 20 years and have never had to wait more than five seconds to turn in any direction. Don't we think this is just a little bit of overkill? Three-way and four-way stops are springing up like spring flowers all over the town.

Enough taxes

I HOPE the mayors of Cape Girardeau and Jackson and the respective councils of both cities stand up to the county government's proposed $3 million tax increase and tell the county that we do not support this. I hope the councils encourage their residents to vote no. We do not need a $3 million tax increase to pay for county roads. The county needs to live within its budget and not build the roads on the backs of the people of Cape Girardeau and Jackson. Our taxes are high enough.

Time for lunch

I'M GLAD to see that the Cape Girardeau School District is concerned about nutrition in school lunches. I have two children in school, and I feel they are served nutritious meals at a fair price. The problem the administration needs to address is the time spent eating this meal. In 20 minutes, six classrooms have to get through the lunch line, pin in their numbers, eat, dump their trays and be out of the lunchroom. Because of this problem, half of the children in our public schools bring their lunches. Please add five minutes to each lunch period to give our children a chance to eat.

Rail to trail

I APPRECIATE the feeling of loss when one looks at abandoned rail lines. But these routes could be put to use if they were part of the rails-to-trails program. Think how wonderful it would be to have these towns connected again with a bike trail like the Katy Trail. The trail could generate some tourist dollars. Go see the Tunnel Hill trail in Southern Illinois. It is a community asset and a destination for travelers.

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