Speak Out 8/12/06

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Unwanted calls

IS ANYBODY else getting as frustrated with unwanted telephone calls as I am? I thought we were doing really well when we could put our name on a do-not-call list for telemarketers. For a while the calls slowed down some. Now I'm getting 10 to 15 calls a day from charitable and political groups. I'm sick of it. The calls are always "unknown name, unknown number," so caller ID doesn't help. Even worse is when the call is an automated message. Anybody who calls wanting my vote or my money over the telephone gets an automatic no.

Phone scam?

I'VE HAD something odd happening. I have received four phone calls from a company claiming to be a collection agency. However, the person calling does not know the name of the person who supposedly owes money. The callers are rude and insistent that someone in this household is going to send money to pay this unknown bill. Perhaps this is a scam.

Don't judge

REGARDING TATTOOS: One of the first things we teach each other and what we learn when we're little is that we don't judge people by their skin. Just because we have tattoos, we're no different from anyone else. Employers who won't hire us because we have tattoos are missing out on some good people.

Cheap supplies

IF YOU talk to any teacher and ask how much they pay out of their own pockets for classroom supplies, it will shock you. Hundreds to thousands of dollars have been spent by teachers who do not get enough pay for what they are worth. Teachers at our school are only allowed $50 per class to buy supplies for the year. Buying a few boxes of tissues and wipes seems pretty cheap for nine months of education and child care for my children.

Attractive schools

IF YOUR child's playing tennis at school, then parents should be buying the balls. Schools should be an attractive place children want to go. Most homes are landscaped. We want our homes to be beautiful places. Shouldn't we want the place our child goes to be beautiful too?

Children in church

I AM sure my children have been disruptive to others in church. There are churches where children do not attend the regular service. However, I want my children to experience attending the worship service. I am teaching my children to be quiet while in the worship service. However, children are children and will move around and talk. That is when I whisper to them to behave and listen. You can't teach them how to behave in church without exposing them to the worship service. Have a conversation with God. Ask him if he believes children should be in church and experience the worship service. I believe he will answer, "God loves all and wants all to experience his Word."

Wipers and lights

AS I was driving through Jackson in the rain that was coming down so hard you could hardly see where you were going, I was reminded how irritating and unsafe it is when drivers drive with their windshield wipers on and not their headlights. Maybe you can see, but you can't be seen. Please turn your lights on when your windshield wipers are going. It is the law.

Monday is better

WHAT IS the point of starting school on a Thursday? I have never seen the sense in it. Start school on a Monday.

Wider coverage

I AM sorely disappointed in the Southeast Missourian's coverage of the 2006 election, especially in Scott County. Two of the biggest area races, judge and presiding commissioner, did not even make the front page, while the Cape Girardeau County results took up the majority of the front page. Beating an incumbent is big news, yet you did not even deem it worthy enough news to get a paragraph on the front page. While the Missourian is based in Cape Girardeau, it serves much more than just Cape Girardeau County and should provide adequate front-page news about topics that are of importance to those who reside in surrounding counties.

School uniforms

REGARDING THE dress code at Central High School: Research shows that schools with uniforms have less violence, less bullying and less gang activity, and uniforms are less costly for families than traditional school clothes. There are many public schools in the United States that have adopted a uniform policy. A modified uniform policy would be easy to implement. Board members should investigate this possibility for the next school year.

Not acceptable

COUNCILWOMAN DEBRA Tracey said she was going to let due process take its course regarding the arrest of her husband on felony drug charges. The people of Cape Girardeau deserve a better response from Tracey than this. I remember when she was elected to this office that she was a write-in candidate opposed by two men whose criminal backgrounds were aired by the Southeast Missourian. I will be interested to see how the Missourian covers this story as it develops. Come on, Councilwoman Tracey, at least say you do not support your husband's behavior.

Time to act

I THINK it is outrageous that the city leaders in Jackson want to wait to put a fire safety tax on the ballot. Jackson is in dire need of a second fire station and more full-time firefighters. What is it going to take before city leaders take action? It's selfish of the city to pour money into parks and soccer fields, but when it comes to the safety of our citizens, the city is going to wait. I love Jackson. Let's not put off upgrading the services the city needs. It's up to residents of Jackson to go to city leaders and let them know we will not let this stand.

Professional growth

I SPENT nearly a week away from my family going to a teachers convention. Each day we started at 8 a.m. and worked until 3:45 p.m. While our expenses were paid, we were not paid extra to do this. We did it because we want to improve instruction in our schools. Our eating out was paired with productive discussions on how we were going to implement the things we learned. Teaching is skill that has to be developed over time. One way to do that is for districts to provide opportunities for teachers to grow professionally.

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