Speak Out 10/11/06

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

China is the key

WHICH NATION is the key to making sure North Korea doesn't get a nuclear bomb? The United States? Of course not. We talk a good game, but past history shows when push comes to shove we are willing to make exceptions for countries to be allowed to join the nuclear club. India, Israel and Pakistan come to mind. The key player in the attempt to deter North Korea from going nuclear is China.

Get story straight

I'M CONFUSED. The Cape Girardeau School District's principals and superintendent didn't know about the trading cards being handed out by Team Impact after the assembly, but they did know that Cape First sponsored the event? What gives? If there is a clear division of church and state, how could one (the trading cards) not be OK but the other (sponsorship of the event by Cape First) be OK? Get your story straight, school officials.

Bikers on the road

I PASSED an avid bicycle rider on County Road 621 by the golf course and stopped at the stop sign. For some reason the bicyclist took exception to my passing him and proceeded to pass me in the oncoming lane of traffic, blowing past the stop sign in the wrong lane and uttering something and making a few hand gestures. I realize that bikers get upset by autos on the road, but they also must obey the laws, like stopping at stop signs.

Stop for the police

HOW ABOUT a little more blame placed on the individuals who decide to flee from police? They put themselves at risk. They placed the police officers at risk of injury or death. You have to draw the line, or everyone will decide to flee from a ticket because the police won't chase them. It's the law to stop when a police officer pulls you over.

Low-wage jobs

I APPLAUD the Cape Girardeau mayor and chamber of commerce officials for recruiting 350 jobs with NARS. The starting hourly rate is $8.50 per hour. Why can't we recruit companies that offer good-paying skilled jobs like we do with the low-end jobs? It is good to say we have new jobs coming, but you seldom hear what these jobs pay. The majority of them are low-wage jobs.

Unheeded warnings

REGARDING THE peace group in Cape Girardeau: I wish we would have listened to them before the war. Looking back on it, I see that they knew a lot and were right about a lot of things. I've changed my views. But it's too late. We're in a mess. The president and his people lied to get us into Iraq. Now we can't get out without a lot of dead soldiers and wasted money. Thank you for trying to warn us.

Dangerous sales

USUALLY, WHEN schoolchildren are trying to raise funds, it is for special activities, generally not necessary to their base education. Whatever happened to the movement to encourage schools to abandon the practice of sending children out to knock on doors of strangers? Neither the schools nor the parents are using good judgment, in this day and age, by exposing children to possible predators. Perhaps the same could be said about unsupervised Halloween trick-or-treating.

Other options

I WISH James Baker were in the Bush administration. He has served honorably in many administrations and said recently that there are other alternatives vis-a-vis Iraq other than the cut-and-run approach President Bush seems to think is the only other choice.

Highway safety

AS I drove on Interstate 55 through the area of Friday's fatal head-on collision, I wondered if the victims appreciated the mile markers every two-tenths of a mile, or would they have been better served by a center guardrail? Although the signs are helpful, I doubt they have ever stopped a vehicle. Why doesn't the Missouri Department of Transportation focus more on safety and less on filling the wallet of the sign company?

Minimum wage

IF YOU are concerned about the minimum-wage law, get informed and involved and vote for the person who will raise the minimum wage. Businesses will tell you it would cost jobs, but no one can prove it has cost jobs in the past. When was the last time minimum wage was raised? 1997. Is the American worker better off today than in 1997? If not, vote for a change.

Support for public radio

I AM an avid fan of Southeast Public Radio, and I approve of the expansion north into Farmington. I enjoy listening to the same station from Cape Girardeau to near St. Louis. The expansion was necessary for Southeast Missouri State University to spread its name northward. KRCU and KSEF are a welcome part of the Southeast Public Radio family.

Vote for values

MUD-SLINGING politicians are becoming the norm because voters allow it to happen. Stand up against this type of behavior. I would much rather vote for someone who puts all that campaign money to good use. Vote your values and hold politicians accountable.

Lights went off

I WAS returning back to Missouri from a trip to Southern Illinois about 8 p.m. Sunday, and the lights were off on the highway from the Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge. It was so dark, Why weren't the lights on? By the way, that River Campus is going to be absolutely beautiful.

More time to mature

DRINKING AND driving, separately and together, kill too many young people. It's time to raise the driving age to 18 and the drinking age to 24 or 25. It would give young people an opportunity to mature and understand the responsibilities of these actions. I'm sure that would cause a fuss, but the number of 18-to-25-year-olds who die in connection to either drinking or driving in a year is higher than those killed in a three-year war that stopped the torture of millions of humans.

Paying for education

I AM ashamed of Missouri schools. I have lived here four years and have spent more on school supplies than my mother did in my 12 years of schooling in California. Is the budget so low that you can't even supply tissues? What's next? Bring your own toilet paper? Or maybe bring your own desk? How about Bring Your Own Teacher to School Day? I feel for parents who struggle with this and the teachers as well. Someone on the board of education needs to buck up and get something done about this. Maybe next year my daughter will have to bring her own classroom.

Using us as pawns

ONCE AGAIN the Republicans in Washington are embroiled in scandal. They are still justifiably smeared with the Abramoff influence-peddling scandal that has tainted GOP senators and representatives in a bribery circle the likes of which we have rarely seen. Now the GOP leadership is seen as guilty of covering up the Foley affair. All the Republicans want to do is retain power to feather their own nests and the nests of their campaign contributors. They do not serve average Americans but use us as pawns to gain and retain power. They will say anything to get our support but deserve none.

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