Letter to the Editor

Do without what we can't afford

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

To the editor:To sell 20,000 acres of our forestland to fund the education deficit is an atrocity. Government officials do not know the meaning of a budget.

In 1872, President Grant set aside Yellowstone National Park, making it the world's first national park. President Theodore Roosevelt declared that the federal government must take an active and aggressive role in planning the wise use of our natural resources. Since 1906, U.S. presidents have used the Antiquities Act, (a landmark in the conservation movement) almost 100 times, protecting millions of acres of public land.

Politicians talk about global warming. However, their actions are mute. Today's mentality is to buy now without contemplating how to pay for the purchase. Hence, Southeast Missouri State University's intellect. I'd love to go on a cruise, but can I afford it? No. With every election, we are promised a balanced budget. It honestly isn't difficult to figure out. If you can't afford it, don't spend it. Period. Cut down on the administrator's salaries (not only in education, but in public utility departments, national and city government and corporations as well). Give teachers the salary they deserve, and protect the resources we have. Land can't be manufactured. It's ours to protect.

My father, Tom Stroup, now deceased, retired with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Extension Service after over 30 years of diligent service. He instructed his family in the difference between "dirt" and "soil." Soil puts food in your mouth. I've come to the conclusion that "dirt" is the promises of affluent politicians.

JOYCE STROUP-TUMMINS, Cape Girardeau