Speak Out 5/8/07

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Burden on criminals

AT ONE time, we never used the locks on our homes or cars. Businesses locked their doors, and a locked door meant "closed for business." The crime rate was near zero. Today some of you are putting the responsibility for crime on the shoulders of businesses. The responsibility should be on the criminals. They should be made to work long enough to burglar-proof all businesses. Our country is deteriorating by leaps and bounds because the criminals have more rights than the honest citizens.

Crime deterrent

I KNOW a Sikestonian who was caught committing a crime on Sikeston's surveillance camera system and told me that he had to admit the system was an excellent crime deterrent.

Egg on their faces

A LOT of area armchair quarterbacks and coffee-shop prognosticators have egg on their collective faces after having been so adamant in their predictions that the Missouri State High School Activities Association would vote to split public and private school post-season competition.

Spending line

THE COMMENT, "I get a set amount of money for my job, and my family lives on a budget. When the money is gone, it is gone." How many decades have many of us been saying the same thing about our government's spending? We are the employers of our government's employees, from the president down to the office clerks. When was the last time any of us received a raise from our employers because we had overspent our income? Part of the problem lies in our own laps. We want new this and better that, whether we (our government) can afford these things. Most of us could set up better budget plans than our government employees have. Perhaps there is no plan, since all government has to do is shake the taxpayers' money trees to pay for all the things they think we want or need.

Providing assistance

RESPONDING TO the person who slammed the Catholic church for not supporting the needs of women and children like Planned Parenthood. There are hundreds of Birthrights and Crisis Pregnancy Centers across the Uniteted States supported by thousands of Catholic volunteers. Catholic Relief Services provides workers and millions of dollars toward the medical care of women and children in poverty, exploitive or abusive situations. The reader is correct: The Catholic church will not be providing abortion assistance like Planned Parenthood.

Laptops not the answer

SOME SCHOOL districts that made laptop computers available to every student are starting to drop the program. The results are in, and studies consistently show the students have made no progress in core academic areas. Many students have used their laptops in school to download porn, hack into businesses and exchange instructions on how to get around school security. Comments were made in this forum long ago stating what should have been obvious. All of this enthusiasm for technology being the solution for student academic deficiencies in school was wrong. And, in many instances, technology has had a counterproductive influence when it comes to student learning and achievement. It's time to end our love affair with computers in school and quit purchasing more sophisticated pigs in a poke for in-school student use. For a more in- depth discussion of these findings read "Seeing No Progress, Some Schools Drop Laptops" in the March 4 New York Times (nytimes.com).

Paint me! Paint me!

THERE IS a simple reason for the slowdown in sponsorship for those portrayed on Cape Girar-deau's wall of fame. Jealousy abounds. Everyone thinks he should be on it, including me.

Something to do

AS A local musician and music fan, I want to thank the Enchanted Forest for all its hard work in building up a safe, fun environment for people of all ages to enjoy local and regional musicians. They do a wonderful job of running the place and giving kids something to do Friday and Saturday nights rather than prowl the streets or drink and party.

Repair the parking lot

I TOO am a senior adult who often visits the adult education center in the former vocational building. The parking lot is a disgrace. I have not only stumbled, I have fallen. This facility is often being used by disabled adults who sometimes have to travel across the lot. That facility person with the great dreams needs to repair the parking lot that senior and disabled adults often use.

We need real proof

I WAS disappointed in the decision to shut down the United Methodist student ministry on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University. Today, more than ever, there is a need for this ministry. Just last week it was reported in one of this newspaper's blog: "Need proof there's a God? FREE BEER! FREE BEER! FREE BEER! I don't care if you're a Cubs fan, Cardinals fan or Mariners fan, everyone gets behind free beer." Students need proof there is a God and need real proof. Times have changed. The ministry should change. But I agree with Denny Lumos that something should take its place, don't just stop. Remember, if you build it, they will come. Let's keep showing there is proof.

Health care for children

IF SOMEONE is worried about paying taxes to provide health care for children, all I can say is I hope you're independently wealthy. There will come a time in your life where you or your children or their children will need health care, and employer-paid insurance will not be around.

Gambling defeat

GAMBLING ON a riverboat was the chance we had to bring back downtown Cape Girardeau, big time. Religious and moral beliefs were exploited by west side business interests that feared losing a buck or two, and the measure narrowly lost.

Town honors resident

RECENTLY A lifelong and highly respected citizen of Oran, Mo., Louis Hirschowitz, died. Mr. Hirschowitz was of the Jewish faith. Last Sunday I was fortunate to attend a memorial service being held for him at Guardian Angel Catholic Church with members and clergy of every church in Oran present. That didn't just happen. Several people from various churches worked hard getting the lovely service organized. Citizens of Oran know who they were, and you responded with a huge crowd. I know Audrey, Louis' wife, and other members of the family were pleased. I think all people will recognize this is an unusual event. I am so proud of you, Oran, and I know God and Louis were smiling on you.

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