Speak Out 10/21/03

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

I HEAR so much about people who are grossly overweight, people who are so overweight they can't take care of themselves. According to the news, most of these people end up being on public help because they're so fat. The public shouldn't be required to feed them beyond enough to maintain life. Then they'll lose weight and become active again. They may not like it, but it's kindness.

Hard-working Democrat

I WORKED over 15 years for the state and over 25 years in the aircraft industry. I went out and found those jobs myself. Just because we're Democrats and liberals doesn't mean we want the government to give us jobs. It doesn't mean we're lazy.

Highway attention

THERE ARE several potholes on the northbound side on I-55 between Scott City and Nash Road. They are getting bigger by the day. Nobody is doing anything about it. I really feel sorry for any small vehicle. Also, the weeds are three to four feet tall, and it's been that way for quite some time. The interchange at Scott City is the most pitiful looking sight you've ever seen.

Cautious commuter

I LIVE in Cape Girardeau but work in Sikeston. I cross the Diversion Channel bridge every day. I have no problem getting across it. All I have to do is slow down and watch where I'm going.

Wishing for the best

MANY OF us in Cape Girardeau love Rush Limbaugh. We pray for his recovery and wish him the best of luck. We're still disappointed he was illegally taking prescription drugs. We think he's let us down. We want him to do better.

No need to diet

I READ Heidi Hall's column on losing weight, and she's wrong. I'm 47 years old, and I've never been on a diet in my life. I have several friends who have never been on diets. There are a lot of us who are not overweight and never have been. We keep our weight under control not by silly diets or taking prescriptions, but by eating sensibly and walking every day or doing other forms of exercise. I understand it doesn't work for some people, and I'm not making a judgment by any means. But Heidi needs to make sure she doesn't judge us either. I am comfortable with the body God has given me.

Good leadership

VICE PRESIDENT Dick Cheney is so right in his guest column. He lays out the facts so clearly. We Americans can easily see that the inaction of the past administration in ignoring Saddam Hussein and his co-conspirators in Afghanistan enabled the 9-11 attack on America. Our national security was so lax that terrorists were able to operate freely in training in the United States to hijack those airplanes. President Bush is a protector of America. We count our blessings every day for his leadership.

Stray animals

THE 1400 block of Luce Street seems to be a haven for stray dogs and cats. Doesn't Cape Girardeau have a leash law?

Test teachers first

PUBLIC EDUCATION is a joke. It's time everyone faces facts and does something about it before any more generations are dumbed down to the point of no return. The teachers need to stop pretending to be the martyrs. Teachers complain more than any other profession. Yes, real life sometimes sucks. I considered being a teacher for a brief period while I was an undergraduate. I can only speak for what I witnessed at that time, but most of the education majors were scraped from the bottom of the barrel. Perhaps the standards should be raised for those going into the teaching profession instead of for the testing of the students being churned out from our public schools.

No businesses here

I WOULD be glad to see any new business come to town, but don't allow it to move to neighborhoods where retired people and families live. Edgewood cares about its neighbors. We're close to the mall, hospitals and the interstate. We're 15 minutes from Jackson, Scott City and Illinois. This is not a business district.

Hiring in Scott City

I WAS calling regarding the budget cuts for the school districts. I think it's sad that our schools are having to lay off teachers and aides. I think it's sad for the kids' sake especially. I find it more sad that the Scott City School District is advertising in the paper for a personal aide/assistant. The district let like several aides go, and it didn't call any of those back to fill this position.

Breaking the rules

I HAVE a son who goes to the Sears Center at Poplar Bluff, Mo. It has come to my attention that, although smoking is against the center's policy, certain people are smoking in front of the children. These troubled children are minors. When I spoke to an employee there about this matter, he confirmed this to be a policy, but one that isn't enforced. My son has had to ask one employee several times to please stop smoking in front of him, and she refuses to stop. The employees of a facility such as this should be role models. If they are breaking the rules set before them, how do they expect to teach young children to obey the rules?

Watch out for raises

IF JACKSON votes to eliminate the Proposition C rollback in November and the administration gets a raise anytime soon, Jackson needs to stand up and do something instead of letting things slide again.

Bad impression

EVERYONE KEEPS complaining about the T-shirts that Cape Girardeau and Jackson fans wore to the football game. That is nothing compared to the way my father-in-law was treated by a Cape Girardeau police officer that night. My father-in-law is disabled and has a handicapped sticker on his car. But he was told by the cop that the handicapped spots were reserved. My father-in-law drove seven hours to support his grandson at the game that night. It really gave my father-in-law a bad impression of Cape. By the way, no one parked in the handicapped spot.

Words aren't enough

AS AN educator working with the No Child Left Behind Act, I can tell you that more children are being left behind than ever before. Granted, NCLB sounds good, but pleasant-sounding words do not cut it.

School counselors

IF THERE had been counselors in grade school when I was growing up, maybe I would have had the courage to tell someone that my dad had been sexually abusing me. In this day and age, if a child goes to an adult with an allegation that he is being mistreated in any way, it is that adult's responsibility to follow up. Twenty-five years ago when I was in grade school, sexual abuse wasn't an issue like it is today. I had no one to confide in. For eight years I suffered in silence. For the sake of the children, keep counselors in grade schools.

Control the economy

I HAVE only a few words for our president, and I am a Republican: Mr. Bush, if you want to keep your job, you and Congress better get a handle on this economy or hasta la vista, baby.

Nothing to fear

A PROVISION of the Missouri Constitution of 1875 allows people to bear arms but not concealed weapons. If that is true, then it must be legal to openly bear arms in any public venue. The lily livers sure wouldn't like to see that in their grocery stores and malls. I would agree that only law enforcement personnel should be allowed to carry weapons in a courthouse. As long as the people carrying weapons have been screened and are not felons, ex-cons or mental patients, the general public has nothing to fear.

University cuts

CUTTING DOLLARS for SEMO athletics is a bad choice. The university has built dorms and parking lots, bought churches and river campuses and opened a new rec center. Stop spending money, and you won't be in debt. It's a simple concept. If enrollment is on the rise and the university continues to increase tuition and services, then the money should be coming in. SEMO spends what it doesn't have and lays off people and programs to make up for it.

New math Web site

I SINCERELY hope the Everyday Math program at Jackson is successful. But I do think parents of Jackson students should check out www.math.nyu.edu/mfdd/braams/ links/em.html.

Athletics important

TO THE person who said we should rid schools of sports and focus on academics: I highly disagree. I believe academics are first on the list, but athletics give kids school spirit and safe activities on the weekends and helps them stay fit.

Throwing money

WHEN EDUCATION faces economic shortfalls, there will always be someone crying that "more money won't solve education." But when the military has a few problems, there isn't anyone complaining about "throwing money at the problem."

The mayor's comments

REGARDING THE mayor's comments in Newsweek about Cape Girardeau's attitude toward the Limbaughs: What a crock: The mayor has not lived here very long, and the time he has been here has been spent mostly with the so-called elite who are very eager to impress and very easily impressed. If he had spent more time with the average person, he would know that the Limbaughs are not highly regarded here by the majority. As a history lesson to the mayor, George Washington refused the crown when our nation began. Therefore, we have no royalty. The people of this town are smart enough to know a blowhard when they hear one. Unfortunately, we didn't see that side of the mayor until it was too late. Now that we know, he won't have to worry about getting re-elected. He should keep his day job.

Right to bar guns

TO THE person complaining about our city leaders banning guns from public buildings: The city has every right to do that. If the conceal-carry law ever takes effect, I hope all businesses and property owners do the same thing.

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