Speak Out 7/26/07

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Class scheduling

THE DEFENSE of Tiger Time at Central High School is absurd. CHS did not have this until administrators made a mistake when the new school was built. They had to add a lunch shift, and that caused a scheduling problem. Tiger Time was added in for that reason. Now this last-minute fix is being sold as a must-have. We functioned well without Tiger Time for years. It is a waste of time and needs to be abolished. The additional class period is also ridiculous. The district needs to return to a 50-minute, seven-period day. It has proven to be the most successful schedule in regard to what really counts: student achievement.

SHE magazine rocks

HEY, SOUTHEAST Missourian, you rock. I just put down your SHE magazine after reading it from cover to cover. Where did you all get such good writers? That was fun. And all local. Thanks.

A big issue

WHEN CAPE Girardeau's mayor says the park board position on a tax increase is "no issue," several things come to mind. When asked about the matter by the media, the mayor's blood pressure spiked significantly. It is an issue.

No justice

THIS IS Southeast Missouri, and there is no justice. My ex-husband abused me on several occasions, and police reports were filed each time. I went to the police station to get copies of reports and was told they didn't exist. Only after a friend threatened to call her father, a prominent town figure, did the reports appear. Last September my daughter was abused by the same man. My daughter was slapped so hard she had a handprint two days later and was told it was poor judgment, not child abuse. In September he was charged with class C felony child abuse against my daughter. Even with all his prior history he was given a plea bargain by our Cape Girardeau County prosecutor and received probation. To top it off, while he was on bail for this crime he got a DWI (not his first) and more probation. Justice? There's no justice around here.

Parking fines

THE PROPOSED parking-fine increase would be OK as long as it does not target only college students. I used to live near Central Junior High School when it was the high school, and it was like pulling teeth to get a parking-enforcement officer to the neighborhood. I would go to class at Southeast Missouri State University to find a parking-enforcement officer waiting for late students to park illegally. Yet as a homeowner I could not get a high school student's car moved out of my driveway. If the enforcement is not targeted at specific members of the population then, by all means, Councilman Voss, raise the fines and generate more revenue for the city.

Paradise?

HOW CAN anyone say Cape Girardeau is the worst community in the U.S.? We have rock solid puritan values, realize we will get our reward in heaven and not on Earth, and have Rush on the wall of fame.

Short lunches

REGARDING THE proposed longer school day for Central High School: It seems to make sense and should help the students. Why are so many people hung up on the hour lunches? Neither of the hospitals provide hour lunches, and those are two of the biggest employers in the area. If the students can't leave the campus and the food is provided there, what is the problem? When I attended CHS, the lunch period was only 25 minutes. That was OK then, and it would be OK now. Focus on academics and what is really important.

Legal propaganda

A LAWYER and professor tried to slip political propaganda by us the other day in an op-ed published in the Southeast Missourian. It failed miserably. The gist of the article was an expression of disapproval of Missouri's non-partisan court plan for selecting judges at higher levels, including the Missouri Supreme Court. Their objection was that politics is still involved in the process. How stunning. Unfortunately, their cure was -- you guessed it -- the insertion of even more politics. The Southeast Missourian readership is far to clever to let this kind of stealth propaganda slip by undetected.

Electric rates

YOUR EDITORIAL conclusion that giving AmerenUE less than asked for in a rate increase will send them a message to clean up their act and improve their service is not the case at all. Ameren knew it would get less than what it asked for, so it asked for much more. It got about what was desired, and we remain hopelessly and helplessly in the pockets and Ameren and their political lackeys.

Voting students

Southeast Missouri State University students should all register as Cape Girardeau voters and use the democratic process to express their economic impact.

Something nice

WHY CAN'T a man send his wife flowers just because he loves her and wants to give her something nice? Give a guy a break. My husband treats me well. He doesn't send me flowers, but he doesn't have to. He grows them.

Consumer complaints

CONSUMERS WHO call the Better Business Bureau and ask if any complaints have been made against a company need to be aware that the Better Business Bureau lists many complaints as informational complaints, and these complaints are not reported to consumers who inquire about the company.

Year-around school

HAS THE school board ever investigated having school throughout the year and having four three-week minivacations instead of one long vacation?

Lucky wife

REGARDING THE husband who sent roses to his wife at work: This is one woman who would definitely get the baby sitter and arrange a romantic evening. No one should laugh about something like that. I was married 25 years and was never been treated like that throughout my marriage. The wife who got the roses should count her lucky stars that she has a man who cares enough to do that.

Taxing issues

WHY DRIVE businesses and workers out of Cape Girardeau and into surrounding communities by continuing to increase the cost of doing business here? Forcing small businesses to invest in expensive, permanent signs instead of allowing them to use inexpensive banners is one example. Raising the sales tax so high that it makes it worthwhile for customers to drive to neighboring communities for big-ticket items like building materials and appliances would be another bad move. Notice how people flock to the city's businesses during the sales-tax holiday. Why not encourage this swarm of customers year-around by lowering the sales tax so that it is the most competitive in that area? Driving high-wage earners and the businesses that hire them out of the city with an earnings tax would be the final nail in the coffin. The city council needs to study St. Louis and other cities where there is an income tax. High-wage earners and businesses are deserting the city in droves for the suburbs, and the city continues to decline. Per-capita income adjusted for inflation has declined dramatically since the implementation of this tax in St. Louis. The city council needs to understand that increased tax rates do not necessarily mean that tax revenue will increase. Making a friendly environment for business to grow and prosper is a tried and proven method of increasing revenue.

Taking shortcuts

I'VE NOTICED that heavy dump trucks come up and down our street day and night. They use it as a shortcut between Kingshighway and Lexington Avenue. By law, they are required to use those main arteries. They come up our narrow street and cut through neighborhoods, endangering the lives of children. When they have a full load of rock or dirt from a new subdivision, they come down our hill so fast past a private day-care center that if the parents are pulling out of the driveway in their car, they would be killed instantly. I wish the police would enforce this law. Otherwise, take it off the books.

Giving extra

TEACHERS ARE already paid well enough in Cape Girardeau, and doing extra work to help ensure that students won't drop out sounds like a good thing. One can only point to the neighboring community of Jackson where teachers are more than willing to stay after school at the middle school and support after-school activities and give of their time. Jackson has set a precedence for teachers who care and give extra, so why shouldn't Cape?

Memorial location

WHEN DRIVING through Cape Girardeau the other day, I came upon a spot that would be a beautiful spot for the proposed World War I memorial. Freedom Corner would be a beautiful spot, and you can see it from the hospital.

No more taxes

I'M CALLING concerning tax increases. Please, no more tax increases for Cape Girardeau. My county property-tax reassessment has shot up 58 percent. The prices at the swimming pool and Osage Community Centre have gone up. Even the basic price of staples like milk have soared. Medical costs are eating me up. This mayor and city council have no compassion for the citizens. They are milking us for all we have. It doesn't do any good to attend council meetings to complain or explain your situation. They will tell they will look into your problem, and the next day you read where they went ahead and did what they were going to do in the first place. The only way to stop these people is to go the polls and vote.

Iraq's borders

I KEEP hearing about Iraq, but I've never heard about the U.S. or Iraq trying to secure the Iraq's borders. They say that's where all the weapons and explosive materials are coming from. So why hasn't that been a priority? Either we aren't informed of it or we are letting ourselves down greatly by not focusing on border security.

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