Speak Out 10/2/07

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Positive approach

TO OUR teachers: I appreciate what you do and what you are up against when you teach our children. Please, don't lump all of the children together when doling out punishment. It is unfair to the children who are trying to do the right thing to be punished for the deeds of others. Offer praise to those who do right and limit punishment. Even the children that deserve punishment could use some loving mercy once in a while.

Ethanol's negatives

ETHANOL IS a crock. It cannot solve our energy problems since at best it takes 11 gallons of gasoline to make 12 gallons of ethanol -- and these 12 gallons contain less energy than the 11 gallons of gasoline. Even if ethanol were more efficient, we don't have the land to convert to corn to produce what we'd need to make a dent in our oil imports. The emphasis on ethanol is increasing the cost of food both to us and folks in developing nations who are destroying their forests to produce corn. It is not worth all the pollution. The only folks benefiting are the distillers, and they are getting fat on subsidies from our taxes. Corporate welfare trumps the public good again.

Difficult times

GOOD LUCK to all our local high school swim and dive teams after losing Central Pool for their competitive season. May you rise up through these difficult times to become stronger teams and better teammates.

Dark park

THE CITY needs to install lights between Perry Avenue and West End Boulevard on Broadway. The new sidewalk around Capaha Park is nice, but it's so dark in that stretch.

Traffic snarl

THE TRAFFIC situation at Clippard Elementary School borders on chaos. Try to drive through there from 2:45 p.m. on and you might as well forget it. Why can't kids ride the bus? There must be 75 cars lining the street. It's ridiculous that city traffic comes to a standstill because of parents who think there children are too good to ride buses or walk. Do you want healthy kids? Make them walk home like I did growing up. In the meantime, get the police to direct traffic so the rest of us can get down the street.

Good impression

BLANCHARD ELEMENTARY School had Grandparents Day recently. My husband and I were impressed with the instruction going on in Mrs. Brase's fourth-grade classroom and the good manners throughout the building. The children were polite, smiling, eager to welcome us and kind to each other. Whatever they're doing at Blanchard to create such an atmosphere should be used at all the schools. Keep up the good work. It's nice to see our taxpayer's money being used so effectively.

Concrete barriers

ENOUGH ABOUT the Jackson left-turn lane. It is time for the board of aldermen to do what politicians have done forever: Make a decision to punish everyone because of the ignorance of a few. Buy a bunch of concrete lane separators and turn East Jackson Boulevard into a limited-turn road like West Jackson Boulevard, just not as pretty.

MoNOT

MoDot's ears are open

When it comes to Ramsey Creek.

And I am the King of Spain

And a wealthy Arab sheik.

Be positive

I AM sick and tired of reading comments bashing our beautiful Jackson School District. As a student I love to go to high school with construction and all. Jackson teachers and administrators do their job and do it well. Let's stop looking at the negative side of everything and see some positive.

No pool parts?

LET'S SEE. There are thousands of public swimming pools throughout the U.S., and ours has an equipment problem that will take as long as 10 weeks to resolve -- all as we're about to consider a tax increase to benefit our parks and pools. It seems unlikely to me that the necessary equipment to repair the pool does not exist in the entire U.S., given that almost every city in this country uses similar equipment. I smell something fishy, and it's not just the stagnant water at the deep end of the pool. I was unlikely to vote for the tax increase before, and now that I see what lengths the parks department will go to prove their point, I am a definite no on the issue.

Chaffee police

I THOUGHT the new police chief of Chaffee was going to make a fresh start and change things. I have yet to see anything done. The city council needs to stay out of police business and let the police department do its job. The city lost a good chief when it let Martin Keys resign.

Let the Guard do it

THE MISSOURI Army National Funeral Honors Program stepped in to give veterans of all services a proper burial because the active-duty services couldn't find the manpower or time. Missouri stepped in to pay for the program when the federal government, then under control of Bill Clinton, wouldn't foot the bill. Whether taps is played by a live instrument or from a recording is not the issue. It's another example of the Guard doing the active duty's job, just like in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Money for pools

TOO MUCH money for soccer, too little money for aquatic sports: It's amazing the potential that this area has to produce top-quality young athletes in many sports, but city officials do not seem to care much about maintaining adequate infrastructure. What happened to the push to keep kids in sports to prevent drugs? Consider the hundreds of kids who are giving up aquatic sports because the only public indoor pool in the area is closed for lack of maintenance. This happened before with hockey, and now the two excellent swim teams in this area will likely disappear for lack of support -- not to mention the high school teams, which have had many top-quality swimmers graduating despite the usually terrible conditions of the pool in the past years.

Great little fair

THANK YOU to all the folks in Altenburg who graciously welcomed all of the fairgoers. I've been attending this little fair for over 20 years, and it just gets bigger and better. The truck pull on Saturday was a success and a great idea. Normally, the crowd moves up the hill after the infamous mule jumping. This really keeps the crowd spread out late into Saturday evening. Thank you again, and I'll see you next year.

Does not compute

SOMEONE COMPLAINED about waiting two hours to see a doctor in Cape Girardeau but had no problem driving at least an hour and a half each way plus using 10 to 15 gallons of gas.

Medical monopoly

THE PROCTER & Gamble plant encourages employees to go to St. Louis to cut health-care costs. The cost difference for health care between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis is amazing. Cape doctors think they have a monopoly on patients in Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois and see no need to cut fees.

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