Speak Out 1/20/08

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Smoking parents

I AGREE that smoking around your children is bad, especially in a car with closed windows. Secondhand smoke is a known cause of many health problems, especially in children. This is overlooked by most people. But if I discipline my child in public when he misbehaves, people are ready to call social services.

Fixing a problem

I DON'T understand why Nancy Jernigan, executive director of the United Way of Southeast Missouri, feels comfortable confronting the mayor and chamber president about their obligation to make a difference in the at-risk youths in Cape Girardeau. She has written grants for a significant amount of money over the last three years for the LIFE initiative to do that very thing. Her own initiative, with hand-selected service providers, hasn't been able to resolve the problems. How can she expect someone else to fix them?

Suggested reading

GOOD EDITORIAL on autism. Thanks for debunking the mercury in vaccine as a myth in causing the disorder. Two current bestsellers by high-functioning autistics (Asperger's syndrome) worth reading are "Look Me in the Eye" and "Born on a Blue Day."

Use Schultz School

I AM all for a new community center on the south side of Cape Girardeau, but why didn't someone think of using Schultz School for it? The school has a gym, cafeteria, meeting rooms, band practice room and space for a library branch. And it would save a million dollars.

Political propriety

THE COZY relationship between area politicians and area lobbyists leave me confused when I try to figure out whether an area pol is still a pol, an ex-pol turned lobbyist, an ex-lobbyist turned pol or what. Southeast Missouri already has a black eye as a result of recent political criminality. If we are going to restore our reputation, we need not give a hint of impropriety, even if none exists.

Designated smoker?

THIS IS in response to the person who compared a smoking ban to an alcohol ban. How is banning alcohol in public the same as banning smoking in public? If you drink, you can either not drink much or have a designated driver take you home. But I don't think you can get anyone to be your designated smoker. When you smoke, the people around you are in danger of secondhand smoke. I am all for the ban on smoking in public places.

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