Speak Out 11/29/04

Monday, November 29, 2004

No more half-days

AS A parent of kids in the Cape Girardeau School District, I'm concerned about the number of half-days scheduled throughout the year. We've had four already this year, and we're not even through the first semester. If the district is so short of money, it makes no sense to have half-days. And if you're going to take off, do it on a Friday. I'm sure the bus company doesn't operate for free when you only get a half-day of education. Economically, it seems very silly to have half-days. Educationally, it's very silly too. My kids say most of the teachers on half-days do fill-in activities or watch a movie. I can't believe these experts at the board office can't figure this out.

Proud union member

I BELONGED to a union for over 50 years. I worked places where you had to join, and I worked for open-shop unions. The open-shop union used to go out on strike and really fight to get a raise, good working conditions and decent vacations. The scabs would walk through our picket line, but they reaped the harvest we had to fight for. People that don't want to pay union dues are a bunch of freeloaders. The union is there to protect the working men and women. I'm proud to be a union member like I'm proud to be an American.

Shooting back

COPS PICK up crooks. Garbage collectors pick up garbage. It's pretty much the same thing, right? But garbage cans don't shoot the garbage collectors.

Getting too big

ABOUT KIDS who are too big for the mall's play area: When your child gets older, are you going to tell him he is too old to play there?

Future interpretation

DO THE words "sexual orientation" in a non-discrimination policy apply only to consenting adults, or do they also mean the organization must not discriminate against persons who are sexually attracted to children or animals? I have seen several of these non-discrimination polices. While those who put those words into such policies may intend only to refer to consenting human adult relationships, what prevents some future court from ruling the words themselves do no exclude other forms of sexual orientation?

Highway advertising

I HOPE Cape Girardeau doesn't make it a habit of advertising in the highway median coming into town. There are enough of those crazy banners every where else.

Too much noise

I AGREE with the caller about the noise ordinance. It should be a state law. I do not like to go out to dinner, ride through town or be in my home and have to listen to loud noise. It is producing a generation of people who will be deaf and a driving distraction. The people who have these sound systems can't hear horns, emergency vehicles or police cars. Turn them down or lose them.

Underground in Cairo

THIS IS no theory. In what had been a hotel on the south side of Cairo, Ill., there were dungeons and passages out to the river. I was taken there as a young girl and saw them and heard the rush of the water from the Mississippi River. In later years the building was used to house cars. Finally, it was demolished, but I don't know what year that would have been. That hotel was also one of Gen. U.S. Grant's headquarters. My uncle obtained a U.S. Army sword from that hotel, and it has been passed down in the family. This is yet another part of history buried underground.

Treat them equally

FOR THE Cape Girardeau mayor to say that it is easier to replace a public works worker than a police officer is not right at all. Public works workers should be referred to equally with other city workers.

Going out of town

WE GO out of town to hire a dean at the university. We go out of town for a fire chief. Now we are having to go out of town for a school superintendent. Is Cape Girardeau only full of oafs, misfits and dummies, or are there some capable and qualified people left here? Or do we go out of town to hire strangers so they can be controlled by a board of directors with their own agenda?

Agreed to pay

THERE ARE teachers upset about the amount of money being paid for a superintendent. There are a couple things they should remember. The CEO of a company usually makes more money than anyone else. The teachers agreed to their contracts.

Wonderful benefit

WERE YOU at the concert? That was the question heard at church Sunday, in the grocery store and in the halls of school Monday. Not the upscale technical event that the audience members seem to have a variety of opinions about, but the benefit at a local high school with sound and lighting run by students. If you weren't there, you missed a truly wondrous evening. No pyrotechnics. No flashing lights. Just 12 performers representing a range from the class of 1980 to the class of 2004 who combined their talents to support the recovery of one of the Notre Dame Regional High School family. Some of the performers were professionals. Some weren't. Some of the performers knew Brad Lively personally. Some didn't. But they all knew of his dedication to helping young people make safe driving decisions. They all knew of his 2 a.m. visits to the annual freshman-senior lock-in. They all put time, treasure and talent into the one-night-only performance. They all experienced the greatest standing ovation ever when the man they came to honor stood unassisted at the end of the concert and applauded them. Were you at this concert? If you were, you know how magic the evening was. Thank you to everyone who created and supported the Lively benefit.

Pair up seniors

MY HEART goes out to all the senior citizens who have to live alone at or below poverty level. Perhaps seniors could come together and pool their resources and homes. Those with better homes could be matched with those who are renting. Pairing could be done like finding a life's partner through the paper or computer service, but this would be pairing people who have similar likes and dislikes and who would like to share a simple hope for financial security and companionship. I guess I am a dreamer, but I think it would work if enough people would pull together.

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