Speak Out 3/19/05

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Trash and junk cars

I CAN'T see why there's so much trash on the highways. Another eyesore is on Route W past the Route Y intersection toward Fruitland. On the left there's a field of junk cars and an old house trailer. Why is that allowed? There are nice houses out there.

Wrong education

THE SOUTHEAST Missourian likes to encourage children to read the newspaper. If it's going to do that, couldn't advertisements for things like a Brazilian bikini wax be placed in the entertainment section, not in the first few pages of news that some classrooms would cover? Also, can't they tone down that lingerie ad a bit? Kids might be getting the education, but I'm not sure it's the kind of education they need to be getting.

Better benefits

IT'S NOT true that families can make over $56,000 and still get medical bills paid. If that were so, we'd have people lining from over in Illinois or the Kansas border to come to Missouri. No way at all you can get medical help with $56,000 a year. Missouri is one of the lowest welfare states as far as benefits are concerned. I see people moving back to Illinois because there are better benefits there.

Increase supply

IN MY opinion, supply and demand are the key factors in fuel prices. My answer is to drill the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, reopen a fuel refinery and increase alternative fuel research and development.

Missouri thinking

IT SHOULD be no surprise to people who are griping about potholes. Missouri has the third worst roads in the country. You can't have good roads without spending money, but we don't want higher taxes because we have things like our Hancock Amendment. When we have good times and we have money, we send it back, and then we don't have money when we need it. That's how we think in Missouri.

Upsetting dispute

I'M A graduate of Southeast Missouri State University back in the 1960s, and I'm upset and displeased at the way president Ken Dobbins and the board of regents are carrying on right now. I assure you that back when I was in school Dr. Mark Scully would not have allowed this situation between Three Rivers Community College and the university. This is a disgrace. I can't imagine the president and board of regents are taking this type of stand and fighting with Three Rivers, which has been a good ally. We need people with common sense and who know how to treat other people. I hope to goodness that somebody can step in and do something before it's too late.

School concerns

I REALLY appreciate the family nights at Cape Girardeau Middle School. Alma Schrader Elementary School didn't do anything like this in the past two years. What makes me upset is when the school sends out information that said only fifth and sixth graders could go through the star lab. There was a limit of 15 students per tour. Sadly, some children had to leave early or didn't get to go at all because of selfish parents who went through with their younger kids.

Take a picture

WHY DOESN'T the Southeast Missourian run a picture of litter problems every week? Maybe that would help clean up the trash in town.

Freedom for everyone

IT IS true that the phrase "In God We Trust" does not force anyone to worship God. But how would people feel if coins read "In Allah We Trust" or "In Ganesha We Trust"? Freedom of religion applies to everyone, not just Christians.

Just surviving

I AM one of the disabled trying to make it on less than $600 a month. All I'm doing is surviving. If Medicaid benefits are cut, I will end up in worse health and perhaps even die.

Brains are chemicals

ARGUMENTS AGAINST introducing potentially helpful prescribed drugs into our brains on the basis that the brain should remain free of chemicals is erroneous. In large part, our brains are made up of chemicals. Adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin are several of the better known ones. When it comes to attention deficit disorder, Ritalin may be, if anything, underprescibed.

Helping ourselves

I AGREE that we need more assistance for the working-class people. The problem is we are too busy helping the young, healthy but lazy people who choose not to work. So our funds run out. Our elderly, disabled and veterans should come first. Parents of school-aged children or children with disabilities should receive help also. "Help" is the key word. If they are able to work, they need to work. There should be time limits on assistance, help them but don't support them for as long as they choose not to work. I am a single mother with three children. I have been homeless. I have received help, but I have always worked. There is always work to be found if you want to work. Let's help those who want to help themselves.

Fuel options

WHAT ARE consumers who are complaining doing about rising gas prices? Drive a hybrid? An electric car? Have you ridden your bicycle to work? Or walked? We are too dependent on foreign oil, and OPEC keeps raising prices. The only fix is to drill in places like Alaska to reduce our dependence on imports. While this is not a permanent fix, it would ease the pressure on prices here. Auto manufacturers have made great strides in the last 20 years regarding alternative-fuel vehicles. By the time the oil in Alaska runs out, we will probably no longer need to drill for oil. We'll be using something else for fuel. I've seen prices well over $4.50 a gallon when I was in Europe, so I'm not going to get too excited yet.

Medical excuse

STUDENTS WHO fall asleep in school should not be punished unless they snore. In addition, those who snore shouldn't be punished if the student has a signed doctor's explanation to the effect that the student snores because he or she has sleep apnea.

Stop the abuse

FINALLY, THE Democrats are showing some backbone. I hope they shut the Senate down and stop the Republicans' abuse of power.

Picking at pieces

LET'S NOT stop with the Ten Commandments. Let's also include laws like Deuteronomy 21: "If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, all the men of the city shall stone him with stones, that he die." Why do people choose one part of the Old Testament and not the whole thing?

Government interference

THE FIRST Amendment says, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or of the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for redress of grievances." To me this says that all Americans have the right to exercise the religion they choose. Our nation, no matter what anyone tells you, was "created under God." When the government starts taking away those things that were so valued by our forefathers and are so important to us today, that is wrong. When the Ten Commandments go, the loss of the right to worship is not far behind.

Time for support

THREE RIVERS Community College is wrong, not Southeast Missouri State University. Three Rivers was not doing what it was supposed to be doing, and Southeast said so. What's really sad is that people of Cape Girardeau always take the other side when it comes to Southeast. Without Southeast, you could kiss Cape Girardeau goodbye.

Put car to the test

NOT EVERYONE objects to potholes. I like them because they're a good test of my car's shocks.

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