Speak Out A 09/07/02

Saturday, September 7, 2002

Tackling mosquitoes

THE ATTEMPT to rid Cape of mosquitoes is about as useless as me throwing a rock at a million starlings. Can you believe anyone would say they are fighting the problem with one little sprayer, putting out a puff of smoke every month in the neighborhood? Saving just one person from getting a serious disease would be worth the effort to have a more serious and vigilant attitude to eliminate most of these pests. This would take a push in Cape -- law enforced -- to remove all standing water, weeds, trash containers, springs, ponds and ditches and about 20 more sprayers at peak mosquito times. The city's dropping the bucket in its approach to this danger. I guess it takes an epidemic or a tragedy to get any action.

A kind helper

MY SISTER and I were coming home to Cape from Memphis where our brother had passed away. On I-55, we had to stop for gas. We noticed we had left our purses at our niece's home in Memphis. We had no way to get gas, and the fuel tank was empty. There was a sheriff's car at the station, and we looked him up and asked for help. This guy filled our tank with gas and wouldn't take any money for it. He told us to just have a good trip and to go on. He was very kind. He worked for the Mississippi County sheriff's office in Arkansas.

Back to school

IT'S A great morning in Cape Girardeau. The first day of school. I drove by the high school early this morning. The lights were on even before the sun came up. The teachers were getting ready. Everything's set to go. May God bless our teachers.

Moving experience

THE MOVING wall at Thebes was a very moving experience. The avenue of flags was lovely. Even the courthouse was dressed up in patriotic bunting. The town really came together. Thanks to all of you who were involved.

Underpaid officers

I WORKED in law enforcement for many years. I realize police officers are not perfect. However, they work a full-time job at different hours and in dangerous situations. Many of them have to work a second job, and their wives have to work in order to make ends meet. These are not always just young people who are just starting out in the department. These are people who have been in the department for many years. The police officers do deserve a raise, not just in Jackson or Cape or Cape County but all over the country.

Arts are alive and well

I AND a few of my friends are baffled at Jim Drury's statement: "We like mud wrestling, rodeos and demolition derbies." With apologies to those who like the rodeo and also go to the opera, this is like saying we all have outhouses, keep chickens in the front yard, pigs in the backyard and use old cars for planters. Arts are a far more important part of the lives of people in this area than Drury imagines. Witness the thousands of kids and parents who voluntarily participate in music and theater programs in the schools of Southeast Missouri. A love of the arts is alive and well in Southeast Missouri

Limited options

"WE LIKE mud wrestling, rodeos and demolition derbies." So says Jim Drury as a compelling reason for not proceeding with a performing arts center at the River Campus. That is precisely the mindset that has pushed many natives like myself out of Southeast Missouri in search of greater diversity and a broader range of enriching activities. Mud wrestling, rodeos and demolition derbies are desirable if they are in demand, but until other performing-arts options are brought to Cape Girardeau, the region will continue to limit its growth and future potential by not becoming a more desirable place for all to live.

Smoking at school

THE SCHOOL policy about smoking is for the students, not the faculty. Teachers are not allowed to smoke inside the new high school. Let the adults be adults.

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