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Philanthropic whims

In response to an editorial on Saturday: For those that our society and economy permit to accumulate more than they need or can comfortably spend on themselves, it feels better to donate directly to those causes that they care about than to be forced to fund those causes, along with some causes that they don't care about and some to which they are opposed, through taxes.

To some extent, our tax system encourages this practice through making donations to some causes deemed to be worthy of a tax deduction. This, however, is a very inconsistent and unstable way to fund those things that we, collectively, consider to be for the general good of society. Enough of us agree that this is the case for K-12 education that we fairly consistently fund that.

I submit that it is in the interest of our general welfare that anyone who wants or feels that they need more education should be able to get that education as easily (read "inexpensively") as possible. To the extent that this can be funded with feel-good donations, that should happen.

I feel, however, that this is too important a goal to leave to the whims of philanthropy. We need to do this together!


Little Rock

Tyranny on horizon

The framers of our republic wanted a government by and for the people and to prevent a tyrannical one from arising. But today, our president apparently thinks he has the authority to do whatever he wants and gets away with it because we don't seem to have checks and balances any more. The Senate, under Mitch McConnell's leadership, has become comatose; no legislation that passes the House is put on the floor for discussion and a vote. And McConnell insists that there is no sense in doing so unless he is sure the president will sign it and it will become law. He obviously forgot that he is a member of a separate branch of government and is not working for the White House.

I don't know if it's mere partisanship or it has also something to do with loyalty to the president because his wife is the secretary of Transportation. In my humble opinion, no relative of any member of Congress should be allowed to work for the executive branch because it is a blatant conflict of interest. And the Republican senators who are up for re-election are scared to death that they might upset "the base" if they stand up to Trump, so they remain silent.

And Attorney General Bill Barr acts like he is the personal lawyer of the president instead of a public servant working for the people, and apparently will say and do anything to protect him, justice be damned!

Little by little, just like the way it has happened in some other countries, I believe tyranny in the United States is on the horizon, if it is not here already.



State's pride for sale

San Jose State University left Arkansas with a million and a half of our dollars, and much of our pride.

I am pretty sure Arkansas State would do the same thing for a lot less money.


Hot Springs Village

A principled leader

You have the daily job of reporting mudslinging politics. It makes me wish officials believed in principles, not partisan politics.

I believe Sen. Tom Cotton is one of those principled leaders. Last year Tom Cotton took heat from Democrats and Republicans for opposing their bill which made it easier for sex offenders to get released early. When a Justice Department study said the "First Step Act" would make it easier for sex offenders to get shorter sentences, Senator Cotton took a stand even though he had to fight senators from both parties.

I was in the police academy at Camden on 9/11. Since then I've been a law enforcement officer in Arkansas. It is a morale booster to see people like Tom Cotton protecting citizens first and putting party politics second.

During the Obama administration, Tom Cotton supported federal funding of ALERRT and CRASE training for people to stop school and church shooters. I guess Senator Cotton practices what President Truman preached, that it's amazing what you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit.



Reach full potential

My goal as a teacher is to help my students foster confidence and reach their full potential regardless of their academic and personal challenges. Many students with learning challenges like dyslexia at times struggle to keep pace with their peers in the classroom. This unfortunately can lead to self-esteem issues that last well into adulthood. Early intervention and support of dyslexic students are imperative for successful academic growth.

I've been a teacher at Arkansas Virtual Academy for five years. During this time, so many of my students have doubted their ability to learn because of dyslexic tendencies. That's why, before the school year even begins, I try my best to learn everything I can about my students--including their likes and dislikes, their strengths, and areas that need improvement. Throughout the year, I help them build their confidence as they practice specific reading and writing strategies.

I also remind my students that everyone can learn--that's the fun part about growing up. I want them to know they truly can be anything they want to be. And I feel fortunate to be able to play a role in helping them reach their fullest potential.



Editorial on 09/25/2019

Print Headline: Letters

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