Letters to the editor - Wednesday (9-4-2013)

  • Posted: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 12:30 a.m.

Another perspective on school central office

A cartoon with a different perspective from the Post’s Mark Brincefield concerning the school central office might have depicted the character Ernest T. Bass of the old Andy Griffith television show who represents the Local Government Commission (LGC). Ernest throws a rock through a window at Salisbury City Hall wrapped with a note which says, “Ur apulkashun ooks fishee. Snd ur reel stuf.”

City Council’s abrupt withdrawal from the LGC process is more than a little fishy. Why wouldn’t City Council comply with questions/concerns from the LGC? After spending countless tax dollars on site preparation and on architectural drawings, the City Council and School Board quit the LGC process ... really? What was the total tax dollar amount spent? When were those expenditures approved? Taxpayers need an accounting.

In an apparent attempt to deflect responsibility for a costly collapse, aka bait and switch, some on City Council were quick to insinuate condemnation towards the County Commission in Thursday’s paper, implying that the County Commission isn’t progressive. What? The County Commission simply allowed the City Council and the School Board to run with the ball. It was the City Council and School Board who snatched up the central office ball.

It’s possible the LGC questioned City Council’s application in part because it recognized the real responsibility and vote of funding our schools rests by law with the County Commission (unless of course that law is challenged by City Council in Raleigh).

Maybe the costs of a school central office can be lowered (no Taj Mahal) and the money saved spent instead on new classrooms for students. Maybe being progressive is in the eye of the beholder.

— Tina Hall


More security needed

Sadly, school security is sorely lacking in the Rowan-Salisbury School System (reference, Aug. 25 Post front page). The new camera systems in the schools are impressive, however, far from perfect. The bottom line is that they can be penetrated by someone bent on destruction. Why are we not discussing armed resource officers in every school — not just high schools?

It’s my understanding that the budget to hire school resource officers was submitted to county commissioners, but was shot down by Sides, Caskey and Pierce on a 3-2 vote. Yet the commissioners have a fund balance of over $20 million — with around $10 million to work with. I firmly believe in cutting government programs — including waste in education systems — as much as any conservative; but we are cutting this budget in the wrong place. Nothing, and I mean nothing, trumps the safety of our children! Rowan — and many other counties — desperately need armed resource officers in every school. Now, not after a catastrophe.

The only way to stop a bad guy with an illegal gun — or other device — is with a good guy with a legal gun. What’s that, call 911? So did Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, the movie theater in Colorado and a host of others with blood-stained floors. In the precious minutes it takes a 911 response to occur, a lunatic with an illegal gun can accomplish unbelievable carnage. Please call the Rowan County commissioners and put them on the path.

If I had children in the system, I would rally parents around chipping in a few dollars every month to hire resource officers, if necessary. The school system and commissioners need to come together on this one. Nobody wants the innocent blood of children on their hands.

— Randy Biggerstaff


No need to fear voter ID

As a refreshing contrast to the fear-mongering by opponents of the voter ID law, here are a few facts from an editorial in the Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier:

n Rhode Island’s overwhelmingly Democratic legislature passed a similar law in 2011.

n More than 30 states have done the same.

n The U.S. Supreme Court upheld Indiana’s voter ID law in 2008.

n Perhaps most telling, black voter participation in Georgia has increased since its voter ID law went into effect in 2007.

There are doubtless exponentially more documented examples of voter fraud in the United States than there are of voter suppression caused by a reasonable voter ID requirement. As Founding Father John Adams noted, “Facts are stubborn things.”

— Stuart Smith


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