Editorial: Helping students succeed is what teaching is all about
Helping students succeed is what teaching is all about
What a pleasant surprise I had when I read the June 2 Salisbury Post. The article headlined “Cheerwine, Gary’s Barbecue and a good book” caught my attention. The young author photographed is a former student of mine, when I taught fourth grade at China Grove Elementary School. Brandon still carries a winning smile that is often contagious.
As an educator in the Rowan-Salisbury School System, it makes me proud to see my former students become successful young adults. A short time ago, while dining out with my family, I had the opportunity to speak with Brandon about his career plans and his interests. I was so pleased to hear that he graduated from N.C. State and has become a successful, career-focused individual. I am always interested in seeing former students of mine and hearing about their successes in life.
Way to go, Brandon, for setting high expectations for yourself and achieving them! I’m proud to say that I was your fourth-grade teacher while you were at China Grove Elementary School, and I wish you the best of success in all that you encounter. May your choice to become a published author be an inspiration to others that anything is possible if you are willing to put forth the effort and persevere.
I hope you will be available to sign my copy of your book! It would be a pleasant addition to my collection of books I enjoy reading to my students each year, along with the fond memories I have of you when you were a young fourth-grader in my class.
ó Christine Fritzsche Barringer
Barringer now teaches fourth grade at Bostian Elementary.
Obama doesn’t get it
The president’s call for a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian controversy when in Cairo indicates a lack of understanding of the historic, cultural and religious elements composing the quagmire of hope. Many of these relate to World World II, when the mufti of Jerusalem, Al Husseini, “vacationed” in Berlin. As an ally of Germany, he created Muslim divisions in the Balkan states to fight for Hitler. He supported the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, born in 1922, creating a violent nationalist movement.
In the 1920s and 1930s, the mufti encouraged killing defenseless Jews in Jerusalem and Hebron whose only crime was religious observance. Religious justification for the murders had their province in the Koran, Sura 2:61, which states, “The children of Israel are consigned to humiliation and wretchedness …” The Koran is replete with religious justifications for the treatment of non-Muslims, Christians and Jews.
Allegations that the Israeli-Arab conflict began with the movement of the Jews from Europe to the Middle East are disingenuous. Arab intellectuals forget that half of the Jewish immigrants to Israel fled their Arab brothers because of an Arab holocaust. Jews fled every Arab state from Yemen to Maghreb. Middle Eastern Jews had been confined to ghettos, forced to walk barefoot or with straw shoes when outside the ghetto, compelled to wear a yellow star, pay special taxes for “protection” and yield in the street to a passing Muslim. Their work in court was less credible than that of a Muslim, and they suffered countless other indignities.
In appreciating Islam, what is the punishment for the apostate? Death. There are wide differences in this conflict of cultures. Given the spread of Islam, the dedication of some to jihad, the Western world cannot submit to an “ism” comparatively hostile to the Enlightenment and allow Israel to be the first victim.
ó Arthur Steinberg
Bill would protect beaches
First appealing to science, then resorting to emotion, the Charlotte Observer recently ridiculed efforts by coastal property owners to save threatened homes (through the Inlet Stabilization Bill, N.C. Senate Bill 832). An Observer editorial states that “N.C. Atlantic shoreline doesn’t look like the snaggle-tooth oceanfront common to parts of New Jersey”… a result of “far sighted state policy banning jetties to halt beach erosion.” Well folks, looks can be deceiving.
Last winter, a flotilla of giant barges, dredges, pumps and GPS-controlled bulldozers pumped hundreds of millions of cubic yards of sand from the inlets and Intra-Coastal Waterway through 30-inch pipes stretching for miles across N.C. islands. This “natural look” cost taxpayers millions of dollars. What’s worse, pumped sand is 60 percent more likely to wash away. “Natural beaches”? You have to be kidding.
Calling it the New Jerseyization of our beaches sounds more ominous than the South Carolina-, Georgia-, Maryland-, Florida-, Massachusetts-, Maine-ization of our beaches. The fact is, all of these states use groins and jetties to great success.
The American Shore & Beach Preservation Association, in a position paper dated April 2008, concluded that “terminal groins can be beneficial to control erosion on nourished and unnourished beaches and reduce losses of sand to coastal inlets… they control large-scale fluctuations of the shoreline and protect homes and infrastructure.” Findings from the American Society of Civil Engineers, National Research Council and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers support these findings.
The fact that so many states use jetties with success and that the science has demonstrated that terminal groins and jetties do work suggests that it is time to unravel six years of bad policy. S.B. 832 will be good for North Carolinas inlets.
ó Michael S. Young