Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

May 5, 2013

In Your View

The Independent

ASHLAND — Schools must go back to basics

The education of the three R’s, history and civics will determine the survival of our state and nation. We are losing our future by grooming all children toward a college degree and many are being left behind. People who have graduated with a four-year degree are unemployed with substantial student loans. Students should, through aptitude and evaluation, be guided toward a vocation or trade rather than condemning them to a feeling of failure and poverty.

Politicians have thrown money at education for years through taxes without accountability and justification to determine which programs are successful. Teachers are threatened with layoffs to meet the budget. The stewards of our education taxes are accountable for programs and should be held to a conservative standard. The sacred cows of extracurricular activities are never addressed to benefit a full-rounded education.

Time in the classroom is the gold standard for success and a teacher’s class is only as strong as its weakest student. No student should be advanced until he or she has satisfied the requirements of a grade level. The practice of everyone progressing based on age is holding back the preparation of students for college and causing our population to be degraded to the illiteracy of a Third World nation.

Our nation was built on the backs and sweat of blue-collar workers and now our past industries are lying in waste after being shipped off shore. With the evolution of the “in-your-face attitude” and lack of discipline, if changes are not made, we are doomed to failure as a nation.

Ron Wedekind, Greenup

Circle was great place to grow up

Reading the obituaries last week I saw where Sidney Rice passed. What a loss to all the folks in what I’ll call the circle.

The circle was from the beginning of Johnsons Fork near the old Eidson School to Eades Holler to Graydon Heights to Bayless Hill on Catletts Creek and back to the school. This is where I spent most of my life.

The thing about the cicle as a child was how safe you felt. On Saturday mornings after cartoons, the mothers would run all the kids outside to play. You could not stay inside unless you were sick, but that was no problem. We loved being outside and running the hills.

Most of the time we would meet at the field for football, baseball, basketball or World War II combat, which took all day to play because it entailed giving a group a 30-minute head start before trying to find it. Finding kids to play was not a problem because there were about 15 we were either related to or were grafted into the family. It was a place where I met and still have my best friend, Mike Amos, and met my second best friend who I went to college with, Casey Shumway.

These are great memories. The mothers and fathers who lived on the circle led by example and taught all children of the circle to know right from wrong.

Where have they gone? Some are still living, but many, like Mr. Rice, have had a home-going.

People say times have changed. I say what really has changed are the people. I’m glad I had the privilege to live on the circle. The things I was taught as a child stay with me as a man while I look for a circle for my grandchildren.

Bob Maynard, Catlettsburg

Snyder’s column makes him ‘brave’

Aaron Snyder asks at the end of his May 2 column about Jason Collins if his expressed belief that Collins is neither “heroic” nor “courageous” makes Snyder “brave.” I would adamently suggest that, indeed, it does just that. We live in a time when free thought and traditional beliefs are smothered by political correctness as forced upon us by the print and broadcast media, the entertainment industry and the present leadership of our state and country.

One can express his or her beliefs, but in doing so, that person must, if the expressed belief doesn’t go along with the present agenda, be prepared for a vicious onslaught of hate, censorship and ostracism as openly practiced by the politically correct “thought police.”

I fear Mr. Snyder will face personal attacks for expressing his sincere thoughts. That’s unfortunate. On the other hand, that is clearly a sign of the times.

Personally, I feel certain Aaron has expressed the feelings and beliefs of a majority of our neighbors. It is long past time for those who claim to be Christians and believers to stand up, speak out and be counted. However, as we sit back and watch the country move farther and farther away from its foundational beliefs as expressed by our founders and closer and closer to inward destruction, I conclude  we have far too many “cafeteria Christians” in our midst.

 No one is trying to deprive Collins of his way of life; that’s his business. However, those of us who find him less than “heroic” should be spared from the onslaught of those who tend to support free speech only when said speech is in accordance with their program. 

Aaron Snyder showed great courage. I salute him for taking a needed stand that too few seem willing to take.

Donald L. Frailie, Ashland

Morning-after pill available at age 15

The Food and Drug Adminstration recently lowered fromm 17 to 15 the age that people can buy the Plan B One-Step morning-after pill without a prescription to 15 and decided that the pill could be sold on drugstore shelves. This was after U.S. District Judge Edward Korman of New York gave the FDA 30 days to lift all age limits on who can buy morning-after birth control pills without a prescription.

The judge didn't want any age limit at all! I didn't know we had a pregnancy problem with 2 year olds. What is the thinking behind this?

Anyway, the government couldn't stomach that, so it set an arbitrary limit settling on 15 year olds. I think 17 years old is still too young to consider a drug which could have potentially devastating side effects. Meanwhile my second grade daughter almost got in trouble for innocently going to her lunch box to get a Lactaid pill (readily available over the counter) to help her avoid lactose intolerance when she wanted ice cream! No child can have a prescription inside school without a doctor's release and they want to give the morning-after pill to teenagers?

Manny Alvarez, a physician who regularly comments on health issues, was livid. He exploded when replying to a question about this saying, “It is my responsibility and my wife's responsibility alone to bring that to fruition. Not the federal government, not the president, not anybody else!”

Why do this? Especially since abstinence works every time it's tried. The reason they want to do this is to bust up the traditional notion of what is a family. The more they bust that up, the more they steer people to Washington for guidance and dependence.

Marcelo Ruriani, Flatwoods

Coming out gets much attention

Jason Collins comes out!

Supportive reactions pour in!

A basketball player says he’s gay and get more press coverage than Christ would if he announced the date of his second coming.

 “He that biddeth him God speed is a partaker of his evil deeds” (2 John 10).

Earl H. Stewart, Grayson

Letters invited

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