Tuesday Letters to the Editor
Teachers, not snipers
EDITOR: In his speech to the National Rifle Association, Donald Trump reiterated the stupid idea that the best answer to school killings is to arm teachers. As a teacher myself and with two daughters in the profession, I am furious that someone of his stature, no matter how dubious, could promote such an unreasonable solution to school violence.
Facts: There are 3.2 million teachers in public schools. Currently, 71% of teachers spend their own money on school supplies because their districts lack the money to provide the supplies students need. Are these resource-strapped school districts supposed to pay for the guns it would take to arm this “army” of teachers? Wouldn’t that add to the unseemly profits that gun manufacturers are already making?
Also consider that many teachers, in addition to being mentors, counselors, coaches, psychologists, would resist being forced to become class cops. It’s not in their DNA.
Trump and others like him need to understand that carrying a handgun in the classroom would, in a sense, be a constant reminder to students of possible violence when the focus should be on what teachers should do: teach.
Spend the excess on the roads
EDITOR: I read the May 29 article titled “State Senate backs toll to maintain Hwy. 37.” I see no logic in taking out a large loan and charging a toll to pay it back while the state has a surplus of 100 billion dollars.
In my view, the reason for the surplus is not that there is no need, but a lack of planning to meet the long overdue infrastructure needs resulting from many years of deferred maintenance.
Look at the sorry state of so many of our roads. There seems to be a huge disconnect between needs and expenditures. Thus, the huge surplus. This money should be spent on dignified and long overdue work, not returned as a political reward to make people happy before an election.
The next amendment
EDITOR: The next amendment to the Constitution should support biodiversity, rewilding and degrowth and massive investment in desalination and nuclear power.
A social problem?
EDITOR: Reactions to the horrific school shooting in Uvalde, Texas immediately turned political. Republicans, Donald Trump, the National Rifle Association and gun manufacturers were blamed, all ridiculous claims.
Interestingly, 70% of school shootings since 1999 have been committed by people 18 or younger, 98% of them male. Payton Gendon, who recently killed 10 people in Buffalo, New York, was 18 and white. Salvador Ramos, who killed 21 people in Uvalde, was 18 and Hispanic.
We hear excuses for being bullied, abused or neglected. Did the killers come from broken or fatherless homes? It is known that most of them having received a similar education do not become mass murderers. In 2017, 7,032 handguns were used to kill, 264 shotguns and 1,591 knives.
It is claimed that if no one had guns, there would be no murders. Criminals or evil people always acquire weapons by building ghost weapons or buying them illegally. Those without weapons remain vulnerable.
The media invariably focuses on mass murders while ignoring St. Louis, Baltimore, New Orleans and Chicago, which report higher numbers of murders every weekend. Where is the horror? The blame? The solution? Maybe we have a social problem, not a gun problem?
The United States is not a democracy
EDITOR: It makes no sense to continually talk about saving our democracy when the United States is not, and never has been, a democracy. Government by the people requires majority government in a true democracy. Our “representative” form of government, a constitutional federal republic, is based on an outdated Constitution written only for wealthy white landowners.
We do not have and never have had free elections. The way candidates are funded, the endemic gerrymandering and growing voter suppression prove it.
There is no political equality in America. Consider that John Quincy Adams, Rutherford Hayes, Benjamin Harrison, George W. Bush and Donald Trump were all elected despite losing the popular vote or that there are two senators representing Wyoming’s population of just over 581,000 locals (84% white) and two representing California. 40 million inhabitants (40% Latinos).
Today, we the majority must stand idly by when two Democratic senators who together represent less than 18 million people can stop the agenda of the Biden administration, when New York City alone has the half of this number of inhabitants.
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