To the Editor:
The shock and sorrow regarding the Newtown, Conn., school shootings permeates this household, as it does our nation. We are retired educators who deeply relate to the fallen staff, their students and their students’ families. We cannot, however, absorb the reality of murdering children and school staff going about the work of their day. Our plea is that federal lawmakers will embrace legislation to minimize the chances of this shooting happening again.
There is no threat to gun ownership in passing gun safety legislation. The Supreme Court has guaranteed protection for legitimate gun ownership. Assault weapons’ only use can be to kill other human beings. Often, shooters involved in such disasters are mentally ill and in need of medical care, not guns. For the safety of our communities these people need treatment, in the meantime their access to firearms must be prevented. Effective and thorough gun registration for all guns sold also should become mandatory. We are begging our congressional leadership to be a positive voice in eliminating assault weapons from private ownership.
We will be following our congressional delegation’s decisions on this particular issue, trusting that they will support legislation to ban assault weapons and make background checks universal. We will do our part to raise awareness of the issues of violence, especially gun violence, so that our children and our schools can be places of learning without fear.
The time is now to take action.
Glenn L. Norris and Jo Anne C. Alexander
GLENN L. NORRIS is a retired teacher and school administrator and Jo Anne C. Alexander is a teacher.
To the Editor:
HEY HINK: Obama loses vote in Democrat-controlled Senate
This week, the Senate dealt President Obama a humiliating defeat. His nomination of Debo Adegbile to head the Justice Department’s civil rights division was derailed by a 47-to-52 talley with eight Democrats among the “no” votes. This outcome is tragic for all concerned; the president, the nominee, the Senate and the American people.
CONSIDER THIS: Why does American Indian Cultural Center matter?
We can fulfill an obligation to our Native American brethren, cultures, histories and ourselves by completing the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum.
Women raise their voices for peace, security
International Women’s Day has been observed on March 8 since the early 1900s. From factory workers to abolitionists, women began to speak out against women’s oppression and inequality. They organized to demand better working conditions, equal pay and the right to vote. As 50 percent of the world’s population, our foremothers realized they had a critical role to play in the political, social and economic life of their society and it was time for their voices to be heard.
Education Savings Accounts are worth the fight
Throughout the course of a legislative session, many bills are proposed, discussed and voted on. Lots of times, good bills pass and become law. Sometimes, good bills focused on important topics do not make it to law. For one reason or another, it just didn’t receive the votes. That can even happen to measures that have widespread support.
Shotgun homes stand in Oklahoma
In 1791 a slave rebellion broke out in what was then the French colony of Haiti and over the next several years French citizens fleeing the conflict made their way to New Orleans. Those refugees brought with them traditions that were to have an impact on their new homeland.
They included the custom of constructing small homes that were one room wide and featured several other rooms behind the front one with doors at both the front and back of the structure that in time became know as “shotgun houses.” The term shotgun is said to reflect the fact that a bullet could be fired through the front door and go through every room in the house.
The Kansas City Star: Ukrainian victory turns toward tragedy
The stakes are changing rapidly in Ukraine. The people have spoken in Kiev. But now Russian President Vladimir Putin has spoken more loudly.
By Sunday, Kiev’s new interim leaders charged that Russians had invaded. Putin asserted that his forces were merely protecting Russian interests in Crimea. He appeared undeterred by his 90-minute talk with President Barack Obama on Saturday, leading experts to question if Ukraine’s regime could stave off a military conflict and possible partition.
President’s budget a disappointment
Last month, President Obama filed his annual budget blueprint for fiscal year 2015. While the contents of his proposal have been a major topic of discussion in the news since then, its official release on March 4 will determine the next steps for lawmakers, who must work together to ultimately find a common agreement.
40 modernization proposals win approval
Last week presented the first major legislative deadline. Proposals that didn’t receive committee approval by last Thursday are no longer eligible for additional consideration.
As the chairman of the Government Modernization committee it was my responsibility to sort through a large number of proposals and work with the authors of those proposals to make them both politically viable and practicable for implementation if approved.
This year, the committee considered more proposals than in any other year.
Here are just a few:
HEY HINK: War redefined: Don’t fall for the con job
This week, I’m thinking about shell games and war. Let’s start with war. This is probably the most damaging social convention ever devised by the mind of man. But war is a phenomenon that’s touched the lives of every American. We owe our freedoms to those who won the “Revolutionary War.” The political and economic face of America was forever changed by “The Civil War.” The pattern for the international stage as it exists today was largely defined by “World War I.”
Bits about Bitcoin and why you should care
Many people have no clue about this thing called Bitcoin. This week’s collapse of the Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange demonstrates, it’s time they do.
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- HEY HINK: Obama loses vote in Democrat-controlled Senate