Our grandson recently entered seventh grade at Lakeside. His mother is a nurse and his father is in law enforcement. So they both work varying schedules that often have strange hours. So he rides the bus to and from school. Nothing wrong with that.
However, he wanted to compete on the seventh-grade basketball team. His parents were shocked to discover that seventh-grade basketball begins at 7 a.m. each school day, before regular classes begin or bus routes even begin, so he is unable to try out for the team. This is extremely unfair to many children whose parents are unable to drive them to school around their own employment hours.
We have another grandson who attends ninth grade at Bryant. His football coach is requiring them to be at the school at 6 a.m. His father works for the district, so they are able to make it happen. However, it's a major inconvenience to their family.
I understand sports are a privilege, an extracurricular activity. But as a taxpayer-funded part of a school district, they need to be made equally accessible to all parents and children. And these schools need to realize that sports aren't the end all, be all. They're not only asking parents and children to accommodate these ridiculous hours, they're asking their own employees, as well.
Citizens want center
I want to say "yeah" to George Pritchett's letter to the editor in the Sunday, Aug. 22, paper. He finally said it like it is: We have got to get these homeless off the streets of this beautiful city but not in a residential area with a children's home right down the street.
I had a horrible experience the other day. I went downtown to go shopping at Renee's and Bear Necessities. There sat a gal with the usual begging cardboard sign right in the doorway of Renee's. Since I was going to literally step over her to go in I went next door to Bear Necessities and asked the sales gal what in the world was going on; she said They won't do anything about this because they are not bothering the customers. She lost a customer because of this; what in the world do they have to do to classify this as "bothering the customers?" I have been told there is already a tent city with many homeless living around the Gulpha Gorge area. Why not buy some vacant building out there? There are plenty to choose from.
The church should be used for the taxpaying seniors; seems to me we always seem to be at the bottom of the list of things to accomplish. I think the people living around there would like a place to go eat a nutritious meal, meet friends, make new friends, and take part in all the activities which I am sure will be offered. Again, thank you George for a wonderfully honest letter. Hopefully, the city will see these letters and realize what the people really want.
Moms for Liberty
A colleague recently told me about an email she had received from Moms for Liberty. From the sound of it, they are looking to open a chapter in Garland County. They already have one in Pulaski County. Interestingly, their site lists the two "co-founders" of the Moms for Liberty Pulaski County chapter as Tiffany Justice and Tina Descovich, former school board members in Florida school districts. Apparently, they felt obligated to spread their fascism in Arkansas, where undoubtedly they were welcomed with open arms by Sarah Huckabee.
The email used the word "indoctrinate" or "indoctrination" nine times. I've read numerous quotes in articles from members of Moms for Liberty. They love the terms "indoctrinate" and "groom." Which begs a couple of questions and some rational thought.
First, if teachers and school districts were to be able to successfully "indoctrinate" and "groom" students, it would be a heckuva feat logistically, and keeping it a secret would be pretty much impossible. Think about a child in seventh grade. They have at least six teachers, with whom they spend a maximum of 50 minutes a day with. They also interact with coaches, administrators, counselors, librarians, teachers aides, school security, etc., which would mean that in order to "indoctrinate" and "groom" a child, every single one of those personnel would have to be on the same page and in agreement with the goal. Does anyone really believe that's possible? Second, it would require the hundreds of students in the district to remain silent about it, with no one speaking out. Does anyone really believe that's possible?
Second, what's the motive? Why would school districts and the people they employ want to encourage young people to question their sexual identity or undergo actual procedures to change their given sex? Which is really what Moms for Liberty means when they use those terms. What's in it for them? Besides the very distinct possibility of the individuals being fired and the district being bankrupted through litigation and lawsuits? If anyone has a good answer as to why that would be a school district's agenda, please share it, because my feeble mind can't come up with a single good reason.
Finally, if I am wrong on the first two questions, and there is some sinister nationwide plan to "indoctrinate" and "groom" children via the public school system, what does that say about parents? It basically means that a school, and the small amount of time your child spends there versus at home, has more influence than you do as a parent. That should force any parent to engage in a little self-reflection. Personally, I'm of the opinion that video games, social media, and television have a far greater impact in this day and age on children than any school district does.
As to Moms for Liberty, I have an idea: I am all for you raising your children as you see fit. As long as you allow others the same respect and courtesy. What could be more fair than that? What could define "liberty" more than that?
ASPSF fundraiser set
The 13th annual fundraiser for Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund will be held Thursday, Sept. 21, at Vapors Live in downtown Hot Springs.
Doors open at 10:30 a.m., and the event includes a silent auction, a style show featuring local boutiques, a cash wine bar, a fabulous luncheon, and live entertainment. The tickets are $45 per person and are available online at https://www.aspsf.org/style-show. All of the funds directly benefit recipients of local scholarships from Arkansas Single Parents Scholarship Fund.
This organization helps single parents further their education and obtain degrees in order to overcome financial obstacles. Our community also benefits by helping these individuals and their families. Tickets can also be purchased by calling Helen Bumpas at 501-620-0348 or emailing her at [email protected].
The Republican debate
The Republican debate showed that the candidates have no connection or concept of reality and the real problems that this nation faces.
They again express support for an alleged felon who used the federal government and its employees as the whipping boy. I am fed up with this deceptive rhetoric. The civilian federal workforce is the one that keeps the government functioning in spite of the unqualified politicians elected. The federal workforce has been eliminated to a point of reduced effectiveness and difficult work conditions.
Per capita, federal civilian employees are lower than in 1945. The real reason there is a federal deficit is not because of federal employees or the government, but due to the tax cuts for the rich and corporations taken by Ronald Reagan and the Reagan Republicans, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump.
Reagan increased the federal deficit 100 times greater than all of his predecessors combined, and Trump increased the federal deficit by $7.8 trillion. The Republican Congress rushed to fund all Trump wanted.
The GOP is using its deceptive spin to win elections by getting votes from voters who do not care about morals, ethics, or truth.
Justice will be served
"I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways. I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight; I can divine it by conscience. But from what I see I am sure it bends toward justice."
This is a quote from a sermon given by the Rev. Theodore Parker in 1853. Rev. Parker was an abolitionist. Later, the quote was condensed to: "The moral arc of the universe is a long one, but it bends toward justice." This shorter quote was used by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King on many occasions. It was also used by his son, Martin Luther King III very recently.
This is a message to Georgia inmate PO1135809. The long and moral arc of justice is coming to Fulton County Courthouse in Atlanta, Georgia. It took a long time, but I believe justice will be served.