Put more focus on recruiting, training teachers
The Oct. 4 Feedback page had three excellent columns about our educational system.
As a former teacher and high school counselor, I know good teachers and motivated students are essential to students acquiring a good education.
Good teachers cannot do it alone. Motivated students who want to learn are a major key in improving the education they receive.
How teachers are evaluated does need to be changed from just using student test results. Poor teachers should be mentored for at least two to five years and, if they do not improve significantly, they need to leave the profession voluntarily or be fired.
Schools and communities differ in educational needs. Inner-city schools' needs will not be the same as the rural or suburban schools' needs. Teachers will need different training and differing skills in such different settings. That alone is a big task for our teacher colleges to address.
The federal government can help by getting funds to teacher colleges and to states that need help with funding their schools.
State departments of education need to work with teacher colleges to make sure they are accepting good students and then giving them the education needed for the schools in that state.
Accepting just any student into a teacher college does not make for good or excellent teachers.
Top minds should be going into education. Who do you want for your child's teacher? That is my response to people who say top minds should not waste their brains in becoming educators.
Polly Jo Green
Real pro-life issues
Once again, we are subject to letters asking us to vote "pro-life."
The writers never talk about real pro-life issues, such as how to preserve life of the already born or how to make the quality of life better for the children we already have in our state.
Kentucky ranks in the Top 10 as one of the worst states for taking care of its children.
The cases of abuse, neglect, and murder of children are in our newspaper almost daily. If someone wants to vote for a candidate who is against abortion, that is the voter's choice.
But I want to vote for candidates who care about taking care of our children, making sure our senior population is enjoying the quality of life they should and promoting measures that will protect the most vulnerable in our state.
If an anti-abortionist is also an advocate of life issues, that is true win-win. Being anti-abortion does not necessarily equate to being pro-life.
Linda D. Hall
God sent a liberal over 2,000 years ago to teach man how to live.
He, like the liberals of today, was so hated they had him killed. Soon they realized their mistake, but the deed had been done.
We, the people, have short memories. Two years ago, our country was declining rapidly because of tax cuts for the rich and the two wars we started for the purpose of further enhancing the rich.
Then we got a new president whose goal was to stop the decline and restore the economy. Instead of getting help, Fox News and talk radio started a hate campaign in an effort to finish the destruction they started.
A lie can travel around the world while the truth is putting on its pants.
Robert Ray Lillie
Company he keeps
With regard to the firing of broadcast personality Juan Williams by his other employer, National Public Radio:
May I suggest the real issue is not whether his comments connecting traditional Muslim attire with his fear of flying were bigoted, but rather whether his journalistic standards and ethics are called into question by his affiliation with Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity and his other "Fox and Friends."
Our general welfare
There are significant differences between Democrats and Republicans.
Democrats respect the mandate in the preamble to the Constitution that obligates us to "promote the general welfare."
Republicans (and their Tea Party surrogates) stand for corporate greed and "blame the victim" philosophies.
Voters in our region have a tendency to register as Democrats and then vote Republican. I give full credit to Republicans for their faithfulness to their party. They rarely cross party lines. President Ronald Reagan is famous for saying that the 11th commandment was to never speak ill of a fellow Republican.
I am proud to pay taxes, as long as I feel my tax dollars are being well spent.
Taxes are necessary for government to function. I drive on tax-dollar funded roads almost every day. Everyone wants to avoid wasteful spending. The basic disagreements are over what spending is unjustified.
Repealing health care reform has become the central issue for many Republicans.
Why? Because they claim it is an individual's fault to be born into poverty and despair.
Denying prenatal care and basic health care to small children is just plain wrong.
Obama wrong on wars
There are a fair number of people in Louisville who were strong anti-war advocates when President George W. Bush was president. Rightly so.
However, now that Barack Obama is president and is prosecuting these same wars, many of these people are not as avidly anti-war. There is a significant drop-off in the anti-war activity.
This is probably due to a belief that Obama is the right choice and best choice to run the country and the wars.
Regardless we are still in Iraq, increasing troop numbers in Afghanistan and are still killing high numbers of Arabs and Muslims while incurring large casualties and costs. All for questionable reasons.
I believe it is necessary to remember principle rather than just principals. After reading the book, Obama's Wars, I clearly recognize that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are Obama's wars.
This all makes the anti-war principle as critical as the principal.
What goes around
When I was young, my cat ate a bunch of palmetto bugs. I could have stopped him, but I wanted the praise from Mom for solving her roach problem.
In 2003, the Republican president, Senate majority leader and speaker of the House decided not to make the tax cuts permanent. The Supreme Court wouldn't have prevented them from making them permanent, so why didn't they?
Because they knew what I learned. Don't be around when the downside comes up.
Robert P. Jones