Letters to the Editor

2/28/2009 Letters to the Editor

Dump CATS; so teachers can

I support the decision to change the state testing system. The 1990 Kentucky Education Reform Act (KERA) has caused many problems for teachers and students since it was created.

When I was in school, we couldn't learn anything that might not appear on the CATS test. My peers and I grew frustrated that we spent so much time focusing on a test when we wanted to learn other things. Teachers also complained that their time was consumed by the CATS test.

According to an article published on Feb. 10, the Department of Education spokeswoman Lisa Gross said the new academic standards would be fewer and narrower. With fewer standards, teachers and students could spend time on subjects other than the ones covered on the CATS test.

The article mentioned that the first change would be math standards. This would have helped me in school because my teachers could have worked with me longer. Math was probably my worst subject, but we moved so fast I felt I couldn't learn the material. If there could be different standards for KERA, teachers could spend more time on material and help students who have trouble.

I feel like it is a waste for students and teachers to spend so much time and energy on one test that lasts two weeks. KERA has needed to be changed for a long time, and I am glad to see that Gov. Beshear, lawmakers and educators are finally doing something about it.

Jessica VanWinkle


Abortion consequences

A letter published on Feb. 19 accuses pro-life people with the inability or unwillingness to make the connection between abortion and population control. I would like to remind the writer of several connections that he seems to have missed.

Japan has solidly bought into the global culture of death that sees children as messy, expensive and troublesome. Seventy percent of Japan's young women say they have no plans to marry or have children. Since Japan also has a dim view of immigration, the population of 128 million today is projected to decline to 95 million by 2050 -- 40 percent of them over 65 years old.

The Japanese government has tried everything it can think of without success. Babies are so scarce that Japanese grandmothers buy and carry around talking robotic dolls to cuddle.

If the writer would prefer something closer to home, let him look at France, the Netherlands and England. All of them are importing workers to do what their aborted babies should be doing now. The immigrants are primarily Muslims from North Africa who have large families. This immigration is rapidly turning parts of Europe into a Third-World country.

I don't know how old the writer is, but unless he is in his 70s, the time isn't far off when he will wish some of our aborted babies had survived and were available to help pay his Social Security benefits.

Jerry Sweers


Yes, he sure can

Is anyone else getting tired of the zillions of magazine covers and news clips about our new president? Evidently he has descended from the heavens to save the world.

"Ladies and gentlemen, here's a picture of President Obama leaving the gym." You know, it's great that he works out, but I don't support someone because they can look good in their clothes or because they weigh 400 pounds.

"Now that we have a modern president (who goes to the gym and uses his Blackberry), we can change the image that the world has made for us." Hmm, maybe. Maybe he can change the "land of the free" into a socialist republic. A much better solution for changing how the world views Americans is instilling the virtues of individual responsibility and perseverance into our youth, and maybe living them out as adults once in a while.

This stimulus bill is nothing more than spending the money of responsible people who aren't looking for handouts and entitlement programs, all in an effort to appease the lazy voting base of the Democratic Party. Oh, and don't forget helping to qualm the regrets that these same Democrats have about living an "entitled life". Yeah, way to go, Mr. President. We can definitely change how the world views our country. Yes, we can! Now we're lazy and socialist. Yes, we can!

Jeremy Young


Shelters meet needs

Reporter Amy Wilson did the Lexington/Fayette County community a great service with the article on special- needs shelters in the Feb. 5 Herald-Leader. In an actual emergency, many people do not know how to get help or where to turn when in need. Now, thanks to Wilson's words, the community's population with special medical needs (chronic disease needing assistance, people on oxygen, etc.), know that assistance is within reach.

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department works with many agencies to make sure the health needs of this population continue to be met, even during times of crisis. During the recent ice storm, the department worked with several groups, including Fayette County public schools, the Lexington police and fire/EMS departments and Division of Emergency Management, the Fayette County Sheriff's Office, LexTran's Wheels, the Red Cross, Pet Suites and Clays Mill Veterinary Clinic.

It is always refreshing to know that when times are the hardest, Lexington's residents, businesses and civic organizations pull together to make sure their neighbors are safe. Through places like the special-needs shelter, the help of the community and the information reported by this newspaper, the next time disaster strikes, even more people will be helped.

Marcia Stanhope, RN, DSN

Lexington-Fayette CountyBoard of Health chair