Letters to the Editor

Your views in 250 words or less

Archives: Feb. 2011

Feb.
28th

DUI: Stop proposing nanny state legislation

Re: “Olympia DUI drivers may need special plates” (TNT, 2-15).

State Rep. Norma Smith, R-Clinton, wants to require drivers convicted of DUI after 2012 to have a special license plate designated with the letter Z. Perhaps she needs a scarlet letter on her forehead to warn citizens that she is a threat to everyone’s civil liberties and an insult to our intelligence.

Legislator that propose pernicious nanny legislation need to get a life and quit trying to further escalate the litigious nightmare we live in.

Using her line of logic that public humiliation will somehow increase public safety, then why

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Feb.
28th

SCHOOLS: Closure costs more in the long run

Closing schools has hidden costs including:

• Increased transportation costs (average often $10 per student per day).

• Addition of ugly portable classrooms in remaining schools.

• Overcrowding and loss of connection to neighborhood that could impact performance.

• Future high cost to develop new schools when population increases (Wainwright is near a mixed-use center targeted in plans for increase growth).

I favor other options:

• Expanding grade levels of schools with space to K-6, 7 or 8 as middle schools/junior high schools have significant behavior and delinquency problems compared to K-8 model.

• Combining grade levels (1 and

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Feb.
28th

UNION: Where was reporting on Walker’s statements?

I am curious as to why there was only a vague blurb from McClatchy News about a very compelling story. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said some extremely interesting and troubling things about his plan in Wisconsin and people deserve to be informed of what was said.

We can all agree that the procurement of these statements was unethical. An Internet reporter was able to get on the line with Walker by claiming to be billionaire Republican financier David Koch, and recorded the 20-minute conversation. Troubling indeed.

Easily as troubling were Walker’s comments on hiring and planting “thugs” to start

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Feb.
28th

TACOMA: Elementary kids lack power of protest

Re: “Tacoma schools considers closures” (TNT 2-25).

Over the last decade or more, the Tacoma School District, board members, administrators, principals, teachers, staff and parents have built strong and successfull neighborhood elementary schools.

Everyone worked to bring safety, quality, accountability and positive learning environment to the most fragile of student populations. Much emphasis was on making sure that those elementary schools in the neighborhoods where parents struggled with low incomes got the best available in elementary schools.

It appears now that the Tacoma School District and board members have decided that elementary schools is where they will make the cuts

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Feb.
28th

UNION: Supporters were given short shrift

Re: “Locals voice views of Wisconsin plan” (TNT, 2-27).

Your report on the rally Friday by unions and their supporters in solidarity with Wisconsin workers was rather odd. The union rally consisted of, according to the State Patrol, 2,500 persons and was addressed by unonists, small business leaders, church leaders and members of the Legislature,including some from our areas.

It seems to me that this was the story. Yet the article led with a report on a counter-demonstration of Tea Party folks that numbered about 500. They got the gist of the coverage, while the larger rally was given short

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Feb.
25th

WISCONSIN: Oligarchs everywhere fear organized workers

It is heartening to see the spirit of freedom soaring in Madison, Wis., as well as the Middle East — and more than a little revealing to see Tea Partiers playing the role of the pro-government militia.

The billionaire Koch brothers, like oligarchs everywhere, understand that an educated, organized and reasonably prosperous middle class is a serious threat. Crushing the unions is the first step toward crushing what is left of the middle class. In their plan, we’ll work at Wal-Mart for minimum wage, and like it.

Busting the public-sector unions, it should be clear by now, has nothing to

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Feb.
25th

DRIVERS: Pedestrians and cyclists have responsibilities, too

Re: “Senate protects cyclists” (TNT, 2-25).

The article pinpoints an important issue. I applaud the state Senate for partially addressing the issue. Yet it needs more.

The situation involves pedestrians, motorists and cyclists. All three have responsibilities. Senate Bill 5326 should be amended to include all of those responsibilities.

I have been a cyclist; I understand their challenges. We as motorists should indeed look out for them. But cyclists also have responsibilities as they share the roadway. SB 5326 should specifically include those responsibilities.

As a pedestrian, I notice that motorists often seem distracted. However, I should never just

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Feb.
25th

ABORTION: Bill burdens pregnancy centers

Re: “Bill seeks to clarify pregnancy centers” (TNT, 2-23).

Pregnancy centers are nonprofit, faith-based organizations that don’t receive federal or state funding. All services are free to clients. Last year, $18.6 million of free services were provided for women in Washington State.

Care Net of Puget Sound’s centers are licensed medical clinics that specialize in pregnancy diagnoses. Services provided by medical professionals include pregnancy testing, ultrasound exams, screening for sexually transmitted infections under the direction of board-certified OB/GYNs.

Contrary to what HB 1366 implies, pregnancy centers follow HIPAA and other applicable laws.

As a board-certified doctor licensed to practice in

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