Letters to the editor: Dec 19 - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Letters to the editor: Dec 19

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Posted: Friday, December 19, 2008 4:51 pm | Updated: 10:57 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

I attended the recent regular meeting of the Gilbert Public Schools Governing Board to voice my views about raising the number of credits from 22 to 24 for students to graduate from Gilbert high schools.

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Board should be listening to public

I attended the recent regular meeting of the Gilbert Public Schools Governing Board to voice my views about raising the number of credits from 22 to 24 for students to graduate from Gilbert high schools.

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For two hours, parents, teachers and school staff passionately, articulately and respectfully, but strongly urged the board not to raise the credit requirements. The reasons included choice, flexibility, family time, quality over quantity, and certainly budget concerns.

At the end of public comments, Elaine Morrison was the first board member to respond. Morrison has served on the school board for more than a dozen years and is now retiring. By all accounts, she has done an admirable job during the district’s greatest period of growth. Unfortunately, she will be remembered mostly for her last couple of months in which she has, in essence, snubbed her nose at the citizens of the district.

Last month she arrogantly defended her name choice for the district’s newest high school, despite overwhelming negative response. And during the most recent board meeting, Morrison responded to the public in the most condescending tone of voice I have ever witnessed from an elected official in my more than 30 years in politics. Sadly, Morrison’s legacy will be one of arrogance, condescension and, if she weren’t retiring, recall.

The majority of the board joined her and voted 3-2 to raise the requirements to 23 credits. The other two members, Helen Hollands and Thad Stump, might soon be joining her in retirement.




Shelters shouldn’t charge for feral cats

Everyone in all neighborhoods should humanely trap, spay at a vet clinic and bring back and feed for life, all the non-tame cats and kittens around them. That is the right thing to do, it spiritually fulfilling and emotionally rewarding (Even if it takes a little work and a tiny bit of sacrifice of time).

That said, there are some people who are perhaps too strapped for money, too old, too ill, or are moving away. So they cannot have one of these delightful “cat colonies.” After letting the first one in for free, our Valley public animal shelters charge $96 to accept trapped wild (feral) cats. They actually turn away even pregnant females! So citizens dump the poor innocent cats out in the first place they can, like an apartment complex or condo or a vacant lot or the desert, where cats are often subject to horrible abuse and starvation. This is a potential felony crime.

I doubt if there is anyplace else in the USA which charges like this for accepting wild felines. Certainly not in Salt Lake City, as that lovely city in Utah avoids making criminals out of its citizens by taking in all feral cats and kittens in traps free of charge. If our shelters won’t lower their rates for now, at least we could start a fund of donations for people who cannot afford to turn in these helpless, untamed cats and kittens.

We would keep these people from becoming felons and end a great deal of animal suffering.




No reason to worry about carbon dioxide

Although mankind is adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere at a high rate, it is not accumulating in the atmosphere at an appreciable rate. Actually, at the present time, there is only 400 parts per million present in the atmosphere. This means at the present time, there is only about 0.04 percent by volume of carbon dioxide present in the atmosphere. It is accumulating at a rate of 1.2 ppm annually. This means it is only increasing at a 0.00072 percent by volumne per year. Perhaps as much as 75 percent of the carbon dioxide is converted to fish food by the photosynthesis reaction in the ocean.

As soon as it is common knowledge that there is not a need for limiting the amount of carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere, real progress can be made on solving the climate change and energy problems. For example, the energy problem could be solved by building a number of coal-fired power plants, by encouraging the purchase of electric cars and by building a number of plants for producing liquid products from coal and shale oil. The shale oil plant could be base on the in-sito process in which a mixture of carbon dioxide and oxygen are added to the formation. Thus, there is no need to limit the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere.



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