Dismayed by pretty grass at school
Congratulations to the Sierra Star for the recent decision regarding stories about our Mountain Area youth. In the July 26 edition, a respected and much-appreciated front page decision was made to feature the uplifting story about Jessica Roberts and her outstanding achievements to overcome obstacles in her path to success along with her parents, who played a large part in that battle.
On a sadder note, a few times a week, I drive by the Oakhurst Elementary School and have waited with anticipation for the unveiling of what was being done behind the construction fence. Recently I was dismayed to see the type of landscaping in place. Lots of green, green grass and apparently the pre-requisite sprinkler system to keep it green. What happened to xeriscaping?
Not only are we experiencing a drought, but there have been serious cutbacks for teachers and programs in our local schools. The cost of installation, and more seriously, the maintenance of this grass, could surely have funded something that would more directly benefit the students.
I'm sure the response will be: "Oh, that comes from a different fund," and/or "We had to use that money or lose it." If that's the case, it's just wrong and is something that needs to be corrected. It sends a message to the students not only of environmental irresponsibility but that their educational needs are superceded by a patch of pretty grass.
Sherri Smith, Coarsegold
Appalled by venom and misinformation
Let's look at some facts. President Clinton left office with a surplus. George W. Bush reduced Federal income by giving huge tax breaks to the rich, got us into two very costly foreign wars with no exit strategy, and refused to regulate the banking industry which in part set the country up for a huge hit in the global recession. This created the economy in which two million jobs were lost during the first three months of Obama's first term. The spiralling deficit is very much the result of poor decisions made by Bush.
The blame for Obama's "broken promises" can be placed squarely at the feet of a Congress that has refused to pass job-creating bills, have the rich pay their fair share of taxes, and provide better health care for ordinary Americans. Never mind the good of the country, let's just play the power game. And after a duly-elected Congress and president passed a health care plan, many Republican states used taxpayers' money to contest this to the Supreme Court.
I am appalled at the venom, inaccurate information, lack of proper research and divisive attitudes of J. R. Froelich and Dr. Bill Atwood. Froelich repeatedly refers to Obama's "Czars" -- the term, created by journalists in Roosevelt's time, has nothing to do with Communism or Marxism in this context -- they are presidential appointees. Obama has two more "Czars" than George W. Bush had. Both Froelich and Atwood trumpet Christian values in their "columns." The values I learned as a Christian -- compassion, helping those in need, equality, respect for the beliefs of others, honesty, and integrity are very different from the rantings of both, which do nothing to further healthy debate or the betterment and enrichment of our values.
David Lopez, Ahwahnee.