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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Chatter: April 15

Four-day week

Most of us have gone through four years of high school, attending five days a week for about seven hours a day. But in Klamath Falls, Ore., a motion was put in to cut the school week to four days in order to save the district $6.3 million annually, according to The Seattle Times. And while cuts have swept our state in recent weeks, education should have been the last to go — the same goes for this particular county.

We simply cannot agree with cuts to the school week. Teenagers would undoubtedly be happy, but since when do they know better?

The plan to take Fridays off the school calendar can only result in a cascade of problems. Students would be deprived of an education that had been offered to their ancestors and has so far worked. And while the district’s plan includes a lengthening of the regular four days, an increase in the school day will not be able to help anyone. Students’ parents will have to concern themselves with later pickups or earlier drop-offs — both possibly damaging to their daily routines. Teachers would also have to be convinced to work extra hours per day in accordance with the new plan. Teaching assistants, cooks, custodians, secretaries and bus drivers would also have to change their schedules in order to accommodate the ridiculous situation.

Cuts are absolutely necessary. That comes without a doubt. But the seriousness of cutting a day of the school week is more than we think. We cannot risk depriving students of their K-12 education. Instead of implementing this rash change, cuts to top district officials should go into effect. The already-overpaid superintendents of many schools seem to inappropriately raise their salaries while students and their schools suffer.

There are many amenities that could be cut from many schools across the nation. In the case of New Jersey, after Gov. Chris Christie’s budget, many schools lost some funding, yet we partly agree with that decision as many district institutions had pointless extras. Automatic doors, million-dollar football fields and constant building renovations are only several of the unneeded facilities.

A five-day school week has been in place for decades, and any motion to shorten it will only turn students off to school. An extra day of free time because of money problems could cause much more than financial changes. After all, what happened to “”kids, stay in school?””

—””Shorter school week spells trouble,””

Rutgers Daily Targum editorial board, April 12

Don’t nuke the nukes

The Facts:

President Barack Obama recently signed a treaty with Russia to curb the total number of deployed nuclear warheads to 1,550. He also rewrote the United States’ nuclear posture.

Our Opinion:

Making the world a safer place is always noble. Weakening the U.S.’s nuclear deterrence ability, thereby making the world more dangerous, isn’t so noble.

The U.S. and Soviet Union spent a large portion of the post-World War II era trying to match each other in a conventional- and nuclear-arms race. Even 20 years after the end of the Soviet Union, the combined nuclear arsenal of Russia and the U.S. still exceeds 20,000 warheads.

The newly announced treaty forged by Russian President Dmitri Medvedev and Obama will reduce the strategically deployed level from the START II level of 2,200 warheads to 1,550 for each country, but doesn’t provide any real benefit to the U.S. or its allies.

In fact, when taken in union with Obama’s Nuclear Posture Review, the U.S. has dramatically weakened its nuclear position.

Obama’s stated goal of a nuclear-free world is naïve and fails to address the important role deterrence plays. Likewise, his promise in the review to never use nuclear force against non-nuclear nations, even if they attack the U.S. or its allies with non-conventional weapons, completely undermines our nuclear presence.

The entire point of having a nuclear deterrent is being able to point to it, as the U.S. did during the Cold War, to show the consequences of aggressive action.

It’s an inherently flawed concept that essentially invites the U.S.’s enemies to use dirty means against us with the promise that they’ll only face conventional retaliation.

The new deployment total, while certainly a goodwill showing, has little to no meaning in light of the destructive power those arsenals have; the Earth would still be reduced to ash if 3,100 nuclear warheads were scattered across the planet.

When the Kremlin crumbled, nuclear arms ceased to be an issue of protection from Russia; but they remained an incredibly powerful deterrent for an increasingly indebted superpower.

Obama’s desire to make the world a safer place is honorable, but too many countries rely on America’s nuclear dominance as a means for their own protection for him to give out such dramatic concessions.

As a result, nuclear proliferation could actually gain momentum if more countries feel threatened by the U.S.’s announcement to stop being the world’s nuclear umbrella.

­—””The power of nuclear deterrence,””

The North Carolina State University Technician editorial board, April 12

 

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