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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Mail Bag

‘Personal involvement’ central to war debate

Shane Ham’s article (“”Attention pro-war students””) has a feeling of rashness, but it also needed to be said. Regardless of whether I agree or disagree with the target of your stance, your argument or the way in which it was presented, I admire your no-holds-barred approach to an issue most people skirt, that of personal involvement.

To be moral, contributing citizens of our countries, the global community and any other communities in which we are involved, we all must eventually choose a side and be willing to support our belief in that side.

Belinda Richardson undeclared sophomore

University agreed to abortion ban

You have printed stories about how anti-abortion legislators banned abortions and abortion education at (the University Medical Center) at the time that a UA football stadium expansion project was authorized.

I was a legislator who represented the university area at that time, and there’s a little detail that has been left out of the story: The university administration agreed to the ban.

I was furious at the time; I still think that they gave in way too easily and that we had the votes to remove the ban. But, they really wanted that hospital in a way that blew away all principles, not that they had any.

You recently reported on the “”nearly free as possible”” tuition case that’s headed for the state Supreme Court. I am the original plaintiff in this extremely important case, but so much time has passed that none of the original plaintiffs are students anymore.

I’m a little worried that the university may try to have the case thrown out on those grounds. It would be a shame to lose on a technicality after all this time and money.

I’d really appreciate it if a few current students would join the case as plaintiffs, no experience necessary. Also, we could use some volunteer help from a few law students in what may become a truly historic case. I hope to hear from you.

John Kromko UA alumnus

Unequal resources, unequal results

There is not currently a lot of help available to students who are English learners, especially in public schools, and new legislation is aiming to reduce that support to nothing.

In California, legislators passed Proposition 227, which eliminated assistance for students from primary school to high school in any language other than English. It is intended that students would learn English through immersion. While they do eventually learn English this way, they are left without vital resources to understand and benefit from their education prior to English fluency.

While this transitional period may last for only a year or two, they suffer far-reaching consequences from their performance while learning English. Poor test scores and grades land students in a “”sub-par”” category, which in turn affects their opportunities in the future. Not only does this hurt the student, it also hurts the school.

With other new legislation focusing on standardized testing and school funding based on those test scores, schools with a higher percentage of English learners are assigned a lower test score, and therefore a lower budget. How does this help?

Schools that need money to help support a growing population of English as a second language students are left with the least money. We should be putting our effort to help those who we must classify as “”inadequate”” rather than toward simply punishing them repeatedly.

Am I suggesting that classes be taught in English and in Spanish? Absolutely not. I am, however, suggesting that we have some resources available for ESL students aimed at helping them do their best and that we not punish students (and their schools) for not instantly speaking fluent English just because Proposition 227 was passed.

Evan Shallcross architecture sophomore

Military makes enormous sacrifices

With respect to Shane Ham’s “”Attention pro-war students,”” I’m sickened enough to believe that the all-volunteer army shouldn’t have been implemented. The disheartening statement made to our military is communism reverb at best. Furthermore, not believing in the purpose for the Iraq war shouldn’t have a punishment of ignorance, stupidity. Obviously this person has given little thought to the sake of this country in building a new one.

Whatever the purpose might have been, one thing for certain is the lack of effort to stylize support for the cause. As a military family member, and dependent, I see people supporting troops at (Davis-Monthan Air Force Base) and it does help to be connected even when we don’t have the odds. Next time you feel the urge to be critical, go talk to your grandpa about what kind of sacrifices the military made so you don’t have to.

Jesse Peterson chemistry junior

Guns, God in schools? In a different time

When I read Alex Hoogasian’s letter “”Guns, God all that students need to be safe,”” I couldn’t decide whether to laugh or cry. I think what came out was a sort of hysterical laugh/cry hybrid.

Hoogasian mentions that years ago, even elementary students would carry shotguns to school. First, although I very much doubt that this is true, may I suggest a reason? I think it was to protect themselves from bears while walking home from their wooden schoolhouses in the late 1800s.

Second, the letter blames the removal of God from schools as the main problem that triggers campus violence. Not mental/chemical imbalances, no, but the lack of God. Let me respond.

First, as a Christian myself, I understand the concept of free will, which we all have. It was given to us to live our lives as we see fit. Second, what Hoogasian fails to realize is that religion wasn’t a factor in education until the Communist scare of the 1950s. Until then, God wasn’t as heavily mentioned in education. I should also point out that many of our founding fathers – Thomas Jefferson included – were not Christians, but rather deists. Incidentally, it was in this period (1950s) that “”under God”” was put into the Pledge of Allegiance. It was never in the original version.

It’s interesting that he also says that guns did not cause this violence; cultural disintegration did. I won’t even attempt to respond to this claim. After this letter, however, I’d be slightly afraid of meeting someone packing “”serious heat”” for fear that the slightest slight would trigger a response.

Alex Gutierrez political science senior

Violence not antithetical to Jesus’ teachings

For someone who purports to be logical, I can’t think of a better example of fallacious reasoning than Jared Pflum’s column, “”On the Hypocrisy of a Christian President.”” Mr. Pflum, you have provided a textbook example of a straw man fallacy – congratulations.

As for what Jesus thought about justice, He was generally for it. Thus, a war to bring justice to Saddam Hussein, I think, Jesus would probably approve.

Also, lets not forget that Jesus made and used a whip to forcibly drive people from the Temple (John 2:15), encouraged His disciples to own a sword (Luke 22:36), and when He returns, will come as a conquering King, destroying His enemies (Rev 19:15ff).

Thus, I believe (and with scriptural support, as well as that of theologians throughout the ages) that violence is not necessarily antithetical to Jesus’ message and thus to Christianity.

Mr. Pflum, next time you want to practice fallacious reasoning (and poor writing), please don’t do so at the expense of my religion; it gets picked on enough as it is.

Silas Montgomery UA alumnus

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