Letters A figurehead
To the editor:
He wasn't looking for WMDs. He wasn't looking for Osama nor even terrorists in general. From the time the war-hawk masterminds chose him as figurehead president (with Dick Cheney as the power behind the throne), they already knew by hook or crook they would, indeed, unseat Saddam Hussein (a pushover) and establish Iraq as the center of U.S. control of Southeast Asia.
He knew a terrorist attack was imminent. I can just hear him saying "Just let them!"
He knowingly, willfully lied in the State of the Union address when he said, "Just [yesterday] we received British intelligence that Saddam was seeking to buy enriched uranium from Liberia." Mind you, this was not a literal lie, perhaps, i.e., maybe they did receive such a communique from Great Britain. But the CIA had notified him months prior that this information was a forgery, so, his childish hedging was just as politically fraudulent as is "what the meaning of is is!"
We have the most formidable armed defense system in the world, but might does not make right. And how long can we maintain our so-called superiority when we are not good intentioned and reasonable?
Strategic Missile Defense System (Starwars), my hind end! An enemy could deploy a wave of balloons and trigger a response then immediately follow up with missiles.
This president does not have the good judgment God gave a June bug and, what is more, is primarily intent on patronage to his wealthiest of his well-heeled base. Take Haliburton, for example! A no-bid exclusive contract!
To the editor:
I love America and the American flag. Whenever I see our flag blowing in the breeze it reminds me of how great it is to be free. The following poem, Freedom Is Not Free by Kelly Strong, is being used by permission. I hope it will help us to remember the great sacrifices that have been made for the freedom that you and I enjoy.
My prayer is that each of us will do our part by helping America stay free from oppression.
"I watched the flag pass by one day
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Marine saluted it,
And then, he stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud;
With hair cut square and eyes alert,
He'd stand out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mother's tear?
How many pilot's planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many foxholes were soldiers graves?
No, freedom is not free.
I heard the sound of Taps one night,
When everything was still.
I listened to the bugler play,
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times,
That Taps had meant "Amen."
When a flag had covered a coffin,
Of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons, and husbands,
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard,
At the bottom of the sea,
Of unmarked graves in Arlington,
No, freedom is not free."
America has been safer under George Bush since 9-11-01, that's one of many reasons why I'm voting for candidates who will help keep us free.
I'm voting for George Bush, John Thune and Larry Diedrich.
Say farewell to Virginia
To the editor:
On Oct. 29, Virginia Delvaux will retire from the Clay County Extension Office. She started as an Area Extension Economist in the West River area in 1972. Virginia came to Clay County in 1985 as an Extension Educator and Family & Consumer Science. Now the state says she is to be Extension Educator with emphasis on Youth Development.
I have seen her put in long hours organizing, setting up and attending the various meetings with no complaining. Now that the state has set her emphasis on 4H, she assists other counties and other county persons have said she was doing a great job helping them.
At the same time, our kids are on her mind. With classes and projects she is working toward getting our kids of Clay County ready for fair and going to State Fair in Huron.
She was always happy to help that person who came into the office with a question and referring them if that was not her field of expertise. She has gone the extra mile for us in Clay County.
I first met Virginia as a member of Extension Club giving homemakers lessons for us to take back to our groups. Now we no longer have Extension Clubs. I hope those in our community will take time to stop and congratulate her on a job well done, visit with her or drop her a card.
Gladys and George Ufford
Pledge your support
To the editor:
I agree with Plain Talk editor David Lias, who noted in his Oct. 15 editorial, "when it comes to education, you get what you pay for."
Lias made these statements in reference to new high school graduation requirements proposed by the state's department of education. While no one argues that South Dakota schools should strive to provide students with every opportunity to excel in their post-graduate endeavors, the state's formula for funding K-12 education has forced Vermillion and many other districts across the state to cut staff and programs over the last few years. How can we afford to add new classes when our teaching staff and resources are already stretched to the limit?
The state has a responsibility to increase funding for K-12 education, but our community can do something now to ensure our local public school district does not have to incorporate these new proposed mandates while facing a predicted budget shortfall of $350,000 next year. District residents can pledge to support an opt-out of the state's property tax cap to provide adequate funding to our school district.
A group of concerned community members have formed a group, Citizens in Support of Our Schools, to urge the Vermillion School Board to opt-out of the property tax cap in the amount of $800,000 over the next five years. This amount allows the district to keep its staffing and programs under the assumptions of 3 percent annual increases in expenses, 2 percent increases in income each year and a loss of five students annually.
To demonstrate to the school board the community's support for more funding for our public schools, we are now in the process of gathering 1,000 signatures from registered voters who would vote in favor of an opt-out.
Members of our group will be seeking pledges over the next few weeks at community and school events. A strong public school district builds a better community for all of us. Please help Vermillion and its youth by signing a pledge to support our public schools.
Citizens in Support of Our Schools
Judy Clark is well qualified
To the editor:
Judy Clark is well qualified to be our State Senator. She held the Representive position in Pierre for four years. She was a member of the all-important Appropriations Committee. She has done a fine job for our district.
When not busy in Pierre, Judy serves on the boards of the W.H. Over Museum, SESDAC and ROCS, an organization that works with many senior citizens centers, including our center in Vermillion.
Judy is responsibple for organizing and is president of Vermillion Beautiful. This is the organization that annually plants all of the beautiful flowers in downtown Vermillion.
In the year 2001, Judy received the Sertoma Club's "Service to Mankind" award.
Your vote for Judy Clark will send a person to Pierre who will work hard for us.