Voices
October 11, 2012 Issue

LETTERS


Get to know your candidates

Dear Editor:

In my empowerment forum, The Open Door To A New Tomorrow With Plans To Give Us Hope For A Better Future, I express my belief that every citizen is important and it will take all of us working together to make things better.

After analyzing things, I have been told for 20 years to vote democratic, but what I have learned these past months is neither democratic, republican nor independent is the answer to a better future. We have been voting democratic all this time and look what shape this county and the United States are in.

 

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Some candidates pretend to be democratic just to win votes.

Think about this, there are more middle class and poor people in this county and the United States than true rich people. It’s enough poor and middle class people to put anybody in office. True rich people care more about power than they do money, middle class and poor people care more about money than they do power in most cases. Be careful to whom you give your power.

When you vote, you should be giving your power to someone you trust and believe in. What I believe is get to know these candidates, look at their everyday living, not just election time, find out if they strongly believe in “God,” make sure they love all people. Our president does!

Pray about them. Ask God to reveal the love in their hearts. Why I like Pres. Obama, not because he’s a democrat or he’s black, but because he loves everybody. He considers “all” people not just 47 percent but 100 percent.

The president is the same around all races and the same around rich, middle class and poor people. He has a free spirit for all. He has a love for people that never ends. No matter how people treat him or talk down on him or try to block his plans to make the future better, he gets up and keeps on striving to do his very best. He cares for all people. He wants everybody to have a chance to do well in life.

Looking at the race in Richmond County, how a democratic endorses a republican, makes you wonder “right.” It doesn’t mean he’s a bad person, simply means he changed. It happens all the time in politics and in everyday life. You never know what to expect from people.

It’s amazing how we fool people here on earth, but not God! There’s good and bad in all. We have to pray that the good out weighs the bad.

Let’s stop allowing the devil to divide us, come together at home, church, school and our county and our country. Let’s get excited about helping each other here on earth. Stop blaming others for our downfall and pick ourselves up and strive to be a better person.

I attended so many great churches and the people were angels. Life is short here on earth, but in heaven you live forever. Let’s learn to be thankful. If someone isn’t right in your life, pray about it, if God agrees he will handle them in his way.

Anybody feeling I have ever hurt, please forgive me, I am so sorry! I challenge you all to do the same. You know pride has a way of holding us back. We are losing so many children to drugs and violence until it’s scary. Let’s focus on them instead of the negative of others.

In the November election, along with our president, we have two great candidates running for district four. Get to know them before you vote. Your vote matters and you are important. Please vote and give your power to the candidate you believe will be fair and go that extra mile to make a difference for you, your family, your county and your country.

Love you all,

Sandra Nelson Wilburn





Glascock road department thanked for quick response

I’d like to take the opportunity to thank Dale Reed and the Glascock County Road Department for their swift assistance in helping us in Mitchell recently. A potentially dangerous situation where some low hanging pecan limbs were striking the top of a school bus on Warren Street causing the driver to have to cross the center line to avoid them was brought to my attention by Scott Usry with the Glascock BOE. I received notification on Thursday night,Mr Reed was notified on Friday morning and by noon the same day,he and his crew had cut and hauled away nine truckloads of limbs.The street looks better and is much safer now as a result of the work done by the County. Job well done!

Greg Johnson,
Mitchell City Councilman



Group seeks public school funds

There are several aspects of one proposed Constitutional amendment that will be put to Georgia voters in November that worry me. The subject of the question concerns “charter schools.”

Notwithstanding whether charter schools are good or bad, here are several aspects of this proposal that are of worry.

1. The proposal would give the State of Georgia, in addition to individual county school boards, the power to establish schools in any county in the state, no matter whether the local school board is in agreement, upon the request of “the community.” This by-passes the local school board and creates an unelected and unaccountable body to get state funds.

2. In effect, the state approving local charter schools would mean that state funding that went to the charter school would be deducted from that county’s state funding, further eroding public schools in favor of charter schools.

3. The wording on this amendment that voters will see on the ballot is highly questionable and even points to the way some want you to vote. Here’s what the wording says:

First, there is a preamble: “Providing the improving student achievement and parental involvement through public chapter school options.” Then it puts the amendment to you in this way: “Should the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities? Yes or No?”

While the proposal itself can by-pass the duly-elected school board, we now find that at the “request of local communities,” that is other people than the school board in any county, such unofficial groups can propose and possibly get funding of a charter school. That alone usurps the authority of local schools. It would amount to having a county wide public school system, and then a group of others having funding for a parallel school.

Something’s not right here.

Now to the sinister aspect. The wording on the ballot appears to be possibly unconstitutional, in that it directs your response to the eventual question by telling you it would mean improved student achievement, and more parent involvement, through the public charter options.

It’s saying something like: surely you want this, for it’s improving and giving more parental options.

Why all this? Proponents of charter schools were thwarted by a Supreme Court decision, limiting their establishment. But even now, the state already has that power through the State Board of Education, though limited. Simply put, charter school proponents want not the state elected officials, but a rogue group named by the governor, to create more charter schools. We might….and spend taxpayer dollars.

We’re always told to “follow the money.” And if the State creates a charter school which the local school did not choose to create, it means that the state will fund the new charter school, while reducing the funding for public school board. That is wrong. It comes at a time when the state has defunded public schools in the last few years.

Georgia ranks low in education, we all know. Taking more funding away from public schools, even if that money is used in another way in the community, still does not fund the local public schools as they should be. They need more money, not have funds taken away from them (even if from a charter school.)

Georgians should reject the amendment on charter school funding. But with the ramifications, the complications and the sinister wording, such an amendment could pass. We can only hope not.

Elliott Brack
Editor and publisher of
GwinnettForum.com
Norcross



Vote no on charter school amendment

The question on this November’s election ballot concerning charter schools is, “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of a public charter schools upon the request of local communities.” Let’s look at the facts why no should be your vote.

1. We already have a charter school amendment! This year’s ballot is not voting on whether to have them…but who should control them. The wording of this one is very confusing… In reality what this one does is give the state more power by removing control from local voters and the local school board. We do not need more bureaucrats who know little about our schools involved.

2. Your tax dollars can be siphoned from Georgia schools. Already the state has cut $4 billion from Georgia schools over the past four years and 7.7 million from Tift County schools. Georgia would have better schools if funding were adequate.

If this passes, the money to fund them must come from somewhere. There could be more budget cuts or raised taxes, more teacher furloughs, layoffs and shortened school years. This would force every county to have a dual school system whether school patrons want it or not...when we are already stretched to the limits.

3. This will give unchecked power to unelected political appointees.

A charter management company in Florida has successfully bypassed local governments. Working with real estate companies who lease schools to the company, they avoid local control and local taxes.

Is this what we want to risk happening in Georgia?

4. Georgia already has 200 charter schools. Parents do have a choice.

Last year, the Georgia Supreme Court struck down a 2008 law that allowed the state to create and fund state charter schools with local school funds against the wishes of the local community. This is just another attempt to sneak this in and over-rule the court.

5. There is already in place a process of appeal if a charter school is not approved by a local school board. We don’t need another law.

I urge you to go to votesmartgeorgia.org to check out the facts and vote no on the charter amendment this year. Don’t allow our school system to be controlled by state officials or outside profit agencies. Our children are important!

Sincerely,

O’Neal Bozeman
A public school supporter and retired school administrator from the Tift County School System

 


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