Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Haley Milton’s letter to the Editor on Oct. 6 sums up the phrase, “You’re entitled to your own opinions – not your own facts.”
When authorities interpret and implement policies that placate to the lowest common denominators of misconceptions and fear, the whole community suffers. Our local police department’s honorable code, “To Protect and Serve,” has been tainted by the decision to combine ICE and School Resource Officers in our schools.
Combining ICE and SROs implies that Latinos – children and parents – are criminals. Citizenship is not a prerequisite for legal rights afforded to all humans within our borders. Documentation infractions are not violent crimes.
Federal courts decide immigration status – not police departments, school boards or the media. Calling anyone “illegal” without due process is derogatory and discriminatory.
SROs are not reliant on immigration enforcement to do the job they signed up to do. SROs do not need ICE to build positive relationships with kids, stop gang crimes, reduce drug and alcohol abuse among minors or bullying in our schools.
SROs collaborating with ICE means one thing: “Profiling non-Anglo children to deport the family unit.” Combining ICE with the SRO program is segregationist and barbaric at its core.
All children have constitutional protections to a public education. The Supreme Court’s ruling Plyler v Doe U.S. 202 (1982) secured every child’s right to an education, as individuals, under the 14th Amendment. Twenty-nine years is ample time to expand our vision of immigration policy with respect to the family unit. No amount of nationalistic rhetoric can turn a “nation of mutts” into “birther-inspired” papered pedigrees. Discrimination is not patriotic.
America was built by immigrants. Policy that makes us less human to each other, based on man-made borders, cannot be tolerated. It’s time for our community to take hold of what it values – accepting diversity. We cannot continue policy that criminalizes ethnic groups, because some people don’t like them. Combining ICE with the SRO program is segregationist policy. ICE has no place in our schools.
I was a volunteer for the Carbondale Police Department from 2008 to 2011 as the crossing guard on Highway 133 for the Carbondale schools. Officer Alvaro Agon was my second boss. I’m no longer a volunteer because my husband is ill.
I believe as a community when we hear someone has been wronged and we know it, we should come forward and say so. Off and on for the school year, I watched Officer Agon walk children across the highway, and I observed his interaction with all the children.
Not once did I see him discriminate with any race. In fact, he took more time and patience with the Latino children because some couldn’t speak English very well. I also saw his concern when some of the Latino children didn’t have warm enough clothing.
I find it impossible to believe anyone could accuse him of such a crime as discrimination. It is bad enough when it’s true, but even worse when it isn’t because we all lose when it isn’t true.
Officer Agon always treated all the children with respect, and I miss seeing his interaction with all the children. I would take a closer look at why. Let us not ruin the career of a good police officer and his family or let alone our community.
So the local school district wants us to approve a mill levy override. Really.
This is no time to raise taxes. We’re broke. Like members of Congress, the school boards just don’t get it: We are out of money. We are taxed out.
Many taxpayers have lost their jobs and experienced dramatic decreases in their property values. Taxpayers also shoulder the added burdens of higher costs for buying groceries and paying higher fuel costs.
Teachers complain about their lack of pay raises while the rest of us consider just having a job to be a pay raise. Most taxpayers have not received any cost of living increases and some have even suffered decreases in their salary.
How can this district ask its friends and neighbors to fork over money they don’t have? Consider a lesson from the business world: Learn to do more with less.
If these parents are so concerned about the quality of education available to their children, here’s a thought: Ask them to pay for it.
It’s not a secret that the local school St. Stephen’s, operated by the Catholic Church, offers a superior education to that offered by its public counterparts. Yes, St. Stephen’s charges tuition.
It’s no wonder that the interest in establishing charter schools is at an all-time high. Why not adopt the school district’s policy in Douglas County whereby taxpayers were returned some of their property taxes in exchange for the parent’s right to send their children to either public or charter schools?
And just a reminder to the average taxpayer: Wait until Obamacare kicks in, and we will be asked to relinquish even more.
I have been a homeowner in Glenwood Springs since 1978. My children attended elementary school here and graduated from Aspen High School. While I do not have children in the schools now, I’m a grandmother of 10 and am very interested in helping the schools maintain a high level of excellence.
I am more than willing to support an increased mill levy to ensure that the schools will not be damaged by school closures, program suspensions, increased student-teacher ratios or a failure to provide the necessary technology for the students in the district.
At a time when the federal government chooses to “bet” millions on failing companies and waste billions in taxpayer dollars giving aid to countries that are confessed enemies of the U.S., I prefer to invest locally where there is more accountability and results we can see working for the future of America – the students in our community.
In our home, we often talk about “making things right” and how there’s nothing better than the chance to do just that.
As we prepared to place our “Vote For Our Kids – 3E” sign in our yard, our 3-year-old son said he wanted to dismantle it and make an art project out of the pieces instead.
We said, “Maybe later, when its job is complete.”
He, as usual, wanted to know why. We explained that the sign was part of a project to make things right in our valley’s schools. With the abundance of a 3-year-old’s confidence in what he knows, he patiently reminded us that he does not go to school.
“But a lot of the kids in our neighborhood do,” said Daddy.
“And a lot of kids we meet on the bus do,” reminded Mommy.
“And a lot of kids we play with at the park do,” said Daddy.
“Oh,” conceded our son. “Want me to help put on the bumper stickers, too?”
We are currently considering all of the valley’s great schooling options – public schools, charter schools, private schools, even home schooling. For us, 3E isn’t about wanting a great, future school for our son, although that would, of course, be nice.
It’s about fairness. It’s about equity. It’s about making things right for all kids in our valley.
Join us in voting for 3E.
Jon and Julie Fox-Rubin
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children … to leave the world a better place … to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
When it comes to leaving the world a better place for our children, the path is not always easy but the path is clear. Please vote yes on ballot question 3E.
Lisa Hershey Lowsky
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