Sorority urges full funding for GCS

Guilford County educators have done a fine job of informing citizens about problems that can only be addressed by increased state and county appropriations. Guilford County commissioners should be reminded of these funding priorities:

1. The $6.1 million the commissioners have been advised to appropriate for capital maintenance and repairs is less than half of what is needed for our 127 schools, many of which are falling apart. Roofing, electrical, plumbing and HVAC problems are common. The school system has neither the personnel nor resources to adequately address these issues.

2. Employment readiness is essential. Fully fund the plan to establish five academies at area high schools to provide work-based learning and career development.

3. Guilford County has dropped to ninth in teacher supplements although we are the third-largest school system in the state. We must pay our teachers and school staff what they deserve.

The members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Beta Iota Omega Chapter, believe that addressing these priorities should be the primary budgetary concern for our county commissioners.

Channelle James


The writer is president, Beta Iota Omega Chapter, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

N&R keeps unfairly blaming the NRA

Your June 4 editorial about mass shootings was thoughtful and, for once, you did not waste ink attacking the NRA. Treating mass shootings as a public health matter, rather than as a political matter, is an interesting idea. The AIDS “massacre” probably would have been mitigated had AIDS been treated as a public health problem rather than a political problem.

You took a positive step by not mentioning the killer’s name; I am convinced that many of these shootings are done for publicity, and the less you report these incidents the less power you give them in sick minds.

But then you turn around and run two ghastly anti-NRA cartoons on June 8. Cartoons such as these make responsible firearms owners such as me your opponent, not someone willing to work with you to stop these horrible events.

I challenge you: Write an editorial not of opinion but of facts, facts proving the NRA advocates, or that its members participate in, mass shootings. What is interesting is that you do not publish cartoons ridiculing alcoholic beverage brewers after fatal or nonfatal vehicle accidents.

Charles A. Jones


Census editorial offers only part of the story

Your June 9 editorial omits key facts about the census and citizenship question. The government has every right to know who is in the country and their citizenship status. The citizenship question has been part of the census since 1970 on the long form provided to every sixth household. The question has also been used in the periodic American Community Survey conducted annually since 2005 (3.5 million households per year) with no complaints about its presence on the form.

There is no evidence (only speculation) in your editorial that use of the citizenship question has provided a partisan advantage to either party. The census is mandatory by law. Fear of consequences of participation is not a defensible reason to avoid answering the questions. The census has a well-developed, robust statistical program for minimizing any undercount. A complete head count is the most desirable result but there are many reasons for an incomplete count and they are addressed by the Census Bureau using statistical methods.

Instead of stirring up partisan divisions over the use of the citizenship questions, you should be using your editorial voice and influence to encourage participation in the census.

Arthur Drennan


Pop Jarrell’s making an impact in prison

What makes a man spend a lifetime being an inmate sponsor? I know what drives my friend, Claude “Pop” Jarrell Jr., to do it: strong faith, a desire to give second chances and an opportunity to work with the men and women of the N.C. Department of Corrections. Almost as long as Pop has been a men’s licensed hair professional, he has been sponsoring men for early release from prison to give them a hand up.

Recently, Pop shared with me the outstanding service of many of the men providing opportunities to change lives at the Davidson County Correctional Facility. William Glick, superintendent; Dwayne Baker, assistant superintendent; Bernard Flaherty, program director. They are trusted with guarding the safety of citizens as well as guiding the future of the men who one day will re-enter society.

Over the years, Pop has watched and learned from these great leaders, always looking for ways to give inmates opportunities to change their future. Pop prays with these leaders that Christ will open their eyes to see the inmates as Christ sees them. Still, prison is a living hell on Earth; strong leadership is required with these men and their families. I am proud to call Pop my friend; much is to be learned from the wisdom of these men who deal with “the least of these” each day.

Terry Miller


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