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Letters to the editor

October 05, 2008

Teachers who want WCTA services ought to be willing to pay for them



To the editor:

As evidenced by their letters to the editor and comments in "Speak Out," many of the people of Washington County resent anyone getting something for nothing. They especially resent it when they believe that people are fully capable of providing for themselves what they are asking other people to give them.

Examples of this were the Mail Call complaints this summer about children receiving free meals in summer school.

Another example of this occurred last year when the refugee resettlement program was shut down in part because many people feared that the refugees would be supported in part by tax money.

Many members of the Washington County Teachers Association take the same position about teachers getting a free ride.

They resent teachers who refuse to join the Association and then, when they get into difficulties in school, expect the teachers association employees to work for free to help them with their problems.

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Teachers' association members and employees spend time and money negotiating a contract with the Board of Education. All teachers are governed by this contract and if a principal should ask a teacher to do something that violates the contract, then all teachers, whether they are Washington County Teachers Association members or not, can ask for Washington County Teachers Association's resources to be used to help them.

Many members of the Washington County Teachers Association take the position that if a teacher who is not a member of the Washington County Teachers Association is using the services of a teachers association paid employee, then that teacher should be required to pay the hourly rate that the Teachers Association otherwise pays to help the non-association teacher.

This is called pay for service. Since all teachers are on the same pay scale, teachers who pay to join the association are paid the same as teachers who refuse to pay to join the association.

Why should nonmember teachers ask that, at no charge, the teachers association use resources to help them during times of contract violations?

Association teachers do not insist that all teachers be required to join the association but most association teachers feel that it would be fair to ask that teachers who refuse to join the association not be given a free ride.

As shown in the beginning, Washington County citizens have a tradition of not wanting to support those who are able to support themselves. Many members of the Washington County Teachers Association take the same position.

Many members of the Washington County Teachers Association simply ask that teachers not in the association who ask for association services be required to pay for the services they receive.

Russell Williams

Hagerstown

(Editor's note: Russell Williams is a candidate for the Washington County School Board.)




Don't vote based on emotions



To the editor:

It's been seven-and-a-half years - a fact I was reminded of on Sept. 11, when I found it had been 2,557 days since Sept. 11, 2001 and there has not been another attack on American soil.

On that first Sept. 11, the country feared another attack could take place at any moment. Here are some other facts that were sent to me:

George Bush has been in office for 7 1/2 years. The first 6 years, the economy was fine.

A little over a year and a half ago:

1. Consumer confidence stood at a 2-1/2 year high;

2. Regular gasoline sold for $2.19 a gallon;

3. The unemployment rate was 4.5 percent.

4. The Dow Jones hit a record high - 14,000.

5. Americans were buying new cars, taking cruises and vacations overseas, living large!

But Americans wanted "change."

So, in 2006 we voted in a Democratic Congress, which made the president a "lame duck," meaning was unable to do anything because the other major party had the control to approve or deny and here is a summary of the "change" we got:

1. Consumer confidence plummeted;

2. Gasoline reached an all- time high of more than $4 a gallon;

3. Unemployment is up to 5 percent (a 10 percent increase);

4. Americans have seen their home equity drop by $12 trillion dollars and prices are still dropping;

5. One percent of American homes are in foreclosure;

6. The Dow is probing another low - 11,300 - $2.5 trillion has evaporated form the stock, bond and mutual funds' investment portfolios!

In 2006, America voted for change and we got a Democratic Congress with leaders such as Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.

Now the Democratic candidate for president claims he's going to really give us change! Can we afford more of this change?

The choice for president of the United States is quite clear. Please don't go into the voting booth and blindly vote based on your emotions. Consider the facts before you pull the lever.

John Detrow

Williamsport




Why God sent Jesus to us



To the editor:

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