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Letters to the Editor - Jan. 19

January 18, 2011

We should all just be known as Americans

To the editor:

As I reflected about Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I thought about how things are in today's world.

One thing that stuck in my mind throughout the day is why we have to designate if one is Caucasian, African-American, Hispanic, etc. If we are citizens of the United States, aren't we all simply Americans? 

I don't refer to myself as a European-American. I just feel that with these categorizations, we are still in some way segregating the different ethnicities of the people that make up the United States of America.

I think that it's been a long time since a radical change has taken place in our country. Maybe it's time for a radical change by designating all of us as simply Americans. We are all created equal. I believe by now, most people realize that the United States of America is made up of people whose ancestry can be traced to Latin America, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia, etc. Let's once and for all simply be known as Americans.

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As Martin Luther King Jr. said, "I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character."

Jason Showe

 

Hagerstown

State must hold line on education funding

To the editor:

Maryland's 24 public school systems have been recognized once again by Education Week as the best in the nation.

This is no accident. Maryland's success was paid for with state and local tax dollars generously provided to ramp up the per-pupil increases in funding needed to build an adequate and equitable statewide public school system. The three consecutive years of being ranked No. 1 in the nation is proof that the Thornton Bridge to Excellence Act, passed in 2002, and the commitments of governors and legislators since then to budget the annual increases in state funding to achieve full funding by 2008, is money well-spent.

Now is not the time for Maryland to make radical cutbacks in public school funding. Now is not the time to grant a waiver to allow all counties to drop below current funding levels without at least requesting and receiving a waiver from the State Board of Education. Now is not the time to shift teacher retirement costs to local school boards. If any shift is made, it must be to county governments that have the taxing authority to respond to such a huge new funding mandate.

Now is the time to hold the line on education funding, at the state and local level, to keep Maryland No. 1. The Maryland Associations of Boards of Education, representing all 24 local boards of education, asks that all Marylanders speak out now in favor of state and local funding for public schools. Call, e-mail or speak directly to your county commissioners, council members, executives, and delegates and senators to urge their commitment to holding the line on public education funding.    

Thomas A. Carr

 

president

 

Maryland Association of Boards of Education

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