In violence debate,
don't forget abortion
Both sides of the gun-violence issue neglect the violence of abortion.
The nameless innocents sucked from the sanctity of their mother's wombs are also victims of our nation's violence. Abortion is no less tragic than the slaughter of innocent first-graders - only it is a hidden slaughter.
Let's honor the holiness of the nameless and prove that we value all life. As the nation weeps for the innocents slain in Newtown, Conn., let it also weep for the innocents aborted.
Lock up all criminals
or arm the rest of us
The National Rifle Association, which is made up of more than 4 million moms, dads, sons and daughters, attended a White House meeting Jan. 10 to discuss how to keep our children safe, mental health, violence and the collapse of federal prosecutions of violent criminals.
But Vice President Joe Biden's anti-gun task force spent all of its time on proposed gun restrictions, attacking lawful firearms owners and honest, taxpaying American citizens, instead of focusing on the acts of criminals and madmen.
There are only two ways to control gun violence - find and lock up all the criminals (which could never happen), or arm upstanding citizens.
Raising debt ceiling
amounts to treason
I read with complete contempt the Jan. 11 letter, "Obama can raise debt ceiling himself." Obviously, the writer is a socialist who does not believe in the Constitution.
At what point will we realize that this government's insatiable appetite for new taxes is straining the country to the limits? Liberal wingnuts seem to believe we all have endless pockets, so they can continue to subsidize those who pay no taxes in order to buy their votes.
Actually, raising the debt ceiling is in itself a treasonous act, putting our country further in debt to China, Russia and a host of other countries that would like to see us fail. Not to mention future generations of Americans who will have to pay this bill once the party is over and our creditors want their money.
The letter writer says the 14th Amendment gives Obama the right to raise the debt ceiling himself. Does the writer also believe in the right to keep and bear arms? Or do liberals just get to pick and choose which amendments they like?
There should be no raising of the debt ceiling without spending cuts - period. And those who vote to raise it without cuts should be charged with treason, including the president himself, because every time you put us and future generations further into debt, you weaken the United States. And that, sir, is treason.
Rhee's school rankings
cannot be trusted
Regarding the Jan 8 article, "N.J. schools graded poor by advocate," about another dismal report card for education giving low grades to most states, including New Jersey:
The list was created by an organization called StudentsFirst, which was founded by Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of the Washington, D.C., public schools.
As a proud public school teacher, I beg people to consider the source of this report card.
A Teach for America alumni (where college graduates are taught how to teach in five weeks), Rhee supports for-profit charters, vouchers and the agendas of right-wing governors, professing that these are the ways to help our society's most vulnerable children.
Rhee has worked closely with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Florida Gov. Rick Scott and other Republicans who want to privatize education, curtail collective-bargaining, base teacher evaluations on standardized tests, and take away any job protections for teachers.
Rhee also has been known to use creative math to make the statistics back her agenda. After closing many public schools and firing many teachers and principals based on standardized test results, she left her job as chancellor in Washington amid accusations of test tampering and cheating.
According to this report card from StudentsFirst, the highest-ranking states are Florida and Louisiana. The Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, set up by former Gov. Jeb Bush, is scandal-ridden, and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal's voucher program to send students to private schools that do not teach basic scientific facts was recently ruled unconstitutional by a state judge.
Watch the recent PBS "Frontline" documentary, "The Education of Michelle Rhee," and draw your own conclusion.
MARY FLATH CAIRNS