isn't the end of the world
Sadly, Mother Nature placed a damper on some recent high-school graduation exercises in our area. The month of June so often is full of pop-up storms, and certainly that has been the case this very wet month.
Most students wish to hold the graduation at their school and prefer it outdoors, where they can invite more guests than at an indoor event. But the rain storms this June show us an important lesson: We don't always get what we want. Everyone - students, parents and school administrators - needs to keep it all in perspective. Graduation day is just that - a day.
The day, the week, the month that follows are all much more important. That is when the "true" parental pride takes place as we watch our children spread their wings and enter the adult world.
To call the day "one of the greatest events of a child's life," as one recent letter writer did, is very much a disservice. That is the same mindset as thinking that the reception is more important than the marriage.
School choice for all
is the best approach
Regarding the responses to my May 30 letter, "Catholics already pay twice for education":
The opinion of the writer of the June 13 letter, "Closing Catholic schools drives up education costs," seemed the most reasonable: "We need choice for parents, along with payment vouchers at set amounts to allow parents to educate their children at any state-accredited schools, including the public system."
Versions of this approach are already happening - successfully - in Ohio, Wisconsin, the District of Columbia and parts of Pennsylvania. In Canada, similar methods have had long-standing acceptance.
The writer also advanced the troubling reality that if Catholic schools close down, higher taxes will be required to send these children to public schools.
Let's get rid of this inequity. Catholics and their neighbors will then all be educationally "pro-choice," together holding a true, authentic interpretation of the Constitution and our states' responsibilities.
REV. EDWARD D. LYONS
Pass room tax in O.C.
to fund street repairs
The streets of Ocean City are in dire need of repair. The City Council constantly complains of budgetary restraints. A simple way to raise funds is to impose a 2 percent to 3 percent room tax on all hotel rooms and condo vacation rentals.
The real estate lobby would have Ocean City residents believe a room tax will discourage tourists. This argument is lame.
If you were going to spend $400 per night for a hotel room or $2,000 per week for a condo rental, would $12 more in the hotel room or $60 more for the condo really enter into your decision whether to come to Ocean City?
I urge City Council to pass the room tax now.
Exactly which ones?
Regarding the June 24 letter, "In today's world, we must sacrifice some liberties":
I am very curious as to what liberties the letter writer is willing to sacrifice for safety.
Could it be a private telephone conversation? How about moving your finances from one bank to another? Maybe to be able to move to another state, change jobs? Privacy in your bedroom? The list is practically endless.
Dog story too quick
to blame pit bulls
Regarding the June 25 article, "Pit bull attack fatal to 3 dogs":
My condolences to Louis Nell for the heartbreak of losing his golden retriever, Chrissy. I'm sorry for his loss, and I wish him a speedy recovery. But this irresponsible and sensational article further fueled the incorrect stereotype of pit bulls as vicious, bloodthirsty killers.
First, the misleading headline makes it seem as though a single pit bull was responsible for the death of three other dogs. Only after reading the article does the reader learn that two dogs were killed by police and Animal Control.
Second, how did the reporter even know that the dogs were in fact pit bulls? Did she see the dogs? Or did she simply report the hearsay of the police officers at the scene? Visual breed identification is inherently unreliable.
Pit bulls are just like every other dog, no more and no less. When bred and raised responsibly, these dogs are the most loving, loyal and friendly companions a person could have. Contrary to popular belief, pit bulls do not have a propensity for aggression.
Unfortunately, pit bulls are popular among irresponsible people who want to project a "tough guy" or "thug" image by having a dog they think makes them look dangerous. But those people are clowns, and as a result, all pit-bull type dogs have a bad rap.
The truly guilty party here is the owner of the two dogs that were not adequately restrained. Let's lay off the misleading headlines and place the blame where it is due - on the negligent owner.
Uproar over racial slur
unfair to Paula Deen
Regarding Paula Deen and her use of a racial slur in her past:
This came to light in a sworn deposition for a lawsuit filed by a former employee Deen had fired. The question was, "Have you ever used a racial slur in the past?" To which Deen replied, "Yes." Remember, she was under oath, and for her honest answer she is losing her income and her reputation.
I do not endorse any type of racial slurs, but what happened to Deen puts all of us on a very slippery slope. If this hypersensitivity continues, no one will be immune. Anyone born in the 20th century has probably used a slur at one time or another. Should all of these people and organizations be punished in the same fashion as Paula Deen? Should we lose our jobs?
Americans have learned to be tolerant and change their way of thinking and acting. So how is it fair to destroy someone for what may have happened years ago when we were less enlightened? Remember the old saying, "Judge not, lest ye be judged."
PATRICK D. PETERS