Let's work together

to reduce violence

Regarding the Jan. 5 letter, "Shooters, not police, need sensitivity training":

The letter writer referred to the18-year-old young man who was shot by an Atlantic City police officer as a "thug."

Instead of calling someone a thug, let us be empathetic all the way around this issue. The young man was someone's child. Imagine losing a child at any age, under any circumstance. We also need to be empathetic to the police officer and his family, who are also in pain.

We live in this world together. As an educator, I believe it takes a village to raise a child. Atlantic City residents are urging police to have sensitivity training. This may not be the answer.

Instead, let us work together as parents, teachers, leaders and members of the community to identify at-risk young people. We need parents and community leaders to get involved in our schools. We cannot keep blaming others for a lack of responsibility, when it is all of our responsibility to contribute to society.

Parents must begin by stepping up and identifying problems they see with their children and getting support. If we fail to work together, these senseless incidents will continue to occur.



Obama, Josef Stalin

both honored by Time

On Jan. 4, 1943, Josef Stalin was Time Magazine's Man of the Year. I find it very interesting that the magazine chose President Barack Obama 70 years later.

It is quite an insight into the leaning of Time, but not really news.



More to police work

than tips from citizens

Regarding the Jan. 6 story, "Killings unsolved in Atlantic County":

The article skirts over the murders of four women in West Atlantic City and of April Kauffman. It focuses mainly on murders of gangbangers by gangbangers in Atlantic City and Pleasantville.

The excuse of police officials is that people are not coming forward with information. I would like to see an article detailing the expertise, level of forensic knowledge and state-of-the-art equipment used in the Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office.

What is the selection process for investigators in this office? How are detectives from other departments chosen to serve alongside county investigators?

I question the reliance on citizen information. Crimes committed outside the world of street violence, especially where forensic evidence should be plentiful, lend themselves to resolution by professional investigations.

It's time for a thorough investigation into the workings of the Atlantic County's Prosecutor's Office. The blood of five women calls for it.



Atlantic freeholders

out of touch with citizens

At the Atlantic County Board of Chosen Freeholders reorganization meeting, the county was touted as the best-run in the state.

Surely not in per-capita income, where we rank 19th out of 21; or health, 17th; unemployment, 19th; infant mortality, 17th; percentage of children in poverty, 16th. Apparently, success to our freeholders is not people-centric.

Do our freeholders advocate for those included in these statistics? The traditional Republican agenda continues to dominate because Democrats fail to vote. Freeholder Charles Garrett, who has been the only Democrat on the board, was effectively shut out. But hopefully the addition of Freeholder Colin Bell increases opportunities for both to work for all the people.

Women, half of the county's population, are not represented on the board. Any organization solely run by men loses women's invaluable perspective.

Obviously the majority of the freeholders like the way things are, but attending Tuesday meetings at 4 p.m. in eastern Atlantic County is impossible for most residents. Without interaction, the people know nothing about the freeholder agenda. And worse, the freeholders learn little about the real needs of the people.



Group deserves 'F'

for N.J. school grade

Regarding the Jan. 8 story, "N.J. schools graded poor by advocate":

Based on reliable New Jersey student performance data, it would appear that the advocacy group StudentsFirst deserves an "F" for failing to include student performance as a major factor in its less-than-convincing report.

The organization's ranking of states has little to do with the reality of what occurs within the educational enterprise. Better to leave self-evaluations, comparisons and criteria for change to teachers, schools and states, among which New Jersey is one of the very best.



Daniel N. Walter is a retired supervisor in the Greater Egg Harbor Regional School District.