Letters to the Editor – Thanksgiving, Adam Frisch, STAAR, Twitter, taxes

Many blessings

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on my many blessings, not the least of which is being part of a great community of people. I am thrilled and thankful to be associated with such dedicated people who go the extra mile to help a neighbor in need.

Every day, I get the opportunity to witness the determination of each member of my community.

COVID-19 has strongly impacted our lives. Elevated inflation and soaring interest rates, high costs for petroleum products, the mounting cost of living and the barren shelves at the supermarkets are now, regrettably, a part of everyday life.

Yet, during this austere, somber time, I see members of my community reaching out to their neighbors and providing the support and consolation that is so urgently needed.

Whether they help those at greater risk of infection, bring meals to neighbors devastated by the loss of a loved one, deliver groceries to those in need or call to check on a neighbor who they haven’t seen in a while, each member of my community represents a shining beacon of hope during this dark, dismal time.

And I am extremely thankful for that!

John Di Genio, Cibolo

No politics; just family

For more than 20 years, I have been a frequent contributor to The Dallas Morning News op-ed page, having written dozens of commentaries and letters. Most of these contributions have focused on our country’s political environment and the fragile state of democracy. Following the November election, I have been reassured that American institutions are resilient and that our nation contains more decent and rational citizens than what I once thought. As a result, I made a promise that I would refrain, at least for a while, from penning political op-eds.

With Thanksgiving, perhaps now more than ever I appreciate the fact that the most important things in our lives involve family and friends. No one can take that away from us. In my case, I am especially thankful for and grateful to my wife and her daughter. I am enormously proud of what they as educators have accomplished to assist young adults and how they have given back to the world in many loving ways.

On Thanksgiving Day, I will not be thinking about politics. Instead, I shall toast both of these remarkable people.

Richard Cherwitz, Austin

Good stuff from Frisch

Re: “Boebert’s opponent concedes tight race — A recount is likely, but Democrat says it’s unlikely to change election results,” Saturday news story.

I was rooting for Adam Frisch in this Colorado race. I don’t care a whit for Lauren Boebert or her policies.

But I admire the way Frisch handled losing this race: like an adult and like a leader. No baseless claims of fraud, veiled threats or efforts to burn down what we — all Americans — have built over the past almost 250 years.

Then as I started to read SportsDay, I thought: We expect and hold professional athletes and team staff to higher standards than our political leaders. It seems to me that needs to be fixed more than any issue that divides Democrats and Republicans.

To me, the substance of the person matters more than the party. Don’t we teach our children substance over form? If not, shouldn’t we?

Russell G. Thornton, East Dallas

Better yardsticks

Re: “Texans want better ways to measure schools — Legislature has opportunity to improve accountability system,” by Brian Woods and H.D. Chambers, Sunday Opinion.

I applaud this op-ed. Haven’t we had enough of only STAAR? Most agree, and as a four-time elected school board trustee, I spent little time focused on STAAR test results. STAAR doesn’t measure learning. The high-stakes nature of this test reflects poverty. It punishes students, educators, schools and districts more often, confusing communities and legislators with its results.

Texas needs a broader accountability system. Before I left my board role, we adopted a community-based accountability system to measure growth and identify opportunities for authentic school improvement. Our community shared in its development. It took time to create, and other school districts are doing the same.

I sincerely hope our legislators take a step back this session and get curious about what Austin has done and is doing to our public education system. Our teachers are leaving in droves. As was mentioned, “All we need is the will to do something better for our students and their future.” Please talk to your legislators.

Tracy K. Fisher, Coppell

Only the House can do this

I see that President Joe Biden has taken his case to implement massive loan payoffs to private individuals using my tax dollars to the Supreme Court.

Apparently Biden has forgotten that by law the only group in the United States government allowed to initiate new spending is the House of Representatives. Hopefully, the Supreme Court will remind him of that simple fact.

Olan Knight, Murphy

Who wants him there, again?

Re: “Trump’s Twitter to be restored — But ex-president says he sees ‘a lot of problems,’” Sunday news story.

So the vote is in and counted. Former President Donald Trump will be allowed back on Twitter. Has anyone analyzed the vote? My guess is that the Democrats voted to let him back on and the Republicans voted to keep him off.

Ted Gold, Plano

And my taxes still rise …

I just received my annual property tax assessment, and once again my tax bill increased. So which candidate/candidates promised lower property taxes? Tell the voters what they want to hear and when elected, forget to fulfill those promises.

I’m so tired of the same political rhetoric from both sides.

Dave Kuhlman, Highland Village

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Read More: Letters to the Editor – Thanksgiving, Adam Frisch, STAAR, Twitter, taxes

2022-11-23 22:32:02

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