New tracks should be a top priority
As former Trojan track and cross country parents, we were very disappointed to read about the hazardous condition of the tracks at Northwestern and Rock Hill High. It is a shame our student athletes will not be able to compete on their home tracks this season. We find it a bit embarrassing that our district leaders have overlooked the poor condition of both tracks. Is there not a maintenance or replacement plan? We also find it hard to believe that money was approved for stadium turf when both tracks were deteriorating. How could these things happen in Rock Hill District Three?
There are three compelling reasons we feel justify replacing both tracks as soon as possible. The tracks are a vital part of the physical education program at both schools as physical education classes utilize the tracks. The tracks serve student athletes in other sports as well as track and cross country. Let's also not forget that numerous District Three student athletes have received college scholarships due to the track and cross country programs.
We hope the district will stand by its professional code, which states: "Put Students First." If so, two new tracks will become top priority for available bond money designated for this type expenditure. We also encourage current and former track/cross country parents, former student athletes, District Three parents and members of the community who are in support of the immediate replacement of both tracks to make their voices heard.
John and Shirley Faircloth
Give students healthy choices
New Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack may be the first to recognize that USDA's mission is to provide a healthful food supply for the American people, rather than welfare checks to agribusiness conglomerates.
The best venue for this mission is our nation's school lunch program, once used by USDA as a dumping ground for surplus meat and dairy commodities. According to USDA's own surveys, 90 percent of American children consume excessive fat, and only 15 percent eat recommended servings of fruits and vegetables. Early dietary flaws become lifelong addictions, contributing to the escalating public health crisis.
Several state legislatures have asked their schools to offer daily vegan/vegetarian options, and 52 percent of U.S. school districts now do.
Parents and others who care about our children's health should work with PTAs and school officials to demand healthful, plant-based school food. Additional information is available at schoolnutrition.org, schoolmeals.nal.usda.gov, healthyschoollunches.org, choiceusa.net.
Let's reduce cost of gasoline
Perhaps I'm stupid, but while the billions of dollars to stimulate our economy may work in the long run, a quick fix would be to attack our oil cost by getting the price of a gallon to $1 or less. We also should remove the heavy tax on diesel needed for delivery trucks that causes retailers to raise prices on everyday necessary commodities for normal living, being that oil is the life blood of nations.
Don't reward bad behavior
President Obama unveiled a foreclosure-prevention package Wednesday that would pour more than $75 billion into arresting one of the root causes of the nation's economic spiral by helping as many as 9 million homeowners obtain more affordable mortgage terms.
On the issue of bailing out consumers who made poor decisions on their housing and mortgages, this is where I and President Obama part ways.
I believe it is the wrong, wrong, wrong thing to do.
I had enough sense to settle on a mortgage with a fixed rate and read all of my loan documents. I pay my mortgage on time every time, and if the president wants to stimulate the economy, he should free up more money for homeowners like me!
I'd like my interest rate lowered, too. Rewarding bad behavior is not an option.