Letters to the editor on punishing teachers, Cal Thomas

04/23/2014 12:00 AM

04/22/2014 5:31 PM

Lawmakers are punishing teachers

Denying tenure to K-12 teachers was a policy change added to a bill late at night and was aimed at punishing teachers for lawmakers having to appropriate additional money for education. It was never vetted or examined by the public.

According to Sen. Ty Masterson, R-Andover, eliminating due-process hearings for teachers would make it easier for schools to fire underperforming teachers. In reality, it would have the opposite effect.

Most of our Kansas teachers are extremely good at what they do. And for the small minority who are not good teachers, there are due-process hearings that can move them out of the education field. Without due-process rights, many of our finest teachers will be shown the door because of a personality conflict or other misunderstanding with an administrator.

Lawmakers who supported this bill, including Masterson and Rep. David Crum, R-Augusta, are not representing the interests of education or senior citizens. We have to find better representation than we have at this time. It’s time to elect people to public office who represent their constituents.

JACK CARR

Rose Hill

Drop Thomas

I think it’s important to be regularly exposed to viewpoints from people with different perspectives. Having one’s ideas challenged on a regular basis provides an opportunity to re-examine those ideas.

Having noted this, I would request that The Eagle’s Opinion page reconsider featuring Cal Thomas as a regular columnist.

Recently on the evangelical network Daystar, Thomas said: “Don’t put your children in the enemy’s re-education camps where they’re taught they evolved from slime and their nearest relative is down at the zoo and that’s why they like bananas on their cereal, where they don’t learn the real history of America.” He then charged that the “government education system” unfairly demonizes the Pilgrims as people who “hated the Indians and ... deprived them of their land.”

Later in the interview, Thomas said the theory of evolution will inevitably lead to an attack on human life targeting “the elderly and then, soon after that, the handicapped, the unwanted, the mentally unfit and the rest,” while Obamacare bureaucrats will decide “who gets care” based in part on “how much you’re contributing to the tax base.”

There are political conservatives with carefully considered, reasoned views. Thomas is not one of them. He seems, quite frankly, to be unhinged. Please stop giving him a platform and instead feature someone saner. Better candidates exist for our intellectual attention than that.

GRETCHEN KOCH

Wichita

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