Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor on teachers, 'In God We Trust,' loving neighbor, string quartet, Tallgrass festival

Teacher can't parent children

I overheard a conversation between two mothers, and the issue of discipline at school came up. One mother stated that a child should be punished only once at school; otherwise the child will stop discussing what happens at school. She also believes that her child got in trouble only because the teacher was overly sensitive and mean. I would like to address this issue as a classroom teacher.

We teach your children. We cannot parent them. We mentor, guide and care for your children eight hours each day but are limited in the ways we may discipline. You, the parent at home, are not.

By refusing to address classroom behavioral issues at home, you are simply teaching children that responsibility falls on the school professionals.

Classroom teachers depend upon parents to reinforce positive choices and discourage negative ones that children make at school. I firmly believe that children who experience the connection between home and school grow to be more successful students and young adults.

Please support classroom teachers by communicating with them as well as with your child. If you do expect us to parent your children, you must then trust our strength of character and fair judgment.



Change motto

The House of Representatives reaffirmed last week that "In God We Trust" is our official motto. It first appeared on U.S. coins during the Civil War.

I'm as Christian as anyone, but I believe that our money should say "In the Productivity of the American People We Trust." God gives us the strength to go to work every day, but he also gave us free will. This free will also allows us to play golf, drink beer or some other nonproductive activity. When you go to work every day in pursuit of those dollars, that is what makes a dollar worth a dollar and nothing else.

The dollar is not backed by gold, silver or any other precious metal; it is backed by you and your hard work. I believe that the motto on our money should reflect this.



Love neighbor

A long time ago, a wise man gave us the Ten Commandments. More recently, another wise man gave us one commandment: "Love your neighbor." It sounds very simple, but it's the toughest of them all.



Fantastic concert

The St. Petersburg String Quartet performed last week in Wiedemann Hall at Wichita State University. The artists produced a fantastic palette of Beethoven (the third "Razumovsky quartet") and Shostakovich.

I think Wichita natives should be more aware of the cultural opportunities residing in their city. There is not an area of cultural achievement wherein Wichita has not produced outstanding leaders, from artists Samuel Ramey and Stan Kenton to basketball star Dave Stallworth to businessmen Charles and David Koch.

I do not think it is cultural disinterest that led to the poor attendance at last week's concert but a simple lack of information. The group performs again at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29, and I think the best gift one can give to our fellow citizens is to inform them of that fact and encourage them to take advantage of it.


Choctaw, Okla.

Rumor has it

Rumor has it that the Tallgrass Film Festival is about to be recognized as one of the best film festivals in the nation by none other than. . . .

Wait, my mother taught me not to repeat rumors. But I can say that Tallgrass already has been recognized as a festival to watch by trade magazines. And filmmakers consistently have said that Tallgrass is one of their favorite film festivals.

But who cares what they think? Being "stubbornly independent," as the Tallgrass folks say, we'll make up our own minds about whether something is worth our time and support, thank you very much.

I've taken a hard look and decided that it's worth my support, but I can't say that I like all I've seen. Some of the movies are downright disturbing, but usually in a thought-provoking way.

Tallgrass offers movies that you may not see in a theater. Taken together, they provoke thought, discussion, laughter, hope and even action.

And the parties are the best. So check out the year-round Tallgrass events and decide for yourself before next year's festival.