George Le Masurier, Publisher
Jerre Redecker, Senior Editor
John Dodge, Columnist
Mary Gentry, Community Representative
Doug Mah, Community Representative
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As voters continue to support their local schools, the state must step up and share responsibility.
Is it time to thank The Academy?
My thanks to The Olympian for the invitation to participate on the 2013 Board of Contributors. I recently returned to Olympia after a 65-year absence.
There’s a lot of language in our community that surrounds and informs our understanding of housing – what it means to be housed or to not be housed, and what that means. The words we use when we talk literally say a lot about how we think and, perhaps more importantly, how we feel. Stabilized shelter has been a critical component of human living since the late-Pleistocene period and its discussion is deservedly bound to generate strong feelings in all persons who utilize or desire it.
I consider myself to be a reasonably well-educated person. I was salutatorian of my high school graduating class. I graduated with honors from a prestigious liberal arts college and continued on for an advanced degree. For more than 30 years I taught high school English.
I will miss Congressman Norm Dicks when he retires from Congress at the end of this year. For whatever the criticisms of Dicks, to me, he is the last of the true congressional statesman. He functioned in a bipartisan manner and put the welfare of our nation ahead of party politics. It seems that members of Congress just don’t operate that way anymore. A few years ago, I watched him on C-SPAN debating the Department of Interior subappropiations budget. He genuinely cared about the opinions of his Republican colleagues, even yielding his time to them when appropriate. As I watched Dicks treat his colleagues with civility, respect and decency, I wished the rest of Congress, and other politicians, would exhibit the same behavior.
The Sept. 26 “thumbs down” editorial about recycled water overlooked an important fact: all water is recycled. That’s a basic concept students learn from elementary school through college. All the water that has ever existed on Earth is still here today, constantly being recycled by nature as it moves from sky to earth and back again. The water we use every day is the same water the dinosaurs drank.
The next governor of Washington will have a unique opportunity to remake our state’s education system, and with it, the futures of generations of young Washingtonians.
As I visit with people, read newspapers and watch the news, it is clear the people who wish to legalize marijuana are passionate about their cause. The advocates for legalization of marijuana assert that if Initiative 502 were to pass, that it is good public policy that will help the state economically and provide the law enforcement the opportunity to be better stewards of our resources, as we will not be enforcing “minor” marijuana possession laws.
For nearly 20 years, Washingtonians have debated how to improve public schools, a discussion that will continue again this fall with Initiative 1240, the charter-school initiative.