Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Sept. 10

Support outdoor school tradition

I am disheartened to see the Olympia School Board cut a program that has been part of what makes it a world-class district.

Overnight, outdoor education is a once-in-a-lifetime, life-changing experience for Olympia fifth-graders. Our community needs to overwhelmingly show the Olympia School Board its support for overnight outdoor education.

Truly, Cispus fits perfectly with the culture of Olympia and our values. With the exceptions of Mark Campeau and Allen Miller, the board undervalues the importance of the environmental stewardship taught at Cispus as well as the social networking created, that establishes a foundation for success in the next seven years of academics at Olympia schools.

During a typical Cispus experience, four schools of fifth-graders come together to spend two nights submerged in nature. These kids, who never met before coming to Cispus, create lasting bonds that help them transition into middle school and high school.

In this day and age when it is so hard to create community building, why would we take away one of the main avenues for our kids to network?

Another tragedy is the loss which taking this program away presents to the high school counselors, who help teachers chaperone Cispus.

These young adults learn about being part of something bigger than themselves by participating with outdoor overnight education. Aren’t these types of opportunities exactly what being a world-class district is all about?

RYAN HALL, Olympia

Strengthen Child Nutrition Act

I’m writing to thank The Olympian for its coverage of the national debate on health care reform, and to point out a great opportunity for Congress to support the health of children and families everywhere by reauthorizing and strengthening the Child Nutrition Act — the law that governs school lunch programs.

As a leader of the Olympia chapter of Slow Food USA — and as the grandfather of two students starting kindergarten this fall — I urge you to join our organization and others that share our passion for real, healthy, locally produced food. We must urge Congress to increase by $1 per day the federal subsidy to schools for each lunch served.

This modest amount would have a tremendous effect at schools that now receive between 24 cents and $2.57 per meal.

Also, we urge Congress to fund innovative farm-to-school programs and school gardens — programs that connect students to the farm economy in their communities.

The Child Nutrition Act can be a tremendous force for lifelong health. Research shows when children learn good eating habits, they do better in school and are healthier throughout their lives.

To learn more, visit www.slowfoodolympia.org and www.slowfoodusa.org.

BOB CONNER, Tumwater

Spirit of hope lives on

You didn’t know me because we’ve never met, but I’ve known you my whole life.

We are kindred spirits connected by a commitment dedicated to lives that are not our own, delivered to us by a higher power invisible to the eyes.

You are a direct descendant from a country that bares my last name.

I am a direct descendant of someone that connects our families and us through a picture that brought justice to America.

I was with you when you lost your two brothers and you were with me when I lost mine and the dream he had to unify our nation.

You carried the torch of privilege, power, and hope that had been passed down from generation to generation.

I carry a cross baring the scars of oppression since birth and the passion to inspire unity among the separated and hopeless.

You became a voice of reconciliation that brought equity to our society, seeking progress toward the avenue of righteousness and unification with a fire that you burned in our souls.

Your vision and spirit of hope will live on within my heart and those whom you’ve fought for.

Your words, “The work goes on, the cause is ours, the hope lives on, and the dream will never die,” will forever resonate in our hearts and minds for as long as we shall live.

May you rest in Peace, Sen. Edward “Teddy” Kennedy.

LIONEL COLLINS, SR., Lacey

Obama cannot be trusted on gun issue

I wish I had the blinders and earplugs used by Judith Metcalf in regard to President Obama and his gun control stance.

She has no problem pointing fingers at the Republicans, but here obvious blind faith in Obama is typical of someone who is either misinformed or uninformed.

Honest with gun owners?

President Obama, while trying to garner the votes of gun advocates did say he supported hunters and their right to have firearms. But, that was after his handlers explained what was at stake if he let his far left view show. “Even if I want to take them away (guns) I don’t have the votes in Congress.” Sounds like he wants to outlaw them to me.

As a senator, Obama favored a plan to tax ammunition at 400 percent, as well as a ban on ammunition that even the ATF department said would virtually take all ammunition off the shelf, even for hunting rifles.

Sure, he will let law-abiding citizens keep their guns, but they can’t have ammunition. Honest? Not at all.

PATRICK ELY, Olympia

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