All the facts pertaining to Girard's sick school problem and the subsequent actions taken, or not taken, by the board of education are not out yet. Real concern is justified for the health and safety of the teachers and students at the intermediate school but the recent negative news coverage and Internet publications warrant a letter of support on behalf of Jane Harris. Everyone knows Jane because she is involved in every aspect of Girard life, from sports to politics to beautification projects. Jane is also one of Girard's Board of Education members.
After dedicating 50 years of her life to public service and education, the woman is being vilified by Girard citizens and The Vindicator. Jane has an exemplary record of service as a teacher, principal and an assistant superintendent. Her volunteer efforts include supporting Girard's parks, women's clubs, beautification efforts, historical buildings, sports programs, band boosters, children's groups and the list goes on and on.
The woman deserves and has earned our respect. She has volunteered her time and efforts for more civic groups and committees than most of the Girard citizenry is aware of. How many of Girard's 10,902 citizens volunteer for community service? Not many. People should volunteer their time to improve their community and quality of life. Jane has done this. She does not fit the profile of a blowhard or a smug conspirator.
The personal attacks and criticisms aimed at Jane Harris are false. She appealed for support in her Girard News article on Aug. 16 and was called smug by a Girard citizen voicing his opinions on the Girard Concerned Citizens Message Board. Does she have a right to appeal for support? Absolutely. Is the city of Girard ready to dismiss this woman and her unbelievable public service record? We should hope not. Girard's reactions and comments related to the sick school problem illustrate the reason why people are not willing to step forward and lead, either in politics or volunteer efforts.
Who are clergy to say how money is spent?
Who do the clergy of Youngstown think they are, that they should tell us how to spend or what to do with our own money? It will either be spent in a casino or at their bingo halls or at their festivals (where they then condone gambling). Every person that goes to Bingo goes to win money not just to donate money to the churches.
If casinos were allowed in the city, it would generate jobs, extra tax money, the city would also make way for new enterprises with more restaurants and more jobs there, gift shops, etc.
Do you realize how many people travel to West Virginia every day, and not only Youngstown people but also all over Ohio and Pennsylvania? The same people that at times fly to Vegas, Atlantic City, Canada and Detroit, and yet they all come back not as hopeless gamblers. They may have left some money there or maybe came back with more then they went with. They go for the thrill and entertainment, which Youngstown can't offer them.
Everyone wants the town to grow; well this is a chance to do that. If we are so afraid that it is going to corrupt our people, then outlaw all gambling. That would include bingo and festivals where you play cards, roll dice, roulette and so forth, Nights at the Races and Las Vegas Nights, all of which churches hold.
In that way we will have no gambling and we will live in a pure town, and our people, mostly the young, will go into other towns or states to get a job and make a living.