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Turn empty old buildings into places for teens to go



Published: Sun, January 6, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Turn empty old buildings into places for teens to go

EDITOR:

I read the letter from the teen in Struthers. I am sure the teens in surrounding areas feel the same.

It angers me to know these teens have no place to go, when we have so many empty schools and houses and buildings that are going to ruin because no one will take the time, effort, and money to refurbish these buildings. They can be made into teen centers and decent apartments for homeless and elderly people.

Instead, they sit empty to be vandalized. With the money we get for repairs for our town, we need to take a good look at the young, old, and homeless people and do something that is more important than worrying about getting casinos etc. I am all for casinos, but our children, elderly and homeless come first. We owe our own before we worry about getting new people here.

God help these children who have to hang on corners just to be together in a group only to enjoy what kids do: to talk about cars, friends, home life, school functions etc., not to be shooting homes up and other children or selling drugs. All teens are not into such things.

I am a 63-year-old grandmother, and my teen grandkids and their friends come to my three-room apartment to play their television games, watch movies, talk and laugh, and they cause no trouble. They all call me "Grandma," and I try and show them the love I show my own. And in return, they show me and my neighbors respect. They help those who need help in with their groceries, keep an eye on their little ones, empty their garbage and if their cars are being worked on by their owners in the parking lot they stop what they're doing and go out and help.

I used to take care of a teen center years ago on Robins Avenue in the projects. It was a new site near Tod School where we held dances and celebrated holidays with parties. There were pool tables, craft tables, game tables, and all participated in helping one another out. The parents who cared made time and helped supervise the teens. We even got a football game going once in awhile.

Why let our children stand on corners when we can do something about it? Or let schools and buildings rot when they can be put to good use?

Let's worry about our own instead of material things. Let our kids and elders know they come first. I am sure volunteers can be found, and teens who care and want this would help repair these buildings. All they need is love, understanding and being wanted. Also they can take pride in themselves. Not all teens are bad; they just need a break to prove it.

"GRANDMA" BRIDGETT McGINNIS

Youngstown

No humor in column

EDITOR:

Bertram de Souza's list of resolutions for 2002 reflects the lowest level of journalism for Vindicator readers. Even in sarcasm, the reference to & quot;Edward A. Flask and Frank DeJute standing on the edge of the bridge over the Meander Reservoir, the source of drinking water for 300,000 area customers, relieving themselves & quot; is crudely inappropriate.

For a newspaper that often writes of eroding standards, this type of yellow journalism strikes an all-time low.

FRANCES RAYBURN

Niles

Cellular phone tower disrupts neighborhood

EDITOR:

A 240-foot cellular telephone tower is being constructed at the intersection of Hillsville and Pine Glen roads on the section of a parcel of property that is surrounded by homes. The cellular phone company told concerned citizens at a recent Pulaski Township zoning board meeting that it is necessary to place a tower every three miles for optimal cell phone reception.

Several nearby tax-paying landowners are upset with the location and reasoning behind the towers. It seems very unfair that one landowner can so negatively affect our scenic view, raise our health concerns and harm the resale value of our homes.

Certainly in this high-tech age, cell phone companies can be more creative and sensitive in providing services to cell phone customers, without defacing residential areas. Our rights and concerns were ignored. I propose that in the future, all neighbors within a certain area be notified by a letter when such a project is undertaken with such grave and dire consequences.

RUTH POPE FLETCHER

New Bedford, Pa.

Weathersfield school board sets bad example

EDITOR:

In the latest RAM-O-GRAM (a Mineral Ridge Schools update), a letter from the superintendent expounds on the ideals and life lessons that are supposedly taught to the students of Weathersfield Township from the elementary school to the high school. These ideals include honesty, integrity, caring attitudes, love, respect and loyalty. They are, supposedly, taught by all the staff and supportive community.

Is it possible that the superintendent and board of education are unaware that our children learn by example as well as from lessons that are taught in the classroom?

Recently, electrical bids for the renovation of Seaborn School were unanimously rejected by the board. This occurred at a special board of education meeting. Strangely, an executive session was called immediately before the rejection vote appeared on the agenda. Interestingly enough, the executive session included a person that is not even a member of the community, although they did have connections to the project and its outcome. Could the board have needed direction in regards to their vote? Interesting.

When inquiries were made as to the reason for the rejection, there was a vague mention of changes although no one could be specific. A conversation shortly afterward with one of the board members resulted in the same nonspecific answers. Does anyone on the board actually know the reasons they voted to reject the low bid? What exactly are the reasons? Or do the board members vote based on instruction from their superintendent?

As a longtime resident of Mineral Ridge I am saddened by the lack of honesty and integrity demonstrated by the people elected to make decisions that affect the children of our community. The example they have shown is not one to be admired or followed. It is impossible to respect community leaders that use their position in a manner that is questionable, to say the least. More's the pity that those people will serve this community for yet another term. As the superintendent writes in his letter -- "What can I say, this is Mineral Ridge."

ED MAY

Mineral Ridge




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