School district has to learn to live on what it has
We are writing in regard to the proposed 9.5 mill levy for the Youngstown School district, which is on the Nov. 7 ballot; or, as Superintendent Wendy Webb says, "the pennies a day" increase to our property taxes.
As residents and property owners of Coitsville Township, we have the misfortune of belonging to the Youngstown school district, one of the worst in the state. As residents of Coitsville Township, we also had the misfortune of just receiving a hefty increase in our property taxes.
While "pennies a day" may seem insignificant to Ms. Webb and others, it may well be the "straw that breaks the camel's back" to many of our residents. We have many retired people on fixed incomes who cannot go to anyone for a 9.5 mill increase to their monthly checks. We have many couples struggling to get by, even with two wage earners in the family, and many single-parent families. To them "pennies a day" may force them to choose between food, medicine, heat, or other basic needs.
Most of our residents never even sent their children to Youngstown public schools, because they felt their children could not get a quality education. Many opted for parochial or open-enrollment in other school districts. Because of this, Youngstown got our tax dollars and never had to educate our children.
It's time for the powers that be to work with the money they have, even if it means cutting jobs and frills. We're certain to hear that if the levy fails, schools will have to cut out sports and other extracurricular activities. Then so be it. If that is what is causing a shortage of funds, cut them out. Get back to basics and teach children the things they need to know to lead productive lives.
Youngstown schools, you've gone to the well too often. Our pockets are empty, and we are tired of hearing "not enough money." We are weary of trying to satisfy the voracious appetite of a school system that believes it is up to the property owners to solve all of its problems. Start at the top and work your way down until you get it right.
MARGE and BERNARD DESS
and five others
All of Lowellville
Different view of forgiveness
This letter is in response to Betsy Hart's article titled "Forgiveness lets us all off the hook." I'm afraid Mrs. Hart misses the whole point of the forgiveness offered by the Amish community to the family of the deranged man who murdered their children. Working through their grief with forgiveness will greatly benefit this gentle, hurting community. Instead of holding on to the devastating anger, pain and torment caused by this heinous act they will find healing and peace.
Mrs. Hart's statement "we Evangelicals don't seem like to admit that we are only forgiven by God through repentance" doesn't hold water. First of all we are not God. Secondly if we wait until someone is truly sorry before we forgive them, we might became as mentally tormented as the perpetrator of this crime.
The writer also equates forgiveness with absolving all accountability. Sometimes forgiveness does bring about true repentance and reconciliation but in no way does it let the offender off the hook; just off our hook. In this case, the offender is a dead man and the family he left behind desperately needs the love and forgiveness flowing to them from these generous hearted people.
It could be that Mrs. Hart is sensing our corporate guilt as a nation for straying so far away from the commands of our Creator. His law concerning murder is this; if a person takes another person's life, he forfeits his own life. The death penalty is not a punishment but rather holding the murderer accountable.
May we pray that the Lord will comfort all these who mourn and that He will forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.