April 2, 2013

Letters to the Editor: Editorial on Zumba case lacks perspective

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Attorney Dan Lilley, left, with Mark Strong Sr., whom Lilley defended on charges of promoting prostitution, says an editorial supporting the decision to prosecute the case bought into an overstated view of the case’s legal significance.

2013 File Photo/John Ewing

This is all underscored by the fact that President Obama, most Democrats and some major Republicans want to grant amnesty to millions of undocumented immigrants.

Meanwhile, thousands of service members have been forced to retire early in the past few years. Border Patrol agents had their salaries cut by up to 40 percent. Something is definitely not right in this country.

Immigrants are not bad people. But a principle of patriotism is placing the urgent needs of your fellow citizens first. And when tens of thousands of Maine citizens struggle to make ends meet and are unable to find jobs, then it's high time to change some policies.

Immigration should be drastically reduced until we can find jobs and guarantee assistance for unemployed Mainers and Americans.

Benjamin Holmes

Portland

Baxter, school choice claims both merit thorough review

Thank you for juxtaposing the perils of charter schools next to the promotion of school choice.

I am a retired public-school teacher and a private-school parent who strongly disagrees with the diversion of public funds to finance corporate schools.

My experience with the accumulated costs of private education leads me to believe that a single voucher would not be adequate to pay for them.

Textbooks and materials, sports and activity fees, transportation and meals are only some of the many elements of private education that are not covered within the umbrella of tuition.

Parents must pay for them separately.

I'm not sure how that is done in a charter school format, but that was my arrangement with the private institution I sent my son to. The cost was easily another quarter to half of what I initially paid in tuition.

Kudos, then, to Portland Mayor Michael Brennan for insisting on an accounting ("Portland mayor calls for AG probe of charter school," March 22).

As for the Governor's Forum on Education ("LePage conference touts school choice, but not all are convinced," March 22), I think it would be more productive to attribute Florida's success to their institution of a designated student-to-teacher ratio and to the documented success of their statewide, comprehensive literacy program than to the unsubstantiated claims of charter schools and voucher schemes.

John M. Flagler

Alfred

 

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