When I submitted my letter, “No requirements for home-schooling” (July 27), I anticipated a heavy response from parents claiming what a good job they do. And I believe them. But I also believe that more people abuse the privilege than make the best of it.
Todd and Susan Devens wrote a letter, “Good education possible at home” (Aug. 8), and said they found my statement that home-schooled children don’t have curricula “ignorant” and “hilarious.” This was not my statement; it came from a letter I received from the Indiana Department of Education. The letter stated: “State law exempts home schools from the curriculum and program requirements which public schools must follow.” Also, “There is no state-approved curriculum for home education at any grade level.”
Nowhere did I read in the Department of Education’s letter to me that “Indiana law also states that the child has to have an equivalent education to the public school system” as the Devenses wrote.
The most frightening statement in the Devenses’ letter is their belief that it is not “the government’s job to say what your child learns.” Every society has always determined what elements of its culture to pass on to its children, or that culture would disintegrate. The government is simply the representative of the people.
Do we really want every individual to decide what their children learn without any common knowledge? Do we want immigrants to teach their children to read and write only their native language, or Muslims to teach only what is in the Quran? Should our history and Constitution be optional to teach? I think not.
There is simply no accountability placed on home schooling. There are no special forms for attendance, no length of day, no required tests and no approved textbooks. Children who are home-schooled should have to meet the same standards as those in public schools.
Hunter shows promise as Republican candidate
I am helping organize the Indiana for Duncan Hunter in ’08 Campaign. We want Indiana to be a major player in deciding who will lead our country in 2008, and we want to help and support our candidate, Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif.
Hunter recently won the Texas straw poll with more than 40 percent of the votes. His message of a stronger national defense, enforceable borders and fairer trade with China are resonating with voters across Texas.
Explaining his vision to delegates at the recent Texas Young Republican Convention in Austin, Hunter commented, “I will have had an effective presidency if the American people are more independent of government than when I walked in.”
Kelty flouted the law regarding loans, sign
Reading letters to the editor, I am confused as to why there is still so much support for Matt Kelty.
I read Joe Collis’ letter, “Don’t let power structure take down candidate Kelty” (Aug. 28), and I am in utter disbelief. Collis states “cowards … are trying to put Kelty in jail for misfiling a form.” Where has Collis been? No one is trying to put Kelty in jail for misfiling a form, but people are trying to bring him to justice after he lied.
Kelty said he lent his campaign almost $160,000, which people, including myself, thought was legitimate considering that he is a local architect. But what we found out after the primary is that Kelty received two loans from other people to then in turn lend his campaign. Kelty purposely kept this little tidbit of information from the public.
I am all for second chances, but this was not Kelty’s first overt flouting of the law. Back in April, Kelty’s campaign put up a banner on the side of a building on Main Street that was too big according to a city ordinance. The city gave him a time limit to take it down, which was a couple of weeks, but that happened to be after the primary. Now, you would think that an upstanding individual would have had that sign taken down right away, but Kelty showed us that he is indeed not an upstanding individual because he waited until after the primary to take down the sign.
Let’s not give Kelty the chance to make any more “honest” mistakes. Please vote for Tom Henry in November.
RYAN McKIBBEN WULPI
Indiana should jump on Amtrak bandwagon
The Wall Street Journal noted on its opinion page Aug. 23 that Amtrak is on a roll with ridership up and performance improving. Ridership is up 6 percent this year, the biggest jump since the late 1970s.
Amtrak supporters in Congress are noticing the improved service. The House recently passed a fiscal 2008 funding bill with $1.4 billion for Amtrak plus $50 million to match state funding of capital projects. The Senate is also considering Amtrak funding of $1.37 billion plus $100 million for the capital program.
The Indiana Department of Transportation and the state legislature should begin studies all over the state, such as is being done in the central and northwest parts of the state, and begin building commuter railroads. There is definitely a need and demand for this type of transportation. The congestion on the highways, especially Interstate 69, and the price of gasoline are going to force commuters to find alternate transportation.
Also, more needs to be done with the upcoming Harrison Square project to persuade Amtrak to come back to Fort Wayne. There is a beautiful, rebuilt Baker Street station for Amtrak to use for passengers. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to ride a train from Fort Wayne to Chicago, Indianapolis, Bloomington, Lafayette, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids and points beyond?
EDWIN L. RAHN
Harrison Square will benefit insiders
The people in Fort Wayne who are in favor of the Harrison Square project are only the ones who stand to benefit the most, including the property owners who sell their property to the city, construction companies, attorneys, architects and other vested interests. I have yet to talk to a friend or a stranger in Fort Wayne who thinks it is a good idea. The city of Fort Wayne has been run by the insiders – for the benefit of the insiders, not the people – for way too long.
If the Harrison Square project is such a viable project, why did only one hotel chain offer a bid to build in this venture? And we, the taxpayers, have to guarantee the hotel the profit it wants.
Fort Wayne now has a very nice baseball field that is only partially occupied most games, and the stadium is located close to recently enlarged adjoining roads, giving easy access to and from it. It also has plenty of good parking. The Harrison Square project, if it is constructed, and if it is successful, will not have the roads to move the traffic. And the proposed neighborhood borders on crime-laden streets.
We, as residents, are being told that this project will be financed without the taxation of Fort Wayne residents. That is bull. The reason that the Harrison Square project is being pushed is so that the owners can get the concession profits, which they do not get now.
J. THOMAS SPARKS