I am writing to encourage approval of the proposed pilot program partnering the Muscogee County School Board and the Columbus Parks and Recreation Department to provide swimming lessons during the school day for kindergarten students through funding by a local corporation.
I exercise at the natatorium daily and am grateful for the opportunity. I grew up in Columbus and graduated from Columbus High School with honors in 1968. Due to segregation practices at that time, no facilities for learning to swim were open to me. The colored YMCA had been demolished and the few neighborhood pools that existed were filled with dirt to prevent their desegregation. During my freshman year at Emory University, I was required to take a water survival course. I barely survived the course after nearly drowning. It took years before I could gain the confidence to venture into a swimming pool.
I look around the natatorium and I see it that it is underused, particularly by African American citizens and children. There is a rigorous and disciplined program of instruction sponsored by the Hurricanes; however, there is barely any participation by African American youth. That willl continue if our school system fails to step in.
The school board should grab this incentive offered by this corporation. Our girls and boys deserve the opportunity for skill building, mental fitness and physical fitness offered through the sport of swimming. These skills will also improve their scholastic performance.
Janet C. Bussey
Road to nowhere
Like many, I am wondering how much further down the path of immorality this country's leaders are going. Aside from the recent decision on homosexual marriage and the many attempts to take the mere mention of God's name out of everything, this government also allows babies to be slaughtered by the million. This practice of sacrificing children is abhorred by God, according to scripture.
Thomas Jefferson said " And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath?"
I believe what the founders of this country meant by separation of church and state was that the state ought not to mess with church. But the legislating of morality is precisely what the wrong branch of government has done.
As Christians, how much more are we to take from a government that ignores the vast majority's opinion to placate another small section of society? Shall we continue to sit on our hands and let the powers in Washington force this poisonous atmosphere on this country? We need to stand and be heard, in the name of Jesus.
This thing with the Mayor. Shows what happens when a lawyer becomes a politician. She seems well versed in law terms, but demonstrares a complete lack of leadership abilities. The whole cities Public Safety is going down and she can't see it. I would challenge every council member to do a ride along and see the shape our public safety is in. You have helped create this problem no go fix it.
Once again we're hearing about cutting the numbers in our fighting force, and once again we are ignoring history. Though the numbers are not quite as staggering as before, they add up. We cannot talk about defending our country out of one side of our mouths while cutting the number of troops necessary to accomplish that defense with the other. There is so much government waste that it is incomprehensible, and while I do understand the budgetary nuances that allocate distribution of funds, someone, somewhere must have a clear head to see the problems cutting more troops will cause.
Over the years, civilian positions have been created and padded to the point where the assistants now have assistants, through budget allocations, and you can't just "fire" or dismiss a federal employee without what amounts to an act of Congress. One can also not take those funds and use them for reinforcement of troop strength. Congress spends a lot of time fighting for jobs that may not be necessary, and don't even mention the "perks" and expense accounts of our elected officials (yet another separate budget).
It's time to revise the budgets and allocations of funds before it's too late. I hope something can be done before we have another "World War" on our hands, and no one to defend the United States!
On behalf of the State Bar of Georgia, I would like to congratulate members of the Fountain City Bar Association and the Georgia Appleseed Center for Law & Justice for their successful "Law Day 4 Boys" event, a hands-on learning program for kids from the Boys and Girls Club of Columbus.
These local attorneys provided the students with the opportunity to tour the courthouse, hold a mini-mock trial, look inside a SWAT truck and police car and experience a drug dog demonstration. Additionally, the young men heard information about preparing for a career in the legal profession and how to apply for internships at local law offices. We salute the efforts of Teddy Reese of the Georgia Appleseed Center and all local Bar members who participated in the educational program.
All Georgia lawyers can be inspired by our Columbus colleagues' commitment to serving others in the community, which in turn serves to promote the cause of justice and uphold the integrity of the legal profession in our state.
Robert J. "Bob" Kauffman
President, State Bar of Georgia