Steve Chittock

Modern economy should not be without universal health care

It makes about as much sense to have your health insurance linked to your job as it would to link your police, fire or national defense protection to your job.

You must have a job or other income to pay for those good things to be sure, but those services are paid for in common through the maligned medium of taxation. Actually, linking job to health care insurance has turned into a modern Edict of Diocletian, tying to their jobs for life those with preexisting conditions in themselves or a dependent loved one.

It is bad for commerce and inimical to growth in a modern economy to have anything less than universal health insurance. It will pay for itself easily with the entrepreneurial forces unleashed when the great fear of medical bankruptcy is lifted from businesses and persons in this country.

As with education, the private system will continue to exist, since there are always those willing to pay for it.

John Douglas, MD

Crescent City

Article inaccurately characterizes Castle Rock's lower test scores

I have been a teacher since 1972. Here in Del Norte County, I have taught at Joe Hamilton, Bess Maxwell, and St. Joseph's. I have also taught in both public and private schools in Colorado, Maryland and Pennsylvania.

I have been teaching at Castle Rock Charter School since 2002. I have a daughter who is a junior in high school and has attended Castle Rock since fourth grade. I was extremely disappointed with the reporting of Kelley Atherton in the Aug. 28 front-page article "Alternative schools' low scores worry School Board."

I cannot begin to tell you how many high school sophomores, juniors, or seniors come to Castle Rock with only one semester of credit or almost straight F's. What about the sixth-grader with second-grade reading and/or math skills? Perhaps Ms. Atherton could ask the high school about "senior amnesty" for the class of 2009 or about how kids are sent to Castle Rock when they fail the CAHSEE (exit exam). Guess what other schools' test scores would be like if it were not for Castle Rock!

Castle Rock does offer incentives and rewards, if anyone had cared to check. There is a dedicated staff that cares about each and every kid and what is best for each individual student. This means that we do not have a "cookie-cutter" curriculum where everyone is on the same page, in the same book, at the same time. No single person learns in the identical way as another and that is the problem with traditional vs. alternative.

I, for one, am tired of hearing negative comments, innuendos and insinuations from various entities in this community. We would not have a school district if it were not for the kids, and that, my friends, is what Castle Rock (parents, staff and administration) is all about.

People who are afraid of change attack that which is perpetrating the change.

Lisa Weaver Kramer


Who has the gall to steal soda cans from the poor?

On Aug. 25, Tuesday, late at night, someone came into our yard and stole two 32-gallon black trash bags full of soda pop cans. Who has the gall to steal from the poor?

Me and my son saved up the cans to take them in and split the money on them. He even went down the road and picked them up off the ground. We are very angry over this.

Be careful, people; nothing is safe in your own yard. I don't feel safe on Moorehead Road anymore. What's next? Gas from vehicles, yard tools, lawn mowers? I guess for some people crime does pay!

Karen Leven

Fort Dick

'Govt. behind the govt.' renders president, Congress powerless

Those of us who worked hard to get President Obama elected put in that time and energy to see that a number of issues tearing down our society and international reputation are corrected.

It is dismaying to find that our "government behind the government" has been able to render our new President, and Congress, powerless!

The National Commission on Presidential War Powers portion of HR 104 is a perfect example of the need for a one-subject-at-a-time legislation! I see no way to get agreement on the hodge-podge of items in that bill. Is there any way, or anyone with the will, to get this issue considered on its own?

Lois Munson

Crescent City