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Many, many thanks to all who were involved in any way, made donations of any kind, participated and organized to make my December 11 benefit such a success.
I can’t express enough thanks for all the caring and prayers.
Your thoughtfulness is appreciated, very much.
Josefita Bentz and Family
A Magnificent Display
On behalf of the citizens of Starrucca, thanks to the Spirited Seniors of Starrucca for a magnificent display of luminaries on Christmas Eve. Lights radiated out from the center of the borough in four directions, extending up to a mile. It was truly a beautiful sight!
Frank J. Mroczka
Mayor of Starrucca
Reasoning Is Flawed
Mr. Amadio wrote in his column the Commissioners allowed themselves to be intimidated by the Unions. Well, they were doing their job and someone has to make these decisions. Many of these decisions do not and cannot please everyone. The OPT out plan has been on the books for a long time. Why are the Commissioners being blamed for this and it is implied they did something wrong? Commissioners have to obey the law (to the letter) just like everyone else. I'm sure if they had an alternative they would have liked to avoid this controversy.
Your reasoning, Mr. Amadio is flawed.
Concerned And Caring Parents
This letter is for the people who assume and take judgment upon other people, without all the facts. A certain woman in New Milford, PA thinks she knows all the facts about three girls from Blue Ridge High School.
FACT: all of the girls are not on Welfare and Medicare. If you know anything about insurance, students are still in school and therefore, on their parents’ insurance, until they graduate.
FACT: if some people are so worried about the citizens on Welfare, maybe they should write to their Congressmen. They may listen. Most of the people who are on Welfare have money to buy their beer, cigarettes and illegal drugs. You can talk to your Congressmen about this issue also. I know a lot of people, not necessarily teenagers, who are on Welfare and just don’t have the ambition to look for a job.
FACT: one of those “girls” happens to be my daughter. She is a twenty-year old young woman, and we are very proud of her for continuing school, working part-time, and raising her child along with her fiancé. They are very good parents, for your information.
FACT: people shouldn’t open a can of worms if they are not ready to eat them! Before assuming anything, you should get the facts. Some people have feelings, unlike you! Have you ever heard the old saying, “It is better to be seen and not heard”? Take it as you may, or “Bring it on” as you say.
I think you owe each and every one of those girls an apology. Your letter was degrading and hurtful. Just remember (for future letters), people may make mistakes in their life, and if God is willing to forgive, who are you to criticize or judge? I’m sure you made some poor decisions in your life, but it’s your life, isn’t it.
This letter is my opinion and I know that other parents and some readers feel the way I do. We should try to guide children and support them with their decisions, not pass judgment and point fingers; especially when they are someone else’s children!
Mayor Willard Canfield
Assumptions Are For The Ignorant
This is in response to a letter in the November 22, 2004 edition called Earn the Respect. I want to start by saying that I have read the letter several times and have yet to find a shred of truth in what the author wrote. She obviously did not have all the facts about what she was writing.
First off, in the Raider Reader article, Baby Pains at Blue Ridge, all three girls talked about how expensive and frightening pregnancy and parenthood is. They also brought up how difficult it is to be going through this while in high school. I don’t see how any of this possibly comes off as being glamorous or as promoting pregnancy. The article was very obviously discouraging teen pregnancy and anyone in their right mind could pick up on that.
As far as birth control is concerned, the only ones available over the counter are condoms and spermicide. All other forms are only available with a doctor’s prescription and, without proper education, how can anyone expect teenagers to know what birth control options are available to them? As Dr. Strasburger from the University of New Mexico said, “We don’t educate about birth control in sexual education classes, we don’t discuss it at home and we don’t offer teens good access to it.” Please tell me, how does this quote give the conclusion that there is a lack of birth control? Anyone who actually took the time to read this quote should see that it is saying that the problem is not a lack of options that are available, but is actually a lack of education about the options that are available.
Now, I would like to take the opportunity to prove the assumptions about quitting school, getting food stamps and welfare and living off the state are completely wrong. I am currently engaged to one of the girls that was in the “Baby Pains” article and we DO NOT get any help from food stamps or Medicaid. The only help that we get is from WIC for baby formula and almost anyone who applies can get that. As for health insurance, I get that for my daughter and I, through my full-time job as an assistant manager at a local business. That’s right, I have a job to provide for me and my family, which also means that my tax dollars are going toward funding my WIC checks. Also, we have yet to leave her with her grandparents. If we want to do something, we take her with us. We would rather be spending time with our daughter than just dump her off with grandma, as the author implied in Earn the Respect.
Finally, I would like to say that not having an abortion or giving the babies up for adoption is a very adult and highly responsible choice that should earn them respect in the eyes of any respectable person. Nobody has the right to judge or make false accusations about the choices that other people make, especially if you don’t even know them. If these girls can find a way to enjoy having a baby while attending high school, then more power to them. That is something that everyone should be able to respect.
Corey J. Shaw
Great Bend, PA
Program Is Endangered
Five to seven unskilled and unemployed youth, on average, are taken off county relief every year that Susquehanna County is awarded a Pennsylvania Conservation Corp. (PCC) grant. PCC grants have been awarded 4 out of the last 5 years, but the chance of receiving another one has been drastically reduced. The grant requires a minimal matching amount to be paid by county funds, currently $5,000, but recent budgetary constraints have made this match unavailable.
PCC grants are provided to political subdivisions, such as a county, by the PA Department of Labor and Industry. Susquehanna County has sponsored these grants on behalf of the Friends of Salt Springs Park, Inc., and Salt Springs Park has been greatly improved because of this. Each grant brings over $120,000 state dollars into the county per year to provide six full-time jobs and to purchase construction materials and additional contractor labor.
If this program is lost, the county’s unemployment rate will rise and merchant sales will fall. The local communities and their disadvantaged youth, however, will lose more.
The PCC mandate is to teach job and life skills to, and to instill work and personal ethics in, unemployed youth through community service. Only unemployed young men and women aged 18 to 25 years are eligible for the program. Those accepted are taught the necessary technical and personal skills to make a living and are additionally required to continue their academic education. Most have since obtained a high school diploma or the equivalent and are successfully employed.
The PCC is also a part of the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA). Like FEMA (the federal counterpart), PEMA provides immediate manpower to help disaster victims, but on a statewide level. Susquehanna County PCC crews have several times been called on to assist neighboring counties.
The Friends is a local nonprofit organization that enhances the community every day. It provides vital learning and training opportunities for disadvantaged youth. Its environmental education curriculum is taught in several county school districts. It manages and improves a unique natural resource that draws thousands of state and out-of-state visitors every year. Additionally, it has kept a statewide-responsive emergency support team close to home.
For more information on the Friends and its relationship with the PCC, please call (570) 967-PARK. For more information on the PCC, visit their website at www.dli.state.pa.us/landi/site/ or call (888) 577-4722.
Friends of Salt Springs Park, Inc.
TO THE EDITOR POLICY
Thank you, Susquehanna County Transcript
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