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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch

Re: “It's Going to Be an Education Election in Arizona

I just finished evaluating County teachers requests for $500 classroom mini-grants funded by a local foundation. I was shocked at what many were asking for. Chairs, Chrome books, books, paper and classroom supplies all of which should be funded by our schools. Those who say "money is not the problem" has their heads somewhere dark. Money is the problem since the legislature took school money back in 08 and used it to fund other stuff including tax cuts.
Lack of education funding is at the root of Arizona's school funding crisis. Make no mistake!

26 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by Michael S. Ellegood on 12/08/2017 at 8:34 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

BPH: when they upgraded the Memorial Union at ASU, they added an interfaith prayer center and an ablution room where Muslim students can do ritual purification before prayer.
https://cronkitenews.azpbs.org/2017/12/06/asu-interfaith-ablution-rooms-memorial-union-religious-practices/

Wayne Olson seems to be pointing out an inconsistency: if public funds can be used in a pubic institution to accommodate the needs of one faith group and this does not violate the separation of church and state, why can they not be used in other contexts to accommodate the needs of other groups?

Safier's post is about fair treatment of minorities, mainly African Americans, but also Hispanics and Muslims. The question of why some groups don't fall within the circle of Democratic policy concern is a valid one and it is directly related to Safier's post. Is the agenda defending only groups being targeted by Trump? Or is the agenda more consistent and whole cloth, one that assures fair treatment of all groups?

From the above-linked article:
"[A muslim student] said the fact that ASU recognizes Muslims on campus makes her feel valued. 'ASU is recognizing that theres Muslim students on campus, and they need a place like this, and that makes you feel important. That makes you feel like, Oh, they care, [the student] said. 'They actually notice that we need a place to pray and a place to make [ritual purification].'"

To include facilities like this for students in their schools is a form of compassion and affirmation. Religious belief is as much a part of who a student is as their native language and their customs. Too bad the Democratic Party recognizes the importance affirmation for some groups, but not for others. Their public policy actively blocks the ability of lower income Hispanic Roman Catholic students to access schools that accommodate and affirm their faith, and that is a fact.

10 likes, 19 dislikes
Posted by What is referenced at ASU on 12/08/2017 at 8:06 AM

Re: “It's Going to Be an Education Election in Arizona

Yes the issue is MONEY. If you are paying the teachers less money,(which Arizona is) the better teachers move to other states where their abilities are appreciated. and rewarded. Republicans, especially Arizona Republicans are as cheap as you can get when it comes to funding anything that benefits education. Their fear is that an educated public will not vote Republican which is true. You will not find many Republicans in the universities and colleges of higher learning because they don't have the brains for that kind of stuff.

29 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Beneal Good on 12/08/2017 at 6:41 AM

Re: “It's Going to Be an Education Election in Arizona

Spending more money does not create better outcomes in and of itself. It's just easy.
Illegal immigration (which sucks money from schools) and the economy (which funds the tax base) will likely be bigger issues.

5 likes, 29 dislikes
Posted by bslap on 12/08/2017 at 5:57 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

Wayne Olson, I can't imagine what you are talking about here, what relevance it has to either the article (oh forget talking about that!!!) or the conversation? Have you left out some reference to religion in your story that I don't know about? How does upgrading a Memorial Union (is that not a student union, like at the UA? What does it have to do with religion?) I don't concern myself with ASU, and I don't consider myself anti-faith. On pro public schools, you have it right. And, incidentally, I don't think that I even have "a whole agenda".

19 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 12/07/2017 at 10:46 PM

Re: “Ed Sec Betsy DeVos on School Choice, College Costs

Ive asked myself why I keep commenting here. Ive been doing it for four years. It does get kind of tedious because David, clever and eloquent as he often is, tends to keep recycling the same themes.

I suppose I keep doing it because I really, REALLY would like to hear a good counter argument to the points I make, one that I might actually find convincing. Somehow you are a long winded fuck doesnt do it. And you are mentally ill doesnt do it either. Go back to ADI bitch certainly doesnt do it.

Guess Ill have to keep commenting in the hopes that one of these days, months, years, I might read something here that will persuade me there is such a thing as EFFECTIVE citizen advocacy in Southern Arizona and the public district system can actually be made to work here as well as it did in the blue state where I grew up.

7 likes, 19 dislikes
Posted by Still waiting to hear a persuasive argument... on 12/07/2017 at 9:57 PM

Re: “Ed Sec Betsy DeVos on School Choice, College Costs

That's amusing.

You are calling me a troll?

So, now I am the person who attacks Mr. Safier anytime he posts something?

Trolling is as trolling does.

Learn what a troll is, what they do and what they're all about... before you leave enough commentary to cover the article posted and then some.

Go back to ADI bitch. They love people like you.

20 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by Reply to the real troll on 12/07/2017 at 5:06 PM

Re: “It's Going to Be an Education Election in Arizona

I wish that what you wrote about was education. But let's be honest. You write about money. Money and hatred of those in power that control the money. Money is not the major problem in the public schools. Why not find out what the problem is and write about that? Lord knows we have spent literally tons of money, and it has gotten worse.

18 likes, 34 dislikes
Posted by Let's Be Honest on 12/07/2017 at 2:15 PM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

Betts, ASU used government money to accomplish this:

Arizona State University is undergoing a $10 million upgrade to its Memorial Union in Tempe. Other renovations include new pool tables, dining areas and better accessibility. (Photo by Michelle Minahen/Cronkite News)
The additions were part of a $10 million upgrade to the facilities. Other renovations included new pool tables, dining areas and better accessibility.

ASU is a very inclusive university, and so weve got a lot of faiths represented across the student body, Nevel said. Its important to recognize that and to be sensitive to that and appreciate their desires.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
$10 million to appreciate their desires? That makes me wonder if your whole agenda is anti faith and pro public schools. Did you oppose this action by ASU?

12 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by Wayne Olson on 12/07/2017 at 9:49 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

Im not going to address everything youve referenced here, Betts Putnam-Hidalgo, except to say that when a few token voices crying in the wilderness do the advocacy work with the district that needs to be done, it is easy for the powers that be to isolate and dismiss them. Advocacy work like the important work you do needs to be backed by the party at large. Has your party backed you as you call attention to problems in the district that need to be addressed? No. They have ignored you or opposed you or they have written checks to other, less worthy candidates as they sat on their asses and pontificated about the beauty of public education while they do none of the citizen advocacy tasks that keep local schools from descending into dysfunction. Much easier to do than attending Board meetings or demonstrating outside of 1010, which is often what really needs to be done.

I am sorry about the things you have written that try to lump every freedom of religion argument in with the worst of them. They are not all the same, and the tone deafness of your faction when it comes to hearing what people of faith have to say or understanding what their institutions have to contribute to the common good is unfortunate. It weakens the movement for economic justice in this country, as I have written elsewhere.

I wish you well but in my assessment, your reform-TUSD cause is a lost one. So, more broadly, is the district school monopoly on the use of public funds for education. Those of you who still favor it can get together in forums like this and reinforce one anothers ideas and anti-religious biases, but the monopoly has been broken and it wont be returning. And that is all for the best for the cause of JUSTICE, as far as Im concerned.

15 likes, 23 dislikes
Posted by Reply to BPH on 12/07/2017 at 6:40 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

"Tired of self congratulation...etc. etc. etc." some of us DO show up at TUSD Board meetings, and have been for a long time. I don't buy arguments that seek to undo the separation of church and state, and I never have. I don't think tax money in a country that constitutionally IS supposed to separate those things should go for religious instruction. Period. Not Catholic, not Muslim, not Protestant, not any of it. Such draining of tax monies is among the things that have caused the public schools to decline. Recall that I said SOME. Mismanagement at TUSD is PART of the story, and it happens to be the part that we can work on locally, so its important. But its not ALL of the story, no matter how articulate the argument against the district is. AND it doesn't hold for all public school districts. Your "stretching" of the concept of freedom of religion is befitting the owners of Hobby Lobby and the cake maker who swears that to make a cake for a same sex wedding doesn't allow him his freedom of religion (oh, or speech). I don't buy it there, and I won't buy it here. As happens with other rights held dear by the reigning powers in the country, the right to religion (which is really a misnomer, because the only one that counts is the right to Christianity, of course) is beginning to trample all over other rights. Here, you would have it trample over the rights to public education as they are having it trample over women's rights to make decisions about their/our bodies. Its not even a slippery slope, its a damned cliff.

24 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 12/06/2017 at 10:35 PM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

The second link in the above post should be:

http://tucson.com/news/local/education/discipline-problems-at-secrist-trigger-special-tusd-task-force/article_2c7cfee0-2dec-5e6c-8298-743298b3abf2.html

15 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Correction to second link above on 12/06/2017 at 9:51 PM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

What is happening right outside the "very safe little neighborhoods" surrounding TUSD enclave schools like Sam Hughes, Fruchthendler, and Sabino is this:

http://tucson.com/news/local/tusd-pours-resources-into-east-side-school-in-effort-to/article_d3d0b851-48ac-5b35-8de9-1d7d3e0c6776.html

and this:

http://tucson.com/news/local/tusd-pours-resources-into-east-side-school-in-effort-to/article_d3d0b851-48ac-5b35-8de9-1d7d3e0c6776.html

and this:

http://tucson.com/news/local/education/six-tucson-unified-schools-to-lose-their-magnet-status/article_d19f0d4b-8043-5ae3-8acf-0abef0651fea.html

and this:

http://tucson.com/news/local/of-tusd-playgrounds-are-unsafe-audit-finds/article_0ec0e889-2187-5224-b25c-2348c914df1a.html

The bigots are those who want to lock poor minority students into low functioning, dangerous schools and insist that the only place public funds can be applied to educate these populations is in schools like Booth-Fickett, Secrist, and Utterback. Southern Arizona Democrats need to wake up and smell the stench of their own hypocrisy and their own willingness to sacrifice other people's children on the altar of their beautiful theories of PUBLIC EDUCATION, theories that have NOTHING to do with what is happening to real students in real schools in Tucson. There are open seats in a number of excellent private schools, all non-profit, both secular and church affiliated, that would serve students much better than TUSD's mismanaged, dangerous institutions serve the students who have the misfortune to be locked into them. And the only barriers to students taking those seats is Democratic party policy and the SOS campaign. Congrats, Southern Arizona Dems. What great, big-hearted humanitarians you all are.

Perhaps if you all started showing up at TUSD Board meetings en masse and actually advocating for better management of the district (difficult, unpleasant, exhausting, frustrating work that it is) the district might be salvageable. But as long as you continue to sit on your asses in the comfort of your homes and pontificate and theorize, congratulating yourselves on what great souls you are while a district serving forty-something thousand ROTS, your proposed policy solutions and your Betsy De Vos and New, New Jim Crow distractions from what is going on locally will not be acceptable.

18 likes, 27 dislikes
Posted by Tired of the self-congratulation & hypocrisy on 12/06/2017 at 8:36 PM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

Thank you for your insights and the good fight for equality and fair treatment of all humankind. And most of all for your continuing patience with those who refuse to see their own bigotry and the narrowness of their own experiences as a gauge of what is happening right outside their own very safe little neighborhoods.

20 likes, 20 dislikes
Posted by Shirley Willis on 12/06/2017 at 7:54 PM

Re: “Ed Sec Betsy DeVos on School Choice, College Costs

It doesnt matter whether or not YOU are a Democrat, troll. What matters are the editorial policies of this Democratic-party-policy-promoting rag and whether those policies are enforced. What matters in the schools is whether there are sane disciplinary policies and whether they are enforced so that LEARNING and not violence, disruption, and bullying can take place. Is the lack of ability to have appropriate policies and enforce them a system wide problem for Southern Arizona Dems, in publications, in the school systems for which they want to maintain a monopoly on the use of public funds, and elsewhere? You bet. Not all Dems everywhere are this way, but these are. Why this is the case is interesting and a lot could be said about it, but I wouldnt want to bore you any further so I wont elaborate.

14 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Reply to a troll on 12/06/2017 at 5:54 PM

Re: “Ed Sec Betsy DeVos on School Choice, College Costs

Too bad that they can't keep the thuggish trolls out.

I could actually read an article without being exposed to a certain person's rants that are usually twice as long as the article itself.

By the way, I'm not a democrat. Just a person who dislikes the way you present your opinion. Big difference there bub.

23 likes, 17 dislikes
Posted by Thuggish behavior in comment streams: unnecessary! on 12/06/2017 at 1:08 PM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

...and the choir sang AMEN!

25 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Mona S on 12/06/2017 at 11:43 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

The constitution guarantees freedom of religion. Separation of church and state is a principle put in place to try to defend freedom of religion, to prevent the state from requiring membership in a state sponsored religion and / or discriminating economically or otherwise against people who refuse to practice a state sponsored religion, which is what the English government and Church of England had been doing in the country from which many of our original settlers in New England came. It is deeply ironic that what we have going on in this country now is economic discrimination against those who elect to enroll in religious schools of their own choosing. In many ways it looks as though we've just switched the previous bias for the Church of England to a bias for secularism. "Recovering Catholics" should not be using public policy to punish the church they have left and / or to economically discriminate against fellow citizens who choose to continue affiliating with it.

What does my critique have to do with David's post? Easy to answer: David mentioned discrimination against Hispanics and Muslims. I was extending the argument that we should not discriminate against ethnic and religious minorities (a position with which I agree) further than David took it to say that public policy should not discriminate against Hispanic Roman Catholics who want to use their per-pupil funding in Catholic schools. How is my argument "selfish"? I am not a Mexican immigrant, nor am I a low-income Hispanic Roman Catholic. In making the argument, I am advocating for fairer treatment of a group to which I do not belong.

Making reasoned, fact-based arguments against ideas with which you disagree is not, in my opinion, "pathetic." What is "pathetic"? People who use these comment streams to engage in ad hominem attacks. If you disagree with the ideas, say so and give reasons. Name calling ("selfish"; "pathetic") demonstrates nothing about the validity of the arguments with which you would like to disagree.

Every time one of these ugly comments is posted and remains up, it tells us something about what Tucson Weekly is, and something about what kinds of behaviors are probably taught in the form of schooling name-callers and bullies prefer. And that only strengthens the validity of the position my camp argues from. So thanks for that.

25 likes, 33 dislikes
Posted by Bullies and bigots do not persuade on school policy. on 12/06/2017 at 11:13 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

Oh, whatever. As a recovering Catholic, I can say with a clear conscience that if you choose to let religion warp and poison your child's education, then YOU can pay for it. But NOT WITH MY MONEY, and especially not when it flies in the face of one of the key principles upon which this nation was founded: separation of church and state.

And, anyway, what the heck does your selfish "critique" have to do with David's excellent post on institutional racism? Nothing, so why are you even wasting the space? Is your sole animating purpose to prove David Safier wrong about everything? Pretty pathetic.

37 likes, 26 dislikes
Posted by skinnyman on 12/06/2017 at 10:05 AM

Re: “The New, New Jim Crow

I worked hard, had some success and moved to an upper income foothills home. Upon arriving I found two black families and a green card alien from Mexico. All are now friends and all voted for Trump.

Blaming others for non existent racism does not help you understand why you lost the election. It may be that you are simply to afraid to face the truth. But that kind of thinking is partially to blame.

27 likes, 38 dislikes
Posted by Wayne Olson on 12/06/2017 at 9:55 AM

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