After Acting Boorish, Ethnic-Studies Students, Teachers Suffered the Consequences

I neither support nor oppose the Tucson Unified School District's Mexican-American studies program ("Final Judgment," Currents, Jan. 12). My request for a classroom visit was denied due to "ongoing litigation"; thus, I was unable to form an objective opinion. Nevertheless, some valuable lessons can be learned from the program's downfall.

Lesson No. 1: Actions have consequences. Incendiary rhetoric and rude, boorish behavior can come back to haunt you. Seeds of the program's demise were sown when Dolores Huerta told a student assembly that "Republicans hate Latinos," and those seeds were watered when students responded to a representative of the state school superintendent with turned backs and raised fists.

Lesson No. 2: In a democracy, good citizenship requires all of us to listen respectfully to diverse points of view, even when we disagree—especially when we disagree. Evidently, this lesson wasn't included in the ethnic-studies curriculum. What wasn't learned in the classroom was taught by the Legislature and school superintendent in a manner not likely to be forgotten.

Lesson No. 3: Those who hold the purse strings make the rules. Did the Legislature and superintendent overreach into local affairs? Perhaps, but if you don't like the rule-makers, vote them out.

William C. Thornton

Meth Isn't the Only Drug That Needs to Remain Illegal

I am writing concerning the Guest Commentary on legalizing all drugs except for methamphetamine (Jan. 12). I never thought that I would be saying this, but I disagree.

Meth is not the only drug that needs to be illegal. Crack cocaine is just as bad as meth, and should not be legal. Having done both, and after being clean for at least 12 years, I know both are bad. I don't even think heroin and morphine should be legal. I've seen a few too many people hurt because of those drugs.

I don't see anything wrong with legalizing marijuana and other herbal drugs. John Key


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