Fountain Of Wisdom

To the Editor,

Regarding "Word On The Street" (Tucson Weekly, November 14): The secret is finally out. The voters really screwed up the city water management program because Bob Beaudry's persuasive talents--his Moore-ish skills?--snowed them into believing he had some knowledge about hydrology.

Mailbag Now we find out where he got his education: pop news magazines, the daily newspaper (your rival), the New Testament of the Bible--more up-to-date at least in water management than the Old Testament--a book on dieting and another one on vitamins.

Perhaps with all that knowledge he could solve the crime problems in Tucson, the traffic problems, and cancer. With more highly educated people like him, Tucson could advance to the superior quality of Phoenix, Los Angeles, Mexico City, the World.

--Sue Dye

Minor Consideration

To the Editor,

Regarding Vicki Hart's article "A Father's Fight" (Tucson Weekly, November 7): The Ray case sounds horrific. However, given that Prop 102 was passed recently, now abused and neglected children like David no longer have the Constitutional protection of the courts. For those of you at The Weekly who love conspiracy, you sure missed the boat on this one.

By repealing the "exclusive and original jurisdiction" of the Superior Court "over all juveniles" (formerly in Article 15 of the Arizona Constitution) as Prop. 102 so sneakily does, technically, the governor and the legislature can set things up so when CPS removes a child, there won't even be a court hearing. The whole thing would be handled in an administrative hearing. And who presides over an administrative hearing? An administrator from none other than DES, CPS or some other bureaucracy the governor gets to create. No judge, no lawyers and probably no constitutional rights. If Mr. Ray and others think things are bad now, just wait until there is no court to turn to when you don't like how CPS is acting.

And truthfully, CPS workers get little training, pathetic salaries and work under incredible budgetary constraints--so how can we, the voters who don't care enough about kids to read the propositions we vote for, expect them to do any better. They are working as hard as they can and I think next time, Hart should find a success story within CPS to write about--a family that DES/CPS helped get back together and back on their feet. There are a lot more success stories we don't hear about than there are tragedies like Donovan and David.

--Thea M. Gilbert

To the Editor,

The piece "A Living Hell" by Vicki Hart (Tucson Weekly, November 7) was right on the mark. I felt it was the most accurate, perceptive piece on Child Protective Services that I've read in my 20-plus years in Southern Arizona. Twenty years ago I was a Child Protective Services worker in Pima County. Then, as now, we felt we were understaffed and witnessing a tremendous rise in the rate of child abuse and neglect. And yes it's true the public is indignant when a child dies, but the public needs to tell our legislature to appropriate money to cope more effectively with a rather large societal problem. Until then it will continue to be a Band-Aid response when serious hemorrhaging is going on.

--Edward Scheschner

Chill Out

To the Editor,

I disagree with most of the liberal rhetoric printed in The Weekly, but I try to keep up with it in hopes that someday sensible ideas or opinions may come forth. But Jim Hightower's "The Big Chill" (Tucson Weekly, October 24) ripping Newt Gingrich was so far afield from meaningful comment that I had to reply. Hightower's gratuitous slander attacking Mr. Gingrich was reprehensible. Corrupt? If the speaker is corrupt, please give examples (convictions, associations with convicted criminals, on-going criminal trials, etc.) Can't do it, huh? Much easier to slop your liberal readers appetites with juicy (albeit unsubstantiated) falsehoods.

I'm all for hammering corrupt officials for sleazy behavior, but devoting an entire column to Newt and ice? And unearthing the "secret" that Newt's staff "runs" for ice. Powerful stuff.

Now I know why the media hasn't covered FileGate or TravelGate or Whitewater (people are in jail over that). Or why they didn't investigate why good soldiers (serving their country for the Coward in Chief) died in Somalia because the Clinton administration denied them requests for needed equipment. The media and scum buckets like Hightower were too busy digging up dirt on Newt and IceGate. Shouldn't Hightower call Janet Reno and inform her of this felony? It is a crime Newt's committing, isn't it?

If you really want to "break" some news, find John Hwang, the fugitive from the FBI, and ask him some questions about money laundering, the Lippo group, and the Clinton administration. That is, after you finished with this ice scandal.

--Mark Johnson

Stream Of Consciousness

To the Editor,

Many thanks to Kevin Franklin for "Grass Roots" (Tucson Weekly, November 14), discussing the ecological importance and beauty of Cienega Creek, and the Southwest Center for Biological Diversity's efforts to introduce the values of this area to the public.

We'd like to offer a couple of points of information:

1) Restoration efforts such as grass plantings to date have primarily been organized by good folks at the Pima County Flood Control District. The Southwest Center has mainly focused on increasing turnouts for these events.

2) Low numbers of salt cedar (non-native tree) are probably the result of past eradication efforts and the rest from cattle grazing. Future eradication efforts will be needed as long as grazing continues in the Cienega Creek watershed.

--David Hogan
Desert Rivers Coordinator

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