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Unintentional line jumper learns lesson at polls

To all who voted at Westview Alliance at 9:30 a.m.: My apologies to all concerned or who were witnesses to my behavior.

When we arrived at the parking lot, I was overwhelmed at the number of cars in the parking lot. When entering the area to vote, I panicked at the long line ahead of us. Someone came by and said if you know in which precinct you live, you may go directly to the table to register. Not knowing, I followed the lady and the line was very short. The worker said, “Did you stand against the wall?” “Yes,” I responded. “And did the man tell you where to go?” And I responded, “No.” What I didn’t say was that I hadn’t waited but just followed the woman.

The lady took my driver’s license and said, “You are to be in the next line.” I waved my husband over and we signed in to vote then proceeded to the shorter line. Of course, afterward I felt really guilty.

I later went to the gentleman who was informing people of their precinct and told him what I had done. He showed me kindly grace and said the purpose for the line was for crowd control and that they could only have so many people in the voting line at one time. I understood.

Thank you for all who served to make our voting possible and legitimate. I voted legally but did not honor all the people who waited in the long line that I inconvenienced while going ahead. Please forgive me for a lesson well learned.


Life is cheap, sentencings show

Two recent news articles made me question the value of human life in this country and how cheap it has become. In one story, a woman ignored the abuse her boyfriend gave her four young children for years and was given a suspended sentence. The other featured a couple who hoarded cats, and they were given 1 1/2 years in jail. The apparent message is that abuse of children is bad, while the abuse of cats is really, really bad. If life gets any cheaper, you’ll find it on sale at the dollar store.


Abandoned schools remain public assets

Per a Nov. 3 article, the Indiana Public Charter Schools Association (which represents for-profit charter schools) is arguing that Indiana state law requires not-for-profit public school corporations to retain abandoned school buildings for four years just in case a charter school might want to buy or lease the building for $1 during that period of time. According to this association’s argument, the public school corporation cannot sell a school building, demolish it or give it away until four years have elapsed.

Implied is that the public school corporation also would retain the responsibility for safety and liability at the abandoned building and would need to provide at least minimal upkeep to sustain the property. These things could involve significant expenditures of tax money. Furthermore, the public school corporation is forgoing any possible income from sale of the property.

If this is what our state legislators intended, I have to ask why they adopted a law favoring the financial interests of for-profit charter school corporations over the interests of local citizens who bought these school buildings with their tax dollars. Since taxpayers paid for these public school buildings, they should be considered public assets, and if a for-profit organization wants a public building, it should pay the fair market value.