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The Public Pulse: Try this approach for OPS; Police stops; ACLU and free speech

The Public Pulse: Try this approach for OPS; Police stops; ACLU and free speech

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Try this approach for OPS

To solve Omaha Public Schools’ back to school dilemma, first go back to just teaching the 3 “Rs”: reading, writing and arithmetic. Then go to half days five days a week, A-K in the morning, L-Z in the afternoon. No in-school lunches; send the morning class home with a sack lunch to eat at home. In the afternoon, class should have come to school fed from home. (Send sack lunch each day to be eaten at home before coming to school.)

Teach only three subjects to free classroom space up for social distancing. Utilize all teachers, allowing them to put in a full day’s work. Mandatory masks; after all, clothes aren’t optional. (The children will adapt to them.) Start training the children to wear masks at home now, the same as parents did with potty training. Most importantly, send the students home a lot of repetitious home work.

Dilemma solved, and just maybe the students will be able to count their change and be able to read and comprehend and write in cursive, three areas that students today are lacking the ability to do.

Riley Leary, Omaha

ACLU fails to defend speech rights

The formerly revered ACLU has lost its way. The ACLU was once a gladiator for citizens whose civil liberties were infringed upon. More recently, the ACLU entered the political arena and began spending money to support political candidates whose agendas the ACLU found to its liking. As a consequence the organization no longer is a protector of civil liberties. Instead, it has taken on the mantle of a civil rights advocate. There is a big difference between the two roles, as demonstrated by its recent foray into the field of “auditing” the civil rights policies of social media platforms.

So, we read in The World-Herald that Laura Murphy, a former ACLU executive, has proclaimed that Facebook’s civil rights policies leaves a lot to be desired. She specifically criticizes Facebook’s failure, in her view, to adequately fact check posts by President Trump. This so-called “politician exemption,” she says, “elevates the speech of people who are already powerful and disadvantages people who are not.”

Since when did our country adopt a two-tiered freedom of speech whereby the expressions of politicians should be curtailed so as not to “disadvantage” those citizens who are “less powerful”? I thought the right of speech was a right that belonged to all citizens equally. Not according to the ACLU, apparently.

Dean Olson, Omaha

Police stops

In response to Bob Reidel’s July 8 letter (“Responsible behavior needed”), George Floyd did not resist arrest, and look what happened to him. You’re right that if you’re stopped by a police officer you’re better off cooperating — as long as you’re white. Every black man knows his chances of survival might be better if he can escape. That’s what has been demonstrated not just by George Floyd but by many others all over the country for generations.

If police would like to foster compliance amongst blacks, they need to stop abusing and even killing those who comply.

Andrew White, Kearney

Palmtag deserved criticism

I’m still trying to figure out what is racist about the campaign mailer saying that Janet Palmtag associated with the views of atheists and radicals. I saw nothing mentioning the race or ethnicity of Ernie Chambers. Last time I looked, he was still an atheist and a radical. When everything is racist, nothing is racist.

The left wants to make sure that the only people who can ever be criticized are old white men. I’m pretty sick of it, and I hope I’m not alone come November.

Chris Lewis, Omaha

Let’s rebuild this industry

America needs a new political discourse on industrialization. This would recognize the emerging reality that the United States has become dangerously dependent on minerals and metals imported from China.

Concerned over the effects of such dependence in these fluid times, the Interior Department has listed 35 minerals and metals as “critically important” to the U.S. economy and national security. Three of those minerals, niobium, scandium and titanium, would be produced at the proposed Elk Creek Mine south of Tecumseh. Most of our supplies of these minerals today come from China, which is the primary supplier of more than half of the minerals and metals.

China is capable of disruption on a grand scale. The United States needs to bring the production of minerals and metals back to our shores. America has abundant, diverse mineral resources of high quality — worth more than $6 trillion.

The argument for restoring mining in the United States is not just about bringing back an essential industry. Domestic production of minerals and metals would provide a big boost to the revival of manufacturing in the United States and the competitive position of American industries in the global economy. A mining renaissance would act as a magnet to pull other industries back, bringing billions of dollars of new investment with them — and a lot of new jobs.

Barry Butterfield, Omaha

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