Letters, Jan. 6

Jan. 06, 2013 @ 02:52 PM

A worthy call to help students

As a tutor myself, I cannot think of a better New Year's resolution than Durham County Commissioner Ellen Reckhow's call for volunteers for the Durham Public Schools.

While the need to improve reading scores for the DPS may result from many socio-economic causes, the benefits from tutoring are undeniable. Tutoring is a nonpartisan, worthwhile activity, for which I doubt we will ever have too many volunteers. Virtually every child, give the appropriate help, will learn to read.

I hope, as Commissioner Reckhow asks, that 2013 will see a tidal wave of volunteers to learn how to tutor and to tutor. Helping others to learn to read is not simple, but it is a noble task to which all can contribute, to the benefit of our children and our society.

I hope that all segments of Durham will respond to Commissioner Reckhow's call for helping our public schools.

Dick Ford
Research Chair, Durham GOP

Mute the ‘whoosh’

If you only occasionally watch football, like now with the bowl games and the NFL playoffs, you may be in for an unpleasant surprise. Televised games now have a soundtrack and it’s not the marching band or the national anthem. It is the electronic “whoosh.” These random whooshes are loud, obnoxious eruptions of sound and have nothing to do with football. There is the first-down whoosh, the time-out whoosh, and the instant replay whoosh, all usually accompanied with exploding graphics featuring a commercial sponsor, of course, which is no doubt the reason that these grotesque intrusions have been inserted in otherwise viewer-friendly productions.

Even if this is part of a campaign to entice 10-year-olds from their video games where whooshing is expected, indeed welcomed, far beyond the earshot of adults, the practice should be abandoned at once, lest the mute button on the remote remain permanently pressed and hostile football fans avoid the commercial sponsors featured on the exploding graphics like a virulent strain of influenza.

Graham Marlette

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