Letters to the Editor

10/04 Letters to the editor: Steve Schewel, and Carey Hughley

Teachers’ important work

Thanks so much to Dawn Baumgartner Vaughan and the teachers she interviewed about the role of city government in the education of our children (Sept. 27). Both of my children attended Durham Public Schools from grades K-12 and got a wonderful education. As a former PTA president at E.K. Powe, school soccer coach at Brogden and Riverside, and school board member, I know first-hand the truth that these teachers told in this story. We have to make sure that our children are coming home every afternoon to a warm, safe, affordable house. I work every single day on this issue, and I will continue to do so. It is my highest priority.

In addition, as the teachers noted, we need to continue to expand our bus system and work towards making the system fare-free for everyone.

I am proud that the council decided this year to offer free access for young people to our outdoor swimming pools and to drop-in activities like pick-up basketball at our youth centers. Now our Parks and Recreation Department is also offering free afternoon programming for teenagers at four of our recreation centers this fall. These are huge steps forward, and we need more.

Thanks so much to the teachers in this article for doing the most important work that any one of us is doing. We need to support them in every way that we can.

Steve Schewel

Candidate for Durham mayor

Respects civil disobedience

Donna Medlin in her letter, (Sept. 30), expresses her non-support of athletes not standing for the national anthem. I respect her right to do so. Moreover I probably would not have chosen kneeling for the Star-Spangled Banner as an expression of civil disobedience, but I respect their right to do so. Everyone should.

The contents of one’s heart cannot be seen; expressive speech and behavior gives the observer an idea of one’s heart. “Move to Africa” gives this observer an idea of Donna Medlin’s heart. AMERICANS with African heritage are not going to Africa or anywhere else because of any injustice here at HOME.

Civil disobedience is not going away. No one can choose where or when it is appropriate, if so it would not shake the conscience of anyone. Just think! Where would this country be without civil disobedience?

Saying “If [you] feel so oppressed, [you] need to pack up and move to Africa or Iran or North Korea” is tantamount to saying we enslaved your ancestors, built this country on their free labor, subjected them to “Jim Crow,” and now since you want all the freedoms and rights that I have go back to Africa.

All citizens of the United States are at HOME. None of us are in the market for a new HOME (country). Some of us see the need for a few renovations. Civil disobedience is one of the most powerful tools that we have to effect these renovations.

Carey Hughley

Durham

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