Letters to the editor
December 5, 2007
Would like to see more support for special needs children
Thank you to Virginia City sheriff and fire departments.
As a grandparent of a special needs child at Virginia City High School, my heartfelt thanks to you for participating in the program to provide these kids with jobs to help provide them with life skills, so hopefully they will be able to function more normally as adults.
Since my grandson was a toddler, and we found out he was retarded, I have worried every day of his life about what the future holds for him. I pray for him to lead as normal a life as possible, and you have stepped up to help him with that process, as with his classmates.
To those Virginia City merchants who declined to help in this program, and this list was mighty long, I hope you are proud of yourselves.
There are only about five students in the special needs class at the high schools, and special they are. You won’t find more loving and caring kids anywhere.
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These kids didn’t ask to be born with disabilities, and a lot of the time they are treated like they have the plague.
They will never be afforded the opportunity for higher education. As adults, some of them will live with family as long as they can, some will be in assisted living with constant supervision, and some who are higher functioning may be able to live on their own with limited supervision. Their circle of friends pretty much consists of each other, their teacher, and aide. Although I have to say that the high school students that know my grandson are very nice to him and I thank them for that.
This program would not have cost you merchants a dime. So what’s your problem?
These kids just want to be treated like everyone else. They are great kids. Some of these kids have attended school in this district since they were old enough to attend school. They love their school and community.
I have spent a lot of money shopping in Virginia City, but you can keep your over-priced merchandise and food, and cater to the tourists, I will not spend another dime in your town.
Thank you merchants for reaffirming my feelings that you are a town of bigots and snobs.
Thanks again to the sheriff and fire departments. I couldn’t think of finer agencies to help these kids head in the right direction to become productive adults.
Doesn’t like caucus system
So you think you live in a democracy where your vote counts when selecting presidential candidates? Think again. In Nevada, political parties can select a presidential candidate any way the party hierarchy wants to.
August primary elections are held for every elective office except president of the United States. Presidential candidates for both parties are selected in party caucuses in January. I’m a Republican so my comments might not apply to the Democrat caucus.
The presidential candidate selection process is designed mainly to attract participants into the party structure, and for the self-aggrandizement of party officials. A great way to hobnob with presidential candidates, who realize these functionaries have a stranglehold on Nevada’s nod for party candidate in the general election.
What should be an inclusive process is an exclusive process for selecting party candidates for the nation’s highest office. For every other elective office legislators mandate absentee ballots and early voting before election day and voters take only a few minutes, specifically so voters have every possible opportunity to vote. For selecting a president, party officials make it difficult for all but the most dedicated voters to participate in presidential caucuses.
Some states have presidential primaries run by the secretary of state in a way to assure ballots are secret and elections honest. Some states have caucuses allowing voters to vote anytime on caucus day. Party leaders seem more interested in party benefits than democracy.
In brief it works something like this. Voters register by 9 a.m. at a precinct meeting somewhere in their precinct. Attendees vote on platform issues, delegates for the county convention, and finally the presidential caucus, also called a straw vote. How secret the vote, or more importantly the vote count, is uncertain. The vote might occur anytime during the day so voters have to give up whatever time it takes.
Delegates go to the county convention to select delegates for the state convention to select delegates for the national convention in September. Delegates are not bound by the caucus vote and can throw their support to any candidate they choose.
That’s democracy in Nevada.
JACK VAN DIEN
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