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Tuesday, May 20, 2003

By Staff
Witness to tragic accident
To the editor:
My son and his girlfriend saw a friend killed in an accident on the causeway bridge road that crosses the upper end of Okatibbee Lake in Lauderdale County while they were riding their motorcycles. They were the first witnesses to the accident, as bad as it was.
The county sheriff's deputy that was involved was traveling east on this very narrow two-lane highway bridge that had guard rails on both sides, and for whatever reason, decided to make a "U-turn" without
warning, in the middle of the two-lane road. This did not allow any reaction time for the oncoming traffic and the on-coming motorcyclist crashed head on into the side of the patrol car. The rider of the motorcycle was dead at the scene.
I urge official law officers patrolling our roads, whether it is a county deputy, Mississippi State Trooper or a city policeman to stop making these abrupt U-turns to chase other motorists going in the opposite direction in a high speed chase situation with flagrant disregard for the safety of other innocent motorists on the roads of Mississippi.
This act I consider to be dangerous and in the case above, resulted in a loss of life to chase down a motorist to write a traffic ticket. The traffic on our highways today is too great to have our law officials reacting in this manner. They say they are concerned about our safety, but make these abrupt U-turns without warning. I have had a close call because of this very situation on Highway 19 between Collinsville and Philadelphia by a Mississippi State Trooper, who turned abruptly in front of me to give chase of an oncoming vehicle. I had to slide my tires and swerve to avoid hitting the trooper's car. The roads are dangerous enough without our law enforcement creating more undue dangerous abrupt U-turn situations on these narrow two lane roads.
Thomas E. Brannon
Collinsville
Red Cross says thanks
To the editor:
The Key Chapter of the American Red Cross would like to thank the community. The support you gave us as we were showing our support to our troops was greatly appreciated.
On April 12, 2003, at Union Station, we collected over 1,500 pounds of items for our troops. That makes a total of 3,000 pounds of items for our troops. Half of the items have already been sent and the rest will be sent very soon. We want to thank you for the items, time, speeches, entertainment or money that you donated for this cause. Thank you so much for all that you have done for us.
Cheri Barry
Executive Director
Key Chapter of the
American Red Cross
Meridian
A problem at school
To the editor:
My husband is active duty Navy. He was stationed as NAS Meridian for three years and we decided to make Meridian our home. When he received orders to transfer to San Diego, Calif., we bought a home for our children and me to stay here. We thought buying a home in the Northeast Lauderdale school district was a good idea. Now I am starting to wonder.
My son is in the MIddle School, and I have to say that I think some of the teachers and faculty are on a power trip. I know that my son is not perfect by any means, but the authority figures at the school only see one side of things. There is a "no tolerance policy" in this school district, which means that they will not tolerate any violence.
On Friday afternoon, May 9, my son was involved in a disturbance on the school bus. As a result, my son was suspended off the bus for three days, but the boy that was kicking my son is still allowed to ride it. Yes, my son did cause a disturbance on the bus, but he did not hit the other child. The other child retaliated by kicking my son. The bus driver did not stop the disturbance, and did not know what was going on, until she stopped at the other child's bus stop, and had to wait for the confrontation to end, before the child got off the bus. At that time, she told my child that he was getting written up for causing the disturbance, but did not ask questions to find out exactly what happened and to see if the other child also needed to be written up for his part.
I spoke with Ms. Hinson, vice principal of Northeast Lauderdale Middle, about the situation. I told her that until they could prove to me that both children had been suspended for the violence, that is not tolerated in the school district, then my child would ride the bus. Ms. Hinson told that she would allow my child to ride the bus until she could investigate that matter thoroughly. Ms. Hinson failed to inform the bus driver of this change.
On Tuesday, May 13, the bus driver failed to pick up my son for school. I had to leave work to go home, pick up my child and take him to school so that he would not be given an unexcused absence. When I got to the school, I was informed that the vice principal would not be there for the day, and there was nothing that anyone else there could do to rectify the situation.
I am a working mother who has to leave home before my son is on the bus and arrive after he gets off the bus. Why is it that the school is quick to pick up the phone and call when your child has done something that they do not approve of, but they are slow to correct a situation when it is brought to their attention?
I understand that children have changed in the past few years, but the educational value and the understanding as a teacher and/or faculty member has also changed. When I was a child, the teachers and/or faculty were willing to help, whether it was with school work or a problem that involved the children in the school. In this day, it sure does not seem like these people, who spend more time with my child than I do, really care about them.
Didn't these teachers and/or faculty members go into these positions because they care about the children? Maybe they need to be reminded of this.
Brenda Carpenter
Meridian

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