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Feedback 12/16

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School board not qualified to pick leader

I really think the Rochester school board should seek professional help finding a new superintendent. When some of the past criteria used is "a person of color" (News, December 2), there should be outrage that such a statement is even used.

It makes one wonder what the mindset is of the present board, how open-minded are they? Would they pass up a qualified white person just because of color? And given the results of past appointments, Brizard ousted from Chicago schools, Janey ousted from D.C. schools, it should be clear that the board is not capable of making an unbiased, qualified recommendation.

MOON MAN

Burial amount is fair

Regarding the Peterkin family's tragic loss (News, December 9), I am truly sorry. I tend to agree with the $1,250 provided by the county toward burial expenses.

We Americans and county residents are generous. The needy causes in our community are too numerous to mention. So I feel that although some may feel that the amount offered by the county is minimal, it is still an offer of taxpayers' money.

WAYNE SPITZ

Readers react to the December 2 guest commentary on the Paris terrorist attacks by Mara Ahmed:

The guest commentary, "Should France rain flowers?" is obnoxious and inaccurate. The author, Mara Ahmed, seems to ignore history in an attempt to strengthen her argument.

In referring to the recent terrorist attacks in Paris she asks, "Why is Paris the city of love and lights rather than the capital of the brutal French Empire?" Could it be that Ahmed doesn't realize that the French Empire no longer exists?

The author also ignored the longstanding cultural ties between Europe and the United States. Ahmed asks, "Why do Parisians represent humanity more than the Lebanese whose lives were extinguished in suicide attacks the day before?"

Perhaps Ahmed failed history in high school and doesn't realize that there are close ties between American society and French society, but that there are very few ties between American society and Lebanese society.

THOMAS MANGAN

I just wanted to write in to say that Mara Ahmed's guest commentary gave an intellectually vigorous voice to things I have been thinking for a long, long time but haven't been able to articulate as well as she does.

Why is it that we constantly "transfer violence from the center," from ourselves, to the other? Why is it that when bombs rain down on Syria, we think nothing of it? And when we arm ourselves to the teeth and violence ensues week after week, and day after day, we still say nothing about the truth of why it happens, but instead seek, as Ahmed says, "generic revenge?"

PAMELA JEAN KINCHELOE

Mara Ahmed is accurately attuned to the historic roles of Western empires still immersed in the conflicted Middle East. The transference of First Word agendas onto the Two-Thirds World continues to pass on the sins of the fathers. The United States' complicity in "the childish (and violent) binaries of good and evil" continues to create an "us" versus "them" world and is anything but peace-making.

Ahmed's article deserves wider distribution.

REV. PAUL D. GONGLOFF

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