I sympathize and I wish I could tell the mayor what the right answer is. But I’m pretty sure I know what the answer isn’t: making Philadelphia real estate unaffordable.
Mark E. Squires, Philadelphia
Civil rights and education
Will somebody please explain how education has become "the civil rights issue of our era" ("Romney quizzed in W. Phila.," Friday)? I just can’t imagine how the poor, the elderly, the infirm, and minorities in this state can believe that their rights are more threatened by the lack of school vouchers than by the possibility that they may be unable to vote in November because of the new voter-ID law passed by Gov. Corbett and the state legislature this year.
I assume that the connection between civil rights and school choice is that parents, through lack of state-funded vouchers, have limited options for adequately educating their children. Yet wouldn’t it be simpler just to adequately fund our existing public schools, which, in Pennsylvania, the politicians from Mitt Romney’s own party have refused to do? This makes me believe that Romney is more interested in vouchers than in civil rights, and that his new favorite catchphrase has only served to cheapen this noble movement by pushing a silly solution to a societal problem.
Coleman Poses, Philadelphia, firstname.lastname@example.org
We can handle the truth
After reading Monica Yant Kinney’s "Lynn takes a gamble and a pounding on stand" (Sunday), I was reminded of the movie, A Few Good Men.
In the powerful courtroom scene, Tom Cruise, as the Navy lawyer, questions the scurrilous Col. Nathan Jessup (Jack Nicholson) on whether he ordered the "Code Red." After a pointed and dung-slinging round of questions, Jessup yells, "You’re g — right I did." It is a scene similar to the testimony of Msgr. William Lynn in the clergy sex-abuse trial. The difference: Jessup did not pass the buck, but took responsibility for his actions. He told the truth. As for Lynn, he doesn’t seem able to handle the truth. His wimpish, codependent stance befits one whose power corrupted the lives of innocent children.
Fess up, Lynn. The truth will set all of us free.
Theresa M. Coleman, North Wales
The lawsuit and Catholic schools
The letter "Funding of religious schools" (Friday) chastises the Catholic leadership for having the audacity to sue the Obama administration. Apparently the writer considers President Obama’s infringement on religious freedom to be insignificant.
When Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of health and human services, made the unprecedented decision to declare that Catholic nursing homes, hospitals, orphanages, colleges, and havens for the homeless were not religious institutions, she made an egregious error. All of these were established as ways in which Christians could live out their faith. And the letter writer need not concern himself about the cost of the suit, as a group of lawyers has taken on the case "pro bono."
The letter writer also calls "outrageous" the notion that non-Catholics should help support the education of children at Catholic schools through vouchers. Does he not understand that Catholics are helping to fund the education of public school children even though they do not send their children there? Does he not understand that, by sending their children to Catholic schools, parents are saving Pennsylvania taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars each year? Catholic children are American citizens and the government should help support their education wherever their parents decide to enroll them.
William Cooney, Philadelphia