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Ode to Joe

4/3/2013

I enjoyed and appreciated the article, “Morphine Dreams” by Joe Weeg (Joe’s Neighborhood, March 21). Tried to express my appreciation directly by going to his website www.joesneighborhood.com but couldn’t enter it. Please relay my appreciation to him for me.

–Jim Calhoun
Des Moines

 

Can the Des Moines Public School Board be trusted?

Last week we witnessed the Des Moines School Board select a new superintendent, Thomas Ahart, by the means of an illegal, closed-door session. Not only is this an injustice to the taxpayers. This is an injustice to the African-American community and people of color. Five of the 14 finalists the search firm picked were minorities, however the School Board never gave them a second look. Dick Murphy, Connie Bosen, Cindy Elsbernd and Bill Howard, through their actions, felt African-American and people of color candidates were not good enough to warrant a final interview. Which leads me to this question: What makes Thomas Ahart better than an African-American or person of color candidate? What makes Thomas Ahart better then Dr. Linda Lane, an African-American woman, who holds doctorates and more than 30 years of experience in Des Moines Public Schools? Thomas Ahart is a white male who can be trusted to follow the orders of Dick Murphy and Connie Boeson — like Nancy Sebring, and present board members Cindy Elsbernd and Bill Howard.

This is not about Thomas Ahart; this is about a consistent pattern of dishonesty, racism and corruption. This has been demonstrated repeatedly by the Des Moines School Board. Which the taxpayers can no longer afford to tolerate. We need more responsible people, like Pat Sweeney and Joe Jongewaard, who had the courage to step up and expose what happened during the closed door session. They cannot do it alone; it’s time for the taxpayers to step up and show Dick Murphy and Connie Bosen who’s truly boss.

HIV
–Les Cason Jr.
Des Moiens

 

Got soy?

Why, living in an area known for soybean production, are all the bags of edamame (fresh green soybeans) that I find in grocery stores labeled “Product of China?” Does the ethanol industry consume so much corn that it is more lucrative for soy farmers to sell their harvest for animal feed? Perhaps the farmers don’t realize yet that human consumption of soy, other than oil, is a trend even among otherwise meat-eaters, and not a passing fancy? A soy association told me it is a lack of local processors. Hasn’t the market proven steady enough that someone decided it would be profitable to market America-grown, even Iowa-grown, soy foods? Surely nationwide it would be cheaper to transport from here than over an ocean.

–Jeni Nosbisch
Des Moines

 

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