Readers Write: Aug. 23

Death of a nationally recognized force for good

Bond is dead. No not James Bond, but Julian Bond, the longtime civil rights activist, who recently died at age 75. Bond, a leading figure in the civil rights movement, served as chairman of the NAACP after a long career in politics. He was a major force in the campaign for racial equality, and was often seen at the forefront of protests against segregation. A visionary and tireless champion for civil and human rights, even in highly emotional and heated situations, the even-keeled Bond never lost his cool.

KENNETH L. ZIMMERMAN, HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIF.

Nothing new in battle for schools

History tells us to expect an all-out attack to wrest control of our public schools from local control. The ones leading the charge are the same who battled for “separate but equal” schools and eventually lost but have not given up. They have withheld billions in public school funding to essentially encourage many failures. They have created tax deduction schemes to help the private schools while illegally depriving our public schools of proper funding. They care about “failing” schools? They are putting more effort into telling teachers what to teach instead of finding innovative ways to help our students be prepared for jobs and life. If you want your children to be educated by a few friends of the governor, then go ahead and give him our schools.

MARTIN MCCONAUGHY, ATLANTA

Writer dishonors noble South

After reading “Southern con job,” (Opinion, Aug. 15), I suggest that the AJC remember the words of Winston Churchill when he said “Never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense.” No responsible newspaper, Southern or not, would accept such twisted views, misquoted history, lack of pride in regional accomplishments, poor conclusions and a dismal negative voice as stated by Frank Hyman. The writer mentions “self destructive beliefs, material harm” and even brings in the Koch brothers and Rupert Murdoch and of course “old symbols.” But that’s not enough! “Only by shedding those (old symbols) too, will Southern whites finally catch up on the rest of the country in wages, health,and education.” .

Catch up? I kindly suggest that Mr. Hyman “catch up” and seek some region more to his liking. Meanwhile the AJC should recognize its own disaffection for the South. They might realize that right before them and supporting them is the South, a beautiful place of renaissance, reliability and acceptance which deserves honesty and respect. Neither is being given now.

CATHERINE BOONE SHEALY, ATLANTA

Planned Parenthood reduces abortion count

With 97 percent of its services devoted to health care for men and women, including wellness, family planning and contraceptive services, Planned Parenthood does more than any organization in this country to reduce abortions. Those opposed to Planned Parenthood funding argue that it might indirectly fund abortions because these revenues combined with other monies could subsidize overhead costs for space where abortions are performed. Using this same argument, government funds for child care, educational programs and health programs should not be granted to religious organizations (which, by the way, are allowed to discriminate in hiring) because these monies could subsidize overhead costs for space where religious activities take place. If Planned Parenthood is defunded, then church-run programs should be defunded also.

MICHAELENE GORNEY, JOHNS CREEK

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