Daily Archives: May 8, 2006

Flowers for Children?

Stop Saving the Flowers The Death of the District’s Children The Chesapeake Chronicle When I was in high school, I occasionally babysat the two young daughters of Washington Post style writer Lonnae O’Neal Parker. One day, after yet another school shooting, she asked me a simple question, but one that I had never truly considered. “Are you afraid to go to school?” The thought had never occurred to me.Frederick Douglass High School in Upper Marlboro, Md., was surrounded on three sides by corn fields.I saw horses, cows and sheep on my morning ride to school.While there was the occasional fight in the cafeteria, I never considered a student going on a shooting rampage with me as a target.You could say I felt safe when I left my house every morning for school. Last year, Mrs. Parker, as I call her, wrote a short piece about the rash of child shootings in Washington, right after the shooting of 8-year-old Chelsea Cromartie. In it, she recounted an imaginary visit to a cemetery, in which someone is trying desperately to keep flowers at a grave from tipping over.Her last line struck me immediately and has stayed fresh in my mind, particularly as of […]

Guess the Decade

GUESS THE DECADE by Howard Smead It is the close of the century. America’s finest hours are behind it. Our democracy and our future are being questioned amid growing distrust of our institutions. Our country is filling with people speaking strange tongues, whose values are different from our own. The cities in which they live are rife with crime. They are divided into pockets of ethnic minorities that seem incapable of and unwilling to assimilate. A bill is before Congress to restrict or ban immigration outright. The poor grow poorer while at the top of the social pyramid the super rich enjoy incomes 200 times higher than average citizens. They are so wealthy they appear to live in a different world, with scant loyalty to our own. Corrupt politicians line their pockets and ignore the “general welfare. “ The inefficiency of city governments and the laws coming from Washington, DC, serve the wealthy and large corporations first — then, if at all, the people. Although the severe economic downturn that took place early in the decade is largely past, average citizens still feel its effects. While wealthier Americans are enjoy enormous wealth and prosperity. Catalogue sales of a vast array […]