Letters to the editor: May 30, 2012

Shame on CLIP for go­ing too far
I moved from Phil­adelphia a couple of dec­ades ago, and I’m glad I no longer live in Philly! After vis­it­ing fam­ily and read­ing about CLIP, I am truly ap­palled at the de­cline. For cry­ing out loud, this is the birth­place of Amer­ica. This is where the Found­ing Fath­ers signed the De­clar­a­tion of In­de­pend­ence. Phil­adelphia is home to the Liberty Bell; Car­penter Hall, where the Con­tin­ent­al Con­gress met to dis­cuss im­port­ant mat­ters of free­dom; the Betsy Ross House; Ben­jamin Frank­lin; and the De­clar­a­tion House, also known as Graff House, where Thomas Jef­fer­son penned the De­clar­a­tion of In­de­pend­ence!
I totally agree with Dee Mai­aletti’s let­ter of March 28, Yo, CLIP, just who do you think you are? As an Amer­ic­an cit­izen who was lib­er­ated by the U.S. Army in post-WWII Ger­many, I find this sort of “patrolling,” tres­passing, pho­to­graph­ing and fin­ing of the homeown­ers to be a vi­ol­a­tion of our rights against un­reas­on­able search and seizure un­der the Fourth Amend­ment of our Con­sti­tu­tion. These Gestapo tac­tics are an ab­use of our civil liber­ties!
It is one thing to go after ab­sent­ee land­lords who neg­lect to main­tain their prop­er­ties; it’s quite an­oth­er to tar­get the eld­erly, the dis­abled and the poor. Shame, shame, shame! For those who con­done this ab­use, I sug­gest a course in Amer­ic­an his­tory. I would also en­cour­age you to get on­line and read the in­dict­ment against the nine CLIP crim­in­als! Put your­self in the shoes of your neigh­bors: Would you want to be treated this way? (ht­tp://www.phila.gov/dis­trictat­tor­ney/PD­Fs/Pre­sent­ment.pdf)
I am sur­prised that the cit­izenry has not ris­en up and de­man­ded that this “pro­gram” be dis­mantled. Whatever happened to the concept that a man‘s home is his castle? I would have filed a class ac­tion law­suit against the city by now, and in­volved the Justice De­part­ment!
Ly­dia F. Sel­wood
Har­ris­on­burg, Va.

Please help save St. Jos­aphat School
We were dev­ast­ated to learn that St. Jos­aphat Ukrain­i­an Cath­ol­ic School, at 4521 Long­shore Ave., may have to close its doors at the end of this school year due to de­clin­ing en­roll­ment.
My niece is now at­tend­ing sixth grade there, and last year her sis­ter was class va­le­dictori­an. Both are high hon­or roll stu­dents.
It is an ex­cel­lent school with Cath­ol­ic teach­ing, high schol­ast­ic stand­ards, small class sizes and ex­tremely caring teach­ers and staff.
My niece, who is now in high school, is now be­ing taught the same geo­metry and oth­er sub­jects that she learned in sev­enth grade at St. Jos­aphat.
Right now, par­ents are be­ing forced to look for oth­er schools in the area. Most Cath­ol­ic schools in the area have long wait­ing lists.
If your child is presently on a wait­ing list for an area school, please con­sider St. Jos­aphat for Septem­ber. St. Jos­aphat of­fers pre-K through eighth grade, as well as after-school care pro­grams. They will gladly meet with pro­spect­ive par­ents and stu­dents and will give tours for those in­ter­ested. You can con­tact the prin­cip­al, Mrs. McIntyre, at 215-332-8008.
Helen Banushi

The sorry situ­ation with the school dis­trict
Read­ing the news­pa­per or watch­ing the news about the School Dis­trict of Phil­adelphia’s money prob­lems is mak­ing me sick.
One thing I do not un­der­stand is the school dis­trict’s re­quest for more money. You know where the money is go­ing to come from — homeown­ers.
People can­not af­ford to live with an­oth­er real es­tate tax in­crease. If you have checked the fig­ures, it is the same areas that al­ways pay their real es­tate taxes when they are due. There are plenty of re­spons­ible homeown­ers and land­lords, but it is the ir­re­spons­ible ones who are hurt­ing things.
If some people have not no­ticed, there are so many houses for sale in this city.  The city can­not col­lect back taxes, both real es­tate and in­come tax, or for that mat­ter, for­feited bail. People have got­ten tired of the mor­ons in gov­ern­ment and moved out. From the days of our last three so-called su­per­in­tend­ents, the school dis­trict has been and is one big screw-up. The school dis­trict is one big money pit.
They can­not even de­cide how much they need or how much they are short. They want to try and blame it all on the teach­ers, but that is a crock of bull. Sure, there are some teach­ers that may not be as good as oth­ers, but who hired the bad ones? The cit­izens will have to foot the bill un­less they get off of their rear ends and stop play­ing Farm­ville.
The worst thing that ever happened was Pres­id­ent George W. Bush’s No Child Left Be­hind Act. Learn­ing in school starts with what goes on at home. It is the par­ents’ job to bring up their chil­dren and teach them what is right and what is wrong. Par­ents need to be in­volved in their chil­dren’s lives and their school. You do not like what their teach­er is do­ing? Go right to them. After all, you are pay­ing their salar­ies. They work for you.
A large ma­jor­ity of today’s kids just do not care. Vi­ol­ence in schools is worse than ever, des­pite what the pro­pa­ganda min­is­ters at the school dis­trict tell you. I blame our last three may­ors and those who are run­ning and have run the board of edu­ca­tion and the School Re­form Com­mis­sion. Things got worse when the politi­cians and the gov­ern­ment got in­volved. I get tired of hear­ing about so-called edu­ca­tion ex­perts. How much classroom time do the prin­cipals, or for that mat­ter, dis­trict su­per­visors, have?
I would love to see kids re­war­ded for good grades and pen­al­ized for bad ones. Want to play sports or be in­volved in school activ­it­ies? Then keep at least a B av­er­age. Do not get me wrong — there are a lot of great par­ents, it is just that the so called school dis­trict of­fi­cials could not find their own rear ends if it was not at­tached to their bod­ies.
I would like to see the school dis­trict po­lice taken over by the Po­lice De­part­ment, and start ar­rest­ing the an­im­als that cause prob­lems in schools. Kids need to re­spect au­thor­ity or suf­fer ex­treme con­sequences if they mess up.
The school dis­trict and the city gov­ern­ment are pathet­ic. If they try to put any tax in­crease through or ad­just the real es­tate tax rates, then they all need to be im­peached. People that claim to be edu­ca­tion ex­perts are just like res­taur­ant re­view­ers. They could not suc­ceed in real life, in the area they claim to be ex­perts in.
When Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Cir­cus comes to town, I would love to see the people at the school dis­trict join the cir­cus! They are all a bunch of clowns.
When the tax base moves away, guess who pays? The people who are left. The city should also be able to go after land­lords who are late on their real es­tate taxes, by gar­nish­ing their rent­al in­come from their rent­al prop­er­ties.
Ron­ald Moskovitz
Ox­ford Circle

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