This is in response to the Nov. 17 letter “Still waiting.” I would like to offer the following responses to the questions posed:

•?Benghazi: The House cut funding for security at all embassies. CBS has reported that the report on which it based its coverage was proved incorrect after the British citizen admitted that he had lied to the FBI.

•?Spying on citizens and allies: This program was instituted by George W. Bush and carried on by the National Security Agency. President Obama has ordered this to be stopped.

•?Internal Revenue Service: A worker in the Cincinnati office, a Republican, flagged a lot of organizations, both Republican and Democratic, for review of their tax exempt status. The worker sent this information to the IRS in Washington and was told to investigate and make certain they qualified.

•?Fast and Furious: This program was the work of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and is being investigated by Attorney General Holder. There were people who resigned when Holder started the investigation.

I hope that the Senate stays under Democratic control and that the House flips to Democratic control so there can be investigations into the work of U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa and his handling of the investigations into the above issues.

I wonder what happened to the old Republican Party that would work with the other side. Did it get overwhelmed by the tea party?

I guess the party’s turn to the hard right was more important than passing bills for women’s health issues, farm funding, school funding and, basically, any legislation introduced by President Obama or any other Democrat that might help the citizens of the nation.

Gerald Reeves


Options for ?Zimmerman

Which approach is better in light of the latest developments in the personal and legal history of George Zimmerman, in which his girlfriend fears for her life?

We could put two National Rifle Association positions together: Stand your ground, and have a gun handy. Isn’t this the precise definition of a downward spiral?

Do we want this law in Ohio? I don’t think so. Let’s not have “stand your ground” in Ohio.

There is another approach.

Zimmerman, as all of us have, has choices. As a Christian, I’ve been taught that our decisions and choices build together into patterns, then into character and finally into destiny.

We can change paths. But we have to recognize the need to change, then seek guidance, follow the guidance, ask for forgiveness and stay on the new path.

In that spirit, I ask: Will the real George Zimmerman please stand down?

Rolf Wicks


Swings and misses

Akron has the RubberDucks, and Toledo has the Mud Hens.

I’d say that is two fowl balls.

I hope Ohio doesn’t strike out.

Patrick Bozzelli

Cuyahoga Falls

Sensible security ?for schools

I am an employee in a local school system. Over the past couple of years, due to a number of school shootings, we have made internal changes to upgrade our school safety system.

We have added more cameras for monitoring the buildings. Also, in-house training has occurred to help us act quickly and properly if any event were to happen.

At the current time, we have police officers assigned to various schools to provide an on-duty security presence. This, I feel, is not a necessary situation. It is very expensive, and I do not believe it can continue.

There is a more sensible way to provide this protection if it is truly thought to be necessary. We could have selected staff members who are licensed and trained carry a firearm at no additional cost to taxpayers. They would provide immediate response in the event something should happen.

Before we even go in that direction, I think we should look at the possibility of an event happening in the first place.

I am certain it is about the same as winning the lottery. I am not trying to downplay the tragic results that have happened over the past few years, but in reality, in view of the number of schools, the chance is astronomically small.

I work in a school. I have a stepson in a local school and grandchildren soon to be attending one. I want our schools as safe as possible. But I believe that having a police officer assigned to each and every school, all day long, is not a realistic answer to the situation.

David Sachs


Education starts ?at home

In his Nov. 17 column (“Weight of poverty on public schools”), Editorial Page Editor Michael Douglas wrote about the need for a new funding formula for “high-poverty, large city schools.”

Lest we forget, plenty of state and federal tax money is already funneled into these communities, apart from schools, so when the average per-person dollars are added to the per-pupil dollars, that’s the number at which we should be looking.

About a decade ago, I observed an inner-city eighth grade class in Hartford, Conn., whose schools at the time had been taken over by the state. I truly could not understand what made that teacher return day after day. There was no learning going on because students had no respect for themselves, their teacher or the principal. It was an incredible, out-of-control display.

Money for a smaller student-teacher ratio would be well spent in any school, but home life is where kids learn their work ethic and behavioral expectations. Neither formulas nor giveaways can buy good parental expectations and follow-through from home.

Americans would get a much better return if bailout seed money was spent in chronically high-unemployment areas by setting up manufacturing of real products that we now buy off shore, or by inviting in construction companies to create apprentice jobs to get sidewalks and buildings repaired.

Adults showing up for work to support themselves (not by government handouts) would be good for them and their children, as boundaries and responsibilities would be learned and examples set.

Treat the problems of the parents and community before kids are born. It’s too late afterward.

Pat Sullivan


Plight of ?the voter

I’m not happy with legislation sponsored by state Sen. Frank LaRose to tighten options for early voting (“Counting the days,” Nov. 24 editorial). I propose that LaRose should cast his vote in a way that shows he understands what many constituents must do to get to the polls.

First, LaRose should note that he doesn’t have a car. It’s Tuesday morning, he’s heard about some changes in voting locations, but didn’t pay close attention.

After feeding his children breakfast and getting them to day care, he takes another bus to the Holiday Inn Express to clean rooms.

At 3 p.m., he gets back on a bus, picks up his children and transfers to another bus to get near his polling place. The location has been changed. He gets a ride to the new polling place, then heads home after more than two hours.

Legislators should make it as easy as possible for people to vote. Registration and voting should be available on the weekend and for many days prior to the election.

LaRose might want to follow up by getting to his polling place using a walker and riding on the Metro SCAT bus.

Michael Lapides


Cycling safety

The final paving of Cleveland-Massillon Road in Bath Township is an excellent example of separating vehicles from bicyclists and walkers. The striping allows plenty of room for cyclists to stay out of the lane of traffic.

As a member of the Akron Bike Club, I applaud the efforts of the township and Summit County. Bike lanes and clean, wide berms benefit drivers as well as cyclists.

The club encourages all to ride predictably and to obey traffic laws. We also ask the non-cycling public to allow adequate space near cyclists and to recognize the vulnerability of the person peddling on two wheels.

We encourage Bath Township and Summit County to refrain from putting rumble strips on this new, wonderfully wide berm.

Sue Serdinak