11-4 Letters to editor

Protests opinions of Texan

I am writing about the response that Cliff Thompson from Dallas, Texas had written about me.

I would like to know how I am a disgrace and uninformed about the realities of my son's school in Mabton, especially since Mr. Thompson doesn't live in Mabton or Washington state.

If I have a personal agenda, it is the welfare of my son's education and that's the only agenda I have.

I have never, or will never, condone the mistreatment of students, no matter the circumstances.

He also suggested that teachers, including myself, feed off the poor community. For his information, I live in Mabton and am barely scraping to get by.

Mr. Thompson also mentions that I approve the lack of values, poor teaching skills and intellect in teachers. He has never been more wrong, and, if he knew me, then he would know the type of person I am and the values I have.

As for the poor teaching skills and intellect, I am always researching and studying the latest materials that may help students and my son in their education in school and in life.

He also questioned the intellect of Mabton teachers where we have a teacher who was teacher of the year for Washington state, and teachers who have their national certificates for teaching.

As for the situation of the Mabton School District and what is going on, I would have to say this new school year my son is succeeding in his new environment.

I haven't said anything that is untrue or biased about Fabian Castilleja or about the Mabton School District.

The letter I had written in September was to get people involved and to get the facts for themselves and not to believe what one person tells them.

I also took offense and asked Fabian Castilleja about comments he made about a Mabton native and professional journalist, Julia Hart, and questioned him about his conduct. I have never claimed to know what the internal problems surrounding Fabian Castilleja had with the staff or administration of the Mabton School District.

I have only had my son's best interest at heart and will do anything for him as would any parent.

I would like to inform Mr. Thompson that I was nominated for student teacher of the year from Central Washington University in 2005. I also am a single parent of a disabled child that attends Artz-Fox Elementary in Mabton. I have helped with the Children's Miracle Network and done interviews to help raise money for disabled children. I have worked and talked with parents of disabled children to help them find information that would help them.

I don't work for the Mabton School District. I work for the Grandview School District as a substitute teacher. I have always put the needs of students first, especially the needs of disabled students.

I am saddened to think that for someone who doesn't live here and doesn't know who I am personally would say that I don't care about kids and their education. It is people like Cliff Thompson that causes good people to lose their jobs with false accusations.

/s/ Shannon Pierce, Mabton

Beyond belief

I have been reading with some amusement the letters in the forum lately. It is unbelievable to me that some of our former council members would have the audacity to offend the readers of your paper with the double standards that they so much believe in.

Examples; Former Councilman Donavan Vliegar presented a letter of support for his friend and former political partner, Mike Farmer. In this letter he insinuated that a Mr. Berk, who had submitted a contrary letter, should not have a political opinion or have his opinion carry any significance because he is related to someone who was soundly defeated in a city council race. This was not only what some could consider a cheap shot at the Berk family, but a double standard. Vliegar himself was soundly defeated in a state representative race. Does this entitle him to an opinion; it's obvious that he believes so.

There was also a letter in the forum criticizing Mrs. Aguilar. What the letter failed to state was the blatant public attacks on her during council sessions at every opportunity by some present and former council people for not conforming to their programs or way of thinking.

Double standard—I can have an idea; you can't.

Former Councilman Werkhoven submitted a letter of support for Ricks and Farmer, two of his political allies. In this letter he stated that he did not believe that Carol Stone had the ability to understand the complexity of the city budget. However, if memory serves me, this former council member spent hours asking the questions that would assist him in understanding this document. I wonder why Mrs. Stone should not be given the same opportunity.

In this same letter the former councilman stated that he wondered if Bruce Epps could, or would, be able to stand up to the bargaining units in the city with the amount of support that he was receiving from them. Perhaps this former councilman has forgotten that he, along with Vliegar, Farmer and Aguirre, were afforded the support of one or more bargaining units in the city.

I would think the double standard comes from I can do it, but my political rival can not.

It is really a shame that these political has-beens could not support their candidates without taking cheap shots. Living a life of double standards is not what has made this country great, but allowing each to have their own opinion is one of the cornerstones of this great nation.

/s/ James Stanton, Sunnyside


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