Recently I was talking to a friend who is a refugee from Iran. In our conversation he commented how much he loves this country. As a side comment he mentioned how people in this country do not appreciate the freedoms we share in this country. My friend’s family was of the religion Baha’i in a country that is Muslim. Baha’i, he tells me when he lived in Iran, were persecuted for their religious beliefs. As a child he recalls his relatives being killed around him and him being the only survivor. He remembers crying alone until his mother came home. They immigrated to this country as religious refugees through Turkey and then to the United States. When you hear stories like this it makes one thankful for being born in the United States. More Americans need to talk to immigrants to get an understanding of how truly blessed we are. Is the United States perfect? No. It is a lot better than many other countries. I am still free to worship as I please no matter no matter how some people say that their religious freedom is being taken away. They really do not have a clue what religion suppression is. 


What is meant by defunding police? Defunding of police does not mean getting rid of police completely in most cases. It means reappropriating police funds to include officers that are trained in working with mental illness, family violence, increasing de-escalating training for police departments and spending more money on evaluating future police cadets. These actions will free police officers to concentrate on crimes rather than spend most of their day dealing with recurring incidents of mental illness. 


I am often perplexed regarding why within the same school, we have students that do extraordinarily well with extremely high-grade point averages (GPA) but then we have students from the same school who do very poorly. Often, I hear it has to do with the socio-economic status of the family, that the child comes from a poor 

family. To some extent that is correct, but that is not always the case. I have seen students coming from poor families who do very well in school and students that come from rather affluent families that do not do so well. I believe it has more to do with the value the parents put on education. I do not believe that the schools and teachers can be blamed totally when students fail or succeed. Parents’ emphasis on education, starting at a young age, contributes to the success of their child. So where do we start with helping students succeed? Where we need to start is when parents bring their children to pre-k. All parents should be required to attend a parent’s orientation to teach parents the value of an education for their child. The state should also make it mandatory that students that are failing attend summer school all summer long. Students that are failing should not be allowed to take summer break. Having a good education is much more important. 

By Alfredo Sanchez


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