Letters to the Editor 9/19/13
I have been a Muni season ticket holder for more than 25 years. I have watched this Springfield icon grow and evolve into the top notch, incredible production company that this small central Illinois city is so very lucky to have. I have seen so many wonderful shows but never have I been compelled to go to a show more than once in a run, until Rent. The show moved me in a way that no other show ever has. I went last Thursday, loved it and turned around and went the next Saturday, and loved it even more.
To those of you who haven’t seen Rent yet, I have one word for you … go. And to Mac Warren and the cast and crew, thank you. You took the chance today to keep the Muni moving forward to tomorrow. Yes, the play is controversial, edgy and raw, but beyond that, the message is clear. No day but today! Those are words you believed when bringing the uniqueness of Rent to the traditional Muni stage. Thank you for taking the risk. It was a risk well worth taking.
BRUTAL COLLEGE LOAN SYSTEM
Burdened by overwhelming student debt, I read your story “Crushed” (Sept. 12, Zach Baliva) with sad familiarity. While we earn a good income, we struggle under the weight of student loans. The complicity of the political ruling class and college administrators angers me more than any single issue. They created and perpetuate a brutal system that devastates our young people, specifically those of middle and lower economic classes, while lauding themselves as student advocates.
The ample availability of school loans has untethered the cost of education from inflation. Democrats forced private banks out of the market in 2010. While progressives decry the evil and greedy bankers, Sallie Mae (the government) charges me 5.55-6.55 percent, as opposed to my rates with Citibank and Discover, 2-3 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, politicians of all stripes speak of grants and scholarships, which they use as a campaign tool that benefits a few recipients. Moreover, the “bipartisan” school loan bill recently passed neither impacts the millions of people already paying more than 6 percent nor the penalties assessed to delinquent borrowers. And then there’s the panacea, loan forgiveness after 25 years. In yet another act of political cowardice and generational theft, the politicians obligate the younger generation, after struggling to pay off their own school debt, to billions if not trillions of loan defaults.
Who benefits from this? The very politicians who created the system. The young lady featured in your article is certainly more likely to vote for a politician who promises to “forgive” her student loans. She’ll walk away from the debt she agreed to pay and the unjust fees tacked on later, the institution pays its staff handsomely, the politician gets a vote and a campaign issue, and the anonymous taxpayer is stuck with yet another burden.
Springfield has lost a great disc jockey in Amie Meneghetti. I’ve listened to her morning program for the last four years. While I do not know Amie personally, her presence on the air has helped to bring me through some difficult times. Music, combined with Amie’s humor and trivia, has really made my mornings.
Amie is not one to simply sit in the studio; she serves our community. She began the 30 Good Deeds in 30 Days campaign for the last two years during the Christmas holiday. She spent two hours each day working for a nonprofit organization. Then, she would talk about the experience on the air. This encouraged others to get involved. She started the PenPals program to help promote local businesses. When our community has needed help, Amie was there. Now, Amie needs our help, and I hope that the Springfield community will be there for Amie. We cannot allow Springfield to lose one of its finest public servants. Therefore, I hope that another Springfield radio station will be willing to add Amie to its lineup.
I would ask for everyone to support our hometown girl, Amie Meneghetti. Thank you, Amie!