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Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019 12:21 am

Letters to the Editor

 

ELECTRONIC MONITORING IS A BARRIER
In honoring the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I am grateful that the civil rights movement led to the dismantling of segregation and discrimination against people of color. Nevertheless, I am troubled about a resurgence of racism in our society by which people of color still experience hate and discrimination.

As a member of the Restorative Justice Task Force of the Faith Coalition for the Common Good, I am voicing our concerns with other Gamaliel affiliates across the nation about the indignity of mass supervision by means of electronic monitoring of ex-offenders on probation and parole. It impacts over five million of predominately people of color. Michelle Alexander, civil rights lawyer and advocate, maintains that electronic monitoring constitutes “digital prisons” that deprives individuals of their civil rights such as the right to vote and the right of due process for technical rule violations.

Electronic monitoring of ex-offenders often creates a barrier to restorative justice. It limits freedom as to where a person can go to find a job, access social services, attend religious services and share in special family occasions. Electronic monitoring is like a dog leash that is a humiliating injustice. Ex-offenders must pay for the monitoring device that keeps them under restraint by law enforcement. In 1963, Dr. King issued a moral challenge to America which remains relevant: “Now is the time to lift our national policy from the quicksand of racial justice to the solid rock of human dignity.”

Rev. David A. Anderson
Springfield


BASIS OF SEX WAS ACCURATE
I have no idea how old Chuck Koplinski is, but this letter is in regards to his article on the movie On the Basis of Sex. He said it did not dig deep enough, and I am sorry if the facts were too much for him to bear.

My sister, Mary Lee Leahy, attended the University of Chicago Law School in the mid-60s, which has always been known as one of the most liberal schools in the country. Shortly after getting married, she became pregnant and soon she began to show.

The head of the law school called her into his office and told her that she must drop out because her pregnancy would be a distraction for the male students. At that time, there was only one other female in the class. She was mad, but did what was asked of her. The thought of taking the school to court was not an option.

She did drop out of school for a semester, but she was not going to give up what she wanted to do, become an attorney. Our family pulled together in caring for the newborn, and she was able to attend summer school so that she would be able to graduate with her class.

Margaret Cullen
Springfield



IT’S BEEN DONE
Dan Walker, and I believe the other constitutional officers, were sworn in Jan. 8, 1973, in front of the Lincoln statue at Second and Capitol streets.  It was colder than a witch’s breast that day.  My wife, who was with me as I covered it for WAND TV, ended up in the hospital briefly with a serious cold.

The ball was held just up the street at the Armory (while it was still a functioning building).  I remember sitting in the south balcony and talking with Floyd Kalber, who was covering it for WMAQ - Chicago.  What can you really report about an inaugural ball once you have described the lovely dresses, the music, etc.? I don’t think there was any live TV coverage of either event.

Carroll J. Sutton
Springfield

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