It has come to my attention that the town, in its effort to live within its budget, is considering dropping the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program. If this program keeps even 10 percent of the children it reaches off dangerous drugs, it is well worth the funds allocated. Consider the cost of incarcerating that 10 percent of the population on drug-related crimes, not to mention the losses to society of those potentially productive taxpayers, the costs of rehabilitation programs, and the rate of recidivism of drug addicts.
Our children are our future. Whether or not we want to acknowledge this, we must realize that they will be making the decisions that will affect our lives when we may be the most vulnerable. This attitude is akin to the idea that (those who) have no children attending public schools shouldn't have to support them. It is in our best interests to support them wholeheartedly, as well as financially. After all, we attended school on someone else's tax money.
I find the decision to establish a free-roaming dog park and the creation of a position, even part-time to clean up after dogs, to be insulting if it is to replace the DARE program.
We want our services, but we don't want to have to pay for them. I, for one, have never objected to paying my fair share of taxes because I realize you can't get something for nothing. I don't go out of town to shop, even though I don't live in the city limits. So I do pay my fair share of sales, property and service taxes. That is the cost of having a police and fire department to protect your person and property, and good public schools with dedicated teachers to educate our children so they may become responsible citizens as adults.
I.L. Schwartzbauer, Mesa del Caballo