Been to Atlanta, prefers snow crews here
Thank you, City of Omaha and Douglas County snow crews!
This was not a huge snowstorm, I know. But after being in Atlanta last week during the snow debacle, I am very grateful for the people who take care of our roads here. It became clear to me how much of a difference it makes that our diligent crews prep the streets in advance.
While the snow was falling in Atlanta, I couldn’t help but scoff a bit at the panic that seemed to be setting in. A few hours later, when I made the five-mile drive to my hotel, I understood. Although there was only 2 inches of snow, as soon as the sun set the highway turned to solid ice. Vehicles lined the streets for miles, and motorists, after trying to get home for 10 to 12 hours, finally abandoned their cars and slept in grocery stores.
I’m so thankful it isn’t the reality we experience here in Omaha.
Lori Bruckner, Omaha
Missileers’ cheating may be exaggerated
It has been nearly 35 years since I was a missile combat crew member. Nevertheless, I think news reports of cheating on monthly proficiency exams may be a bit overblown, because there are other, more profound ways of measuring proficiency.
In my day, crew members underwent a minimum of one annual proficiency evaluation in a missile procedures trainer, including a field evaluation in an operational missile launch control center. This comprehensive evaluation not only covered aspects of the monthly proficiency exam but also included virtually every area of daily operational procedures.
It’s worth noting that crew members performed as a team but were scored individually. Generally, the practice was to evaluate crew members more than once every 12 months to avoid mandatory decertification if the annual evaluation slipped for some reason. And it was not unusual for highly motivated crew members to seek additional training.
I’m not saying cheating should be treated lightly. It is a serious problem that should be addressed firmly and forthrightly, because it bears more on officer integrity and trustworthiness than proficiency.
On the other hand, consumption of illegal drugs and controlled substances is more concerning, since it impairs judgment and the ability to perform at a high level.
Augustus O. Wills, Bellevue
Complaints forget migration was illegal
Ron Holscher complains (Feb. 3 Pulse) that U.S. Senate candidates Sid Dinsdale and Bart McLeay want to give illegal immigrants legal status but not citizenship?
Let’s not forget they are talking about illegal immigrants — people who have entered the United States against the law. Any amnesty, legal status or citizenship would not be a solution to the illegal immigration problem.
We have millions working here but do not know if they are paying taxes because our government does not know where some of them are or what they are doing. Others have committed crimes and been given a deportation order, but their whereabouts are unknown.
D. Mark O’Neill, Omaha
Time for prompt, sensible judicial pick
As a professor of law at the University of Richmond, I think a Jan. 29 World-Herald editorial, “Court vacancy needs attention,” is exactly right. Nebraska’s senators should expeditiously recommend several well-qualified, mainstream candidates for the federal judiciary. President Obama should promptly nominate one, and the Senate must swiftly process that individual’s nomination.
With cooperation, a worthy successor could be appointed before Judge Joseph Bataillon assumes senior status in October, so the District of Nebraska can remain at full strength.
Carl Tobias, Richmond, Va.
A chance to repeal the prairie dog law
With Legislative Bill 673, the Nebraska Legislature has the opportunity to repeal the Black-tailed Prairie Dog Management Act. The bill would return the state to the system we had before 2012, under which property owners were free to do what they liked on their own property with regard to prairie dogs.
The bill would simply take away the ability of someone else to dictate what happens on your own property. Some people don’t think the government should be able to come onto their property to poison a native wildlife species. Wildlife aside, the current law has eroded personal freedom and set a precedent for other kinds of government intrusion.
Repealing it would mark a return to respect for the fence line and the rights of landowners.
Rachel Simpson, Lincoln
An honest passerby saves the day
On Feb. 3, my elderly parents made a trip to the Hy-Vee store at 132nd Street and West Dodge Road. They left my mother’s purse in the grocery cart and did not realize it until they had returned home.
In a panic, they drove back to the store. Fortunately, an honest person found the purse and returned it. Nothing was stolen! My parents were so relieved. They hope the person will read this and know how greatly the kind act was appreciated.
Kathy Mabrey, Omaha