Regarding “Shutdown averted as Trump signs aid bill,” (A1, Dec. 28): In the latest COVID-19 relief bill, there are hundreds of millions of dollars going to other countries and to non-COVID purposes such as the John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. That this money is not being used to help the millions of suffering Americans is outrageous. Businesses are closing and citizens can’t pay their rent or mortgages. I just emailed my representative and demanded he correct this travesty eliminating funds allocated to non-COVID purposes and use those funds to help our fellow citizens in financial peril. I ask your other subscribers to do the same.
Dick Flamos, League City
Regarding “Georgia Dem Senate hopefuls collect $200M,” (A4, Dec. 26): The two Democrats each raised more than $100 million over two months. With the way the economy is due to COVID-19 I think the money could have been put to a much better use. It could have helped out all the people who have lost their jobs and might lose their homes. How much food could you buy with $200 million? What a waste of money in times like this.
Joanne Geller, Richmond
Regarding “Four HISD teachers urge TEA to skip the test this year,” (A15, Dec. 27)” Thank you to the HISD teachers who have so eloquently put STAAR into perspective. At best STAAR is a $90 million boondoggle. In a year like we have had since March 2020, it is a travesty. Teachers are struggling to keep their heads above water so they can meet the needs of their students while meeting the mandates of CDC and governments to keep kids safe. STAAR will tell us nothing this year. The students who do well on tests anyway will shine. Everyone else will tank and have one more layer of stress added in a terrible year. TEA has waived promotion requirements for fifth and eighth grades but high stakes testing for high school students still stands. I guess the guys in Austin don’t think the older kids deserve consideration this year. The Legislature needs to take up this decision as soon as they return in January. Cancel STAAR or make it purely diagnostic for all students. As a retired educator I am begging for help and compassion for our kids!
Cathy Felder, Friendswood
I am a seasoned citizen and have lived in Houston all my life. I might be old but I don’t live like an old person. I am involved in this city and try to live by the Golden Rule. It has become hard to read the paper and watch the daily news, where there is little faith, hope and charity in so many stories. My wish for 2021 is love your family, be kind, be a good neighbor and be honest. We might be the best example out there. God bless all the doctors, nurses, firefighters and police who are trying to help us get through this pandemic.
Tommye Torian, Houston