Discrediting Basis' ranking makes no sense

Re: the May 5 column "Let's keep Basis, UHS in perspective."

As the parent of two Basis students, I don't understand the point of Tim Steller's column on Basis' ranking as the second best high school in the country.

He acknowledges the commitment required to manage the heavy workloads imposed, demonstrating Basis students "perform highest at academics in the Tucson area."

Apparently, this ranking is unimpressive because Basis students take AP tests, which are flawed because they require substantial memorization. But academic achievement is always measured through testing. There's no memorization required for the less rigorous AIMS testing, I suppose.

It is insulting to suggest that managing heavy workloads and preparing for and sitting for AP tests don't require "grit, perseverance, curiosity and work ethic." Basis students exemplify these qualities, the reason they perform at such a high level.

The article attempts to diminish Basis' ranking because it is based on having highly achieving students, and that is truly unimpressive.

Joe St. Louis,


Gun would have made attack even worse

Re: the April 29 "Around the Nation" item "4 people stabbed at church."

I was shocked and saddened to read that another young man, obviously mentally unbalanced, attacked people with a weapon in an Albuquerque church. Another double-digit death toll, I assumed; another tragic day in America's history of gun violence.

But wait! The assailant's weapon was a knife. The Associated Press reported that "the injuries to the four church-goers weren't life-threatening." It occurred to me that a number of people would have died if the attacker had a gun.

But I immediately got my head on straight and reminded myself of the National Rifle Association's mantra that "guns don't kill people, people kill people."

Peter Bourque

Literacy volunteer, Tucson

Sell guns for 25 cents; let private firm destroy

Re: the April 30 article "Bill signed preventing Tucson from destroying 'buyback' guns."

Perhaps we could do the following: Sell the guns for 25 cents apiece to a company that would destroy them for us.

I am so weary of Gov. Jan. Brewer.

Patty Burks

Retired nurse, Tucson

Governor keeps NRA agenda

Re: the April 30 article "Bill signed preventing Tucson from destroying 'buyback' guns."

It would appear the National Rifle Association got its money's worth from our illustrious Gov. Jan Brewer.

Jerri Jameson

Retired, Tucson

Brewer, Horne act like Big Brother

I find it interesting that Gov. Jan Brewer and Attorney General Tom Horne, both among the loudest to yell about Big Brother federal government telling the states what to do, are among the first to be Big Brother themselves.

The governor in the form of signing a bill against Tucson destroying guns, and the attorney general in the form of telling Bisbee it cannot pass the marriage law it wants to.

What about the local control they both seem to hold so dear?

David Reynolds

Teacher, Tucson

Let's get facts, not rush to judge PCC board

Brenda Even has been an active resident of the Tucson community for over 40 years. Her professional life has been centered on education and the young people it serves. She has worked tirelessly on the Tucson Unified School District and Pima Community College Boards. I have known Brenda for over 25 years.

Ethical is the first word that comes to mind in describing this talented public servant.

The question to ask is "Do we, the public, have all the information regarding the problems at Pima Community College?" Let's find out all of the facts before rushing to judgment to recall the PCC Board.

Danielle DeConcini Thu

Businessperson and former teacher, Tucson

Fitz is good for laughs

Re: the May 1 letter to the editor "Fitz's account of fair shows his arrogance."

This is in response to the letter to the editor railing against David Fitzsimmon. I wrote to him after the article about the fair and said "I read the Arizona Daily Star and New York Times for news. But I always read your articles last so that I can have a good laugh after the usual terrible world news.

You never fail me, so thank you, David, and keep it up."

Joan Domash

Retired teacher, Green Valley