Letters to the editor: What about me, mommy?; Concerns about improvements
What about me, mommy?
To the editor:
On a recent Friday evening, my wife and I attended the Tonganoxie beauty pageant at the fairgrounds, sponsored by Starstruck Dance Studio. The entrants ranged from babes in arms to teenagers, and the event very entertaining until the awards were passed out.
When the judges made their decisions, and the awards were handed out, two little girls were left with nothing. After the ribbons had been placed on the little ones' shoulders, and those presenting the awards moved on to the next age group, a 4-year-old turned and looked across the room to her mother, and with kind of a little shrug and her little hands turned palms up, uttered those words that just about broke grandpa and grandma's hearts: "What about me, mommy?"
A hushed A-w-w-w-w-w-w murmured from the parents and spectators around us. The other little girl looked to be a couple years older, and stood in the line bravely smiling, although she likely was thinking the same thing the 4-year-old had asked.
I don't mean this as a criticism of Starstruck. Those ladies do a wonderful job of teaching dance steps to miniature princesses, and encouraging the art. Nor is it a criticism of the judges. They did what they thought was right.
However, it seems pertinent to point out, that those little girls who didn't win, for whatever reason, may have worked just as hard as the winners and performed, no matter how good or bad. At some point in their lives, they will likely learn that no, life isn't always fair, and we don't always win, or get what we want, but at 4 years old? When it would be so easy to correct? I would suggest that next time, those in charge get a supply of ribbons that say "thank you for participating" or "participant."
After the real prizes are distributed, call the names of the remaining children and give them a participant ribbons. They will be just as proud of it as if they had won.
Concerns about improvements
To the editor:
The city wants to make road improvements on East Fourth Street with new sidewalks so they can make it safer for children. But they don't want to spend money to do the improvements right. In our neighborhood they want to come through and put a new water line, widen the street and put a five-foot sidewalk. But they don't have the easement on the north side. They are asking for 20 feet for all of the improvements. They already have 10 feet of easement on the south side of the road. But there is a substation on that side of the road, which they say cannot be moved. So it has to be on the north side. So we tried to work with them. We want the electric line underground. Which will save all 32 trees. Doing the improvements right would be putting the lines underground but once again the city says it's going to cost too much. But if you ask me, doing it the way they want it wouldn't be an "improvement." It would be destroying our neighborhood.
As an example the city came and did their "improvement" on Village Terrace. The only thing is that they put sidewalks from 24-40 to the stop sign. It really isn't all that safe for the children to be set free off the sidewalk in an intersection. If they do decide to do our road, is it going to be as bad as Village Terrace? They replaced all of their dirt with rocky red dirt and planted whatever cheap seed they could get on sale. The yards should have been put back the way they were found.
Keep in mind that safety for children is the No. 1 objective. With a sidewalk from 24-40 that dumps off in an intersection, and a sidewalk that will go from South Park to a narrow bridge. Which is where the children will have to get onto the road and walk about a half-mile to where the sidewalk picks back up and then they will have to cross the road to get to it. Maybe what the city needs is a sidewalk going to and from the new middle school and not a sidewalk on the far east side of town.
Get ready, Tonganoxie. The nightmare is coming to your neighborhood next.