Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Power of the Pen: Write a Letter to the Editor!

Writing letters to the editor is easy--use the links on the side bar on the right side of this page!

Posted by: Noel Jones

Below is my letter to the editor of the Express Times on the EASD tax hike, which was published in today's paper:

Easton School Board Must Fight Croneyism

This was not my title--the editor chose it after reading the text of my letter (which had no title) and I like it!

Writing letters to the editor and to your elected officials is easier than ever in the modern days of internet and email. At the right on the side bar of this home page you will find a Letter to the Editor link to both the Express Times and The Morning Call--please use them! It's fast and easy, and helps the papers know what is important to their readers (and lets politicians know

what's important to their voters). You might very well get published--in which case your ideas and concerns reach a large number of voting taxpayers who might care about the same issues you do, or might be persuaded or inspired because of what you write. This is an important part of being an engaged citizen, and for those of you who have a hard time making City Council and School Board meetings between work and kids, this is a way that you can engage when you do have a quiet moment to yourself, either at work or at home!

Please give it a whirl and let me know how it goes--whether you get a response, get published, or whether it just disappears into the ether...but remember, even when you don't get published, you've done an important thing by letting your paper know what matters to you! 


Anonymous said...

wouldn't it be better to wrote or call a public official first? Seems to me that letters to the editor are perceived as the end of the road. I remember a lady in my neighborhood blasting the mayor for not paving 15th street like he promised. I called and found that Wilson wasn't able to pave in 2008 so we got our street paved in 2009. I think that is a man who kept a promise. Did she expect panto to pave just the city side of 15th street. Let's get real, let's get the facts prior to writing letters to the editor as a first line of offense.

Now if you are talking about an "announced" 12% increase in taxes, absolutely tell them at meetings, write letters, get petitions signed and yes, even a letter to the editor. I was pleased to see that my city taxes weren't going up and then BAM here comes the school -- increases as usual.

Anonymous said...

city taxes as well as school taxes need to go down. Easton residents pay too much in property and income taxes as well as garbage and sewer fees. We should not be satisfied with what our taxes are. They are too high. they need to come down

Anonymous said...

write the letters,
buy the bull horn, make the speeches

This is America. Free Speech. Free Press. Use them. People have died for them. Don't undercut their value by private conversations with elected officials.

noel jones said...

Anon 11:39--absolutely. Welcome to the blog. If you read some of the other posts on the tax hike, you will see that I have been providing contact info for state and local officials and encouraging residents to write, so yes, please do! Information is also available on the side bars of this home page.

And please, everyone, post a comment to let us know when you have!

Letters to the editor are important in a different way, they communicate to the voters, let them know that they are not alone, and urge everyone to fight, whereas private letters to elected officials are urging action from within the political system. Both types of letters are very important.

Anonymous said...

ah the voters. all 18% of them and they represent 18% of the 50% actually registered. People can do the most by just registering andf voting. If we can get them involved all the better. We have become a lethargic society. I don't agree with some of the things stated here on this blog but we need energized people to participate in the process. Democracy is not a spectator sport.

So far the only thing I disagree with on all of the talkabout the school district is the nepotism. I agree that an individual should not get a position just because of who they are related to but I do not hink they should be denied either. Isn't that discrimantion as well. As to the issue of the Vulcano daughter the issue to me is not that she is related nor that she wasn't certified since she was appointed under an emergency certification. The issue is that qualified individuals that WERE ALREADY certified were passed over. That to me is the issue.

I willl be writing letters asd well about the redicupus increase in taxes. The EASD is killing us. I really don't mind paying city taxes because lately I feel that I receive good services. In light of heavy snow I was able to travel safely in the city; I have a better and larger police department; a full-time professional fire department, etc.

I have no children in the schools.

noel jones said...

Anon 1:15--thanks for dropping a comment--don't forget the street sweeping is coming this Spring too...

and i agree people shouldn't be denied a position just because they're related to someone in power, but they should not have an advantage either, and that everyone should be hired from an equal honest field of competition whose process is transparent, because otherwise, hiring a family member will always encourage distrust in the public.

noel jones said...

Here is an article by Chris Baxter in today's Morning Call on the results of a poll conducted recently on how residents in the Valley's school districts are responding to the proposed tax hikes. There is a mention of the EASD situation and the public outrage that has been expressed, so letters to the editor and speaking up at public meetings continues to resonate through the public dialogue in the media:,0,1665990.story?page=1&utm_source=feedburner&utm_campaign=Feed%3A%20morningcall%2Fnews%2Flocal%20%28Local%20News%29&track=rss&utm_medium=feed&utm_content=Google%20Reader