May 11, 2022, Letters to the Editor

Thanks for the wheelbarrows


We want to thank the anonymous donors of two new wheelbarrows to Heritage Park Gardens.

What a great surprise to fine these much-needed items at our gardens. 

We so appreciate any donations to help our efforts to maintain Heritage Park Gardens for our community.

Thank you again, Sincerely, all the Heritage Park Gardens / Main Street Gardnerville volunteers.” 

Donna Werner


Murphy most qualified


Thanks to the Record-Courier for helping host an excellent debate, and the classy Jim Settelmeyer for conducting it with poise and decorum.

It should be obvious to all that Janet Murphy is the most qualified to serve as Commissioner; hopefully, she can turn back the tide of urban sprawl of which Mr. Rice was a prime architect. 

And the lovely ladies of this community deserve one of their own on this Board. 

William D. McCann


Backing Murphy for commission


I strongly support Janet Murphy for Douglas County District 4 commissioner.  Janet is against vacation home rentals.  Her opponent Wes Rice is on record stating that 600 VHR permits in the Tahoe Township is not enough.  Thankfully his fellow commissioners rejected increasing this limit.  Janet’s other opponent Natalie Yanish, a real estate agent and representative for the Contractors Association of Truckee Tahoe supports “one county, one rule,” which means Yanish is in favor of vacation home rentals being equally permitted in Carson Valley.  Janet is an adamant and vocal adversary of vacation home rentals in residential neighborhoods because they reduce the number of permanent full-time rentals which are sorely needed for our workforce. 

Janet believes VHRs are a commercial activity that should only be allowed in commercially zoned properties and not in residential zones, which should be used for quiet and safe residential use.  

Janet also distinguishes herself from her opponents in other ways.  She does not agree with a transportation plan that would reduce safety if Highway 50 is changed back to a two-lane road.  She, contrary to opponent West Rice, was against the $34.25 million diversion of Douglas County property taxes for an event center for the casinos.  The casinos should pay for their own event center.  And, she is against the Park Development agreement, which traded receiving area in the Topaz area for prime agricultural land in downtown Minden.  For environmental reasons, she does want not our valley to become urbanized.  

Janet has successfully managed the Tahoe Douglas Sewer Improvement District for 30 years, accumulating kudos for her fiscal discipline and problem-solving abilities.  She has been a valued influential member of many state and local governing boards and committees.  Also, for many years she has served as a legislative advisor. Notably, she was successful in lobbying the Nevada legislators to approve an amendment to SB471 in the 2017 Legislative session for the property owners, of the corrupt and scandalous Douglas County Sewer Improvement District #1 (DCSID), to maintain majority voting power over the new replacement authority.  

Janet Murphy is a champion rock star defending the rights of the people against insiders, and she deserves your vote in the June 14 Republican primary election for District 4 Douglas County Commissioner.  

Jeanne Shizuru


Elected officials should work for you, not themselves


When I vote for an elected official — at any level of government — I want that person to represent me. Too often — for whatever reason -- that person just becomes a pawn in the game of politics. I do not feel that representing people who voted for you is a ‘game’. I want the people for whom I have voted to be working for me. In the several decades that I have lived in Douglas County, I can honestly say that I have never experienced any elected official to be as conscientious as Danny Tarkanian has been as County Commissioner. He keeps us informed about everything that comes before the Commission; reports on the results of the voting, and even highlights different locally owned businesses. This is exactly the kind of representation we need in Washington: someone who takes the job seriously and doesn’t just play politics; someone who will let my voice be heard. That is why I support Danny Tarkanian for Congress.

Gayle Wedgwood


Social emotional learning’s darker side


Social emotional learning has become a hot topic with various opinions circulating regarding its true intent. 

Proponents describe it as a harmless means of helping children learn skills to manage the emotional difficulties in life and to succeed. And, in the process, develop the capacity to show empathy and compassion toward others. Who can argue with that? 

Yet, a deeper look will reveal a darker vision that could affect not only the well-being of our youth, but direct our Nation into a future few of us would care to live in.  

SEL is promoted by CASEL or the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning. Their website reveals that the goal of SEL is far more encompassing than simply addressing the emotional needs of our youth. 

Under the heading “SEL as a Lever for Equity and Social Justice” its stated goal is to be “transformative.” That is, SEL is to “critically analyze sociopolitical forces and take action to fight injustice” (as defined by CASEL). This boils down to politicizing students. 

SEL also aims to “critically examine root-causes of inequity, and to develop collaborative solutions that lead to personal, community and societal well-being.” 

Sounds good, right? But SEL’s equity is not equality. Equality provides equal opportunity and treatment, but SEL’s equity demands equal outcome and deliberately favors one group or groups of people over others. 

According to Population Education, a national education program that focuses on human population issues, combining SEL with global learning is an excellent way to promote “global citizen education.” 

Thus, it is apparent that SEL as described by CASEL intends to create generations of political activists who advance progressive and globalist values. According to Alex Newman (Epoch Times; 10/27/2020):

“Public school teachers in Florida, to comply with SEL mandates, were ordered to show videos to their middle school students. These included propaganda videos promoting homosexuality, bisexuality, transgenderism, “diversity,” “inclusion,” and more.”

SEL undermines the values that have held our nation and its people together through faith in God, the family, equality, and moral living. Looking into the institutions that support SEL also sheds light on its true nature. CASEL’s lists of supporters include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the NoVo Foundation. 

Bill Gates has been a longtime promoter of Common Core and signed a deal in 2004 with UNESCO to develop a worldwide curriculum reflecting UNESCO’s progressive values. 

The NoVo Foundation “invests worldwide in systemic change to foster a transformation from a world of domination and exploitation [i.e. capitalism] to one of collaboration and partnership [i.e. socialism].” According to Influence Watch, NoVo directs millions of dollars yearly to left-of-center groups advocating for abortion, LGBT interests, and liberalism. 

To conclude, we need teachers, administrators, school board trustees, parents, and citizens who are willing to say no to SEL or similar programs in our schools. We must advocate for sound education that prepares our youth to be productive members of society. 

Bob Russo


Douglas teachers aren’t Marxists


I retired from the Douglas County School district in 2020 after teaching social sciences, primarily United States history and government for 21 years.  During that time my interactions with parents and the public were generally positive and I received a lot of support.  Lately, letters to the editor from the supporters of a slate of candidates who wish to seize control of the school board to promote their own extremist agenda and from those who have put students and teachers in the crosshairs of their culture wars have left me feeling disrespected.  I, along with my colleagues, have been falsely and maliciously maligned as being Marxist agents of indoctrination. I am not a Marxist, and did not engage in indoctrination as a teacher, and I am not aware of any of my colleagues for whom those criticisms would be warranted.

I studied economics as a university student nearly fifty years ago and read Marx’s book Das Kapital in an economic theory course.  This book led me to understand some critiques of the capitalist system, but did not lead me to feel as either oppressed or an oppressor, and did not make me a Marxist.  In addition, all the teaching contracts I signed listed promoting or supporting communism as a termination offense. Not a problem for me to not promote an undesirable and unsustainable system.

I was always aware that teaching the social sciences meant talking about subjects upon which people have differing opinions.  That is what makes it interesting to me.  I made it a point at the beginning of each year of teaching to tell students that I would ask controversial questions with the intent to help develop their critical thinking skills, not to tell them what I thought was the correct answer.  I specifically told students that I would keep my personal political beliefs out of the classroom, and added that if they were really interested in my beliefs, they could ask me after they graduated.  Every year at graduation I would be surrounded by students who asked me what party I belonged to, and sometimes would be asked when I ran into students in public years after graduation.  As many were surprised as not by my response.

As a result of this stance, I frequently challenged the arguments of students who expressed beliefs with which I agreed, because their reasoning was weak. Just as frequently I gave high marks to students who expressed beliefs with which I completely disagreed because they completed the assignment as directed.  My experience as Department Chair of Social Studies at Douglas High leads me to believe that I was not alone in my approach.  

So unless our critics can give specific examples of our indoctrinating of students I would ask you to stop slandering me and my colleagues. And if you can give an example of a student who says that I was biased in my teaching I can offer several hundred who will support my claims.

Roger Rusmisel

Fish Springs

Concerns over critical race theory criticisms


My concern about the inroads Critical Race Theory progressive ideology is making in the Douglas County school district certainly sparked some backlash (April 27 and May 4).

As usual in disputes over serious matters, an abundance of misunderstandings (sometimes born from ignorance and sometimes created deliberately) prompt assertions and defenses that do not reflect what the argument is actually about. Here are two examples pertinent to what I am fighting about:

1. I am a strong advocate for Douglas County’s teachers. I believe the teachers here in our county are doing a great job. If anything, I think they are undervalued. I am a retired teacher. I taught teachers how to teach at California State University, Fullerton.

2. I do not assert, and have never asserted, that Douglas County has bad schools or does not provide its students with a good education. 

What I find problematic is that our current school board isn’t taking adequate efforts to stop CRT from insinuating itself into the policies it approves and implements, and, in fact, has adopted the stance that CRT is some kind of political hoax that no one has to worry about at all. The world of education (at large) is a progressive world, with outright Marxists holding top positions in academia and in teachers’ unions. Over the last five years or so, an intense push to get progressive (CRT+LGBTQIA+gender fluid) ideology into K-12 schools has been going on.

I don’t have to visit any school to verify if progressive ideology is in DCSD schools. Here is a list of successful incursions into the DCSD that already have happened:

Professional Development includes units that are straight CRT. One particular book, “Cultural Responsiveness and the Brain” that all new teachers read is based on the idea of “Systemic Racism” and offers “remedies” that foster equality of outcomes (a CRT ideology). A panel within the school district weighs in how well programs fulfill the requirements of “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” (a CRT enforcement mechanism), the sex education program has been revised to reflect progressive (CRT+intersectionality) ideology, such as children identifying as transgender. Discipline policy has incorporated “Restorative Justice” and “Restorative Practices” (both based on the idea of “Systemic Racism” and both tied to CRT).

A hot topic regarding CRT is the DCSD program called Social Emotional Learning (SEL). SEL tells schools how to teach “values” to students and puts the “state” in the role of parents (another CRT progressive pillar). I have been told repeatedly by DC board members that parents are too busy or incapable of doing that themselves, so SEL is “absolutely necessary.” 

Douglas County is not a Democrat (“progressive”) stronghold. Rather, according to voter registrations, it has a sizable majority of those who fall into the category of “right of center.” I am fighting to keep our children from being taught progressive ideology that contradicts traditional values. 

The Douglas County School Board needs to clearly reject CRT (and all the progressive ideologies associated with it). Period.

Virginia Starrett


Sad state of affairs


It is a sad state of affairs when people [an article titled Putin voting for Trump appeared in RC on May 4 by Irene Rice] parroting the propaganda of the left to cover for the failing unpopular Biden administration. During the Trump administration, no moves were made against US by Putin because Pres Trump made clear the consequences of such action.   Questionable election of Biden, 50/50 Senate and 4 person majority in the house.The Left took it for a mandate to  overhaul the US economy from America First Trump policies to America Last. [ The green energy agenda will have a minimal effect on climate, will cost over $50 Trillion and will benefit mostly the globalists and China]  Biden appears bent on recreation of Carter’s problemsome presidency.  [Cote Pres Trump]  [unfair comparison Biden to Carter ,Carter mishandled crisis after crisis, Biden has created crisis after crisis]  Ms Rice’s reference to 1/6/21 riot, non violent, over hyped,  Pres. Trump recommended  10000 guardsmen to Nancy Palosi 3 days earlier  which she turned down. In the 150 plus riots during summer of 2020 by BLM and Antifa, Thousands of law men were injured, more than a dozen killed, over $2billion in damages and nobody held responsible.  Putin was emboldened to invade Ukraine , after the tepid action  of  Obama Biden adm. in 2014 for  annexation of Crimea,  They gave Pillows and Blankets ,unlike Trump who supplied Javelins and Stinger missiles to Ukraine.. Then came the fiasco of Afghanistan  Two months into the conflict, Biden promised $30 Billion in aid to Ukraine {None for our southern border where over 2million/year illegal crossings  Projected to grow to 7million/year if title 42 is lifted.]  His policies on energy  are increasing  the oil revenues to Russia by over 180 billion/year [funds the war with these revenues] and doubling the cost of gasoline at the to US citizens, limiting the supply of over 6000 chemicals derived from oil, being a major part of the inflation up tick from 1.4% to 8.5%,, He has also with his talk of regime change  brought  us to the brink of Nuclear confrontation with Russia  which would result in mutual destruction..  Some other worrisome development’s   from Biden. 1 Potential Compromises  because of Hunter  2 Roe vs Wade, Used for fundraising by Democrats, protests at homes of justices, Abortion is not mentioned as a right in the Constitution, transfers authority to state legislatures, 63 million babies terminated since 1973, If a pregnant woman is killed it is a double homicide & abortion is ok, Mandatory  vaccination for Covid19 OK.  

3 Ministry of Disinformation under the umbrella of Homeland Security {similar to Orwell’s 1984]   4  Transgender,CRT and Wokeness  5 Promise of gas rebates, Reparation and student loan forgiveness to obtain votes for the upcooming elections.

Mark Tarvainen




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