Taxes — we shudder at the very sound of the word. In fact, we do more than shudder: We complain about it, we dread it; we vow to throw out the bums in elected office who copiously impose them on us. We also argue amongst ourselves about them: Do we keep the Bush tax cuts or do we dispose of them like last night’s trash? Taxation, like marriage, is for better or worse, we live with it, as we do with the shadow of death, the only other guarantee in life, according to Ben Franklin.
Legislation to help ensure that all students have a safe, harassment-free and discrimination-free environment to learn was signed into law this week, Senator Craig Johnson announced.
The “Dignity for all Students Act” is designed to provide all students with a safe and nurturing school environment conducive to learning by putting an end to harassment and discrimination based on, but not limited to, race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender, or sex.
“Intimidation and persecution are lessons that no child should have to learn in school,” Senator Johnson said. “As the father of three young children, I am proud to have helped sponsor this legislation to create strong statewide protections for all students.”
In order to foster a safer, more constructive school environment, the law:
Prohibits harassment or discrimination against students by employees or students while on school property or on school grounds;
Defines “harassment” as the creation of a hostile environment by conduct, verbal threats, intimidation, or abuse that has or would unreasonably interfere with educational performance, opportunities, benefits, or physical or emotional well-being, or cause fear for physical safety;
Prohibits discrimination based on an individual’s actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender, or sex.
Senator Johnson sees this victory as a great first step, but still believes strong legislation to address cyber-bullying or Internet-based bullying is necessary to truly make an impact in today’s technology driven world.
“We must continue to fight for a strong, comprehensive piece of legislation that will protect our children on the Internet,” said Senator Johnson, who in 2007 created a cyber-bullying education program for schools within his district. “The Internet has provided bullies an entirely new playground.”
Primaries are bruising events, often more contentious than general elections because they are intra-party affairs which tend to result in family fights. This year’s primaries provide an opportunity to reflect on the grandest of all spectacles: American democracy.
Once again, the nation marked Labor Day with a sense of foreboding as unemployment numbers continue to menacingly hover around the double digit mark. Washington’s $850 billion stimulus was supposed to put people to work but it has had, if anything, a deadening effect on economic growth.
In the wake of the saddest moment in our nation’s history, members of Long Island’s family came to the beach at Point Lookout and gazed to the west in shock and disbelief. The weeks following the attacks of September 11th witnessed neighbors returning to the waters of the Atlantic in deep reflection. The soothing waves cresting the shore, the infinite horizon of the ocean and the warm sparkling sands has drawn so many of us back on an annual pilgrimage to this location on the anniversary of 9-11.
A plan to build a new skyscraper near the Empire State Building has antagonized urban esthetes who view the construction as graceless, unnecessary and out of place.
The following are trustee reports from the Aug. 17 Floral Park Village board meeting.
Trustee Tweedy reported that during the month of July the Building Department issued 13 building permits, one amended permit, seven plumbing permits, 16 electrical permits, six fence permits and nine miscellaneous permits. The Architectural Review Board heard six new cases and one sign application. There were no cases heard by the Zoning Board of Appeals during the month of July.
On Tuesday, Sept. 7, the Sewanhaka Central High School District will open its doors to approximately 8,500 students. This marks the 82nd opening of school in the district, which has received national recognition for the quality of its educational programs.
Oscar Wilde, the celebrated satirist, once wrote “the only duty we have to history is to rewrite it.” I note this little jibe among the criticisms, fast and furious, being directed by some of our political leaders at the benighted rabble (their constituents) who have dared to raise objections about building a 15-story high mosque/Islamic center just 600 feet from where the rubble of the Twin Towers had lain.
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