Letters: Training Prisoners | STEM and the Arts

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The state education of prisoners
a life-changing program

Re: “College expanded for young inmates” (Page B1, April 20).

I am glad to hear that California is continuing to provide rehabilitative services for youth in the juvenile justice system. Incarcerated youth have the potential to make changes in their lives after release that can promote positive and healthy lifestyles if given the right tools.

As everyone told us, education is not only the best way to improve ourselves, but it also opens our eyes and mind to a different world and to different possibilities. A lot of the time, these young people think that these dreams are unattainable for them, but through the Project Change program, they are shown otherwise.

That this program is run by people who have been in the juvenile justice system themselves makes it even more valuable. They have lived first hand what it is like and know what changes need to be made.

Fabiola Aguirre
San Jose

Balance between STEM,
the arts are key in education

Re: “Theater ‘something missing’ in STEM-focused school” (Page B9, April 30).

STEM classes provide job preparation, but they do not prepare students to understand other people, learn to appreciate and value cultural differences, or how to speak at a conference. Art promotes focus, concentration and imagination. Dance teaches you how to walk and not spin in an interview. Studies have repeatedly shown that classical music aids thinking.

Students interested in the arts should have classes available. Students who are not interested in arts should also have art classes. Students who do not prefer STEM courses also need them. Balance is of great benefit to people. The arts teach us how to think, read without succumbing to propaganda, and find value in humanity.

Leslie Friedman
Mountain view

The rules of nature do
some sense towards animals

When do you stop protecting nature to save it?

On a recent walk at Sunset State Beach in southern Santa Cruz County, I came across an injured sea lion pup. I called the Marine Mammal Center, which is a great organization that routinely rescues these animals and has done so several times in this area.

However, due to a recent change in regulation, the California State Parks Agency now prohibits lifesaving from some of their beaches, including Sunset, which are designated as sensitive habitat due to the nesting sites of birds such as the snowy plover, a “species of special concern.”

While I have no problem with protecting the birds, the sea lion was far away from the nesting site on the beach where the rangers pass several times each day. This is no different than a mammal rescue truck coming once to pick up an injured animal.

Tom Herman
Morgan Hill

The state should remove
all child marriages

I am writing to express my concern about Section 302 of the Family Law Code, which allows child marriage under certain circumstances. While the intent of this law may have been to protect the interests of minors, it instead led to countless cases of forced marriages and exploitation.

Child marriage is a violation of basic human rights and has severe physical and psychological consequences, including increased risk of domestic violence and poverty. Allowing children to legally marry sends the message that their rights and well-being are not valued.

We must take a stand against child marriage and repeal Section 302 of the Family Law Code. Instead, we should focus on implementing policies that prioritize the safety and well-being of minors, such as increasing access to education and resources that empower them to make informed decisions about their lives.

Hana Mukhtar
San Jose

We have to vote ours
gun control way

May 6: Coronation of King Charles. Thousands on the streets of London. Nobody shoots. May 6: Texas. Eight shot and killed in shopping mall. 201st mass shooting in the US this year. How angry are you about the prevalence of gun violence in this county?

They shot a young man who rang the wrong doorbell. A woman is shot and killed for driving in the wrong lane. Cheerleader shot after getting into wrong car. Babies riding in the family car shot. Children shot while attending school where they should be safe.

Then again, there are those (think the gun lobby) who respond by saying that events should not be politicized. Yes, you should. The GOP’s response to this violence – arm teachers. More armed security on campuses. Abolish gun control laws. More guns. Can we find a solution? Unfortunately not, but we can try. Vote.

Carolyn Rakowski
Morgan Hill

Transgender harassment
distracts from problems

Instead of the headline “Transgender rights conflict heats up in the United States” (page A5, April 29), a more accurate headline would be “Transgender harassment continues.”

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