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Deer season,

a time for safety

For many people who love hunting, the most important season of the year begins today.

Hunter education has helped make deer hunting safer than in years past.

Back in the olden days, people would nail boards to a tree and call it a deer stand. Thankfully that practice is mostly obsolete.

However, tree stand injuries still account for half of the injuries during deer season.

Never climb into a tree stand with a firearm, loaded or not. After you are in the tree stand and have attached the fall arrest system, pull your firearm up to you — muzzle down — with a haul line. Then load the gun.

Do not place a loaded rifle in the vehicle. There is no reason to have a loaded hunting gun in the vehicle.

Plan your hunt and hunt your plan. Let someone know where you will be hunting. If someone has to come looking for you, they need to know where to begin looking. Also, have a charged phone with you.

If you are approached by a Conservation agent, be respectful and follow instructions.

Mostly, always keep the muzzle of your firearm pointed in a safe direction. This universal gun safety rule saves lives and prevents tragedies. Accidents are preventable.

ABC — always be careful. Be safe out there. Don’t let the thrill of the hunt turn tragic.

Missouri needs and depends upon deer hunters to manage the deer population. Your families need and depend upon you. Be careful and enjoy the hunt.

Sean Harper

St. Joseph

District should give

teachers bigger raises

I don’t know what is wrong with the people on the St. Joseph school board.

We just recently put new replacement windows in our schools. Then we air-conditioned our schools. Next, we built very expensive fieldhouses for our high schools. The last three schools built in our city were all desperately needed, or so we were told. The third newest school, Lake Contrary, is no longer used as a school. Oak Grove was built so large that now we are renting out “office space” in it?

Our three high schools will stand for another 200 years. They are virtual fortresses. The last very quietly advertised vote for the $0.61 increase was so teachers could get a raise. I don’t consider a measly 1-percent hike a raise, but an insult instead.

However, more positions were added in the Downtown office. We must have made a mistake with hiring Superintendent Doug Van Zyl, because the first thing he wants is more money and paying outside people to come in and propose more tax increases. I say be happy with the $141 million you already are getting and do like the rest of us — get creative and use your high-priced educations and figure it out.

This last slap in the face to teachers is the last “yes” you are going to get. In spite of the fact that our enrollment numbers are going down just as fast as our test scores, Van Zyl thinks the problem is the buildings? The problem is the Downtown office, where they still refuse to address bullying and overworked, underpaid teachers.

Sandra Horn

St. Joseph