The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


March 23, 2014

Readers' Forum 3-23 | What values do we impart on our children?

JOHNSTOWN — The recent opinion column by Thomas Sabo (“Are we placing too much emphasis on winning?” March 17) lamenting society’s emphasis on winning over the “joy of effort” is an example of why Americans now feel their children won’t be better off than they are. Achievement now comes with an negative stigma.

Certainly, a professional-athlete mentality doesn’t belong in a church softball league. However, Sabo’s connection between a drive for success and poor sportsmanship is contrived at best. Every competition allows for a lesson in sportsmanship. I was taught that being a good sport in victory is more important than in defeat. If his softball league missed an opportunity, it’s because he failed to take it.

How can we expect children to be successful if we teach them that winning isn’t important or that their winning is the cause of others losing? What’s the value in excellence when everyone gets a trophy? These values will not help our children find a job to support their family.

We live in a society that glorifies Occupy Wall Street protestors over the 1 percenters who became successful. We live in a country where the president’s priority is to fix income inequality by demonizing those at the top instead of encouraging those at bottom to do better. What can we expect from our children and grandchildren when we tell them that everyone should have the same success regardless of their effort?

Sabo is entitled to his opinion. I just wish he had kept it to himself.

David Black


City Council shows a lack of caring

The people of Johnstown are getting ripped off. It’s time City Council find a way to help homeowners pay for expensive pressure testing.

If something positive is not done in Johnstown, the city will become a ghost town. Everybody will leave instead of paying this unfair sewer fee.

The city had to have seen this coming, but did not care. That’s bad management.

Also, I have lived in Johnstown all my 62 years and have paid my school and property taxes, garbage and water bills, but come time for Thunder in the Valley, I don’t matter. People and/or vendors block me from getting to my house along Washington Street.

John Zawalish


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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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