The Canadian Record (Canadian, Tex.), Vol. 109, No. 72, Ed. 1 Thursday, May 27, 1999 Page: 4 of 32
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to the editors
THURSDAY 27 MAY 1999_7lfe ^attoRECORI)
to the editors J
Drunk drivers claim Deadly rail
too many victims crossings
TOO MANY TEXANS still die in drunk driving crashes. Sadly, in fact,
Texas leads the nation in alcohol-related traffic fatalities. In 1997, the
number of alcohol-related deaths on the roads in Texas alone accounted
for more than 10% of the nation’s total. But it’s time for a change, and
Texans are ready and waiting.
A recent statewide poll reported that the majority of Texans think
current drunk driving laws are too lenient and that drivers who fail the
sobriety test or refuse a police officer’s request to take the test should
have their driver’s license suspended for longer periods than the current
law allows. Overwhelmingly, 86% of Texans favor a one-year guaran-
teed license suspension period for repeat offenders.
Texas lawmakers have a chance to help turn the tide by adopting
Senate Bill 1774, authored by State Senator Judith Zaffirini of Laredo.
The bill lengthens the suspension period for second offenders and for
those who refuse a sobriety test The bill in its current form also allows
officers to confiscate a driver’s license upon arrest.
A wide cross section of organizations has thrown support behind the
bill including Texas MADD; the Century Council, which is funded by
America’s leading distillers; the Texas District and County Attorneys
Association; the Texas Medical Association; the Texas Academy of
Family Physicians; USAA; the Texas Police Chief Association; AAA-
Texas and other groups committed to reducing the number of alcohol-
related fatalities in Texas.
Texans deserve and want safer streets, and public opinion has swung
firmly in favor of tougher laws to achieve them. Legislators have a great
opportunity in SB1774. The people of Texas deserve it.
JOHN C. LAWN, Chairman ft CEO, The Century Council
ON YOUR PAYROLL
U.S. President Bill Clinton
1600 Pennsylvania Ave„ N.W.. Washington. DC 20500. (202)456-1414
Fax: (202)456-2461. e-mail: email@example.com
U.S. Vice President Al Gore
Old Executive Office Building, 17th St. & Pennsylvania Ave., N W, Washington.
DC 20500. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison
284 Russell Senate Office Building. Washington. D C. 20510. (202)224-5922
U.S. Senator Phil Gramm
370 Russell Senate Office Building. Washington. DC 20510. (202)224-2934 or
Lubbock Office (806)743-7533. e-mail: email@example.com
U.S. Rep. Mac Thom berry
131 Cannon House Office Building. Washington. DC 20515. (202)225-3706 or
Amarillo Office at 724 $. Polk St.. Suite 400. AmanKo 79101, (806)371-8844
e-mail: http://www.house.gov (dick on Write Tour Representative)
Governor George W. Bush
PO. Box 12428, Austin. TX 78711, (512)463-2000, (800)843-5789
Fax: (512)463-1849, http://www.govemor.state.tx.us
Lieutenant Governor Rick Perry
PO. Box 12068. Austin. TX 78711-2068. (512)463-0001
Fax: (512)463-0039, http://www.senate.state.tx.us
Attorney General John Comyn
PO. Box 12548. Austin. TX 78711-2548. (512)463-2191, (800)252-8011
Fax: (512)463-2063. http://www.oag.state.tx.us
Comptroller of Public Accounts Carole Keeton Rylander
PO. Box 13528. Austin. TX 78711-3528. (512)463-4600. (800)252-5555
Fax: (512)475-0352. http://www.window.state.tx.us
Texas Land Commissioner David Dewhurst
1700 N. Congress Ave , Austin. TX 78701-1495. (512)463-5001
Fax: (512)475-1558, http://www.glo.state.tx.us
Texas Agriculture Commissioner Susan Combs
PO. Box 12847, Austin. TX 78711-2847, (512)463-7476, (800)TELL-TDA
State Senator Teel Bivins
PO. Box 9155, Amarillo. TX 79105, (806)374-8994. Fax: (806)374-4607
Speaker of the House James E. “Pete” Laney
State Capitol. PO Box 2910. Austin 78768-2910 (512)463-3000
Fax: (512)463-5896, http://www.house.state.tx.us
State Representative Warren Chisum
PO. Box 2061, Pampa. TX 79066-2061, (806)665-3552, Fax: (806)669-1095
DURING “OPERATION Life-
saver Week’ earlier this month, I
had the opportunity to talk to
thousands of Texans about the
importance of rail safety. Such a
reminder seems particularly
timely with newly licensed driv-
ers, as well as Texas vacationers,
preparing to fill our state’s roads
Texas, with more rail cross-
ings than any other state in the
nation, still leads the country in
rail-crossing crashes. Surpris-
ingly, most of these collisions oc-
curred during daylight hours, in
clear weather, with unobstructed
driver views. What is more, over
26% involved motorists running
into the side of a train already at
a crossing. As I remind Texans
across our state, a car simply can-
not beat a train. Nor can a train
stop quickly. In fact, a 100-car
freight train requires the length
of 18 football fields to come to a
In 1998, Texans saw a 24% de-
crease in rail-crossing collisions
and a 17% and 18% decrease* in
rail-crossing fatalities and inju-
ries, respectively. Those de-
creases are undoubtedly due in
part to the hard work of Operation
Lifesaver presenters throughout
the state and the successful
service announcement campaign.
I am confident that continued fo-
cus on prevention and education is
the key to seeing that trend con-
During our Operation Life-
saver Week tour, I urged Texans
to follow the sound advice our
mothers gave us years ago—stop,
look and listen. If you do, we can
live. By following these simple,
common-sense guidelines, count-
less lives could be spared in Texas
each year. Yet, simple though it
may sound, we had 287 tragic rail-
crossing collisions in Texas last
Those crashes could have been
avoided had drivers and pedestri-
ans been attentive to the real dan-
gers of railroad crossings.
All Texans should follow Op-
eration Lifesaver’s sound advice
and obey state traffic and tres-
passing laws relating to railroad
tracks. Pay close attention to
warning signs, flashing lights and
oncoming trains. Finally, listen
closely for warning bells and en-
gine horns. Doing so could save
lives—perhaps your own or that
of a loved one.
I WAS LOOKING at all the awards given out at the Athletic Banquet,
and was wondering: Did any athlete that played football or basketball
not get an award?
If 1 was on the golf team, I would be upset. Only one award! And it
was given to just one athlete. English wasn’t my best class In school,
but isn’t “golfer" singular, like, say, “lineman," or “girls basketball
player,” and especially “Fightingest Wildcat!"
As for the golf team, all I can think of is that next year they will add
awards for the “lowest score" and the “longest drive" to go along with
the additional award. For basketball, the “best lO1* man off the bench”
award, and for football, the much-anticipated and prestigious “best
second-string lineman” award. Pa-leese! Enough is enough.
The school dress code
I WOULD LIKE to respond to the article about the student dress code.
I have been a substitute teacher for 12 years, and have spent many days
at the high school.
There is indeed a problem with the attire some students choose to
wear to school. Although sleeveless clothes are allowed, many are very
inappropriate. There are many times when a good portion of a girl’s
underclothes ( I don't mean just straps) ran he seen through the
armholes. This is inappropriate dress, and I believe where Mr. Jackson
should be able to use his discretion.
There are many times that although not specifically addressed in the
dress code, children come to school ina|ipropriately dressed. We, as
parents, should more closely monitor our children’s clothes. And if they
art* sent home to change, we should respect that derision by our
principals, and also show our children we respect that decision.
Most of our prinri|udx and teachers have over 10 years experience
in the teaching field. I think that experience qualifies them aa much
more knowledgeable about teaching children than many parents who
have never set foot in a classroom. Any (uirent knows how difficult it is
to be fair and consistent with our own children for the few hours we have
them after school. Try being completely fair and consistent with 50 or
60 children 7 hours a day 5 days a week.
I think our teachers and administ rators deserve more of our support
and respect, instead of our grumbling. We es|>erially need to make sure
our children don't hear our grumbling about teachers and principals. If
we can show that kind of disrespect, why should our children show them
I thank Polly Farrar for her support of Mr. Jackson during theCISD
Community team effort for
Project Graduation praised
SOOFTEN I INTEND to write a letter commenting on our community
and its goings on, but I never seem to get it done. Well now, I speak of
the good in our community.
So often the first experiences are not good ones, but when they are,
you feel like celebrating. I am speaking about Project Graduation.
Thank you notes have been written, and acknowledgments put in the
business window. But I just want to add how much I appreciate every-
one working with all the seniors' parents on behalf of our young men
and women who graduated Saturday evening. It took a lot of sweat and
hard work, but it was all well worth it. Accomplished with great team
And last but not least, I want to address our townspeople. The
economy has seen better days, but through the generusity and kindness
of our area, we pulled it off. It is the people of Canadian and in Hemphill
and surrounding counties that make it the wonderftil place it is that our
kids can leave to further their education and be proud to call it home. I
have two great places in the Panhandle I am proud to call home.
Thanks again to each and everyone.
Take cart and God Bloss.
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Ezzell, Nancy & Brown, Laurie Ezzell. The Canadian Record (Canadian, Tex.), Vol. 109, No. 72, Ed. 1 Thursday, May 27, 1999, newspaper, May 27, 1999; Canadian, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth746433/m1/4/: accessed April 19, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Hemphill County Library.