LETTERS: Drivers need better roads; Police Academy garners praise

Drivers need better roads

From the time someone starts driving the law inculcates into one that driving is a privilege. Therefore, mostly everyone feels obligated to put up with certain things like speed limits and always wearing your seatbelt.

Now, although things like these are understandable, there are still a few things where the public road system lacks perspective, such as making sure that every road is always made or fixed to its full potential.

For example, many people have to go through the struggle of replacing their wheel or tire because of an unfixed pothole in the road. Not only that, but bad roads even go as far as to damaging the suspension of certain vehicles.

Furthermore, this starts taking a toll on the pocket of the public. Not to mention that the public already pays enough taxes for things like this and to pay even more is absurd.

However, as mentioned, it is arguable that driving is a privilege. not a right. after all it is said. “Beggars can’t be choosers,” but we have to remember that the “driving is a privilege, not a right” law was made a long time ago.

Therefore, it is not so simple putting the law into action since in today’s society driving seems to be more of a necessity rather than a want. For these reasons, it is important that a change in the public road system is needed, whether it is city officials taking care of damages done to vehicles by the roads they have not fixed or bringing out new ideas so the public will not be affected so much.

Jayda De Leon

Mission

Police Academy garners praise

On Oct. 16 I had the privilege of graduating from the McAllen Citizens Police Academy. Like many people, I thought that one calls 911 or a non-emergency number and an officer shows up. But there is much more to it than that.

For 10 weeks, our class got an in-depth look at all the departments at the McAllen Police Department with the leaders of each department, who explained how it is run and how it interweaves with the other departments to work on lowering the crime rate in McAllen. So far, the crime rate has fallen for the last nine years.

From the time dispatch gets the call to the arraignment process, we learned the processes. One example is to give dispatchers as much information as you can while they are sending help so the officers can arrive quicker and are more prepared to help. Also, we participated in a ride-along and a day at the McAllen shooting range. I was surprised to learn that some of the groups like SWAT and K9 are volunteer officers. They do their regular patrol shifts and train on their own time. The Texas Anti-Gang/Texas Transnational Intelligence Center program unique to the MPD allows interagency communications.

Questions are encouraged and answered. While the subjects are serious, the atmosphere wasn’t heavy. A group of strangers started the CPA but by the end, we were friends. At graduation, a binder with each presentation from the departments was ours to keep.

I would like to thank Chief Victor Rodriguez and all the people who were involved in teaching us so much. Particularly, I’d like to mention Capt. Irene Luna and Sgt. Gaston Balli along with all the Community Support Services officers for their dedication to the McAllen community.

If you live or work in McAllen and want to take this annual class, call 956- 681- 2120.

Catherine Heckel

McAllen

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