Friday, Dec. 08, 2023 |
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Americans behind in reading
West Hawaii Today’s commentary (Sept. 19), “Teaching math the same old way won’t get us out of this mess,” got me thinking about how we teach reading.
Shouldn’t acquiring sufficient reading skills be the foremost educational priority, considering that every major subject requires one’s ability to read a textbook, directions or a test?
Talk about national deficiency! According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 21% of Americans are illiterate and unable to comprehend simple instructions, labels, signs, etc. That’s millions of vulnerable people needing important information they can’t decipher while trying to hold jobs and raise families.
Fifty-four percent of Americans aged 16-65 read below the sixth-grade level. Likely they struggled in school, trying to keep up — while being pushed from grade to grade — until graduating from high school without ever receiving the remedial reading enhancement they needed. Surely, you’ve noticed the people in today’s world who have found ways to mask their inability to read, avoiding the task whenever possible.
Once upon a time, leaders like Thomas Jefferson believed every American deserved the ability to use crucial reading skills to enhance their everyday life and fully participate in a democracy. Yet, you who are reading this newspaper are among the only 25% of advanced readers who can analyze and interpret its content, a legal document, a contract’s fine print, or a nonfiction book.
Those who solely depend on listening in order to receive information put themselves and all of us at risk. Easily led by charismatic scammers apparent in marketing, politics and even religion these days, their misguided decision-making often proves dangerous (as it did for those who believed Trump when he suggested drinking bleach to prevent COVID).
Unless we hire additional trained teachers who can provide the support necessary in the individualized complex process of learning to read, our nation continues to be at the mercy of an under-educated citizenry.
How China does business.
I have a website with a domain name. I received an inquiry from a “Mr. Tang” at the domain registration organization in China asking about it, as someone there wanted to use it.
I said I am not affiliated with them, and this is my registered name. Here is the response the company wanting to use the name sent me, edited to leave out the domain name details.
“We will register the China domain names … (my domain name) … and internet keyword … (my domain name) … and have submitted our application. We are waiting for Mr. Brian Tang approval and think these CN (China) domains and internet keyword are very important for our business. Even though Mr. Brian Tang advises us to change another name, we will persist in this name.”
So, they didn’t check in advance that someone already was using this name, and basically are saying we don’t care what our domain registration authority says, we are stealing the name anyway.
China, no wonder we put sanctions on you over intellectual property violations. You only seem to know how to steal.