Letters: Other views on Tlaib, admissions scandal

The Detroit News
U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Detroit, and impeachment activists speak to the press in her office on Capitol Hill.

Tlaib's disturbing flirtation with anti-Semites

Recently, Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s office hosted a fringe group of rabbis that believe that Jews deserved the Holocaust and call for the destruction of the Jewish state.

This comes following a week when her fellow freshman, Rep. Ilhan Omar, was again condemned for engaging in anti-Semitic tropes. This is a sentiment Tlaib herself expressed back in January.

Then recently it was discovered that the congresswoman’s Instagram account followed a page littered with yet more anti-Semitic slurs. These include a post claiming that the Nation of Israel was responsible for the 9/11 attacks, and an image depicting a rat embossed with the Star of David and reading, “the real plague.”

Shortly after this was discovered, Tlaib stopped following this account and added a sentence in her profile cautioning that following an account does not equal an endorsement of that account’s content.

This is not nearly sufficient enough an explanation for following such an obviously bigoted account, nor much of an apology for doing so.

So voters in the 13th should ask ourselves whether this is the type of leadership we are comfortable representing us in Congress. No one can doubt Tlaib’s commitment to progressive politics, but it should be asked what she’s doing to actually achieve progressive wins.

Rep. Haley Stevens from nearby in Michigan’s 11th District is championing skills training programs for jobs in the light manufacturing sector. What is Tlaib doing for her constituents?

I’ll be happy to eat my words if Congresswoman Tlaib succeeds in impeaching the president, but even if that comes to pass, I don’t believe her constituents should have to countenance her flirtation with various anti-Semitic groups.

Paul Corbett


Hit reset on college planning priorities

Like most of America, I have been intrigued by “Operation Varsity Blues.” And, like most middle-age parents, the college planning and college admission process is always on my mind.

When I was in high school, I don’t recall much of an obsession about college. Most of the focus was on future job skills, and whether college or trade school were the best pathway to a secure job. College preparation was the responsibility of the school and the student.

In contrast to my late parents, my generation has been very focused on the activities and opportunities of our children. Parental responsibility has increased, but so has parental interference.

In stark contrast to this, today’s over-involved "helicopter" parents work to minimize their child’s failures. I believe parents and educators should be encouraging their children to test their limits to the point of failure.

I am a general contractor and I see incredible opportunities in the construction trades and other college alternatives. Despite offering excellent careers, there is very little promotion of trade schools.

The college admission arms race values a perfect resume and perfectly crafted public persona. However, authenticity, grit, effort and communication are the better predictors of workforce and life success.

Every one of the families involved in the college admissions cheating scandal is now tarnished, having allegedly sacrificed their personal integrity in an attempt to construct a perfect image of their student. However, our parents knew that perfection was not the goal. Rather, the goal was to make a meaningful contribution to your family and community through respect, hard work and selfless behavior.

It might be time to hit the reset button on K-12 and college planning priorities.

Joseph Vig