Cheers and jeers: January 2011 edition | Editorial

• Cheers to Federal Way’s Martin Luther King celebration for making a comeback in 2011. King ranks among history’s most influential icons. His words continue to inspire the cultural and social attitudes of Americans. More importantly, Federal Way’s celebration provides a cultural learning opportunity for residents across the city. King’s legacy brings out the best in people. Federal Way’s celebration brings hundreds of people together under one roof to honor that legacy. The event is a quintessential example of building community, and the more it’s done in Federal Way, the stronger Federal Way’s community fabric becomes.

• Cheers to the late Daisy Sonju, who included a $155,000 gift in her will to Highline Community College. Sonju, a Des Moines resident, never took a class at the college, and her donation did not come with any specifications. Nevertheless, the money will assist students who need it most. The Highline Foundation gives out about $100,000 each year in scholarships, emergency student aid and program support. Sonju’s gift is enough to help 20 students pay for eight full-credit semesters each.

• Jeers to the road rage incident that took place Jan. 2 in Federal Way. Auburn resident Josh Deraitus was shot in the head by an unknown suspect while stopped at South 304th Street and Military Road. Deraitus survived, but lost his left eye. Police are looking for the suspect.

• Cheers to South King Fire and Rescue firefighters for giving up wage raises in 2011. The firefighters union president said the concession was inspired by a desire to maintain service and minimize the impact of the rough economy. Regardless of the reason, taxpayers will appreciate the fire district’s proactive approach to saving more money.

• Jeers to the puzzling admiration that some Tea Party activists display for America’s founding fathers. The founding fathers embodied the same traits these activists hate today. If the Tea Party were alive 200 years ago, its supporters would have rallied against the founding fathers for being privileged elites who controlled the government and the nation’s wealth. And if Thomas Jefferson were president today, would we see these same protestors waving posters of Jefferson dressed like Hitler?

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