In today’s political society there is an abundance of commercial campaigning.  Whether on the television or radio, citizens are guaranteed to hear many of these advertisements. Many of these political announcements are not made to build a certain candidate, but to portray them in a negative light. According to a CNN Politics an online article (http://articles.cnn.com/2007-10-15/politics/ad.spending) political TV commercials topped 2.3 billion dollars in 2006. The article also mentions that 2006 spending on political commercials was nearly doubled in 2008, reaching 3 billion dollars. With the dramatic increase from 2006 to 2008, we can only imagine our candidate’s currant spending. This is a large amount of money that could be used for a greater purpose, such as financially assisting tutor/mentor programs.

Much like political ads, the need for funding tutor/mentor programs can be made into a public plea. If the billions of dollars that candidates spend on ignorant slander of their competitors were spent to inform the public on the need for tutor/mentor program funding, politicians could use their power to raise awareness, especially on the West Side.  With some of the money candidates waste on advertising is used for tutor/mentor programs Tutor/mentor programs provide children in need with stability they may not have at home, as well as opportunities their family or school may not provide to them.  Because the West side has a higher rate of poverty than other areas in Chicago, it is essential that their programs receive funding.  Certain areas of the West Side, including East Garfield, do not have tutor/mentor programs available.  It is hard to say if tutor/mentor programs will see government funding, but we believe that it is more then needed.  Government officials should be leading by example and finding a way for public dollars to reach not for profit tutor/mentor programs.  In return this would familiarize citizens of tutor/mentor program and their importance.

With new government officials receiving their positions, we challenge the next Explore Chicago: the Tutor/Mentor Program to investigate the new leaders stance on education, poverty, and most importantly tutor/mentor programs.  Not only do we challenge them to gain knowledge on the subject, but also to act on what they have learned.  Blogging is an effective way to voice an opinion, but we ask of them to take their voice step farther.  It is time to be proactive, write a letter to local government official discussing what they learned and present a proposal.  An effective and professional proposal could initiate action and make a difference.

 

Next year’s bloggers have the foundation set for their research.  They have neighborhood stats, funding options, and specific tutor/mentor centers readily available.  Using this information, they can now go directly to the centers (whether it be through email, phone contact, or site visitations) to get stories from those who frequent the program: directors, volunteers, and of course, the children.  Next year’s bloggers have an important job.  They must put names to the faces, and give blog viewers a more personal, relatable, subject matter.

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