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Wiping out student loan debt in bankruptcy is unfair to families who sacrificed to pay for college

Sen. Dick Durbin hopes his new bill, Student Borrower Bankruptcy Relief Act of 2019, can build in an escape clause for student loan borrowers who he says carry their debts to their graves.  Sun-Times file photo

Senator Durbin, I have been a supporter of yours since at least 1997 and see no reason why I won’t continue to be one. My issue is student loan debt forgiveness via bankruptcy.

I understand student loan debt is out of control due to a broken college financial system.

However, what about all the parents and students who worked, sacrificed, and saved to help their kids pay for college? They get nothing?

This proposed policy will lead parents and students to expect they will not be responsible for student loans, and will only make the crisis worse.

My son is finishing his last year of college, and my daughter has three years to go. My wife and I have paid the full bill for them. I have seen firsthand how colleges waste too much money on non-educational spending.

My family took fewer vacations, drove older cars and worked longer hours while other middle-class families saved nothing, never attempted to, and basically just kicked the can down the road.

Senator, there must be a better way to solve this crisis, one that is fair to all of us. Banks and loan companies charge inflated rates on student loans and colleges make no attempt to reduce tuition.

Please consider this issue for my family, and other families that have sacrificed so much to get their kids through college the right way.

John Petersen, Belmont Heights

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Concrete steps to curb violence

I disagree with Mr. Green’s op-ed on stopping violence.

I also grew up in the ‘hood, the now-demolished projects in the Kenwood Oakland area along the lakefront. On any given nice day, hundreds of teens were playing, with no gunfire.

Now, guns are too easy to obtain. If the guns were as accessible then as they are now, I would not be here. The gangs now control the inner city. Parks are no longer safe, they’re empty.

First, the parents need to be employed.

There are too many able-bodied adults with non-violent offenses on their record who are denied jobs that pay well. I am sure if a proper audit were to be completed there are several hundred city employees with just a GED or high school education making $60,000 a year. Start there.

Expand and enforce the bonding program for private companies that hire ex-felons.

Two, the worst criminals need to be locked up and serve their full sentence. People need to know there is a penalty for the most violent offenders.

There must be proper security for the park district and the other organizations that have program for youth.

Also, bring back trade programs or create one that is affordable with private donations. If big business can cut a check for campaign donations, this one should be very easy.

Leonard Hamilton, Kenwood