Easing the congestion

Seeing people walk in Santa Maria is rare. The only thing seen on the streets are cars.

This fast-paced lifestyle is changing our interaction with the environment. Traffic congestion in Santa Maria should be regulated by more people using alternative types of transportation.

Cars get stuck in the traffic for long periods of time, usually afternoons. Most families have at least one car. Traffic is concentrated on the major streets. For example, Main Street and Broadway are usually congested because they connect with the freeway entrances and exits.

Bicycles are a good way to avoid traffic, but people feel insecure about walking or using a bicycle. And some drivers don’t respect bicycle lanes.

However, walking or using a bicycle will change our lifestyles in a healthier way. According to the Centers for Disease Control, “communities where more residents walk or bike to work boast significantly healthier weights.”

Bicycles are faster for travel than walking, can help lower cholesterol levels, improve the performance of the cardiovascular system and improve lung capacity.

When traffic levels are reduced, air quality improves. Another way to reduce the high levels of traffic is more people should ride-share. Also, more people could ride the bus, which is cheaper than using a car.

If you are considering making a change, you should think about using alternative forms of transportation. Everyone in the community can help to make a change.

Liliana Garcia

Santa Maria

Gender bias is hurtful

Gender discrimination is something we sometimes think is over, but it’s still a problem. Discriminating based on gender should end.

According to The Balance, “An example of gender stereotypes exists in the belief that it is the woman's job, simply because of her sex (female) to stay home and take care of their children,” while the men go to work and bring in the money.

Women aren’t just made to receive orders of men. Being a woman doesn’t make them less than anyone. Every person has good and bad. Being a man doesn’t give the right to treat a woman like if they aren’t worth it. A woman can do things as good as a man.

Being a woman doesn’t mean she can’t work and that she needs to stay at home doing chores. There are many women who have good jobs — lawyer, human resources manager, pharmacist, and many other jobs, and they are good at it. Every person is good in something and it doesn’t matter if you’re a women or a man.

Gender discrimination needs to stop because every person should be equal, no matter what your gender. Discriminating against a person because of gender is something that should stop.

Yoana Tadeo

Santa Maria

Sex education is important

Parents don’t talk to their teens enough about sex. We have a lot of teen pregnancy and STD. There are a lot of websites and books to help, but parents have to educate themselves to speak about sex with their kids.

Parents need to talk more about sex with their kids at an early age and provide them with information. It’s also essential to let them ask you questions. Children have questions that may be embarrassing, but the way you choose to answer can make a difference. Be open to them, let them trust you.

The internet has a lot of information for teens about sex. There are clinics that provide services for teens who might need condoms or birth control. There are also abortion clinics that you don’t need the permission of your parents to go to. Planned Parenthood is one of the clinics that is nonprofit and helps teens and adults get medical help and checkups.

Parents and teens have no excuse because the knowledge is out there, and for them not to be aware of free condoms, avoiding pregnancies at an early age or even STD’s is absurd.

Ana Palomar

Santa Maria

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