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The Suburbanite
  • Frank T. Bow yields to Ralph Regula

  • THE ISSUE:  Canton’s new federal building 


    OUR VIEW:  A welcome addition downtown

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  • Frank T. Bow was Stark County’s Ralph Regula before there was a Ralph Regula.
    Not literally, of course. Regula, who served 36 years as Stark County’s U.S. representative before retiring almost 18 months ago, was a boy and young man during Bow’s time in Congress.
    Bow served in the U.S. House from 1951 to 1972. A year later, following his death, the federal office building at Cleveland Avenue SW and Third Street was named in his honor.
    In a week, the Frank T. Bow Federal Building will be empty. The few remaining federal offices still in the Bow building — the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the U.S. Marshal’s Office and a few others — will move to the new federal building a few blocks away. Others will join them.
    When built in the 1930s, the edifice that later would be named for Representative Bow was greeted with pride in Canton, a city riding high on an economic boom. Downtown bustled then. The building was long a hub of government activities, including the main city post office.
    Yet now the building, which has historical and architectural distinction inside and out, is deemed worn out. The federal government chose to replace it rather than invest in fixing it.
    Fittingly, its replacement at McKinley Avenue SW and Fourth Street is the newly constructed Ralph Regula Federal Building.
    Canton is much different than it was in the 1930s. The new federal office building is less an expression of pride than a seed of hope downtown. Let’s hope it takes root.
    SPRECHEN DIE MANDERIN?
    We applaud the Jackson Local School District for taking a deliberate approach to changing its high school foreign languages program.
    The district now offers four languages: German, French, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. The coming retirement of the district’s German teacher prompted a review.
    So the district conducted a community survey to weigh public interest in several foreign languages. The results: Spanish, favored by 25 percent; Chinese, 19 percent; French, 15 percent; German and Japanese, both 15 percent; Arabic, Italian and Latin, all 6 percent.
    Based on the survey, Jackson High School will drop German.
    Thank you, Jackson schools, for soliciting public opinion — and for keeping languages with the most potential for preparing students for global careers.