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IQ: You be the expert 

The 1999-2000 legislative session is over, but polls suggest the majority of Coloradoans think our lawmakers should have done more to promote sensible gun limitation, growth control and public education. We asked the man and woman on the street their views on issues lately in the news.

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Carl Madearis
Pastor of Vineyard Christian Fellowship

Neighborhood: Shook's Run
What's your favorite or least favorite new Colorado law? I've lived in Colorado Springs since 1975, but I spend a lot of my time overseas in Beirut, Lebanon. I'm not real up on new Colorado laws.

What do you think about the recent proposal for English-only education in public school? I think it's potentially dangerous. We live in a pluralistic society, and we have a large Hispanic population in Colorado. It would be sad to pass a law requiring English-only education.

How would you fix public education? Fund education better and require smaller class sizes. My wife and I are both teachers, and I have a graduate degree from UCCS in Education. I speak from experience in saying that when you get more than 25 kids to a classroom, you're asking for trouble.

Should gun purchases require background checks? Definitely. I'm neither pro-NRA nor anti-gun, but I strongly feel that people who can't pass a background check shouldn't have a gun. And surely the people who hunt and target practice can wait a few days to get their guns.

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Debby Hacking
Works at Cheap Tickets Neighorhood: West Side
What's your favorite or least favorite new Colorado law? I don't like it that they didn't pass tougher gun control laws, like trigger locks.

What do you think about the recent proposal for English-only education in public school? If we can provide services for students who really need them, why not do it? If you can't speak English, being taught in English doesn't do you much good.

How would you fix public education? Kids aren't learning things that apply to everyday life. They should find a way to get trade schools back into the high schools so that graduates who don't go to college can get jobs.

Should gun purchases require background checks? Yes, oh yes. It's too easy to get guns. Our streets, restaurants and schools aren't safe. We need more restrictions on guns.

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Bob Weizenecker
Electrical engineer Neighborhood: Manitou Springs
What's your favorite or least favorite new Colorado law? My least favorite is Gov. Owens' law about report cards for schools. It doesn't take differences between schools into account.

What do you think about the recent proposal for English-only education in public school? I think it's a good idea. Kids that can't speak English need to get some help to learn it.

How would you fix public education? Pay teachers better. They're grossly underpaid.

Should gun purchases require background checks? Yes. It's another step to keep guns out of the hands of criminals. It doesn't stop criminals from getting guns, of course, but not having checks would make it way too easy.

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