Electing imperial rulers
It appears that Kansas and Egypt have something in common. Both have elected executives who want to neutralize the courts to advance their own dictatorial powers.
We elect our U.S. senators and representatives to lead, govern and commit to public service, thereby moving the United States forward to a better life.
It is clear from recent days, weeks and months that the current group is, in fact, incapable of such and would rather act immutable, petulant and, hence, go nowhere fast.
We need to hold these people accountable for not acting in the best interest of the United States and for not forging a path forward.
Instead, we have stalemate ad nauseam.
If they don’t do what they were elected for, voters should throw them out of office at the first opportunity. It is unfortunate that the next election is so far away.
Assault weapons clarity
There’s an outcry to ban assault weapons, but some clarity is needed. First, assault weapons come in several versions: automatic and semi-automatic.
Automatic means when you squeeze the trigger a large number of rounds are fired as long as the trigger is depressed. Semi-automatic versions fire one round every time the trigger is depressed, just like any other rifle or shotgun.
There’s already a ban on automatic assault weapons.
I don’t agree with the National Rifle Association’s proposal to arm school personnel because even though one is armed it takes a special frame of mind for the average individual to pull the trigger, and most people aren’t good marksmen.
The chance of hitting an innocent victim rather than the target is great. Armed guards also place a cost burden on schools.
A couple of days ago, my wife’s son proposed that school personnel be armed with mace. He said there is mace made for large animals that will shoot about 20 feet and incapacitate anything it hits.
Perhaps it’s time to end the rhetoric and investigate something like this. It isn’t deadly, and if people other than the target also get hit they recover.
John H. Brown Jr.
Shake up Congress
During the fiscal cliff crisis, the secretary of defense stated that the automatic cuts to the defense budget envisioned would gut the military and cause substantial harm to our national security. The new nominee for the Defense Department has clearly stated that the defense budget is too fat and must be trimmed substantially.
Who is lying to us this time? It seems that this administration is no better than any other in the lies it tells to get its agenda approved and then goes about its merry way.
Just look at all of the special-interest funds added to the aid that is supposed to be helping those affected by Hurricane Sandy.
Impeach and fire the lot of them. Start over, as the quote that is floating around says, “A little revolution, every now and then, is not such a bad thing.”
Enough of their lies and double-dealing. Vote the Congress out.
Smaller Kansas capital
With the Kansas Legislature and Gov. Sam Brownback calling for further tax cuts, perhaps we should also consider moving the state capital to Osawatomie.
It’s strange to read opinions of people who describe Barack Obama as the first failed president to get re-elected.
Unlike President George W. Bush, Obama did not prevaricate the country into an immensely costly and unnecessary war, as Bush did in Iraq. Nor was Obama foolish enough to cut taxes in wartime as Bush did.
Republicans now beat the drums for fiscal responsibility. They too conveniently forget that we owe much of the current deficit to the enormous tax cuts of Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bush, whose primary beneficiaries were the richest 2 percent.
Gail Collins column
Gail Collins’ Jan. 13 column, “On abortion, the nation remains deeply divided,” stated that women don’t like labels in regards to pro-life and pro-choice. They certainly wouldn’t if the label pro-choice were correctly called pro-death, which is the true opposite of pro-life.
The choice is life or death not life or “choice.” But too harsh? Tell that to the baby who had more than his feelings hurt.
Families lose dignity
I was dismayed to read about Kansas officials’ plans for changes to the discrete benefits card currently used by Kansans to access the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (1-12, A7, “Kansas considers a new red card for food stamps”).
According to the state website, the current vision card “looks and functions like a debit card.”
A red card shouting “Kansas Benefits” might function like a debit card, but it also would function like an undeserved scarlet letter.
Please, Department of Families and Children, select a design that respects the dignity of your fellow Kansans.
School funding debate
It is unbelievable that the rogue Kansas courts want to make the state allocate more funding for education (1-12, A1, “Kansas is ordered to boost school aid”).
The residents have spoken and given Gov. Sam Brownback even more support for his agenda.
Let the citizens spend more tax dollars on these frivolous items locally while Topeka devotes its money to important things such as giving tax breaks to companies to simply move across the state line.
Kansas conservatives are predictably outraged by “activist judges” forcing them to fund schools at a constitutionally appropriate level. Coming from people who constantly demand strict constitutional law at the federal level, this is laughable.
Keep in mind that judges did not instigate this case.
The real outrage is that parents of Kansas children had to go to court to get their legislature and governor to obey the law and follow the Constitution — the fundamental responsibility elected officials take an oath to uphold.
Moving U.S. forward
When will Congress wake up and start working for us, the hard-working citizens of the United States, instead of just looking out for special-interest groups and big business?
The middle class/economic midrange citizens do not mind paying their fair share when everyone from the top of the economic ladder to the bottom of the economic ladder pays his or her fair share.
We’re at a crucial time in moving our country forward. Many of us fought hard to ensure President Barack Obama’s re-election, and now we’re fighting to help him achieve his goals for the nation and not hurt our country’s economic progress.
I want a fair and sound budget that does not in any way affect Social Security and Medicare, supports the mid-economic-range citizens, ends tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, and moves our country forward.
Donna Campbell Brice
More guns, no safety
For more than 60 years after Hiroshima, we’ve argued against the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Even so, the nuclear club has grown ever so slightly.
Now we worry, and rightfully so, about Iran and North Korea obtaining bombs.
However, there is almost no argument for increasing the stockpiles or the number of countries that have these weapons.
The possibility of nuclear war is so horrendous that the only real argument is how to eliminate these weapons.
No one questions this reasoning.
So how can you advocate for an increase in assault rifles and multibullet clip magazines as the cure for gun violence?
And yet that is the argument being put forward by the National Rifle Association and many of its members.
And how can we accept the argument that more nuclear weapons won’t make us safer and assert an opposite argument for rifles that are used for mass murder?
When I was in high school in the 1960s, there were occasional fights after school. Somebody would get a bloody lip or a broken nose.
Today, someone is killed by a gun in the same circumstance. I don’t understand the logic that asserts that more guns make us safer.