Support KC health levy
On April 2, Kansas City voters should vote yes on Question 1 to ensure critical funding for Kansas City’s safety-net health-care providers.
Question 1 asks for the renewal of 22 cents of the current tax levy dedicated to ambulance services, emergency medical services, and hospital and public health services for nine years.
The owner of a home assessed at $100,000 pays less than $4 a month to help provide essential health-care services in our community. The money supports Truman Medical Center, Northland Health Care Access, Cabot Westside Health Center, Swope Health Services, Kansas City Care Clinic and Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center.
Without the health levy, some crucial health-care programs such as mammograms, childhood immunizations, nutrition programs to control childhood obesity and early childhood interventions will be discontinued.
With so much uncertainty surrounding health-care reform in Washington, D.C., and Jefferson City, let’s do our part to continue to care for those who need health care the most in Kansas City.
Paying more in taxes
Frankly, I would much prefer to be back in a 28 percent marginal tax bracket than to allow the Republican-dominated House to tinker with Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid or for that matter military budgets. Talk about your slippery slopes.
Would it really present a hardship on couples earning more than $20,000 a month to pay another 4 percent on the earnings of $20,000 to $40,000 a month? Breaking our promise (reducing Social Security benefits) certainly would present a hardship on most of us.
GOP failures include:
Failure to address our country’s glaring social needs. Failure to accept scientific data regarding global warming.
Failure to address infrastructure needs of our country. Failure to attempt to correct the substandard health care of our poor.
Failure to take action regarding our low minimum wage. Failure to respect the plight of the poor, labeling them as lazy and “takers.”
Failure to acknowledge workers’ rights. Failure to address our imbalance of trade.
Ignoring our embarrassing murder rates by guns, not addressing huge holes in our gun-registration laws and defending assault weapons.
Denigrating women’s rights. Promoting privatization of our educational system, thereby leaving no options for the poor. Promoting privatizing Social Security and Medicare.
Defunding Medicaid. Failing to adequately fund mental health. Using a bullying demeanor on the international stage. Casting increased taxes as an anathema. Promoting a smaller government to govern an ever-increasing population.
Kowtowing to the rich and the powerful while ignoring those who have no voice because of their economic status. Failure to promote humanitarian legislation. Denouncing all of those who oppose them as unpatriotic, atheistic and communistic.
Robert Stuber, M.D.
Stop the bullies in Congress. We paid into Social Security and Medicare. It’s not Congress’ to cut.
Eliminate tax loopholes for Wall Street and corporations sending taxpaying jobs overseas. These jobs belong here.
The government should prefer people working and taxes being paid.
Cheers for new pope
Jewish Community Relations Bureau/American Jewish Committee, which serves Kansas and western Missouri, congratulates Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio and the Catholic Church on his election as Pope Francis.
We are heartened by the demonstrated commitment of Pope Francis to interfaith relations. We also note his choice of St. Francis of Assisi as his namesake, reminding us of the great legacy of an abiding commitment to the poor.
We are deeply moved by learning of a message Pope Francis sent to the Chief Rabbi of Rome, in which he stated: “I strongly hope to be able to contribute to the progress of the relations that have existed between Jews and Catholics since Vatican Council II in a spirit of renewed collaboration and in service of a world that may always be more in harmony with the Creator’s will.”
“We anticipate a close relationship with Pope Francis, as, together with our Catholic partners, we continue to advance Catholic-Jewish relations,” said Rabbi David Rosen, American Jewish Committee’s international director of interreligious affairs.
We share in the joy of the Catholic Church.
David T. Rudman, M.D.
Chair, Board of Directors
Bert Berkley Chair
for Community Relations
Lee Judge cartoons
I happen to appreciate the work of The Star’s editorial cartoonist, Lee Judge, and don’t understand why people who complain about his cartoons bother to read them.
These are probably the same folks who will sit through an entire television program or movie with mature ratings and then complain about the language used.
Just change the channel or skip the column. Simple.
Safety over firearms
Gun advocates are quick to point out their Second Amendment rights to own firearms. With rights there are also responsibilities.
Far too many guns end up in the hands of the wrong people, resulting in deadly consequences such as last month’s heartbreaking story of a 4-year-old girl who died of a gunshot wound.
Gun owners please listen. I’ll support your Second Amendment right to bear arms if you’ll support my/our right to simply live (Declaration of Independence).
Please start acting in a more responsible manner regarding your WMDs (weapons of mass destruction). There were more than 8,500 murders caused by firearms in U.S. in 2011.
Lock up guns. Put them in storage.
Do something besides leaving them in a place where thieves or children have access to them.
Public displays of faith
Christians certainly have rights, as do practitioners of other religions.
Your children can pray privately in school as they wish. They may not engage in public prayer in public schools.
Such a public demonstration of prayer serves only to flaunt the supposed superiority of Christianity to those of other faiths.
This country was founded on ethical principles, which happen to mirror closely the religious principles of Christianity as well as the principles of most world religions.
We do not have a monopoly on those ethics. They are not solely Christian.
It is my job as a public school teacher to teach and model ethics, to encourage critical thinking, to provide sound curricular content and to manage my own spirituality while encouraging the same in my students, whatever form that spirituality takes.
Public displays of prayer are neither needed nor appropriate. God hears us whether others do or not.
Kathryn O. Moore
Abortion, poor choices
Abortion is often lumped into the category “reproductive health.” Really?
Very few abortions have anything whatsoever to do with health. The vast majority of the time, an abortion is the violent ending of an innocent human life for superficial reasons such as:
• I’m not ready.
• I don’t have the money.
• It’s too inconvenient.
• I don’t want kids.
Rarely is an abortion performed for actual health reasons.
Obviously, I’m pro-life. For those who hold a view that abortion is a valid choice, so be it.
But seriously, if you need to stick a fictitious label on it just to make yourself feel better, perhaps you should be re-evaluating your views.
Mary E. Goodwin
Attention all Lexington, Mo., residents. Our town is about to make the biggest mistake in its history.
At the expense of the police, sheriff, fire and street departments, we are hiring a city administrator. We do not need nor can we afford this position at this time.
Trained police officers, firefighters and ambulance personnel, as well as street repairs, are a much higher necessity to our community. So let your councilmen know we need to drop this lack of intelligence and common sense before it becomes a total disaster for all Lexington residents.
Don’t sit back and let us all suffer for the actions made by a few. We need our law enforcement, our firefighters, our ambulance staff and our street department.
We do not need a city administrator.
Larry and Carolyn Milligan