Letters to the Editor

Voting Rights Act, gay marriage, Boy Scouts

Updated: 2013-06-27T21:37:56Z

Court decision

I can’t even imagine what Congressman John Lewis of Georgia felt when he heard that the Supreme Court had sent a dagger through the heart of the Voting Rights Act (6-26, A1, “High court finds flaw in Voting Rights Act”).

Congressman Lewis was beaten and bloodied and degraded when he fought for those very rights not that many years ago. And now?

Do we believe that the same partisan groups who tried to put obstacles in the way of certain voters during the last election will not be encouraged to take even more action in future elections to dampen voter turnout and make it difficult for many Americans to exercise their right to vote?

The 5-4 majority in the court left the issue up to Congress — that same Congress that has failed to pass even the bills supported by the vast majority of Americans. I don’t expect our congresspeople to stand up on this issue either.

All that seems to be left is for us to coalesce with the many organizations representing people of goodwill to convince our elected officials to have a backbone, and for us to remember them at the next election.

As you ponder this event in the Supreme Court, picture in your mind Congressman Lewis and many other brave men, women and children trying to walk across the Edmund Pettus Bridge being pummeled by officers armed with nightsticks, kicked by police and choking from tear gas, simply for the right to vote.

Then join up, and let’s make this right.

Judy Hellman


Gay marriage

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, I’m expecting a flood of letters expressing displeasure.

However, before you write, think about this: Your hatred of gay marriage is based on your religious beliefs. So, denying marriage to those whose beliefs are not the same as yours is infringing on their religious freedom.

Same goes for abortion. Your fundamentalist beliefs are not the same as many other people’s beliefs.

So, before you insist that the USA ban gay marriages and/or abortions, remember, the First Amendment guarantees religious freedom to everyone — not just those whose beliefs are the same as yours.

I won’t insist on infringing on your beliefs. Please allow me, and others, the same right.

Suzanne B. Conaway

Kansas City

Scouting threatened

I was a Boy Scout in Troop 102 in Las Vegas. I didn’t earn Eagle, but I came close and learned a lot along the way.

Laced through our weekly meetings and monthly campouts, there were lessons in teamwork, leadership, preparedness, conservation and other useful concepts that would grow in importance as I got older.

Now scouting is under attack from within and from without.

The decision to admit openly gay members has caused some churches to threaten to withdraw their support and some parents to threaten to pull their children from the program.

The continuing prohibition of openly gay scout leaders has led to cries of discrimination by gay activist groups. No solution will make everyone happy, and the quest for one might tear the Boy Scouts apart.

If that happens, who benefits? Not the children, who might never learn the lessons scouting teaches.

Not the churches, who might lose an opportunity to connect with non-believers.

As for gay activists, how would the disappearance of scouting promote equality? Isn’t it time everyone accept the Boy Scouts for the imperfect institution that it is and just leave it alone?

David Marcus

Overland Park

Obama’s scandals

It’s no surprise that three recent Obama administration scandals have done little to weaken public support for the president.

Remember Washington, D.C., Mayor Marion Berry and his cocaine scandal? Voters re-elected him anyway.

Fidel Castro is another great proletariat leader. His favorite slogan was, “History will absolve me.” President Barack Obama’s should be, “History will expose me.”

Michael Kalny


Koch brothers’ fame

I did not even know who the Koch brothers were until after then-Sen. Barack Obama was first elected president.

Hearing what sounded to be a broken record of voices blaming Obama for the country’s debt and the Wall Street bailout before he was even inaugurated made me question the source of the script.

Later, it was the script used by Heritage Foundation as it was enlisted to “teach” government officials that marriage was the solution to child poverty in Kansas.

I’m not sure I was as shocked at the Heritage Foundation reports as much as I was its place at the head of the table and involvement in directing government policy and the label of “think tank.”

I did much research and reading before I arrived at the Koch brothers’ doorstep. I hope they reap what they have sown.

Conni Nevius

Spring Hill, Kan.

Humble leadership

We should realize that a nation can rise no higher, can be no stronger, can be no better than the individuals who compose it. There is nothing wrong with the world.

The trouble lies with the world’s people. If the world is bad, it is the people who are bad. If the world is confused, it is the people in the world who are confused. If this is a godless world, it is the people who are godless.

Our nation was founded by people who believed in prayer. President Abraham Lincoln, during the Civil War, said, “I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me, seemed insufficient for the day.”

If only our leadership were as humble today.

Jeanie Adkins-Peine

Overland Park

KU Med Center

The University of Kansas Medical Center is touted in television ads as a first-class organization, up on all the latest therapies and state-of-the-art treatments.

The different areas of medicine are housed in beautiful quarters — until you come to the adult in-patient psych area.

When you go there, you are transported back 40 years. The walls need to be redone. The floors are cracked. The furniture is archaic.

The bathrooms and showers, well, let’s just say they leave much to be desired.

Mental illness is a sickness, like diabetes or heart disease. Why shouldn’t we receive the same considerations?

Karen Behrens

Kansas City

No jail time?

So a 20-year-old guy races 100 mph on a Kansas City street, killing his 17-year-old passenger in a crash that splits his car in two and gets no prison time (6-26, A8 “Driver avoids jail for fatal wreck”).

Seven years’ probation?

Where is the justice for the victim and her family? Where will the justice be for the victim of his next fatal car wreck?

Lee Karbaumer

Platte City

Nursing home visits

The day after Mother’s Day, as I was doing my weekly hospice visits to nursing homes, I was amazed at all the beautiful flowers.

I wonder whether friends and family members realize how much more their visits mean than the expensive flowers they send.

These people have given all they have, so can’t you give them just a few minutes of your time? Most may not remember you were there, but does it really matter?

Some hospice and nursing home residents think I am their relative or friend and thank me for the flowers, so I read your names to them to jog their memory. They have not forgotten you.

Have you forgotten them?

If you could see their eyes light up when I walk into their room, you would know why I volunteer for hospice. They are so happy for company.

Please let it be you.

Rita Greer


Backward Royals

Where is former Royals hitting coach Kevin Seitzer when you need him?

Apparently, the Royals’ batters have it backward. You do not look at the good pitches and swing at the bad ones.

Any questions?

Wayne Miller

Lone Jack

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