Letters to the Editor

Seek peace, Obamacare, food stamps

Updated: 2013-11-04T23:29:22Z

Work for peace

Norman Solomon recently delivered a petition with 100,000 signatures to the Nobel committee, asking for Bradley Manning to receive the Peace Prize award. I signed this petition because we needed to know our government’s operating philosophy. He had voiced concern to a superior who was not concerned, and the citizenry needed this information.

We need to make the changes to actually work for peace. Dennis Kucinich and others tried to get Congress to make changes to no avail.

Now we see that our State Department isn’t “doing statesmanship,” and has been embarrassed. Let’s have the State Department work for peace. Then it wouldn’t be embarrassed.

Taxes pay for our government, and we should not be shut out of decision-making. Our military and State Department should be doing their best for the citizenry and fostering peace in the world.

We should not be using the military to carry out the wishes of corporations.

JoAnn Witt

Kansas City

Youth and Obamacare

Sunday’s front-page story on how the youth view Obamacare (11-3, A1, “The youth ponder Obamacare”) gave me pause to consider how young adult minds think when making decisions that affect themselves and the community.

Though one seemed to rationally view the issue of health care as a necessary element to live responsibly in a privileged society, the others demonstrated the success of the right wing’s rhetoric that “it’s being forced on us” and “that programs that help people” (I assume the government safety nets put in place after the Great Depression) are “unsustainable.”

Let’s not forget those programs are part of the fabric of our democracy implemented to level the playing field so the less fortunate can, with hard work and luck, achieve a livable life.

The article illustrates a staggering lack of informed decision-making in a population supposedly one of the most literate in generations.

Lisa Stockton


Obama’s record

I must respond to the letter in the Nov. 2 Star in which the writer states “that Republicans have gone after President Barack Obama for his four years of accomplishments.”

I wonder if he was referring to Fast and Furious, Benghazi, IRS, NSA spying on American citizens and allied leaders, record national debt increase and, last but not least, Obamacare.

I think the writer must have meant to use the word incompetence instead of accomplishments.

Larry Taylor


Political dreams

Where is the political party that values:

• Protecting its citizens’ best interest over promoting its own self-interest.

• Supporting systems and accountability for both citizens and corporations that receive government funds.

• Safeguarding its soldiers’ well-being over Department of Defense subcontractors’ financial feeding frenzies.

• Protecting the health and well-being of human life from the womb to the tomb.

• Regulating the number of guns someone can purchase, at least to the degree that it regulates how much cold medicine someone can buy.

• Providing religious freedom over religious fervor and yet doesn’t desire freedom from religion because God deserves better.

• Valuing public education as a cornerstone of an educated, well-trained democracy that leads to self-sufficiency versus an example of government mediocrity and carelessness.

A girl can dream....

Melissa Watkins

Overland Park

Thanks to employers

Without employers, employees would have no money to buy employers’ products.

Without employees, employers could not make the products they sell.

Some say the baby boomers and unions asked for too much in wages and benefits and are bankrupting companies and cities.

Those employee wages and benefits buy company products and pay taxes to support cities.

One day all the baby boomers and their pensions, wages and benefits will be gone.

Fewer employers today pay living wages, benefits or pensions.

When the baby boomers are gone and not sucking employers dry with their wage and benefit demands, how many people will have money left to buy all those nonessential products? Fewer remain every year.

How long will employers stay in business selling fewer and fewer products? One by one, the employers who fought so hard to deny living wages and benefits in favor of paying billions to their investors will be shutting down because the majority of the masses can no longer buy their products.

Thanks to the small and large business employers who treat employees fairly.

Karen Snelling

Kansas City

Shame on Congress

Shame on each and every senator and representative who voted to lower the amount poor families receive in food stamps (11-1, A10, “Benefits drop for millions”).

I challenge our members of Congress to feed themselves on the average $1.40 per meal per day and see what it feels like.

Judith Payne

Cleveland, Mo.

Political screwiness

Let’s review: Obamacare (a Republican plan in force in Massachusetts since 2006 and signed by then-Gov. Mitt Romney) was passed and signed into law in 2010.

The Supreme Court reviewed the law in 2012 and found it to be constitutional.

Last year, we had an election where the Republicans ran on a platform of repealing the law. They were soundly defeated and the president was re-elected.

So here we are when the uninsured can sign up for affordable health care.

What has been the reaction of the disloyal, obstructionist Republicans? Remember, this is the party that wraps itself in the flag and touts itself as the “law and order” party.

They are running a campaign, financed by the billionaire Koch brothers, advising those under age 30 to break the law and not sign up for coverage.

Their reasoning?

Why buy a policy when they probably won’t get sick.

Rumor has it that the mental midgets of the Republican Party are preparing a new campaign regarding auto insurance.

They will advise drivers over age 50 to break the law and not purchase mandatory auto insurance because they probably won’t cause an accident.

Pete Henderson


Dental health care

Dental health for one of our state’s most vulnerable populations — nursing home patients — is a key focus for those of us in the Kansas oral health community.

Recent national media attention has ignited a focused discussion on the needs of the elderly and the challenges in helping them maintain good oral health.

Research shows that proper dental care can prevent serious, even life-threatening infections.

It’s also linked to proper nutrition as poor dental health can result in an inability to eat, compromising one’s overall health.

In Kansas, the oral health community is working proactively to meet the dental needs of our elderly fellow Kansans.

In addition to Kansas dentists and hygienists offering their services in nursing homes throughout the state, we are engaged in a comprehensive review of strategies and pilot projects to improve access to care.

This initiative — one of only seven funded in the nation — has brought our state’s oral health provider community together in partnership with leaders from Kansas long-term care facilities and hospitals.

These efforts are made possible by funding Kansas was awarded by the DentaQuest Foundation, which has launched a multi-year initiative — Oral Health 2014 — to help state partnerships address local oral health concerns.

Stay tuned as we next identify pilot projects in Kansas to ensure that challenges facing this population are addressed and good oral health needs met.

Jason Wagle


Kansas Dental



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