Letters to the Editor

Obamacare, Sen. Pat Roberts, minimum wage

Updated: 2014-02-01T04:51:53Z

Bill on disclosure

The failings of Obamacare are painfully clear from loss of coverage to increased premiums, but the secrecy in the law raises serious moral and ethical issues.

Pro-life Americans oppose the use of their money to cover abortion services, but as current law is written, it is difficult to obtain information about which exchange plans provide such services.

I have introduced legislation, Senate Bill 1848, requiring this information to be prominently disclosed so consumers can make informed decisions.

My bill also requires disclosure of the amount of the “abortion fee,” a surcharge required to develop a fund to pay for abortion on demand.

Kansans have a right to know what they are paying for so that they can choose an insurance plan that meets their needs, values and beliefs.

U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts

Dodge City, Kan.

Tea party, Roberts

I accepted Sen. Pat Roberts’ invitation to join a recent teleconferenced town meeting and realized just what Democratic constituents in Kansas face. Not a single caller I heard expressed concern for the common good, and in fact, one was quite offensive in his remarks about the “clown” in the White House.

The conversation seemed to center on things that make little difference to me — who was to blame for Benghazi or decisions regarding Iraq.

Roberts was disparaging of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, describing her as incompetent.

When I protested, he assured me it was not “personal.”

I also found many of the things he said about the Affordable Care Act to range from misleading to contradictory to reports I’ve heard.

Roberts dismissed my suggestion that perhaps a more effective way to make Americans “self-reliant,” if Republicans refuse to extend unemployment benefits or provide food stamps to those in need, would be to support the jobs bill proposed long ago by the president. The senator concluded that we have to agree to disagree.

Faced with a tea party election opponent, Roberts is moving further to the right.

I am blue in a red state.

Janelle Lazzo

Roeland Park

Happiness in sports

Sports can bring you new life. Something happens to you when you are with thousands of people watching a game.

The cheering is contagious, and suddenly your voice is with the crowd and you are encouraging the team and, surprisingly, all of your worries and concerns and personal problems have vanished. As strange as it seems, it makes no difference whether your seat is far up or on the 50-yard line.

Your enthusiasm and voice join with many others in exciting cheers. We might recognize that to a lesser degree we can experience the wonderful feelings and the excitement right in our living rooms, and even the noise of the crowd can affect us in happy ways.

At the end of the game, we have a different voice and we are exhausted and weak but happy. Certainly winning the game helps, but win or lose, it was the fellowship and the discovery of that inner part of us that speaks of joy.

Sports can bring us out of the doldrums.

Enjoy the Super Bowl.

Doug Sutherland

Raymore

Questioning voters

The Census Bureau might have lied about employment numbers before the last election to influence voting.

Some reports say that the president implemented executive privilege so the attorney general didn’t have to testify about Fast and Furious.

Some reports say that the president and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton lied about Benghazi and whitewashed the deaths of four Americans, including our ambassador.

Reports also show that the Internal Revenue Service targeted conservative groups before the last election to interfere with their ability to raise funds for candidates.

I think the president and others, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, lied about Obamacare, with many Americans losing their health insurance. Now Democrats have changed the rules of the Senate so that they can implement their agenda without debate or compromise.

This is the closest thing we have come to a dictator, and shockingly people write letters complaining mindlessly about Republicans.

Somehow, family values and Christianity are radical and extreme.

Our country is going bankrupt, and people are complaining about some mythical group called the “rich.” Maybe we need an IQ test along with voter IDs for the next election.

Frank Green

Kansas City

Minimum wage

I totally sympathize with those who desire to increase their pay through an increase in the minimum wage.

I have been there, but I realized that the only way to earn more money was to increase my education.

An increase in the minimum wage is not an issue in a bubble. There is a cause and effect, which will eventually require employers to increase the pay of workers possessing more skills and will eventually increase inflation.

I encourage our government to think seriously about the ramifications of such a move before acting.

Janice Schultz

Independence

Foreign aid, waste

From 2001 to 2010, just Israel and Egypt alone have received billions of dollars in foreign aid from the United States. Then add to this what the U.S. sends to all the other countries.

Just think what this could do for the people of the United States. Isn’t it about time we take care of ourselves?

On top of the foreign aid, we get wind of wasted spending for conferences, travel, food and hotels by government agencies. Our elected officials are in it for themselves.

When elected, they borrow money. When some retire, they are millionaires.

When are we, the people, going to wake up?

Joe Parizek

Overland Park

Sorry Obama speech

I must say that I was underwhelmed by President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech (1-29, A1, “Obama hopes to narrow gap between rich and poor”). Such small ideas for (what had been) a great country.

The constant whining that the Republicans are opposing the continued socialist agenda of the Democrats has become tiring. Let’s note that it is not the Republicans who oppose most of Obama’s agenda but half of the population of the country.

The opposition party is the only way to have a voice. Legislation such as Obamacare was imposed rather than enacted.

What kind of leadership is this?

The country has been severely divided, and it will take a real leader to get the branches of government working again as well as to restore the trust of the people.

Maybe in three more years.

Will Kazenski

Kearney

Basketball assist

The University of Kansas’ basketball program is really a finishing school for NBA prospects. And while players await the draft, they need luxurious housing to get a taste for the big-time lifestyle coming their way.

On average, NBA players earn annual salaries of more than $5 million.

As of opening day 2013-2014, 14 former KU basketball players were in the NBA, according to rpiratings.com. Among other elite college basketball programs, Kentucky led with 21, and Duke and North Carolina each had 15 on NBA team payrolls.

These deep-pocketed basketball pros owe a large part of their success to their schools. They should be funding the opulent digs that NBA prospects live in.

And in consideration of their good fortunes, pro players should be contributing generously to their schools’ academic programs as well.

Basketball finishing schools are a gold mine of talent for which the NBA, worth billions of dollars, should be showing its appreciation by financially supporting these schools.

If monied players and the NBA were carrying the load, it would reduce the ever-increasing burden on loyal school boosters and eliminate the need to float revenue bonds to fund the balance of construction costs.

Ron Fugate

Overland Park

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