I was outraged to hear the Olathe gunman targeted the victims simply because of their ethnicity. (Feb. 24, 1A, “Man reportedly told victims to ‘get out of my country’ before firing”)
The victims, Srinivas Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani, were minding their own business — watching a basketball game at a sports bar — when they were senselessly targeted.
As an immigrant from India and longtime Olathe and Kansas City resident, I understand why this country is so appealing to people from throughout the world. There is no better place to enjoy freedom, practice the religion of your choice and build a better life for your family. The potential for success is limited only by how hard you are willing to work.
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To the family of Mr. Kuchibhotla, I offer my deepest condolences. I wish a speedy recovery to Mr. Madasani and Ian Grillot, the man who tried to stop the shooting.
Some have said this is not a good time for families to send their children to the U.S. in search of a better life. I respectfully disagree. This shooting is not a reflection on America. It is the cowardly act of one man, whose actions do not represent a nation.
Miami Beach, Fla.
Let’s deport anybody convicted of a felony hate crime — how about that? Put ’em on a plane to an authoritarian country and invalidate their passports.
Cultural Crossroads, an organization promoting mutual respect among all peoples, expresses deep sorrow at recent instances of hate violence in our midst.
The cemetery desecration in St. Louis, with a background of threats to Jewish community organizations around the country, is acknowledged as hate violence.
We extend profound sympathies to the victims, families and communities. Our entire community is lessened by such acts of hatred. Hate violence is the result of a mindset that divides people and holds some people to be superior to others. Those who condone and cause violence, by definition, contradict any notion of superiority.
While we thank those who stand against violence — the selfless courage of the bystander in Olathe, who became a shooting victim, and the support from the Muslim community, raising tens of thousands of dollars to repair the Jewish cemetery — we are distressed that such actions are necessary.
We promote the idea of equality of all people and the mutual respect that provides a peaceful society. We call on people to remove “superiority” and “otherness” from our vocabularies and replace them with “equality” and “humankind.”
We can and must be better than this.
Cultural Crossroads Inc.
Gift of art
Henry Bloch and family’s gift of 29 masterpiece paintings to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art truly was one of immeasurable generosity and love for Kansas City. “Feb. 25, 1A, “Bloch savors paintings in redone galleries”)
In addition to receiving the paintings that Henry and his wife, Marion, collected over many years, the Nelson-Atkins was fortunate having the Bloch family underwrite major renovation of the museum’s European 19th and 20th century galleries.
After seeing the exhibit at the ribbon cutting, I urge people of all ages to give yourselves a gift by attending the free exhibit that will open to the public March 11. I promise that you won’t be disappointed.
Give up meat
March 1 marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day period preceding Easter, when many Christians abstain from animal foods in remembrance of Jesus’ 40 days of fasting in the wilderness before launching his ministry.
The call to refrain from eating animals is as old as the Bible. A number of Christian leaders have followed the call, including John Wesley, Salvation Army founders William and Catherine Booth, Ellen G. White and prominent evangelical leader Franklin Graham.
A meat-free diet is not just about Christian devotion. Dozens of medical studies have linked consumption of animal products with elevated risk of heart failure, stroke, cancer and other killer diseases. A United Nations report named meat production as one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases and water pollution. Undercover investigations have documented farm animals being caged, crowded, mutilated, beaten and shocked.
Lent offers a superb opportunity to honor Christ’s powerful message of compassion, but also to protect the health of our family and our planet Earth. Adopt a meat-free diet.
Dear Democratic leaders:
I am hearing that you are paying protesters. I would like to get paid, too. I feel kind of silly admitting that I have been attending rallies and marches for free.
When I ask others how they got paid, they sheepishly admit they are protesting for free, too.
I get requests for money from many liberal organizations and Democratic politicians, but none offers to pay me to protest.
Please let me know how I can get paid because it looks as if I will be attending many rallies and marches in the coming years to stand up for immigration, health care and environmental, human and voting rights, and against deregulating corporations, banks and financial planners.
A protesting-without-getting-paid citizen,