Get the message?
Tuesday’s vote was less about rapid rail and more about (yet again) defeating Clay Chastain.
Take a hint, Clay. Go home.
The travel industry deeply respects the work and mission of the NAACP, but shares the St. Louis County chapter’s initial concern over an action by the national organization meant to protest discriminatory policies. (“St. Louis group objects to NAACP travel advisory” Aug. 5, 2A)
While actions of this nature come from well-intentioned places, the people who suffer most are workers whose livelihoods depend on travel to and through their region. Fewer visitors mean fewer jobs — especially in Missouri, where travel employment recovered 89 percent faster than the rest of the economy after the 2008-2009 recession.
Every $1 million in sales of travel goods and services (a broad category, to be sure) directly generates nine non-exportable American jobs. Even if the NAACP’s advisory results in the repeal of controversial legislation, chances are the targeted legislators will still be able to support their families. But the same may not be true for a hotel front-desk clerk, restaurant waiter or rental-car agent.
The issues that inspired the NAACP’s advisory deserve attention. However, punishing entire communities for the actions of a few is not the answer.
President and CEO
U.S. Travel Association
Watch for signs
Living in the 1960s in northwest Missouri, my father could tell how far and how fast I had driven the family car with a quick glance at the windshield. The splattered bugs told him the whole story.
I am driving those same country roads a lot this summer, but I wouldn’t know it from looking at my car. Gone are the telltale sign of insects colliding with the glass.
I am not a scientist. I do not have empirical data that proves this alarming trend. But I know that without insects there is no pollination, and without pollination there is a catastrophic impact on our food chain.
The choices we make matter. I believe the widespread use of pesticides and herbicides to improve crop yield is destroying insect species. I fear a dead zone is replacing our nation’s breadbasket.
I intend to speak up, purchase organic food, encourage others to use alternatives to chemicals and vote for politicians who prioritize the planet over the pocketbook.
Kansas City, Kan.
Off the ship
Clay Barker, executive director of the Kansas Republican Party, said one of the dumbest things I think I’ve ever heard anyone in politics say, referring to Gov. Sam Brownback: “He changed a lot of things. He’ll leave a record of change for the state that most governors aren’t able to do.” (July 27, 1A, “Trump taps Brownback for ambassadorship”)
In 1912, that iceberg changed a lot of things for the Titanic, none of them good. In fact, I think the same analogy applies to what Brownback did to Kansas with his “changes.” He sank it.
The only difference is Capt. Edward J. Smith went down with his ship. Brownback? He bailed.
Set record straight
Much has been said about Mike Moustakas breaking the Kansas City Royals’ single-season home run record of 36, set in 1985 by Steve Balboni. I salute Mike on an outstanding season, but there is more work to be done.
Kansas City’s major league home run record is 38, set in 1958 by Bob Cerv of the lowly Kansas City Athletics. Cerv accomplished this despite playing about a month and a half with a broken jaw that was wired shut. Characteristically, Cerv broke his jaw hustling, in a home-plate collision with Red Wilson, the Detroit Tigers catcher. On a liquid diet, and with an occasional shot of oxygen that was kept in the dugout, Bob carried on.
Sadly, Bob died April 6 at the age of 91. He was an outstanding athlete, outstanding coach and outstanding person. We will never forget you or that memorable 1958 season, Bob. Thanks for the memories.
Let’s give Russian President Vladimir Putin his due. He was able to influence both Democratic and Republican voters with very little effort.
Most of his success can be attributed to the media — newspapers, traditional network news, conservative and liberal news networks, and talk radio.
The media continue to provide assistance in this divisive melodrama in the name higher ratings rather than professional, unbiased journalism.
Yes, Putin duped Congress, the news media intellectuals and all the wannabes. He could not have asked for a greater return on his small investment.