Well, the bills are finally being presented from the incompetence and total indifference of Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and our laughable Legislature. At least seven school districts are closing early because they’ve run out of money (5-8, A1, “Early dismissals in Kansas”).
A state legislature has three main areas of responsibility: schools, highways and public safety/health. Brownback has declared war on all three, and thus far, he is winning.
Meanwhile, our crack legislators try to ensure that every man, woman and child in Kansas is packing heat. No training required. All you gotta do is point the small end of that thing away from you. And be sure to carry an extra high-capacity magazine with you in case you gotta do your constitutional duty while in a large crowd.
Never miss a local story.
The war on public health, and particularly on women’s health, continues unabated. This nutty, Republican-controlled Legislature will not rest easy until lengthy imprisonment is mandatory for every woman who has a therapeutic abortion to save her own life or sanity.
The state highway fund is being stripped blind, while the Legislature creates a billion dollars in new debt for the state by selling bonds to fund an underfunded retirement system.
I’m glad the sun is shining in Kansas. Everything else is mortgaged.
Richard L. Warrick
Regarding the recent attack on Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker by a local Catholic priest, it appears this priest and our Republican lawmakers in Jefferson City and Topeka have something in common (5-7, A1, “Prosecutor, priest square off”).
Both claim to know the words and will of their savior Jesus Christ. But if what the Bible says about Jesus is true, he would not have tolerated child pornographers or their defenders any more than he would have tolerated followers who show such disdain for those less fortunate.
It all reminds me of what Mahatma Gandhi said: “I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
To the people who said that those who worry over the consequences of reduced tax revenue in Kansas should volunteer to pay more taxes on their own, let’s apply the same logic to them. If they want to pay fewer taxes, then they should volunteer to use fewer public services.
They shouldn’t drive on our tax-funded roads, call a fire department if their house is on fire, hire a private tutor to home-school their children, ask for government aid if a tornado strikes their house or ask the government to subsidize their crop insurance.
If they are creditors of some kind, they shouldn’t ask the government to use the courts to pursue their uncollected debts. If they have mortgages, they shouldn’t ask the government to provide special tax privileges or expect the government to ensure the safety of the products they buy.
If they own intellectual property, they shouldn’t expect the government to pursue copyright infringements for them or put their money in a FDIC-insured bank.
If they are hurt on the job, they shouldn’t expect the government to protect them.
I realize politics is a field devoid of manners, but the garbage thrown at Dr. Ben Carson about being a Christian is a new low for The Star (Off the Easel, syndicated cartoon, May 9). Here is man raised by only his mother, and he has become quite famous.
And the cartoonist throws stones at him when his mother is critically ill. The cartoonist’s true colors are showing, and it is not pretty.
Awareness of illness
For millions of people, every day is a struggle. You wake up every morning feeling as if you’ve been hit by a truck. You don’t sleep well. You’re tired all the time.
You start bouncing from doctor to doctor because nobody can figure out what is wrong with you. Doctors run numerous tests, but the results come back within the normal range.
Yet you feel awful. So, what gives?
There is a name for your condition, but there is no laboratory test to confirm its diagnosis and no medication to cure it. The best most doctors can do is prescribe medication designed for other illnesses. You try dozens of them, only to discover they only slightly tame your symptoms.
What I have described is life with fibromyalgia. “Fibro what?” you may ask. It means fibro (fiber), my (muscles), algia (pain).
Fibromyalgia affects about 4 percent to 6 percent of people in the United States and millions more worldwide. This translates into about 125,000 people in the Kansas City area.
To help educate patients, the nonprofit Fibromyalgia Coalition International is having a free Awareness Day event on Saturday at the South Summit Christian Church, 1121 SW Hook Road in Lee’s Summit.
For further informatio,n call 913-384-4673.
Pledge to guns
A Missouri lawmaker is proposing that schoolchildren be required to recite the “Pledge of Allegiance.” I would like to suggest this for Kansas:
“I pledge allegiance to the NRA of the United States of America, and to the guns for which it stands, a divided nation, under extremist Republicans, with safety and security for none.”
Conservatives, by definition, are supposed to keep the status quo, not be radical anarchists in their beliefs and actions.
I retired from teaching students who had mental problems, therefore I know of many mentally ill adults who now will be able to obtain guns with their disability paychecks.
Most are law-abiding and peaceful when on medication. But with all the cutbacks in KanCare, who knows?
Many of these people have no case managers anymore. Many of our lawmakers claim to be Christians, but they don’t act like it.
That means they should follow the New Testament: “Do unto others ....”
TV talk-show host Jon Stewart observed that the Bible was written in a foreign land, referring to states that have passed laws against Sharia and other foreign legal codes.
Lawmakers need to be wise enough to realize the consequences of their actions.
God help us.
The main tenet of conservative Catholicism, personified by Pope John Paul II, is that the church lost its way because of the permissiveness brought on by the Vatican Council II.
The cure for this would be authoritarianism, with the issue of abortion as the hammer. The anti-abortion faction really promotes the control of women, which is central to the male-dominated church hierarchy.
This is also the source of the church’s greatest abuses, which led to the reforms of the Vatican Council II in the first place.
It will take a generation or two to overcome the damage done to the church by Pope John Paul II.
Thomas J. Hogan
As a cancer survivor, I am acutely aware of the importance of having health insurance. That is why I was thankful Congress passed and President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law five years ago.
Obamacare’s benefits include:
▪ Twenty-six-year-olds being allowed on a parent’s policy.
▪ No lifetime caps on coverage.
▪ Free preventive care.
▪ An end to discrimination against pre-existing conditions.
▪ Expanded access to Medicaid (except in Kansas and Missouri).
▪ The ability to shop for affordable plans with expanded coverage.
Since the Affordable Care Act became law, 16.4 million Americans have gained coverage, uninsured rates are at record lows and 2014 saw the largest gain in health-care coverage in four years.
Every president since Theodore Roosevelt attempted health-care reform. Despite continual Republican obstruction, President Obama finally made it possible.
Thank you, President Obama, for this historic health-care law.