Thank you to The Star for the list of all Johnson and Wyandotte County legislators and how they voted on key issues during the 2018 session. (May 10, 7A, “KC area lawmakers sealed fate of certain Kansas bills”)
Please continue publishing this format during the session as well as at its end. This “at a glance” view is just what busy folks need.
League of Women Voters
of Johnson County
We have spent more time in Afghanistan — our longest-running war — than we did in the Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Korea and the Persian Gulf war combined. There’s a reason this mountainous region is called “the graveyard of empires.” Great Britain gave it four tries (1839-1842, 1878-1880, 1919 and 2001). The Soviets tried it in 1979, until backing out empty-handed in 1989.
They all learned what we refuse to learn: Afghanistan isn’t a real country with secure borders, a national economy, human rights, respect for law and a national government worthy of the name.
So why are we there? After 9/11, President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney bullied Congress into believing that not voting with them was unpatriotic. Instead of defending its constitutional authority to issue — or refuse — a formal declaration of war, Congress folded like a cheap suit: The vote for war was 420-1 in the House and 98-0 in the Senate.
So we grind on and on, year after year. Someday, when the last soldier steps onto the last C-130 to leave Afghanistan, members of the Taliban and al Qaeda will be beyond the fence, waving goodbye.
Michael L. Pandzik
A lot of drivers are going 30 mph over the speed limit because they are rushing to get home to their drugs. They’re eager to smoke, snort, shoot up, pop pills or sniff.
Police need to get on this. Then they can get some more arrests.
Right to work is wrong for Missouri workers. It is not what workers want.
In 1978, a right-to-work constitutional amendment in Missouri was defeated by 60 percent of voters. In 2015, Gov. Jay Nixon vetoed a right-to-work law because Missourians did not support it. In 2017, Gov. Eric Greitens signed into law right-to-work legislation passed by the Republican-controlled legislature despite worker opposition. In response, Missourians submitted more than 310,000 signatures to Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft to place a repeal of the law on a statewide ballot.
Now, in another attempt to force right to work on the middle class, legislators have fast-tracked H.R. 79 to put right to work in the constitution. Millions of dark-money dollars have poured into a PAC named Freedom to Work, with $1.2 million coming from Greitens’ nonprofit, A New Missouri. Freedom to Work failed to get enough signatures to put a new amendment on a ballot. Now H.R. 79 could do so.
Supporters of right to work claim workers are forced to join unions. This is untrue. If you don’t want to pay union dues, work non-union.
So when will legislators stop forcing laws on us that only enrich their dark-money donors at the expense of the middle class?
IBEW Local Union 124
Kathleen Parker’s two recent commentaries about horse slaughter were informative. (May 15, 9A, “Making hay from horse sense over slaughterhouses”) Horses are herded into trailers annually and sent out of sight to die horribly in the slaughterhouses in Mexico or Canada because the U.S. has outlawed horse slaughter.
As Parker wrote: “Exhausted, terrified, dehydrated and hungry, these horses are usually shocked (with a stunning device) and bled out. Sometimes, when the shock is incorrectly administered, as is often the case, horses are skinned and dismembered while still conscious.”
As a veterinarian, I know there is no easy answer to what should be done with horses that are no longer considered useful or of value, except to mitigate the pain they may suffer during their remaining life. However, I do agree that slaughtering them at home seems to be a better option than slaughtering them in Mexico or Canada.
My neighbor and I were talking last week about our reactions to pronouncements uttered by city, state and federal officials, and we each began reciting a familiar quote: “Pride goeth before a fall.”