On Saturday, we will gather with friends and family to celebrate Independence Day with cookouts, parades and all manner of gatherings. A good number of folks include fireworks in their agendas, regardless of legality.
Many communities have banned fireworks — Kansas City included — but we know that many people will defy the law and detonate fireworks.
Celebrating the Fourth of July can be a real struggle for people suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder. There are ways we can show our compassion for those who have defended our nation:
Never miss a local story.
1. Consider viewing public fireworks displays instead of setting off ones in your neighborhood.
2. Talk with veterans in your neighborhood to see whether fireworks are upsetting.
3. Let neighbors know what time you will be setting off fireworks and for how long.
4. Refrain from setting off fireworks at unexpected times during the day.
5. Choose a location that will be least likely to disturb veterans.
6. Minimize the amount of fireworks you set off.
Arctic drilling wrong
Drilling for oil in the Arctic?
The Gulf of Mexico continues to be a disaster. What life didn’t escape the BP blowout was instantly nuked. The food web in the Gulf of Mexico remains horrifically disrupted, regardless of BP’s “come visit the clean Gulf” public relations campaign.
Now Shell wants to place the same alarming hazards in the Arctic. That this is immoral in addition to environmentally disastrous is an understatement.
Conditions in the Arctic affect our weather. Arctic ice is already melting at an alarming rate thanks to human-caused climate change exacerbated by the fossil fuel industry’s ravenous search for more, and ever more risky, reserves.
This is an incredibly destructive step initiated by the Obama administration. More carbon in our atmosphere also results in a rise in ocean acidity, which is stressing our marine life.
Too much of the life in the ocean is finding it difficult or impossible to adapt. Are these already distressed oceans worth another oil disaster? The next one could be in a much smaller area and difficult to reach.
If we destroy our waters, we destroy ourselves. It’s just this shockingly simple.
Curious wedding ties
Is it not ironic that members of the homosexual community are elated to have won the right to join their partners in a civil marriage while many heterosexuals eschew the institution of marriage (6-28, A18, “Observers ponder court’s apparent tilt”)?
Mary Kay Clune
Beauty of nature
The hummingbirds fly 500 miles non-stop over the Gulf of Mexico each year on their way to Panama. They hatch their young and leave them after six weeks, and then fly back north.
When their babies gain enough strength, they make the trip themselves and somehow find their moms and dads. These tiny birds’ hearts beat up to 1,200 times per minute, and they have the largest brains in relation to body size of all birds.
I just saw one outside my window and was glad I’m not addicted to texting. For many young folks, their primary remembrance when they become as old as I am will be of a keypad and characters on the tiny screen of their cellphones.
Sadly, they may never see a hummingbird.
The June 30 letter on Hillary Clinton running for president is representative of the Republican stance of government these days — no. While laying out the many reasons Clinton is unfit for the presidency, phony being used twice, and the obvious right-leaning slant, it fails to state which Republican the ever-ignorant electorate should vote for.
With the number of candidates on the right growing daily, people would think the letter writer might have reasons to vote for one of them and not simply oppose the one qualified candidate who leads the slim Democratic field. I for one am waiting for the GOP to start presenting well-thought-out alternatives to Democratic candidates and ideas instead of just saying no.
That only serves to get nothing done, which is exactly where our state and local governments seem to be these days. It reminds me of the often-used argument between children in the absence of any good rebuttal — “nuh uhhhh!”
Without the death penalty, our whole way of life could never work. People who commit murder would own the honest people.
We must not become the victims of that kind of mess. Our society must get back on track.
Maybe the young people are right. Our future is in jeopardy.
On Sunday, everyone who goes to church needs to ask the preacher to put the Ten Commandments back in our world everywhere.
To get serious about the death penalty, maybe put the gallows at the biggest stadium in every state.
William Leroy Elwood
Kansas opinion poll
Why have we not seen approval polls of the Kansas governor, House and Senate? It would be interesting, especially because the governor was re-elected — God only knows how.
Also, it shows the state of the Republican Party when it controls the House, Senate and governorship and still cannot approve anything. Raised strictly Republican, I have not voted for a Republican in the last eight years. It’s sad.
Ballot box solution
If the people of Kansas are as disgusted as I am with the dysfunctional government leaders in our state, perhaps they are looking for reasons this is happening. It’s happening because these people were elected to office.
It’s hard to ask why is this happening and at the same time say that you voted for these people. Voters should remember that you get the government that you elect.
It is unfair, of course, to paint all elected officials with a broad brush, and I don’t mean to do so. The voters of Kansas need to make better choices in selecting their elected officials.
Let’s make better choices, and if there is ever a reason to vote, surely this is one.
I am a longtime resident of Kansas City, and I have always enjoyed the many things to do, see and buy on both sides of State Line Road.
But, after the events of the past few weeks and the actions (or inaction) of the Kansas Legislature and governor, I have decided to restrict my business to Missouri.
This will be hard, as there are so many good things on the Kansas side of our city. But until a budget is passed that calls for taxes on businesses that are equal to — if not greater than — those imposed on the middle and lower classes, and which restores funding for the schools as mandated by the courts, I refuse to support the government of Kansas.
The good citizens of Kansas deserve better.
Yes, it will be hard. And, yes, I am only one person. But what I can do, I will do.
Low voter turnout
Like the June 27 letter writer, I served in the military during World War II for a short time before the abrupt ending. I agree with the letter writer on voting.
However, I am more bothered by uninformed voters. A democracy requires knowledgeable voters, not lemmings or robots.