Letters to the Editor

June 16, 2013

Light rail, immigration, good guys and guns

What are the city fathers doing thinking about an upgrade for Kansas City International Airport?
Rail system for KC

What are the city fathers doing thinking about an upgrade for Kansas City International Airport? We don’t need an upgrade of the airport at this time.

We need a mass-transit system like light rail or a monorail to get people from the airport to downtown Kansas City, to the Country Club Plaza, to the Power Light District, to the River Market, to the Sprint Center and to the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.

And then we need to be able to move people from the south in Overland Park, to and from the east in such cities as Blue Springs, Independence, Lee’s Summit and Raytown, and to the west around the Legends and Kansas Speedway.

If we really have more than a billion dollars to throw at the airport, let’s put it into a mass-transit system instead.

Look around you, Kansas City. The big cities and not so big cities that have thriving convention businesses have transit systems to accommodate residents and visitors alike.

Kansas City is way behind in the area of public conveyance. If we had such a transit system, we could become a convention magnate.

Then, maybe, we would need to upgrade the airport.

Donald D. Smith

Blue Springs Loving politics

Why does it seem like everyone (including me) is so fed up over our politicians’ inability to get anything accomplished, and yet we had an election just months ago and very little changed?

It seems people like their own representatives but think all the “other guys” are the problem. How do we send a message that they have to change how they work together if we’re not willing to vote all of them out when we have the chance?

Kim Harrison

Overland Park Zimmerman’s trial

In the famous drama “A Man for All Seasons,” Sir Thomas More’s son-in-law, Will Roper, urges More to arrest a man Roper considers dangerous. More refuses, saying he has broken no law and even the devil deserves the benefit of the law.

Roper angrily tells him that to get the devil he would cut down every law in England.

More replies: “And when the last law was down, and the devil turned ’round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws being all flat?”

This exchange is worth remembering as the trial of George Zimmerman is underway in the slaying of Trayvon Martin. At any moment, any U.S. citizen may be accused of breaking the law — and when that happens all of us are going to want the protections that the legal system provides.

There is a lot of truth in the conservative saying that a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged. But it is equally true that a liberal is a conservative who has been arrested.

George Zimmerman deserves his day in court, and he should be tried before a judge and jury, not in the press and certainly not in the streets.

Ernest Evans

Leavenworth Nail more speeders

In reference to all the complaints from lead-footed recipients of traffic tickets in Mission: You’re probably speeders wherever you go (6-11, A1, “Mission: The area’s traffic ticket capital”).

It is dangerous as well as unsafe for you as well as the innocent people who conform to the speed limits and other rules of the road.

You have no legitimate reason to create unsafe passage for those of us who drive in a safe manner. It angers me to have to drive on our interstates in the metropolitan area.

Years ago, police departments of cities in the metro area had infrequent “Operation 200s.” The departments acted simultaneously to inform radical drivers of the rules of the road by issuing tickets.

It seems that area police departments give a very low portion of their time to reducing accidents and saving lives by doing so. I’d love to see our Kansas City police once in a while on our streets and highways.

I challenge anyone to drive Interstates 435 and 70 at the posted speed limits and see how many cars pass yours at a much, much faster speed — and not a police officer in sight.

Richard McKiddy

Kansas City Gusewelle column

Concerning C.W. Gusewelle’s June 9 column, “Creatures comfort the mind and soul,” it is my hope that Star editors will print your columns until you wish to quit writing them. You have long been my favorite Kansas City Star columnist.

You write so movingly and poignantly about animals, wild and domestic. I, too, have a great love for animals, and I can’t express how much I enjoy reading your words about your pets and the wild animals you encounter.

I hope you are able to contribute for many, many more years, and I thank you for enriching my life. Best of everything to you and your family.

Elizabeth Leach

Merriam Sacrificing rights

Let’s say we rewrite the Second Amendment to say anything you want. Ban guns, ban box knives, ban kitchen pots, even ban pop tarts that are made to resemble guns. What happens now?

You have set a precedent to start the ball rolling downhill. What’s to stop those in power from changing the First Amendment.

You have opened the door for those in power or who have influence to change things so no one can speak against them or voice a difference of opinion.

Some will laugh with a conceited air that that can never happen.

Are you willing to put your trust in politicians? Politicians can be and are bought, as is evident when some “change their minds” once they get elected regardless of what their constituents wanted.

The Constitution and its process is the only protection we common folks have left.

People will always argue about it, but I am not ready to put my trust into career politicians who cater to the National Rifle Association, Bloomberg, the communications giants or anyone else.

Mark Anderson

Overland Park U.S. rights adrift

There’s an old American saying: “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll fight to the death for your right to say it.”

We have seen our government’s assault on our First Amendment with its restricting of military people’s practicing their faith.

We’ve seen government officials secretly monitoring Associated Press reporters’ phone lines and emails as well as secretly gathering personal texts and emails of James Rosen, a Fox News reporter.

We have seen the letters from Sens. Chuck Schumer and Al Franken encouraging the Internal Revenue Service to restrict the financial resources of lawful conservative groups.

The Obama administration is also aware of the IRS tactics and strategy.

Once being called a liberal meant you were a person who loved and supported liberty.

Now it appears a more accurate description of a liberal is one who loves to restrict and deny others’ liberty because they say things that are disagreeable to them.

I suppose that old saying should be changed to: “I may disagree with what you are saying and I will do everything in my power, legal or not, to deny your right to say it.”

What has happened to our country?

Jack Cook

Blue Springs Capitalism calling

Ding dong, the American economy is back with 300 new local jobs at $11.30 an hour. I remember those days.

You could get a new Camaro for $5,000 and a great three-bedroom house for $50,000. Of course, family health coverage didn’t run $1,000 a month back then.

Yes, it’s a big step for American capitalism when a breadwinner’s net pay is below the poverty level.

The Hostess saga does not resemble the PATCO strike. It brings to mind what Carl Icahn did to TWA and what Bain Capital did to Armco Steel.

Craig Hoerler

Parkville Improve KC Royals

Last year, the Kansas City Royals didn’t have a decent pitching staff. This year, we have pitching but questionable hitting.

Where is Kevin Seitzer when we need him? I think the team and the fans would be happy with singles and doubles.

The power-hitting often experiment isn’t working. I’ve been a Royals fan since year one and would love to see a balanced team again.

Jerry Francis

Centerview, Mo.

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