Letters to the Editor

August 14, 2013

Baseball and drugs, Obama mask, hospital billing

Dear Baseball Management: I am a young player and would like to excel in baseball and make a lot of money.
Baseball’s dilemma

Dear Baseball Management:

I am a young player and would like to excel in baseball and make a lot of money.

I think what I am hearing is that if I use drugs to enhance my body and abilities today, I will have a better opportunity to play major league baseball for millions of dollars a year (8-6, B3, “A-Rod ready to tangle with baseball”).

If I get caught later, I likely will only need to sit out 50 games.

I am 15 years old. I am thinking about it, and it is very tempting. Why not?

Except that I know it is not the right thing to do.

Baseball Management, can you give players my age more incentive to do the right thing?

Calvin Wrege

Overland Park Offensive state fair

Shame on the Missouri Rodeo Cowboy Association for the sickening performance at the Missouri State Fair (8-12, A4, “Anti-Obama stunt rebuked”).

During the bull-riding competition Saturday, one of the rodeo clowns appeared wearing a mask of President Barack Obama. The announcer incited the crowd by asking whether anyone would like to see Obama run down by the bull.

This performance was extremely disrespectful, inappropriate and offensive.

Clowns are portrayed as funny and entertaining. But this incident was neither.

The Missouri State Fair is billed as a family-friendly event, but this set a poor example for children. Despite the apology from the Missouri Rodeo Cowboy Association, I will not attend the Missouri State Fair in the future.

Jane Toliver

Leawood What about Bush?

Politicians on both sides are almost speaking as one in opposition to the rodeo clown’s questionable antics last weekend at Sedalia, Mo.

The question one needs to consider is this: Would there have been as much of an outcry if the clown had worn a George W. Bush mask?

Russ Warren

Nevada, Mo. Show-Me shame

I am ashamed to say I live in Missouri after the racist and disrespectful antics at our State Fair.

Putting on a mask that was supposed to be the president and asking the crowd how many want to see him hit by a bull is beyond the most obscene of gestures directed at the president.

President Barack Obama won the election with a majority of votes. Sadly, some backwoods Missourians still can’t accept the fact that a black American was elected to the highest office in the land not once but twice.

This is not the first time supposedly intelligent people have shown disrespect toward our president.

First, there was the representative from South Carolina who called the president a liar during his State of the Union speech.

I won’t even go into the hatefulness of the Koch brothers.

The Show-Me State?

Maybe the show-us-how-stupid-you-are state.

Steven Addison

Kansas City Steve Rose column

Columnist Steve Rose is right (8-11, “Government should subsidize the Postal Service”). The Postal Service deserves a government subsidy, but for greater reasons than he cited.

Of 18 powers the Constitution grants Congress, just one isn’t for revenue, regulation or defense, and that’s No. 7, “To establish post offices and post roads.”

Subsidies helped for nearly two centuries until lawmakers decided in 1970 to operate the system “like a business.” President Richard Nixon signed the reorganization bill.

A better course than the current one would be to restore the government our Founding Fathers invented and Abraham Lincoln preserved.

Naturalized citizens must learn more about the Constitution’s contents than the rest of us know. Sadly they believe we, the people, are on top of all that stuff.

Norm Ledgin

Stanley Hospital billing

In response to the Aug. 12 letter from Tom Bell with the Kansas Hospital Association and Herb Kuhn with the Missouri Hospital Association, your attempt at explaining the billing practices of hospitals is inadequate.

The implication of sinister practices by hospitals, according to the Aug. 4 Kansas City Star article, “Hospitals are sued over billing practices,” is very warranted.

If a patient appears in the emergency room with injuries from an auto accident and has health insurance, the patient should be billed for treatment at the negotiated cost of the insurance plan. If the hospital chooses to wait for reimbursement from the accident claim, that is its choice.

What makes this situation sinister is that the hospital places a lien against the accident claim at full hospital charges — in other words, list price. This is a blatant attempt to collect more than the hospital is due.

If the hospitals were as altruistic as Bell and Kuhn state, the charges to the patient’s personal insurance and against future claims would be exactly the same.

Not all hospitals in the area are doing this, which is a big red flag.

Gregg Morris

Kansas City Senseless slaughter

It was a sad story in The Star about the senseless slaughter of Ella, the little orphaned deer (8-6, A1, “City mourns loss of Elmwood Cemetery deer”).

Elmwood board member Bruce Mathews was quoted saying, “She was such a ray of sunshine. She brought so much life to this place.” In describing the shooter, he continued, “It was someone with a hard heart and a confused mind.”

To which I would add “and a loaded gun.”

Janice Grebe

Roeland Park End animal cruelty

It appears we have an awful lot of deranged people running around Kansas City. Drowning cats, shooting dogs and throwing them in dumpsters, killing an innocent deer for no reason.

Those are just three examples from the last couple weeks.

What is wrong with people? Did they not get enough love growing up? Do they need a hug? Does it make them feel good to be mean?

Seriously, grow up. They should pick on someone their own size.

Or, better yet, if they have that much time and energy, they should direct it toward something positive, like mentoring children. Or how about helping at an animal shelter? Or a senior center.

Join the human race. Really, grow up.

Kate Hoffman-Hugo

Kansas City Consequences of sex

Kathleen Parker’s Aug. 12 commentary, “Finding your joy with or without having children,” barely scratches the surface of that awesome decision. There are deeper, long-lasting realities to be considered.

The joy women experience during childbirth is a miracle exclusive to that experience. This miracle is only the beginning.

It’s during the following 18-plus years that actual parenting exists. The thrill of delivery becomes a vague memory compared with the responsibilities and sacrifices parenthood brings.

Thanks to the evolution of sound-minded females, they now have the blessed option of whether to experience that thrill of childbirth. They can now choose to be selfish, if that’s what logical, practical women prefer.

It’s deplorable that many parents haven’t considered the true facts of parenthood. Look at the statistics of neglected, battered, homeless children in the care of state agencies.

These children desperately need the love and security that has been denied them.

We should recognize and thank Planned Parenthood and other organizations that support women’s options to plan when or whether to become pregnant.

We must encourage our youth (male and female) to intelligently ponder the realities, responsibilities and consequences of sex.

Ida Mayor Clayton

Lake Waukomis Huelskamp, Kansas

In 1896, Republican editor William Allen White wrote his famous article, “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” More than a century later, Thomas Frank wrote a book of the same name, although not coming to precisely the same conclusions.

For either White or Frank, however, the primary illustration for his writing could be a picture of Congressman Tim Huelskamp (8-7, A1, “Kansas’ Huelskamp stands up to party”).

Stuart Bintner

Kansas City

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