Letters to the Editor

September 3, 2013

Missouri budget, local TV news, same-sex marriage

Several groups are advocating an override of Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of House Bill 253 with a television ad blitz.
Missouri’s budget

Several groups are advocating an override of Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of House Bill 253 with a television ad blitz.

HB 253 calls for cutting business taxes in half over five years and making a smaller reduction in the state’s individual income taxes. If this is accomplished, kindergarten through 12th grades and higher education in Missouri will be underfunded.

With competition in the global economy, this is not the time to cut back on the educational opportunities of our youth.

Also, this bill calls for taxes on prescription drugs. It could also lead to a downgrade in Missouri’s AAA credit rating.

Please contact the Missouri General Assembly and ask lawmakers not to override Gov. Nixon’s veto of HB 253.

Eva Ponessa

Kansas City Counterproductive ad

I was stunned to hear a local sports radio station (WHB) air an advertisement featuring Texas Gov. Rick Perry encouraging Missouri businesses to abandon the state and go to Texas.

Did this ad run on other stations?

Is it possible broadcasters did not notice what this ad said to their regular sponsors, not to mention their regular listeners? In essence, the ad told your sponsors that you, as a station, are willing to encourage the patrons on which their businesses depend to move away.

If this ad had simply attacked the Democratic governor of Missouri or encouraged low taxes, it would have been politics as usual and perfectly appropriate. Instead, it called for nothing less than the wholesale gutting of our community.

WHB and any other stations choosing to run this ad owe their regular sponsors and their listeners an apology.

No station can claim to be a part of the community it serves while running ads encouraging listeners to move away (and all to make a few extra dollars in ad revenue).

Privately owned stations are not required to run offensive ads. What could be a more obvious slap in the face to our community than this?

Craig Prentiss

Kansas City Local TV news

I have to say, amen, brother, to the Aug. 30 letter writer’s comments about our local television news. There is only one problem with it.

He left out all the house fires and car accidents that also fill the time. Sometimes five to 10 minutes are spent dissecting how an accident happened, with commercial breaks during that five to 10 minutes.

They also do not need to go to the scene of every shooting. We mute a lot of the commercials, and it is unbelievable how quiet it gets in a 30-minute time slot.

And, yes, we are tired of the weather near the beginning, in the middle and just before the end of the show. We got it the first time; we are not stupid.

Barbara Butterfield

Grandview Diuguid column

On Lewis Diuguid's Sept. 2 column, “50-year anniversary of King's 'dream',” Here are some facts you wouldn't learn by reading what he wrote on the freedom riders in the civil rights movement.

• Some freedom riders were white people.

• Some white people in the movement died while fighting for black civil rights.

• Some of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People were white.

Despite what Diuguid evidently wants you to believe, black civil rights weren't a cause championed just by black people.

Steven Thomas

Kansas City Bartering via TV

Have you seen “Barter Kings”? Well, it’s on A

Have you looked on YouTube? There is news there, too.

It’s a blast to trade and get what you want and at the same time save money.

Who are the Barter Kings of Kansas City or Missouri?

Let’s find out. It’s a big topic around the country.

I have land I bartered for; others have cars and houses.

It’s worth it to check out, and people are wanting to know more.

Matthew Whitmore

Kansas City Same-sex marriage

“From moral slide to a full free fall”? Really? Over gay marriage? Really?

Some people are expressing such self-righteous indignation over an issue of equality. Where is as much self-righteous indignation and venom over some Catholic priests abusing the youths around the world and subsequent bishop cover-ups?

That’s not labeled “a moral slide to a full free fall”?

Maybe some people think gay marriage is the moral end of the world. But they ought to take a close look at what is really a moral-decay issue: the Catholic archdioceses’ cover-ups, the moving of abusive priests and not informing the new parishes, the refusal of bishops to step down in light of their involvement.

Gay marriage will not change one thing in others’ lives. Not one, single thing. But you never know when the next priest or bishop will be exposed for abuses or a cover-up.

I hope you’re doing your part to demand complete accountability and prison for all involved in these abuse cases and cover-ups.

Michael Molick

Kansas City Immigration reform

As an immigration attorney committed to a fair and workable immigration system, I am deeply concerned that the House of Representatives may bring HR 2278, the Strengthen and Fortify Enforcement Act (or SAFE Act), to the floor for a vote.

The SAFE Act is an extreme and regressive piece of legislation that would establish a deportation-only approach that leaders from both parties have rejected.

It would criminalize undocumented immigrants, massively increase detention and enforcement costs, and do nothing to actually fix our broken immigration system.

Not only that, but states and cities could investigate, arrest and detain people for any violation of immigration law and could even create their own criminal and civil penalties for federal immigration violations — ideas the U.S. Supreme Court rejected just last year when it reviewed Arizona’s controversial “show me your papers” law.

This is bad not only for immigrants; it is bad for the economy, for public safety and for our communities.

I urge my representative to reject the SAFE Act, to oppose bringing it up for a vote and to call upon leadership to support meaningful reform instead.

Angela Ferguson

Kansas City Becoming American

I recently attended a naturalization ceremony for my daughter’s friend at the federal courthouse.

Having not been to one of these, I was pleasantly surprised.

Fifty-nine people from 32 countries dressed in their best clothes stood up and took the citizenship oath of their new nation.

These people came from places such as the Ukraine, Russia, Canada, Uzbekistan, Honduras, Nigeria, Somalia, Germany, Iraq, Mexico, Philippines, El Salvador, Cuba, India, Pakistan, Jamaica, China and Romania.

These new Americans are all looking to take part in the great American dream, just like many of our ancestors did many years ago. Some are escaping difficulties in their home countries for a new start.

The American dream is alive and well. Watching this gave me a new appreciation for what I have always had and many times took for granted.

Tom Gebken

Independence NRA, assault weapons

Recent letter writers have wondered why the National Rifle Association defends gun owners’ right to “assault weapons.” I assume the writers are referring to semi-automatic rifles, which have been used for hunting since 1907.

Semi-automatic rifles are popular in marksmanship competitions. Their design and light recoil lend themselves to accuracy.

They are popular in self-defense because a homeowner roused from bed can snatch up a rifle with enough cartridges on board to repel nearly any threat.

The steady drumbeat that they are unusually deadly works toward intimidation of criminals. Intimidation works toward fewer shots being fired.

Lastly, the NRA defended such assault weapons because gun-hating organizations want to ban them.

This would justify their fundraising and demands for more bans.

Kevin L. Jamison


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