Letters: Credit card safety, Medicaid expansion, Common Core

03/17/2014 7:40 PM

03/17/2014 7:40 PM

Credit card safety

My husband and I have often wondered when the credit card chip technology used in England would come to America.

With the unfortunate hacker attack on Target and the possibility of similar attacks in the future, why are we not hearing more urgency about doing away with magnetic strips? News articles have stated that the Target hackers snatched customers’ data directly off the magnetic strips of credit and debit cards.

We need to insist on changing to chip technology sooner rather than later. Not only would it help protect us from hacker fraud, but it would reduce the possibility of credit card information being stolen when a server or clerk takes a card out of sight to complete a transaction.

In England, the server or clerk simply uses a handheld device that reads the chip and the transaction is completed in your presence.

Now is the time to change to the safer chip technology.

Libby Schoeni

Overland Park Lee Judge cartoon

As a Christian man, I was horrified by the Lee Judge editorial cartoon of March 14. Yes, Lee, God is supernatural, and he can do anything he wants, whenever he wants.

Would you have devised a cartoon about the Muslim faith? How about the Jewish faith?

Regardless of what you may think, there is only one truth, and that is Jesus Christ.

He has instructed us to pray for the lost that they will be softened of heart and turn to him for everlasting life. So, Lee, I pray for you, just as we all need prayer.

Remember, Lee, if you’re right, all of us Bible-believing Christians will be there next to you. If we are right, we get eternal life.

Do you want to take that chance?

God bless you.

Tim Beach

Kansas City Medicaid expansion

Steve Anderson should be ashamed for writing “The cost of Medicaid expansion” (3-12, Commentary). His commentary is not so much outright deception as it is half-truth.

Granted that Medicaid recipients have more trouble finding providers, may have to wait longer for treatment and frequently have poorer outcomes, but that is largely because Medicaid is an insurance of last resort.

There is no open enrollment where people can chose their Medicaid plans. The choice is whatever Medicaid can provide or nothing at all.

And just because Kansas chooses not to expand Medicaid does not mean those health-care costs will then be avoided.

The truth is that in some cases emergency care will be provided at a much greater per patient cost, and in other cases people will suffer or die unnecessarily because of inaccessibility to health care.

Mike Wheeler

Kansas City Vows for candidates

It’s the time of half-truths and innuendos. It’s election year.

I think more people vote against a person than for a person. I was at a meeting, and the speaker was introduced as “the honorable ...” I thought it would be nice if the people on the ballot were honorable in deed and not just in title.

Maybe it’s time for a vow of candidacy for a name to be placed on the ballot. The candidate should vow to all of his constituents to:

• Be open and truthful.

• Support and embrace the will of the majority regardless of personal or political convictions. Support of the majority is not encumbered by any predefined agreement or contact.

Any person not willing to take a vow of candidacy could still run for office as a write-in candidate.

I think most people would prefer to be informed voters, but where can a person find unbiased information about the candidates?

Political ads are trying to sell a product and should follow truth-in-advertising statutes. Debates are candidate testimonies; participants should be put under oath.

Al Mason

Overland Park Common Core test

Kansas should take its last chance and ditch national Common Core testing mandates this spring. There are many reasons, but at the heart are two: their poor academic quality and degradation of local control.

Local control does not mean “the power to carry out what other people have decided for us.” Many Common Core supporters use this definition when insisting Common Core allows this.

And the academic quality of the math, English and science mandates is highly suspect. For one, the math has children learning multidigit multiplication two years later than high-achieving foreign competitors. For another, the science omits almost all high school chemistry.

There are many more objections, but I think upon hearing just these any fair-minded person should at least be willing to take a further look.

Joy Pullmann

Education

research fellow

Heartland Institute

Chicago Loose Park pests

A while back I read of a patron of Loose Park wanting to eradicate the annoying Canada geese. Evidently, the geese waddled along, stopping occasionally to foul the ground upon which the man would soon tread, frustrating him mightily.

His idea allowed for the arming of him and others who would enter the park shooting every goose in sight. I remember doubting the efficacy of such a campaign, worried about the exit strategy.

Even if the park were completely cleansed of today’s Canada geese, that wouldn’t address tomorrow’s geese. They’d be in flight during the massacre and likely unaware of conditions on the ground.

I have since taken up the habit of walking the interior of Loose, only to find that the previous plan doesn’t go far enough.

One morning’s walk required a constant vigil to keep my feet from the foulings of geese, and a much larger problem was numerous dog droppings.

So I will see the previous patron’s plan and raise him.

I call for an ordinance allowing not just the eradication of all geese who set webbed feet down in Loose, but a ban on any canine observed leaving the scene of a dropping.

Hunter Rogers

Kansas City Destructive thinking

With taxpayer dollars scarce and a long list of needed improvements, it amazes me that Kansas City’s elected officials are leaning toward spending $6.5 million to tear down a historically relevant building and $30 million more on a smaller replacement structure on the site. All this because a Denver-based CEO requests it?

It further amazes me that this is happening when an entrepreneur is proposing to repurpose this same building into a much-needed youth activity center with no city taxpayer funds involved.

I understand that Kemper Arena does not serve the American Royal as well as could be hoped, and I recognize the Royal’s proud tradition in this city. Nevertheless, the Royal is a shell of what it once was, and there is no good reason to believe it could ever return to its former glory.

Spending taxpayer money in a nostalgic attempt to resuscitate the Royal is foolish considering the other priorities Kansas City faces.

George Lafferty

Fairway Retirement outrage

There have been several letters regarding federal employee compensation and related retirement benefits, including one that noted that federal retirement-benefit cost-of-living adjustments match those for Social Security. That will remain true so long as the retiree is a civilian.

For military retirees under age 65, the adjustment will be reduced by 1 percent each year, meaning the reduction will compound over time. This travesty is occurring while the president and members of Congress, including our own representatives, express great appreciation for the service of military members.

However, they do not appreciate it enough to live up to the commitment made to long-serving military members, deciding instead that the only place they could find to reduce federal benefit payments was in those due military retirees.

For the record, I am a military retiree but well past 65 years of age, so I am not personally affected by this deplorable action. That fact does not reduce my outrage, a feeling that should be shared by all Americans.

Jim O’Connell

Shawnee

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