Confronting Russia, guns for protection, texting and driving

05/30/2014 4:36 PM

06/03/2014 2:23 PM

Confronting Russia

The current administration needs to grow up.

President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have resorted to name-calling and pointing at calendar dates as a way of dealing with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the invasion of Ukraine.

This childish behavior seems to be the president’s strategy on dealing with the expansion of the Russian empire. Therefore, I suggest we hit Vladimir where it hurts, his front doorstep.

Kerry can do it on his next trip to Moscow.

Joe Lavender

Lenexa

Support U.S. vets

A few weeks ago, I took the opportunity in Olathe to personally thank former Sen. Bob Dole for helping me in 1970. He arranged a three-week leave for me before my deployment to Vietnam so I could be home for my first child’s birth.

He probably didn’t recall it, although it made an unforgettable impact on my life. I sat down next to him and thanked him, and his humble reply was, “Well, back then we did what we could.”

Fast forward to today. Politicians, shame on you.

You have failed miserably to take care of the returning military whom you sent into harm’s way — Vietnam, Desert Storm, Iraq, Afghanistan and even Korea. It shouldn’t take 43 years to get earned benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs on an injury from Vietnam.

Veterans make up a huge voting bloc, and elected officials better take note — yes, we vote. No longer do we believe it when we hear you say you support veterans and the military.

Don’t tell us. Show us, just like Bob Dole did.

Earl Boutell

Leawood

Guns for protection

Yet another shooting in a public place (5-25, A2, “Three stabbed and three shot before killer dies”). This time in Isla Vista, Calif., a heavily regulated no-gun zone.

The shooter has been presented as mentally ill, with a Facebook post to prove the fact. As a society, we need to change our mindset and look at these events as acts of domestic terrorism. Terrorizing victims for their own suicidal self-interests is what terrorists do.

Had one person at the scene been able to fight back, perhaps the murderer’s route would have been shortened or not started at all. A common link with past incidents is the sites selected by mass murderers were likely no-gun zones.

And in all of the past incidents, victims were prevented from having the means to protect themselves because of onerous regulations.

I am a retired police officer and now a civilian firearms trainer. I hope some day I can breathe a sigh of relief because a citizen had the attitude, ability and tool to defend himself against a deranged terrorist like the one in Isla Vista instead of counting the dead and wounded.

Bruce Luedeman

Independence

Obamacare wrinkles

What those in support of Obamacare have not addressed is that only about 67 percent of the people enrolled have actually paid a premium. Will the remaining third of the unpaid premiums ever be paid?

Recent polls have shown that around 42 percent of Americans do not understand or know what a deductible is. How shocked are these new enrollees going to be when they realize the first $2,500 or so of any significant treatment is going to have to come out of their own pockets?

Who plans on taking the hit for that when it’s not paid — hospitals, clinics, providers? Are they going to be asked to simply write it off as noncollectable?

Until premiums are paid and deductibles and other co-pays paid, it’s just a lot of hoping and wishing. Simply listing enrollee numbers and calling it success isn’t real or valid.

Tim Goodheart

Overland Park

End texting, driving

What can we as citizens do when we see people texting and driving? I see it every day and always want to do something.

These people are dangerous to our community and careless about their behavior. Even honking at the driver next to you doesn’t get his or her attention.

I think people want to get tough on texting while driving, but there is no major action being taken by everyone. Even a law doesn’t help because cops can’t be everywhere.

It seems the only way to fight it is to have citizens report it.

I could think of other ways we could prevent it. But then we would all be in jail.

Casey McDonald

Kansas City

Royals not winners

After reading many columns about how much talent the Kansas City Royals have, I would remind Royals fans that talent is a small part of the equation in winning at the professional level. Everyone at the professional level has talent.

What separates champions from the rest of the pack is mentality and execution.

Winners have a win-at-all-costs mentality. Winners hate losing more than anything in the world and after a loss will display a seething rage that most people cannot fathom.

Losers have a “it’s just one of those games, we will get them next time” mentality after a loss.

Winners thrive on the pressure of the big stage and find a way to come through.

Losers are nervous on the big stage and eventually will crack under the pressure and find a way to lose.

Winners take personal responsibility for losses and deflect credit for successes.

Losers take credit for successes and deflect responsibility for losses.

Despite their talent, the Royals do not have what it takes between the ears to become winners. They don’t have the winner’s mentality, nor can they execute when it counts.

Kyle Black

Overland Park

You’re not a liberal if...

If you don’t believe in all of these tenets, you are a socialist, communist or (shudder) a liberal:

President Barack Obama is the devil.

Universal health care is a Marxist plot to destroy the best health-care system in the world.

The greatest evil in the world is not repression, war, greed or slavery but homosexuality.

The media are part of a liberal conspiracy — except Fox News.

Our greatest prophet is Rush Limbaugh.

The only way to stimulate the economy is to cut taxes.

The only way to reduce the deficit is to cut spending.

Poor people are deadbeats and don’t deserve to vote.

The unemployed should just go out and get a job — period.

Government has no purpose, so we should not have to pay any taxes.

Colleges foster Marxism; only the wealthy should be allowed to attend.

Women and people of color deserve a little less of everything.

Man-made climate change is a worldwide conspiracy among universities, scientists and the government. Sort of like evolution.

People who care about nature and the environment are wackos.

I’ve got mine, to heck with you.

Jim Meyer

Lenexa

Internet fast lane

Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler has proposed new rules regarding net neutrality after the Verizon vs. FCC ruling.

Wheeler states that Internet service providers should be allowed to charge companies a fee to allow them to get prioritized Internet speeds.

So why should people be upset? Here’s an example.

Netflix could pay its fee to Comcast, and those who use Netflix would soon find themselves having faster download speeds.

Great, right? Wrong.

There is a finite amount of space on the cables. If you let one website have faster speeds, it causes the other parts of the Internet to slow down. So if you have an amazing idea for an alternative to YouTube, you better be forking over the big bucks to the Internet service providers to get that website up and running.

This just enforces the ridiculous monopoly our service providers already have over the Internet in America.

Wheeler says this won’t be a big deal because the service providers will have to be commercially reasonable.

Because the Internet in America is already so reasonable.

And if you only use the Internet to watch Netflix and are thinking that this will be great, have fun paying Comcast’s exorbitant charges.

Elliott Davidson

Overland Park

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