Kansas ticketing, budget flimflam, GOP miscalculations

06/06/2014 4:18 PM

06/06/2014 4:50 PM

Kansas shakedown

I travel through Kansas regularly. I live in Missouri and have business in Colorado. I was pulled over recently. I was not given a reason, such as speeding. When I asked, I was ignored and had to give my license and insurance information, which was checked without incident.

The officers then demanded that I vacate the car. They proceeded to rummage through sales material, clothing and personal effects.

Not finding anything, they sent me on my way.

I was intimidated, humiliated, and furious. I believe that if I had protested I would have found myself under arrest for who knows what.

I am appalled that this goes on in Kansas. I cannot be the only person this has happened to.

I will never spend another penny in Kansas.

We have become accustomed to our politicians having no shame, but I have always had the utmost respect for law enforcement. Sadly, Kansas has tainted that for me.

Beware travelers. Avoid Kansas. The state has no respect for you.

Renee Shy

St. Louis

Selective data use

Enough already. Those who agree with Gov. Sam Brownback’s policies and those who disagree are looking at selective data and fail to see more relevant factors to the debate.

First, more than any other allegedly comparable states, Kansas is an agricultural state, and there is no question that agriculture has contributed to economic growth, especially in the time period in question. The result is that in states where agriculture is dominant (not Missouri, not Colorado, not Oklahoma), the unemployment rates never went as high as the national average.

Therefore, the greater the influence of agriculture, the lower the unemployment rate in this time period. In a recovery, you are starting from a higher base, so job growth is (mathematically) slower.

Do the math. Both sides need to fess up to selective data use.

Jarold W. Boettcher

Manhattan, Kan.

GOP miscalculations

Remember how Republicans thought they had a sure winner in the presidential election of 2012?

The economy was a disaster, they kept saying. No president had won re-election with unemployment above 7.5 percent.

As usual, though, they were just talking among themselves, spinning their own reality, ignoring their differences with the larger world around them.

Well, déjà vu is happening again.

The Republicans think they’ve got a winner with the 2014 elections because, according to their calculations, Obamacare is such a catastrophe.

Why, it’s obvious that the American people don’t want Obamacare, it being a socialist/communist plot and all.

They want the Affordable Care Act to fail. They’re working hard at it, spinning their lies, building their own reality, obstructing at every opportunity.

What would they do with the millions of enrollees if they had their way?

Here’s one of the great ironies. If the Republicans ultimately succeed in killing the Affordable Care Act, considering that most Americans don’t want to kill it, they just want to make it better — who would get the blame?

Probably the Republicans. The voters could turn on them if they’re successful, recalling how they again attacked those in need.

Paul J. Potts

Overland Park

Capitol’s empty suits

So 50 U.S. senators sent a letter to the NFL commissioner requesting the name of the Washington NFL franchise be changed. These same empty suits can’t handle the Benghazi, Veterans Affairs, Internal Revenue Service, National Security Agency, and “Fast and Furious” scandals.

But they can roll up their sleeves and tackle a name change. They are an absolute disgrace. The Washington team name cannot be as offensive as these 50 senators are to me.

Dick Heinisch

Kansas City

Climate change ethics

The Republicans’ denial of climate change is just another example of their disdain for science and reality. It reminds me of a story about a man whose house stood in the middle of a large flood.

Sitting on the roof of his house, he petitions God to save him. Soon, a motorboat from the sheriff’s office comes by offering help. He dismisses it, saying that God is going to rescue him.

He repeats this to a highway patrol motorboat and a news station helicopter.

After he drowns and stands at the pearly gates, he asks why God didn’t save him. God answers, “I sent two boats and a helicopter, but you wouldn’t get in.”

Cute little story that doesn’t begin to touch the lack of ethics of politicians who accept huge sums of campaign money from big oil companies to deny what 97 percent of all climate scientists insist is the truth.

If it were just the money, I could excuse them. But the lives of our children and grandchildren are at stake.

Politicians declare concern about the national debt, which matters very little if no one on Earth can breathe.

Ruth Sandefur

Leawood

Humans, free will

A writer recently asked whether all the misery in the world is part of God’s plan. It was never God’s intention for man to suffer.

Before the universe itself was created, God knew that man was going to break his heart. But God made us anyway, because along with a soul that he breathed into us at our conception, he gave us free will.

It is the same free will that gives us the right to mock, curse, ridicule, deny and even crucify him.

It’s the same free will that ignores him when things are going in our favor and blames him when things go awry.

Because of free will, we will always have the Adolf Hitlers, Joseph Stalins and Idi Amins of this world who will torment us with wars and holocausts.

Because of free will, we are also blessed with the Martin Luther King Jrs., the Mother Teresas and the Nelson Mandelas.

God lives in the eternal present; there is no past or future in his sight. So the sufferings we go through are not predestined.

When man broke the covenant with God, we invited all our calamities. God is just.

He won’t rescind our free will despite his sorrow.

Art Carrillo

Kansas City

Great area theater

Kansas City is home to many fine theatrical companies, but please don’t overlook the great productions staged by area community theater groups.

In particular, I’d like to call attention to Raytown Arts Council, Blue Springs City Theatre, City Theatre of Independence and Summit Theatre Group of Lee’s Summit.

I’ve traveled from my home in Lexington to see productions by each of these groups. I have always been impressed with the quality of their plays and musicals.

This summer, you can see “Pride & Prejudice” (City Theatre of Independence), “Kiss Me, Kate” (Raytown Arts Council), “Annie” (Blue Springs City Theatre) and “Godspell” (Summit Theatre Group).

Community theater relies on the many people who are willing to volunteer their time and talents to put on these productions.

Show your support for these and other community theater groups by attending a performance this summer.

Diane Dunford

Lexington, Mo.

Motorcycle helmets

I’ve been a motorcycle rider for more than 50 years and an avid helmet wearer nearly all of that time. So I think I have some credibility to comment on the issue.

Many of the comments in support of helmets relate to devastating injuries or death. I absolutely agree that helmets can do a great deal to protect the brain and minimize injuries.

I have an old helmet in the basement I keep as a reminder of their effectiveness. There is a significant gouge from when my head rubbed a rock while I was sliding into a muddy ditch to avoid hitting a dog.

But I digress. Perhaps too much emphasis is placed on the death and disability angle.

I find that my full-face helmet enhances my riding experience. My eyes don’t dry out, and it’s quiet, preserving what is left of my hearing ability. Stones that are thrown up bounce off the face plate without consequence.

And when I look at the bug collection, I realize there is a lot less unsavory protein I have consumed or have to scrub off in the shower.

I bought a new helmet recently. It’s really comfortable and effective.

Gene Moyer

Kansas City

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