Letters to the Editor

June 26, 2014

Readers weigh in on Clay Chastain, money in politics and driving

I can’t understand you people who sign Clay Chastain’s petitions. Over the years, this has cost a lot of money that the city of Kansas City doesn’t have.

Chastain’s proposal

I can’t understand you people who sign Clay Chastain’s petitions (6-24, A4, “Chastain ballot wording dispute deepens”). Over the years, this has cost a lot of money that the city of Kansas City doesn’t have.

There are water mains and sewer lines that are very old and need to be replaced or repaired. There is no money or call for light rail, which would cost a fortune. If Clay Chastain wants light rail, let him do it in Virginia.

Frank Thompson

De Soto

Money tilts politics

The problem with the Supreme Court ruling allowing the Koch brothers, George Soros and others to spend virtually unlimited amounts on political campaigns is that it lessens the effect of average Americans. It also widens the gulf between us and them — and I don’t mean between Democrats and Republicans.

The money from the ultra-rich comes at a cost to the rest of us, such as the many favors they buy, not to mention the additional hours of negative advertising that bring nothing more than misleading information, innuendos and outright lies into our living rooms.

If you are happy with the Kochs, Soros and the rest of the wealthy 1 percenters buying elections for their personal gain, this ruling is right down your alley.

You can thank the John Roberts court.

Kent Zimmerman


Follow driving rules

Does everyone know there are unwritten rules for drivers? It’s these unwritten rules that people break every day, which make the rest of us rule-abiding drivers frustrated and angry.

For instance, when driving on the highway, the far left lane is for passing only. It’s not for some to take their Sunday drive.

If you’re in the passing lane and someone approaches, get out of the way. I can’t even begin to count how many times motorists encounter one car in the passing lane and a line of 20 vehicles behind him, with no regard for others.

That leads me to my second point. When everyone has to merge left or right for an accident or some other reason, you’re not being cute driving past the line all the way to the front and then cutting in.

This is so rude.

We have these rules that we all should follow. But there are rude, inconsiderate drivers who know who they are.

Also, don’t text and drive, and don’t throw your nasty cigarette butts out of your windows. The roads are not your trash can.

Please respect these rules, and we will have a lot less road rage.

Joe Rhea


Steve Rose column

Steve Rose’s June 22 column, “Fix initiative petition process to stop fiascos,” on initiative petitions was very well-stated and certainly timely.

I hope the Kansas City Council and mayor will give this issue serious consideration.

One question Steve did not cover is why the city would accept a petition from Clay Chastain when he does not live in Kansas City. Is it possible that Mr. Chastain owns property in Kansas City, which allows him to do so? To my knowledge, however, those issues have not been dealt with or answered publicly.

Glen Bailey


SkillsUSA pluses

Our students’ reading scores continue to rank low. Thank heavens for the SkillsUSA competition this week in Kansas City. It encourages young minds to think creatively and rewards them for it.

Many more specialized education programs will be needed to support our students in their quest for learning. Parents, we need your voices to campaign for children's education rights.

Vicki Saviano

Kansas City

Arming educators

Thank you for the excellent June 25 As I See It column, “The folly of arming of school officials today,” by G.A. Buie.

Buie makes the case, in a most articulate and concise way, why arming school personnel is not the answer to school shootings.

His well-reasoned and cogently argued position is one of the best things I’ve read on the subject.

Don Wilson

Overland Park

Recycle for planet

I remember more than 67 years ago, our teachers told us God made this world for us. They taught us that every living creature, the vegetation, the water and the air were put here for us.

God sent his son to forgive us our sins. All he asked was we take care of our gift for life, take care of our people and our world.

Why can’t we do that?

I can remember when we lived without electricity and running water. This was a beautiful world then.

How can we preserve our clean water? The time is now to turn waste into new products.

What if we rinse all containers for recycling maybe in a container to use waste as fertilizer?

We know the landfills are unacceptable. All paper, glass and metal needs to be put back into service.

With the help of technology, greed, oil men, arrogance, lawyers and bankers, we keep using up everything God gave us.

We can fix this. Sort and recycle.

William Leroy Elwood

Osceola, Mo.

Concern for homeless

People who believe the city will take positive action on the safety and feeding of the homeless are deceiving themselves.

It’s class warfare, plain and simple.

The only concern people in some neighborhoods have is for property values. The homeless residents of Kansas City are people, not some sort of demographic.

I’ll bet well-off people just love the homeless, as long as they don’t have to look at them, deal with them or acknowledge their existence. Instead of demonizing people and griping that they leave waste all over, maybe we should be figuring out how to take care of people.

Put up some trash cans, for crying out loud. People can’t dump their trash in trash cans if there are none.

The same goes for restrooms. Why doesn’t Kansas City have public toilets?

Or maybe the residents of some neighborhood can just build huge freaking walls around their community so they don’t have to see other human beings in need.

Lola Shrimplin

Kansas City

Often mispronounced

The word “veteran” is a three-syllable word, not two.

Diane Capps

Kansas City

Smoke-free gambling

Smoking has been controlled in most public and private businesses in Kansas City for some time.

Last month, the housing authority threw in its new ban.

So why do non-smoking gamblers (or those just out for a night of entertainment) have to endure the carcinogenic air at area casinos?

There has to be some reason for this.

Is it a strong casino lobby in the state legislatures? Is money paid to the states from gambling more important than the health of the majority of their constituents?

The area casinos I have visited have paltry or zero nonsmoking areas. One casino has a nonsmoking area that seats maybe 30 people.

Considering that the casino has several hundred seats where smoking is allowed and that almost 80 percent of the population doesn’t smoke, how can this be allowed to continue?

Smoke-free casinos are popping up all over the country.

Instead of waiting for the first brave casino to go smokeless, or worse, a huge lawsuit from an impaired nonsmoking worker or patron, wouldn’t it be wise for the Missouri and Kansas state legislatures to enact the same rules that apply to area bars and restaurants?

Van Vandiver


GOP takes KC on ride

Once again, Kansas City has lost out on a convention because the city doesn’t have enough hotel rooms (6-25, Editorial, “Nice try, no cigar on GOP bid”).

How many times has this been now?

I have lost count. But I hope the Kansas City Convention & Visitors Association is keeping count.

It is not the lack of a 2.2-mile streetcar that is keeping the Republican National Convention away in 2016.

That folly is going to cost all of us big time. It is a grab for “free” federal money, with us paying through the nose for the bulk of the remainder of the cost.

Meanwhile, we lose out on getting big conventions.

Enjoy the short ride.

Geri Jaeger

Kansas City

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