Letters to the Editor

July 3, 2014

Readers weigh in on the national anthem, veterans and troops

Why is it that every schoolchild knows Francis Scott Key wrote the poem that would became “The Star Spangled Banner,” but few know that John Stafford Smith wrote the music?

National anthem

This letter concerns “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Why is it that every schoolchild knows Francis Scott Key wrote the poem that became “The Star Spangled Banner,” but few know that John Stafford Smith wrote the music?

Thomas A. Strickland Jr.

Kansas City, Kan.

Veterans’ service

America’s veterans witnessing the events in Iraq should be at peace with themselves.

Americans go to war with the purest of motives. They fight because their country asks them to. They fight to make the world a safer place for themselves, their families, their country and the world at large.

They weren’t drafted; they enlisted. They chose to put themselves into harm’s way. They returned to multiple tours of duty to further help those left behind.

Serving in Vietnam was one of the highlights of my life. And, although South Vietnam fell to communism, the country is now an ally in a civilized world, living in peace and not threatening its neighbors.

I’d like to think that I contributed to that, just as Iraq will eventually realize that if it is to survive in this world it, too, will join the chorus of voices demanding peace and stability.

Thank you to veterans for their service to this country. They have served this country well, and their sacrifice was not in vain.

Tom Davis


Thanks to troops

The Fourth of July is not only a time to celebrate our great country but also a time to reflect on the service and sacrifices made by military service members.

The dedication of the nearly 21 million veterans living in the United States today is one of the reasons Bank of America is committed to honoring them both nationally and in Kansas City.

Bank of America’s longstanding commitment to members of our nation’s military and their families focuses on connecting them to the support they need to make transitioning into civilian life as smooth as possible. In doing so, we hire veterans, provide banking services and support community organizations to offer wellness programs, educational resources and donate homes to returning service members and their families.

In the past three years, we have hired more than 4,000 veterans and guard and reserve members and have donated more than 1,000 homes through military nonprofits, including in Kansas City.

This holiday, I invite others to honor the lasting effect service men and women have made on our community by expressing your thanks at bankofamerica.com/troopthanks.

I join all of our Kansas City-based employees in giving thanks to our troops.

Jack Ovel

Bank of America

Kansas City Market


Kansas City

No on sales taxes

Exciting, useful projects? Yes. Sales taxes? No.

Pat Kenoyer

Kansas City

Declaration, Obama

As we celebrate the 238th birthday of our country, please read the Declaration of Independence. Read it slowly and give serious thought to what is says.

Its writing was prompted by the way King George and Parliament were governing the American colonists — much as the president and Congress are governing our country today.

Joseph Pavlich


Hobby Lobby case

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby, saying that the corporation is not required to provide birth control to its employees under the Affordable Care Act because it is an affront to the corporation’s religious freedom.

At the same time, Hobby Lobby employees are required to stock, sell and sack myriad Chinese-made products that grace its store shelves.

How ironic. A corporation that refuses to include contraceptives in its company-provided health benefits, under the ploy of religious freedom, does business with a country where there is no religious freedom and rampant abortions.

The Georgetown Journal of International Affairs reports that China has about 13 million abortions per year.

That’s 35,616 abortions a day or 1,484 per hour. Where is Hobby Lobby’s self-righteous indignation over this?

If Hobby Lobby were truly committed to its religious principles and beliefs, then how could it continue to buy and peddle products from the baby-killing capital of the world?

Ron Fugate

Overland Park

State sales tax plan

An article highlighted the differing opinions held by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon and state Sen. Mike Kehoe on the proposed sales-tax funding for transportation.

The governor opposes funding through a sales-tax increase because it is regressive in nature and would fall disproportionately on lower and fixed-income citizens.

Kehoe supports the plan because the Department of Transportation needs the money and the sales-tax increase would create good, high-paying jobs.

Gov. Nixon recognizes the needs of the Transportation Department, and he is aware of the stimulating effect of investing tax money to improve our transportation system.

The need for increased funding is agreed to by Nixon and Kehoe. The economic stimulation from meeting these needs is mutually recognized. The disagreement is in the funding source.

I tend to agree with Mark W. Hendrickson, a renowned Republican cheerleader, when he states, “Why shouldn’t motorists — the users of roads — be the ones to pay for the repair and upkeep of those roads?”

Stanley Robinson

Princeton, Mo.

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