Letters to the Editor

July 7, 2014

Letter writers share views on Veterans Affairs, senior care, Mitt Romney

Letters to the Editor: Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney was quoted saying 47 percent of Americans cannot be persuaded to take personal responsibility. Mr. Romney only spoke a truth.

Problems in VA

First of all, I am a veteran who has nothing but praise for my treatment at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the people of this facility.

It is a disgrace that the veterans who fight for and protect these people, who have created this mess at the VA facilities around the country, have to fight for health care.

Punishment should start with members of Congress who voted against funding and preparing for the extra load of wounded veterans from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. A veteran should be the last person to have to beg for help.

I believe that those most responsible will see to it that the underlings get blamed, with no Congress people stepping down for their part in the inaction. This won’t be like Wall Street, where they just keep doing as they please because that’s where the money is.

Pay attention to what happens at the VA. Congress will make sure heads roll. Anyone responsible for bad or no health care for our veterans should be punished to the max.

Thomas Taylor


Goldberg on liberals

In his column published in The Star on July 6 (“This is why liberals are not proud of America”), Jonah Goldberg states “many liberal Americans still don’t like America.”

He pulls out of the right-wing, Fox News, anti-Obama archives the president’s 2009 comment that other citizens around the world, just like Americans, believe their countries are exceptional. He knows he can always count on this to rile up the Obama-is-really-a-foreigner crowd.

I guess if a liberal condemns the Bush-Cheney Iraq escapade, she is anti-American and should either love America or leave it. Goldberg apparently is suggesting that the First Amendment of the same Constitution that conservatives use as a prop for their shrink-government agenda does not apply to liberals.

Particularly offensive is Goldberg’s pot shot at Congressman John Lewis, whose beating by Alabama law-enforcement officials in a 1960s civil rights march is documented on videotape.

Michael Quinn


Caring for seniors

The Department of Veterans Affairs has been in a crisis, with people telling Congress of excessive waits for veterans to receive health care.

Kansas nursing homes also have problems. Advocates for better care have tried for two years to increase the time during which residents can get care. The Kansas Legislature has turned down bills on the issue.

Yes, more hours would cost more. Help is always short, and low pay doesn’t help either.

My husband is a veteran and 90 years of age. He has to be lifted in and out of bed several times a day.

He waits more than 45 minutes many times for the call light to be answered. Oh, yes, someone may answer quickly, turn the light off and then say, “I’ll be back. I have to get help.”

Then the long wait begins.

We spend billions of dollars every year to build and repair our highway system. But we keep adding more cars on the road, so the problem will never be solved. Our priorities need another look.

As our population of senior citizens is increasing, what are we doing to improve their care?

Evelyn Eastwood

Overland Park

Working the system

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney was quoted saying 47 percent of Americans cannot be persuaded to take personal responsibility. Mr. Romney only spoke a truth.

The following facts are the results of Americans who cannot be persuaded to take personal responsibility. The government spends more $940 billion annually on benefits — Social Security and Medicare are not included — which is more than on public education and defense spending.

A new report from the Census Bureau showed 108,592,000 people were on some sort of means-tested government benefits program in the fourth quarter of 2011, yet only 101,716,000 people were employed full time for the entire year.

The usual response from the left when faced with these facts: “The people receiving these benefits don’t have the opportunity to be responsible.” Let me remind them that the current president of the United States came from a humble beginning, is a member of minority group and came from a broken family.

I acknowledge there are people in need, and we should help them. I also acknowledge that a large percentage of these people have “learned” the system.

Ed Scrutchfield

Blue Springs

Pricey Royals games

I had come to town recently and offered to treat my family of six to a Kansas City Royals game and hot dogs at Kauffman Stadium. But when we looked, the cheapest seats we could find were at $21 each.

That was ticket shock for me. We stayed home instead and watched the game on TV.

For me, it just wasn’t the same. I love going to Kauffman Stadium and was sorry to have been priced out of a day at the ballpark with my family.

This new pricing system doesn’t work for me. And it obviously doesn’t work for others either.

Marianne Ronan

Albany, Mo.

Hudler’s sincerity

I find Royals announcer Rex Hudler’s less-than-perfect grammar refreshing because he isn’t trying to impress anyone but simply loves baseball. He expresses passion and firsthand knowledge of the game.

Also, you can’t fault him for wanting all the kids at the game to experience that same sense of joy that he gets. He even ran into the stands during the telecast of a game last year to hand a ball to a little boy who was crying because he had to give a ball to his visiting cousin.

Hudler may not say things with perfect English, but you have to admit he’s sincere and he loves his job.

Donna Ebeling

Lee’s Summit

Cover-up by church

The July 2 story, “Diocese told to pay $1.1 million,” on the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph is sad, yet interesting. It’s sad because we are still guided by a bishop who apparently valued reputation more than the protection of children.

Why is this? No amount of dollars can heal what has happened to children through sexual abuse, although it may allow recovery of some funds spent by families for the help needed during the years of pain, sickness, loss of spirit, loss of relationships, loss of soul and more.

And, yes, I do know about it becasue we experienced it all. In another diocese after we reported it, the Catholic organization chose to keep the perpetrator on staff for another 26 years because .. . you finish it.

Charlotte Humphrey

Kansas City

Climate-change costs

Some letter writers complain that the costs for alternative energy would be borne by the middle class. I wonder who is bearing the cost of repairing the damage caused by climate change.

I am referring to the damage caused by tornadoes, forest fires (California is a tinderbox and Texas not far behind), floods and drought. Water shortage is the next big thing we will face.

The cost for these disasters is borne by the middle class via the insurance industry. When your rates go up, you will have more to complain about.

David Zoller

Kansas City

Warren for president

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s time has come and gone. Sen. Elizabeth Warren gives voice to the concerns of ordinary citizens.

Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, is insightful, intelligent, articulate and compassionate. And she scares the socks off the hedge-fund crowd.

Elizabeth Warren for president in 2016.

Dale Irwin

Kansas City

Watch for bicyclists

Recently, I took up biking for the fun of it and just to say I did it. While finding out how much I enjoyed bicycle riding, I also began to notice all the signs that say “Bike Route.”

But I also found out that there is nowhere to walk, much less ride, with shoulders consisting of ditches. Now I know these signs cost money.

But why put them up needlessly? Motorists should sure watch carefully as bicyclists are sharing the lanes with cars and trucks.

Barbara Courtney

Kansas City

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