Letters to the Editor

July 12, 2014

Letter writers expound on Hobby Lobby, guns, Little Free Libraries

Letters to the Editor: It is good news that the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence will challenge a recent Kansas law making it a felony for U.S. government employees such as Drug Enforcement Administration and FBI agents to enforce federal gun regulations.

Hobby Lobby event

I was reading a recent Leawood magazine and saw an ad for an evangelical night hosted by the Kansas City Royals and paid for by Hobby Lobby.

I thought I wouldn’t have to read much more about the abysmal Supreme Court decision — Hobby Lobby against women. But, no, the corporation will be here on July 26 for Faith and Family Night at Kauffman Stadium.

I have re-engaged with the Royals the last two years, having lived in Kansas City in the 1970s. It has been fun. But I now need to know the team’s motivation to host this event.

I am very disappointed.

Susie Rawlings


Guns in Kansas

It is good news that the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence will challenge a recent Kansas law making it a felony for U.S. government employees such as Drug Enforcement Administration and FBI agents to enforce federal gun regulations. (7-10, Commentary, “Kansas gun law deserves censure”).

Of course, Gov. Sam Brownback stated, “The people of Kansas have repeatedly and overwhelmingly reaffirmed their commitment to protecting this fundamental right.” I’m not sure who he is talking about.

I, for one, welcome the enforcement of federal gun laws. There should also be universal gun registration, eradication of gun-show loopholes and requirements for gun safety.

Brownback’s administration promised the state will “vigorously defend” the Kansas law.

Please make your voice heard to your Kansas representative and senator. Also, make sure you are informed when you vote.

Judy Rieck

Grandmothers Against

Gun Violence

Overland Park

Victory for reading

I admired young Spencer Collins as he worked with the City Council of Leawood to allow “Little Free Libraries” in that area (7-8, A1, “A new chapter for ‘Little Free Library’”).

We have such a library in our neighborhood, and it is frequently used by people of all ages. The sign on our library reads, “Celebrating healthier neighborhoods.”

Julie Conn

Kansas City

Acting on faith

Freedom of religion is under attack. That right is in the First Amendment to the Constitution.

The first 10 amendments make up the Bill of Rights. Some of the first states refused to adopt the Constitution without these amendments.

Freedom of religion and speech were so important they were listed first. Many early colonists fled England because of that country’s attempts to control their worship.

Many, including the federal government, now discriminate by forcing Christians and churches to conform their beliefs. A recent commentary in The Star declared, “Church fumbles chance to change,” suggesting it change its beliefs to conform to majority views.

Some letters to the editor have said freedom of religion was limited to inside churches, implying that believers have no right to practice their faith in public.

Those under fire are Bible-based faiths that put forward what they believe to be God’s word.

Acts 4:19 says, “We must obey God rather than man.” They would have to give up the faith to change it.

They are charged by Jesus Christ not to “hide their light under a bushel,” but to share it with the world. It’s not a suggestion but a commandment.

Changing their church’s proclamations of God’s commandments is not an option.

They must put their faith into action.

Tyron Emerick


End all car chases

Stop police car chases (7-3, A4, “Driver fleeing police dies in head-on crash”). Stop them.

An innocent man, Benjamin Shively, has been badly injured so police could recover some stolen scrap-yard truck.

How many innocent people must be crippled or killed, paralyzed or brain-damaged for the sake of those police car chases?

No drug stash or car recovery is worth even one more injured soul.

Remember the slogan, “To serve and protect”?

Catch up with those criminals later. Apply brain power not pedal power.

Police must end all car chases.

Robert Stewart

Prairie Village

Truncated speech

I am troubled by the truncation of the English language.

For some time, laziness has caused us to drop the “g” from such words as dancin’, eatin’ and playin’. The word “ain’t” usually denoted a lack of formal education.

But now, at a rapid pace, “awesome” has become a single word to describe a sight, an event and even a point of view. Today’s generation begins each sentence with the word “like.”

In the not too distant future, authors will be dotting the pages of books with “24/7,” “awesome,” and even OMG and LOL.

A major question in my mind is, “Will there even be books, dude?”

Steve Katz


U.S. losing gleam

I am a 62-year-old man, and I wonder what is happening to our country. We started an unprovoked war with Iraq, which cost tens of thousands of Iraqi and American lives, then we tortured the prisoners of that war.

The Washington Post has reported that more than 30 states have enacted some form of stand-your-ground laws, which relieve the person with the gun of a lot of responsibility and burden the unarmed victim with almost all responsibility in court.

We have the National Rifle Association crying that 300 million guns in America are not enough, even if it makes our precious children targets.

We have a Congress that votes more than 50 times to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which expands health insurance to millions of Americans.

But then Congress is unwilling to seriously address the real problems of our country.

And we have Christian churches claiming dishonestly from the pulpit that Jesus would be for all of the above.

What happened to President Ronald Reagan’s civilized American “shining city on a hill”?

Sadly, I think we are losing it and also American compassion.

Daniel Paulsen

Lee’s Summit

Elect better servants

We have elected public servants who don’t believe in public service. We’re the butchers who hired vegetarians.

One should not take the job if he or she can’t support the mission.

By writing laws that increase our cynicism regarding government, these anti-government representatives prove an organizing principle: government is the problem.

Are you worried that the state might grant control of Medicare dollars to a for-profit company? Big government. Concerned for your neighbor, the teacher, who is depressed because her profession has been disparaged and her contract nullified? Big government.

These zealots rarely describe real people. Instead, they rail against abstractions.

They talk about “bad teachers” who have the audacity to expect a living wage, but they fail to mention the school custodian who just cleaned up your grandkid’s vomit.

While the private sector was producing 50 flavors of chewing gum and the latest “Batman” sequel, government workers were doing cancer research and making sure your tap water is safe to drink.

During the day, the public sector teaches my kids math, science and history. After school, the private sector teaches them to twerk like Miley Cyrus.

The mission of government is to serve the public. We should elect people who support that mission.

Jay York


Compromise on roads

Why not a compromise for Missouri roads?

Everyone benefits if goods move more efficiently and traveling is easier, thus a smaller sales tax might be justified.

Better roads equal fewer accident injuries and lower health costs borne by the taxpayer and insurance customer. Missouri has a comparatively low gasoline tax. There is room to raise part of the revenue through higher user fees.

Finally, use technology to build a system of automated toll collections that would raise revenue on major roads such as Interstate 70 without greatly raising the costs required of staffed toll booths.

It exists in other states.

Vance Colling


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