Letters to the Editor

July 19, 2014

Letter writers sound off on Missouri sales tax, Russia, political signs

Letters to the Editor: Why do some drivers not use the turn signals on their vehicles? Are they lazy, dumb, ignorant of where the lever is or just plain inviting an accident?

No on road sales tax

I feel strongly about how bad the Missouri constitutional amendment for a three-quarter-cent sales tax is. A sales tax is the worst way to finance fixing our roads.

Instead of charging for using the roads by collecting taxes from the people using them, the proposed amendment taxes people whether they drive on the roads or not. Increasing the fuel tax is the only fair way to pay for this, not a sales tax.

You see that most companies and corporations will pay nothing toward fixing our roads while the rest of us will pay on almost everything we buy. The heavy trucks and equipment that businesses use on the roads do the most damage to them, and they are left off the hook in helping to fix Missouri’s highways.

That is just wrong.

There is a higher tax on diesel fuel because heavy trucks cause more wear on the roads, and that is why a fuel-tax increase would be the best and should be the only fair way to do this.

Yes, our roads need to be fixed, but not this way.

Jeffrey L. McMillen

Kansas City

Russia, Obama ties

Here are three things I think are related.

First is President Barack Obama’s March 2012 conversation with then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev with an open-mic slip wherein he said, “After my election I have more flexibility.”

Second, Obama earlier this year ordered Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to drastically reduce our military to pre-World War II levels.

Third, Russia shortly afterward went after Ukraine.

Obama retaliates by restricting the travel of 11 Russian government officials. Is it merely coincidental, am I paranoid or are they related?

Jack Folse

Overland Park

Use turn signals

Why do some drivers not use the turn signals on their vehicles? Are they lazy, dumb, ignorant of where the lever is or just plain inviting an accident?

They could be discourteous or careless, too. Don’t they know that when they have passed a vehicle on the left while traveling on an interstate, they should turn on their right signal when they are wanting to return to the right lane?

Maybe they are trying to get back in the lane too soon. If so, the driver of the vehicle they are passing could lean on his horn to avoid an accident.

Maybe they are used to the horse-and-buggy days, when the person handling the reins would just stick out an arm.

’Tis a puzzlement.

Wayne Sangster

Prairie Village

Political sign-weeds

One definition of a weed is something sticking up from the ground that doesn’t belong there. This time of year, you could say that about a lot of campaign signs.

They’re popping up in a lot of places they’re not supposed to be.

It seems in Johnson County the most prolific “sign-weeds“ stem from Patricia Lightner’s campaign for county commission chairperson. They stick up from verges and medians in public thoroughfares where they clearly do not belong.

Another annoying identifier about this particular weed is its marking — an elephant’s picture where it does not belong. Although that may not be illegal, it’s a smug poke in the eye of the non-partisan nature of the race.

The signs’ placements indicate an alarming lack of regard for local campaign laws, and this is especially concerning when it is done by someone who in her signs declares herself to be from the “law and order” party.

Lightner’s signs, and any other illegally planted ones, need to be weeded out.

Andy Sandler


Kansas governor

There is a simple question I haven’t heard anyone in the media ask regarding the 104 “moderate” Republicans who have endorsed Democrat Paul Davis in the Kansas gubernatorial race (7-16, A4, “Kansas governor’s race heating up”).

I realize a large number of them have not stood for election since the last century and, thus, their campaigning skills may be rusty. However, why didn’t one of them step forth to challenge Gov. Sam Brownback in the Republican primary?

If they are, as they call themselves, “Republicans for Kansas values,” why would they prefer to see a liberal Democrat, who supports President Barack Obama, elected governor instead of someone from their own party?

One could reasonably infer from their endorsements of Davis that they believe Kansas values are liberal values and Obama values. The elections of 2008 and 2012 should have informed them that that is not the case.

Kevin Groenhagen


Unnecessary killing

No psychologically healthy person wants to kill another human being. As such, the military needs to subject recruits to training and drills to get soldiers to violate their consciences and kill people.

Even then, rates at which soldiers fired upon other soldiers was 15 percent through World War II. The U.S. military decided this was a problem.

Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, in “On Killing,” explained that the military began waging psychological warfare on soldiers to get them to kill more people. In Vietnam, fire-and-kill rates rose to 90 percent. Afghanistan and Iraq have had similar rates, with similar trauma to soldiers and society.

Given these truths, questions arise.

Because not even soldiers in war want to kill, why is this extreme violation of conscience being promoted in social settings? Why is a willingness to inflict pain, as with young men’s gun violence, not being dealt with and creatively solved rather than mimicked and expanded?

Peacemaking is a virtue and a skill. It’s routinely practiced by teachers.

It’s teachers who need to teach soldiers, of all stripes, peacemaking skills to create a healthy society and healthy children. Why promote the militarization of society when people can teach and practice creative problem-solving?

Margaret Del Debbio


Thanking veterans

I am a retired Vietnam and Desert Storm combat veteran who moved to Kansas City four years ago. I have lived all over the world and in many states here in the U.S.

As a proud former military man, I often wear my veteran’s ball cap. This letter is to thank all of those in Kansas City who have walked up to me and said, “Thank you for your service.”

I can’t begin to tell you how good you all make me feel with those kind, sincere words. I can also tell you that nowhere, and I mean nowhere, does this happen as it has here in Kansas City.

Perfect strangers, business people and shoppers — wherever it has been — have suddenly walked up to me for no other reason but to say “thank you.”

I can’t speak for every veteran, but I can speak for myself and say those who have done that have a place in heaven. This is my chance to thank all of you.

If anyone wants to find the true meaning of being an American, all they have to do is come to Kansas City.

May God continue to bless all of you.

Michael Clark


Community service

Recently, there has been criticism regarding building a new sanctuary at Church of the Resurrection, with people saying the money should be used for the community. The community has always been a priority for this church. Programs of the Church of the Resurrection include:

Partnerships with six schools in lower-income areas, updating buildings, classrooms and playgrounds.

Backpacks every Friday for children who may not have food for the weekend.

A program that provides beds, linen and pajamas for children who previously slept on the floor.

A church food bank that supplies tons of food each year to 17 community pantries at no cost.

My Father’s House, which strives to ensure low-income families have furniture for their homes.

The Resurrection Community Grant, which this year gave $100,000 to Operation Breakthrough to support families and $25,000 to Cross-Lines Community Outreach to support low-income families

This is a small representation of Church of the Resurrection’s community service. The church seeks to inspire and encourage working together for our community as we seek to know, love and serve God.

Bonnie Gleason


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