Joco Opinion

913 readers discuss judge retention, Right to Hunt

Judge retention

We urge you to vote to retain all Kansas Supreme Court judges who have previously been selected by the nonpartisan court plan. This is the best system yet devised to keep politics out of the judicial selection process.

Currently when a court vacancy occurs, attorneys are interviewed and their qualifications reviewed by a commission composed of several lawyers and regular citizens. The commission picks three of the most qualified applicants and sends their names to the governor for his decision on whom to appoint.

Following an approximately one-year initial retention or recall period , the judge in question will not be voted on for another six years. This nonpartisan court plan has succeeded in keeping highly qualified judges on the court without being subject to the pressures of party politics.

There is an effort by Gov. Sam Brownback and his allies to eliminate this nonpartisan process and require judges to become politicians by either running for the office as either Republicans or Democrats, or being appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Kansas Senate.

This recall campaign is the first step. Let’s defeat this effort and keep the system that best maintains the independence of our Supreme Court.

Byron Beck


Voting fears

News of numerous hacks of election offices and systems across the country raise questions of the integrity of the system in Kansas. Much has been said about voter fraud in Kansas, but to date solutions focus only on registration and voter ID.

▪ Do voting machines used in Kansas (especially Johnson and Wyandotte counties) have a paper trail?

▪ Are the Kansas voter registration database and election systems among those known to have been hacked?

▪ Is Kansas one of the many states that have asked for federal assistance in protecting the voting process?

▪ If not, what is being done to protect Kansas elections from this type of voter fraud?

▪ In this computer age, will my vote count as I cast it?

Russ W. Townsley

Overland Park

‘Right to hunt’

The National Rifle Association’s Right to Hunt amendment to the state constitution was presented to Kansas legislators in January, passed both houses by March and now awaits Kansas voters in November.

When the NRA speaks, our legislators listen and leap into action. This amendment is unnecessary because Kansas already has laws, rules and regulations regarding the management of wildlife.

Why did our legislators pander to NRA paranoia? Why do they fix problems that do not exist instead of fixing real problems facing us on a daily basis? For example, where is an amendment valuing the education of our youth, or protecting our elderly, or assisting our citizens challenged by health issues, or valuing the contributions of our military veterans? Why don’t they do something about our unfair tax policy?

What I find disturbing is that this amendment demonstrates Kansas values; that is, we value guns over anything or anyone else. I hope you will consider these remarks and vote “no” on the NRA Right to Hunt amendment.

Angela Schieferecke

Prairie Village

Hijacked GOP

Donald Trump, a Republican in name only, has hijacked our party and is destroying the principled foundation that Republicans have spent years developing.

Trump rejects the Republican principle of free trade and wants to start job-killing trade wars everywhere. Trump rejects the Republican principle of freedom abroad and threatens to abandon our democratic allies in favor of brutal dictators like Vladimir Putin. Most of all, Trump rejects the bedrock Republican principle that the character of a politician matters above all else.

This election is already lost, but unless we act boldly, Trump will be back in 2020, driving out even more Republican voters and relegating us to minority status for generations. We need a crushing Trump defeat in November to eject this pretender from our ranks permanently.

If you love the Republican Party, vote against Trump and vote against the cowards who refuse to condemn him.

Steve Simon


Round the world

We recently purchased a refrigerator and dishwasher from Sears in Overland Park, paid for them with an EFT debit to our bank account here, which I arranged by phone with Sears in Guatemala, and finalized the transaction by phone with Sears in the Phillipeans.

Any wonder why we don’t have enough jobs to go around, and why over $2 trillion is housed in more favorable tax havens?

Any wonder why the Fed keeps vacillating on raising rates, caused in part by a much more complex global economy with even our old-time favorites like Sears spread all over the globe to take advantage of a cheaper labor source?

Loyalty used to be reflected in how corporations treated their customers. It has shifted to maximizing the bottom line, and in the process, businesses like Sears have lost that irreplaceable customer loyalty and faded Into the retail second tier.

There was a time when business school professors would advise their students to try to land with Sears, IBM, or AT&T. Not anymore.

Jim Kudlinski

Overland Park