Joco Opinion

913 Letters: Trump, solar power and tobacco taxes

First shame

In my four score and four years as an American, I have never felt embarrassed and ashamed of our country until now. I have these feelings because of the actions and behavior of our current president. It appears to me that he is an ignorant, self-serving egotist, whose only success has been taking advantage of others.

He can hardly make a complete sentence, has no compassion for anyone and cares very little about this country and nothing for humanity.

I hope those who supported him reap the benefits he will leave them. As for me, I will not vote for anyone who supports him.

Hugh Taylor

Overland Park

Solar stymie

Many of the homeowners’ associations in Johnson County have restrictions against installing solar panels. In this day and age, it is very hard to understand why HOAs have such outdated policies and why Kansas and Missouri have not enacted solar-access laws like most other states.

It is time the citizens of this blessed land took measures to keep it that way. It would be wonderful if The Star could take a driving role, as you have many times, to address this public issue.

Rajesh Paul


Tobacco tax

Raising Kansas’ tobacco tax by $1.50 per pack would save lives and money. A significant tax increase would keep many kids from starting to smoke by making cigarettes more expensive, encourage adults to quit and generate new state revenue.

As a youth anti-tobacco advocate, I don’t want to see anyone smoke. But more than 16,000 high school students and 387,000 adults in Kansas do. Our elected officials must do everything they can to reduce tobacco use, the leading cause of preventable death. Raising the tobacco tax by $1.50 is the best thing they can do to help our state and its citizens fight tobacco.

Tobacco companies know raising taxes on their products means fewer customers. That’s why they work so hard to defeat these bills (or make sure any tax increase is so small it will have little impact). It’s why raising the tax by $1.50 is so important.

A $1.50 increase could save more than 10,000 lives and keep more than 16,000 kids from becoming smokers in Kansas. It also could save hundreds of millions of dollars in health-care costs.

I urge our lawmakers to raise the tobacco tax to protect Kansans, especially kids, from the dangers of tobacco.

Emma Bigham

Herington, Kan.

Airport debate

On May 7, both the Opinion section guest commentary by Teresa Loar (15A, “Why the rush to build a new single terminal?”) and Sherry Kuehl’s column in 913 (Page 22, “Gate to car in five minutes at KCI?”) addressed the controversy around building a new single terminal at KCI airport.

I agree with Kuehl that people who think KCI is convenient are living in an alternate universe. KCI is convenient only if:

1) Someone is taking you to or picking you up from the airport and they know where you will be entering and exiting security. Knowing your gate number doesn’t help because the entry/exit to the security area is often a half-dozen gates from your gate.

2) You’re traveling without checked luggage, children or an appetite.

3) Your flight is on time.

In the last 10 years, I have traveled multiple times through airports in Denver, Los Angeles, San Jose, Honolulu, Tampa, Indianapolis and New Orleans (currently being replaced as outdated). None of these do I find as unpleasant to travel through as KCI.

It’s time for Kansas City to sever our sentimental ties to an outdated and inconvenient airport design, and step into the 21st century.

Kimberly Schlichter

Overland Park

Let’s bargain

I want to thank Skip Spear for making us aware of a serious problem in his letter to the editor titled “Missing bees.” (June 3, 12A)

We don’t have a patch of clover, but we do have flowers around our home and there are three large multiflowering pots. And like he said — no bees. In fact, there are no butterflies, either.

We should be really concerned, because in the 1940s and ’50s there would have been a bee or butterfly on every bloom.

However, we have a solution to the problem: We are willing to trade Mother Nature a large number of oak leaf itch mites (which we have in abundance) for a few more bees and butterflies.

Our hope springs eternal that she will make the trade.

Milton Wallace


Terminal debate

Is one terminal better than multiple terminals? These cities apparently don’t think so: Los Angeles International, JFK in New York, Heathrow in London, Boston Logan and Newark, N.J.

Most of these airports require going through security again when changing terminals.

The downtown airport in Kansas City is a single terminal. Maybe we should just move back there.

James Orth

Kansas City

Voice of reason

Finally, the voice of reason has been published. Kansas City Councilwoman Theresa Loar offered common sense for our airport. (May 7, 15A, “Why the rush to build a new single terminal?”)

Although KCI is one of the most convenient airports curb to gate, over the years security measures have severely reduced space for access and gate areas. But a total teardown and rebuild isn’t necessary.

The center terminal becomes the new single terminal that is so now in vogue, where check-in and security takes place.

Moving sidewalks or internal shuttles would whisk passengers to the two secured terminals for boarding. These areas are now much roomier, and most food and souvenir services are in the corridors leading to them.

The makeup becomes similar to almost all modern airports, at only a fraction of the projected cost.

Jim Scanlon

Lee’s Summit