Over the last several weeks we have seen some courageous congressmen, business leaders, the media and others who have confronted hate groups like the neo-Nazis, white supremacists, KKK and others. Unfortunately, our national and local clergy have been largely silent. Where are our Christian leaders? What about Jesus and his teachings?
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The right term
Recent Star stories and editorials have focused on problems and solutions for the Jackson County jail. They have been well written and to the point.
One concern, however, is the continued use of the word “guard” to describe officers who work in the jail. The principal duty and concern of jail officers (and also prison officers) is the management and supervision of inmates in their respective institutions. A guard, for example, would be an individual assigned to protect a department store after closing hours.
Over 25 years ago, both the American Jail Association (for which I was managing editor from 1986 to 2009) and the American Correctional Association passed resolutions against the use of the term “guard” to describe correctional officers employed in local, state and federal institutions.
Over half a million men and women work as correctional officers. To refer to them as “guards” is insulting and demeaning. Please refrain from using that term in future articles and editorials.
Louder than words
In The Star’s Aug. 15 editorial “GOP must repudiate more than Donald Trump’s timing” (10A), it states “Yes, Charlottesville (is) sad. But sad, too, is that more Republicans who know exactly who Donald Trump is are not more clearly distancing themselves even now. Every toxic leader, and Trump is one, is made possible by those who know what’s wrong and yet for their own reasons keep quiet.”
This statement implies that GOP representatives do not support Trump’s positions and yet do not have the courage, character or integrity to do the right thing for the benefit of their constitutes. As always, they think only of themselves and their financial backers.
Maybe the real problem is that Republicans do not distance themselves from Trump because deep down they support his ideologies.
It’s time to call it what it is. These Republicans are not necessarily cowards. The truth is that anyone in office who does not openly and directly rebut Trump actually agrees with and supports his actions.
Everyone, please make your honest opinions known to your representatives in Washington, D.C. It matters. Vote your conscience.
In an effort to find a good Nazi, an Aug. 19 letter writer proposed Wernher von Braun. (Letters, 10A)
I doubt if the Eastern Europeans who were worked to death in Nazi labor camps to provide the materials Braun needed to build his V1 and V2 rocket programs during World War II would agree. The same goes for the thousands of British civilians who were killed in the rocket attacks on London during the war.
It was only due to America’s race to acquire German rocket scientists after the war that Braun’s scientific knowledge was deemed more important than his moral transgressions as a Nazi.
The recent story “Climate shifts could clog food routes through Kansas City” (Aug. 9, 8A) makes a statement in passing worth discussing: “U.S. railways figure to hit capacity in less than 20 years,” the report states.
Yet this is mere conjecture and, quite frankly, inaccurate. Privately owned freight railroads invest heavily — more than $100 billion the past four years alone — and will invest for additional capacity if needed. In doing so, the industry will continue to serve a critical role in Missouri — home to 18 railroads, more than 7,000 employees and nearly 4,000 miles of track — and the U.S.
Nationally, the industry supports 1.5 million jobs, $274 billion in economic activity and $33 billion in tax revenues. This will continue, in large part because of the unquestioned leadership of elected officials such as Rep. Sam Graves who help maintain an economic regulatory structure enacted in 1980. It protects railroad customers against unreasonable railroad actions while allowing railroads and their customers to work together without undue government interference.
Freight demand will indeed increase in the future, and railroads will invest to meet it.
Association of American