Hope replaces hate
April 13, 2015, one year after the fatal shootings at the Jewish Community Center and Village Shalom, the community again came together to say hatred, bigotry and evil will not be tolerated (4-14, A4, “Anniversary of shootings brings a show of spirit”).
With arms outstretched, about 3,000 participants held candles to eradicate the darkness that enveloped our community and to light the way to change and the repudiation of violence.
Thank you to the planning committee, sponsors, volunteers and participants for an outstanding event.
Sheryl R. Porter, Ph.D.
Against Gun Violence
Village of Loch Lloyd
Right, wrong, politics
Right is right, and wrong is wrong. Unfortunately, in our political environment people judge whether something is right or wrong based on who did it.
There are many examples, but I’ll give you just one — the letter written by the Republican senators that was posted on a senator’s website. Many Republicans see this as right because they think President Barack Obama is selling our security down the river. Most Democrats see this as wrong because we have a president and a secretary of state who are trying to do their jobs.
I think the Republicans’ action was probably wrong, even though I think Obama is selling our security down the river.
Maybe the Republican senators thought it was a point of no return, and they had to. My point is, how many Democrats would support a Democratic-majority Senate that did the same thing to a Republican president?
We all know the answer, which gets us back to my first sentence. You don’t get to pick right from wrong based on your politics. Doing so makes you look like a hypocrite.
Dump the 401(k)
“The 401(k) is failing” flashed a recent business headline. The story reported that only 14 percent of 401(k) plans contained enough money to make a difference in retirement.
The 401(k) plan has been around since the 1980s. It is a tax-code provision to allow savings without paying income tax on the money until it is withdrawn. It was started as an alternative to the defined-benefits retirement plans that large companies offered.
I worked for a smaller company that did not have a pension plan. If it were not for the 401(k), I would be broke and on welfare.
Americans are not savers. The savings rate for Americans is always less than any other developed country. Yet, today the 401(k) systems are holding trillions of dollars in trust for future retirement payments.
All the tools to help savings for Americans should be preserved. Not all people can use the same method.
Most of the 401(k) funds are in the stock market helping American industry.
Don’t let this happen.
I, for one, have a real problem with President Barack Obama’s unilateral actions contrary to any constitutionally ordained authority when he releases top al-Qaida operatives who have a known return rate to the battlefields. Obama has no legal authority to do what he is doing.
In my opinion, these actions amount to giving aid to the enemy and are a slap in the face to the military troops who put their lives on the line capturing these terrorists. Islamic terrorists are at war with us, and our president is releasing terrorist detainees from the Guantanamo Bay detention camp?
Apparently, a campaign promise to close Guantanamo trumps endangering Americans through the release of known terrorists. This unilateral action by the president must stop.
These actions always seem to take place on Fridays and Saturdays. This president seems to always downplay terrorist attacks connected to Islamic radicalism.
The president’s ideology may please his far-left supporters. But it is a danger to this country.
Those making minimum wage have the right to protest but do not have the right to dictate the amount. At $15 per hour, assuming a 30-hour work week with arguably a 15 percent tax rate, that person would earn about $20,000 annually.
I believe that the small-business owners, which includes national franchises, would limit their personnel to 30 hours to avoid other issues with benefits such as the Affordable Care Act.
The Star’s April 16 editorial, “Fairer pay on low end would benefit everyone,” used Mimi Thompson as an example. She said, “I don’t make enough to pay all my bills.”
We know that Ms. Thompson is 20. There are many unknown variables to her that should be addressed. Is she single? Is she a parent? If so, how many children does she have?
What is her home background? What is her level of education? What has she done to market herself?
Have Ms. Thompson and others earned this wage?
Use the adage regarding teaching a person to fish and feeding many. If it’s not earned, where does this end? Will there be more, I want, I want?
Kevin M. Kuebler
Put races in parks
There has been much written about the foot races that are on our streets. I am the founder of the Kansas City Track Club and have put on more than 100 races in the metro area over the last 50 years.
When we started, we would have only five or six races a year, some in the parks. Now, with the sport’s popularity, it is out of control.
It’s not only the traffic that is an issue but also the cost to runners. The Kansas City Track Club is trying to do something about it by conducting many of its races in parks as much as possible.
The reason is quite simple. To police a street run is very expensive, so the runners have to pay.
The solution is just as simple — put the races back in the parks. Think about Swope Park. I do not know of a single race there, yet it is one of the largest parks in the nation.
I could design a half-marathon (13.1 miles) there without ever leaving the park. This would solve both problems, cost and congestion.
It’s disappointing that The Star and area Health and Human Services and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services offices have not been more proactive in promoting the extra sign-up time for the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.
If you need to enroll in Obamacare, the final date is April 30. About 99 percent of the people I have enrolled have out-of-pocket costs less than the penalties they would have had to pay for not having coverage.
It makes no sense for most people not to sign up for President Barack Obama’s signature program.
Recently, ultraconservative Republican Sen. Ted Cruz announced his presidential bid for 2016. In Congress, Cruz has been best known for his vocal opposition of the Affordable Care Act.
In 2013, he led a government shutdown to try to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Cruz characterized Obamacare as “lawlessness of breathtaking scale,” despite the success of 16.4 million insured Americans, and he vowed to repeal every word of the law.
Despite his sharp condemnation, Cruz announced recently that his family was enrolled in Obamacare. Unbelievable.
Cruz is a hypocrite for saying one thing and doing another. Voters don’t trust hypocrites, so Cruz has no chance of winning the GOP presidential nomination.
Trunk that grows
It seems entirely apropos,
That the elephant is the Republican logo.
For its trunk is like Pinocchio’s nose,
The more they lie the longer it grows.
At first it was short, fat and round,
And now it hangs almost to the ground
After Nixon and “Read My Lips” Bush it grew by inches; but after George W. it grew in feet.
Florida, you’ll remember, is not only where they lied, but where they started to cheat.
So at the next election watch the nose.
It turns red, white and blue just before it grows.
Hugh J. Taylor