In on the job
If Jeneé Osterheldt thinks Janet Jackson was not in on the nipple slip incident at the 2004 Super Bowl, she is very naive. (Feb 3, 8A, “Nipplegate crippled Janet; Justin flourished”)
Justin Timberlake may have gotten more of a pass, but this was a planned part of the performance — made obvious by Jackson’s strategically placed decorative metallic nipple cover.
She obviously did not have a problem with exposing herself, as shown by the Sept. 16, 1993, Rolling Stone magazine cover where she was nude from the waist up with someone else’s hands partially covering her breasts.
I am not offended by either, but to say she is a “victim” is weakening the message of the #MeToo movement. Timberlake made his way on his own talent, not riding the coattails of anyone.
Thank you for your story on addressing teens who are suicidal. (Feb. 4, 1A, “Call 911 or not? Families wonder after police shooting of suicidal Overland Park teen”) I appreciate the ideas for parents who need to call the police for help.
As a child and adolescent psychiatrist, I face this topic routinely. I completely agree that we do not have enough resources to respond to the mental health needs of our community.
We have additional opportunities to keep our kids safe that are frequently overlooked. My work on suicide prevention has repeatedly led me to means restriction: the act of limiting access to the methods used in suicide. Multiple studies tell us that individuals facing a suicidal crisis often act impulsively and take action within minutes of deciding to end their lives. Eliminating quick access to the methods used in suicide is one of the most reliable ways to prevent suicide.
Israeli Defense Forces members no longer have access to firearms on weekends, and pesticides are less accessible now in Sri Lanka. In both places, the suicide rate fell to about half the previous rate after these policies were put in place.
In my work with parents of suicidal youth, we have these difficult discussions — about firearms, medications and sharp instruments. These are tough conversations, but critical.
Share the wealth
Why do some people suggest that jobs on projects the size of the new Kansas City International Airport terminal must all be awarded to union members?
I’m not bashing unions. They have well-trained workers, earn high wages and have great benefits.
But I have met many very capable non-union people who can do just as good a job as union workers. The problem is the contractors who employ them don’t have the kind of labor pool that the unions do.
So how about bidding out some of the smaller sections of the KCI job as non-union and let everyone have a piece of the pie?
A letter in the Sunday paper under the headline “Gateway drug” blames marijuana for car wrecks. As a criminal defense lawyer who would prefer not to benefit from drug prohibition, I disagree.
Just as few people climb Mount Everest as their first mountain, few shoot heroin who haven’t tried cigarettes, alcohol or marijuana. And addiction to anything other than legal drugs (nicotine, alcohol and prescriptions) is relatively rare.
Since indicators of marijuana use stay in the blood for six weeks or more, far beyond the two hours or so when it actually has an effect, the fact of their presence means little. Having discussed it with many, I have found no law enforcement officer who plausibly connects the use of marijuana by itself to causation of traffic accidents — in stark contrast to alcohol.
Further, I am aware of many who have come home drunk and abused a significant other. Has anyone seen domestic violence occur after use of marijuana, unless alcohol or other drugs are involved?
The letter writer suggested studying the issue. Please do, then vote. Then we can free up taxpayer money to address serious substance abuse and other issues.
Prohibition was, and is, a costly disaster.
Last week was a great week for America and a great week for the middle class. Like many others, I began receiving more money in my paycheck under the new tax bill passed by Congress at the end of 2017. We are finally beginning to see what a real booming economy looks like under the leadership of this pro-business, pro-worker and pro-middle class administration.
In addition to the new money in our bank accounts from the tax bill, last week also brought the news that Americans have seen the biggest increase in wages since 2009. And our annualized GDP is expected to be above 5 percent this quarter for the first time in years, according to the Atlanta Fed — much higher than the average under President Barack Obama.
Thank you to all of our local leaders for working so hard on our behalf, especially Rep. Kevin Yoder, who leaves his family every week to go to Washington and fight for our Kansas values.