The news channels cover the threat the Islamic State poses. We see the barbarism of this group and its draconian version of Islam. It killed an American and threatens genocide against the various peoples in Iraq.
This group established a self-proclaimed caliphate and intends to act as a nation-state. The question is what to do about this fact.
Unchecked, this group could become an existential threat to the United States. Congress must rise above partisan politics and address this situation.
Congress has the power to declare war. This option must be considered. By declaring war, Congress exercises its constitutional authority and oversight.
War is not an all-or-nothing proposition. Declaring war against the Islamic State would allow the full range of national power available to the president to be brought to bear on this threat.
If Congress elects not to declare war, the debate will generate options short of war to deal with the Islamic State.
I do not advocate war; I advocate open and thorough debate of U.S. interests and policy objectives.
Our use of force must be guided by thoughtful policy and policymakers. Our Congress must rise above inanity and consider what is best for our nation.
Republican by choice
I am 58 years old and a 20-year retiree of U.S. Navy. Being a Republican is not a lifestyle choice but being a responsible American.
First, how do the Democrats plan to pay down our $17.7 trillion debt? I feel ashamed that we are going to leave this to our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Second, I would support the Affordable Care Act if it were in its original draft and not have the waivers the president gave out.
Three, past Republican presidents are twice the leader that President Barack Obama is. A true leader addresses our nation’s problems by working with Congress, not with a pen and a phone.
President Ronald Reagan was twice the leader that Mr. Obama is. President Reagan was referred to as the leader of the free world. I was raised a Democrat but changed to Republican when Reagan showed true leadership.
We Republicans warmly welcome all converts, and no counseling is necessary.
I for one do not want our president impeached, but he should do his job the way the American people require. Don’t throw Congress under the bus.
Jerry L. Kissick
The United States government established a goal of leaving Afghanistan with armed forces of 350,000. This army is being trained and equipped by Uncle Sam.
The United Kingdom, by comparison, has an active military of about 199,000 soldiers and France’s is about 222,000.
It is irresponsible to establish an army that size in an area that is defined by instability. There is a grave chance that this 350,000-man army will end up in the hands of the Taliban or other revolutionary interests.
We are laying the groundwork for perpetual chaos. We should keep in mind that the Islamic State is creating complete havoc in the Middle East with 10,000-50,000 soldiers, depending on the source.
What sane reason can we give for the United States establishing a 350,000-man army in an area that is home to many terrorist organizations and corrupt governments? Creating training and equipping this huge army is pure folly, an action we will regret.
George J. McLiney Jr.
Open season for guns
Have Missouri legislators who overturned Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of Senate Bill 656 taken leave of their senses? This bill allows guns to be carried in popular gathering places such as Westport, the Plaza, the Power & Light District, the Kansas City Zoo, stores and theaters.
No wonder our mayor and law enforcement officers have spoken against this bill.
Allowing teachers to carry guns in school only increases the opportunity for accidents and violence. The Star recently ran an article about an Arizona teacher’s gun accidentally discharging in the school bathroom, with the bullet ricocheting and striking her.
And what is to stop a couple of disgruntled students from overpowering a teacher and taking his or her gun?
Science verifies that the 19-year-old’s brain is not fully developed, yet Missouri lawmakers have now allowed those teenagers to conceal and carry weapons.
Why would the Senate defy reason and science? Do elected members really serve the people of Missouri, or have they sold their souls to the National Rifle Association?
Better gun laws
It was with great sadness that we learned how the 3-year-old child in Wichita, Jahmez Hunt, fatally shot himself with a gun he found in his parents’ kitchen cabinet in late July.
Kansas Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America would like to see a reduction in the number of tragedies like this one and is willing to work toward a sensible and fair way of preventing them in the future.
Shootings like this one and others that we hear about weekly could be avoided if gun owners stored firearms responsibly to prevent children from accessing them. Although reported as “accidents,” such occurrences are preventable. Sensible measures can be put into place that protect the rights of gun owners and also protect children and prevent the unintended use of guns.
We implore you to tell our elected officials to support laws requiring that firearms be secured. Having such laws would reduce the number of gun-related injuries and deaths.
Let’s keep guns out of the wrong hands — especially those of children.
Moms Demand Action
for Gun Sense
When I was a young boy, my life’s ambition was to be a cop. But that changed during my teenage years when my friends and I began to experience the wrath that cops inflicted upon us through harassment, intimidation and humiliation, which to this day still haunts me.
Each time we were stopped, searched, threatened and belittled, it was like a dull knife stabbing at our insides and tearing away a small part of our manhood.
I can understand why some people don’t understand. Unless others have endured the pain, agony and frustration of being treated that way, especially by those who are supposed to protect you, it’s impossible to understand what that feels like.
Even today, more than 50 years later, it’s hard for me to write this letter because it brings back memories that were better off buried deep in my subconscious mind.
White people often pose the question, “Why does it always come down to race?” Speaking as an African-American with a sad history of unwarranted experiences with the cops as a young man, I can only give this short response.
Trust me. Sometimes it is what it is.
Eddie L. Clay
Open carry of guns
Regarding the open carry of firearms, if you call the police to report someone carrying a weapon in the open, that is precaution. If you carry a weapon in the open and get yourself shot, that is foolishness.