No quick fix
The Star’s editorial board has the solution on how to reduce violence at local shopping centers: Flood the areas with law enforcement — which would move the violence to other parts of town where there is less police presence. (Dec. 29, 7A, “After two shootings, should shoppers at Oak Park Mall feel safe?”)
Social problems aren’t easy to solve, even if you consider the ramifications of your solution. At least the board didn’t suggest midnight basketball or herding teenagers to city-sponsored dance parties.
And wouldn’t a subsequent editorial or a letter writer soon complain of police overreaction or brutality anyway?
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I don’t have the answer, but I submit respectfully, neither does The Star.
Two taunting penalties for the Chiefs in Sunday’s game against the Raiders? (Dec. 31, 4B, “Report card”)
Excuse me, but at least two Chiefs players need to learn that they are not 5 years old on the school playground. This type of behavior will cost us in the playoffs.
Our president tweeted Thursday that “most of the people not getting paid” during the federal government’s partial shutdown are Democrats. After the way he is treating them, they are all Democrats now. Lead on.
Who gets help?
As I was reading Sunday’s story about Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas and the Farm Bill (1A, “Roberts’ bipartisan deal-making could be GOP red flag in 2020”), I focused on quotes from Andrew Roth of the Club for Growth and Robert Rector of the Heritage Foundation. They complained about and denigrated Roberts for being bipartisan and working across the aisle to pass the bill, which they said is in direct violation of conservative views.
They complained about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps, which helps feed the needy and the poor of this great nation.
I did not see them complaining about the billions of dollars of subsidies for farmers that are part of that bill. Millions of those dollars are going to mega-farms owned by corporations and individuals, such as Missouri’s own Rep. Vicky Hartzler. These people and corporations are worth many millions, and they are taking more money from our government.
Hartzler is herself a millionaire. Her family’s Hartzler Farms Inc. has received at least $1 million in farm subsidies since 1995. Those subsidies originally were meant for mom-and-pop farms to help them through hard times.
These millionaire- and corporate-owned farms are putting those mom-and-pop operations out of business. Why doesn’t the Club for Growth or Heritage Foundation complain about those abuses?
Let the light in
President Donald Trump is the obvious, rotting, low-hanging, in-your-face produce. Members of Congress, ignore him.
Let Democratic Reps. Jerrold Nadler, Adam Schiff and Elijah Cummings and their committees do their thing in open, public hearings. Enough with the mushroom treatment. The disinfecting light from solar energy powers democracy. Let us see who’s saying what.
While waiting for special counsel Robert Mueller’s term paper, do what we elected you to do. Those on the other side of the aisle? Ignore them, too. Pass people-focused legislation: Affordable Care Act reforms, voting rights, actual middle-class tax relief, equal pay, minimum wage, DACA, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program, immigration, money in politics, union and labor rights, infrastructure, gun control — people stuff.
If your Republican colleagues in Congress choose to actively oppose you on these issues, you win. In the unlikely event they wake up and decide loyalty to country is more important than loyalty to Trump and they join you, we all win.
In this regard, we’re all Missourians. Show us.
Some new leaves
Here are the New Year’s resolutions I would like to see our Kansas City-area TV weather forecasters make:
▪ Don’t tell us what to wear when we leave the house. Our mothers have done a fine job of that already.
▪ Don’t say, “I can’t rule out …” Instead, say, “I really don’t know what’s going to happen.”
▪ Don’t ever — and I mean ever again — say, “Temperatures will drop when the sun goes down.”
What, you’ve never said that? Just check the tapes.