Letters to the Editor

American Jazz Museum, organ donation and slippery abortion slope

No chance

To say The Star Editorial Board’s timeline for improvements at the American Jazz Museum is rushed and unrealistic hardly does it justice. (Feb. 24, 20A, “KC budget includes $1 million more for jazz museum. When will taxpayers say ‘enough’?”)

“By spring,” you wrote, with Major League Baseball spring training already under way, “the museum should have a blueprint in place for recovery and renewal.”

Well, is that all? That soon? With no permanent director in place?

Ridiculous. You are setting up the museum to fail your arbitrary test. Why the pearl-clutching and foot-stamping? And what’s the “or else” — let the museum close?

Yes, the museum needs help, including the understanding and support of a progressive newspaper.

Rick Hellman

Prairie Village

Living on

Thank you for telling the story of Christopher Hutson Jr. (Feb. 24, 1A, “‘His heart was the best part of him’: Teen’s gift of life binds two families”)

It is rare in today’s news that we learn of stories coming full circle. How very sad that his young life was taken in seconds by the senseless, irrational act of an adult man. Because of Christopher’s love for human life, he signed up to be an organ donor. That generous act has changed the lives of Gary Dixon and many others after receiving his organs.

Christopher’s parents and siblings undoubtedly feel proud and honored to have had him in their lives. Gary’s gratitude to Christopher’s family is a wonderful tribute to the heart he received.

Christopher’s heart continues to beat and change the lives around it.

Ashley D. Sanor

Kansas City

Lots of life left

The Star is in need of an issue, and the Royals and Kauffman Stadium seem to be its target. The Monday editorial, “A baseball stadium downtown? It’s time to start the conversation,” (7A) mentions that contacts between Kansas City and Royals owner David Glass have been initiated about the possibility of a new downtown stadium. It also notes that “the history of our two professional sports teams suggests the Chiefs will demand equal treatment.”

What’s a billion-plus dollars here and a billion-plus dollars there for municipal vanity projects for private businesses’ benefit? Yes, the Royals and Chiefs are private enterprises that are profitable, but they still get public money to enhance their facilities. New stadiums for both franchises could cost more than $2 billion.

Downtown Kansas City is by no stretch of the imagination a vast expanse that can be had for a few pennies and developed for a pittance. The Truman Sports Complex is an asset that’s a bit underappreciated. It’s versatile and structurally sound.

Arrowhead and Kauffman stadiums work.

Paul Comerford

Blue Springs

Abusive priests

I wanted to give Pope Francis a chance to prove he is a man of his word about the sexual-abuse problem besetting our church. But he has run out of time after this latest Vatican fiasco, which produced no real action. (Feb. 25, 1A, “Pope’s pledge on sex abuse disappoints victims”)

Meanwhile, Bishop James V. Johnston Jr. of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-Saint Joseph still will not release the names of priests who have been accused of such behavior.

The problem is so obvious and simple: It’s called the vow of chastity. As one Florida priest told The New York Times about his fellow clergy: “A third are gay, a third are straight and a third don’t know what the hell they are.”

It’s too late to do anything about the damage done to those who have been victimized. It will never be erased. We need to change the rules of the game, and until then our youth will be in harm’s way.

David Biersmith

Kansas City

Down the slope

I read the headline on a Washington Post story online Monday: “Senate blocks bill on medical care for children born alive after attempted abortion.” I reread the story line, thinking it was someone’s hubris or a mistake. Not so.

Although only about 1 percent of all abortions are affected by this procedure, the Senate’s failure to pass the bill does allow for a neophyte born alive after a failed abortion to die. Some senators who voted against this protection for birthed children contended that the proposed restriction would influence doctors not to perform late-term abortions.

We certainly lacked the foresight when Roe v. Wade took place that it would lead to the slippery slope that now includes the “partial birth” abortion option. A new incremental step has been introduced, allowing for the death of a newborn outside the womb by inaction from a medical practitioner.

A child being born and allowed to die no longer blurs the line. It allows the line between abortion and infanticide to be erased.

Patrick Devine

Overland Park