Letters to the Editor

Letters: Readers discuss presidential misconduct, disrespect for police and Joe Biden

Counter-example

For the first time in U.S. history, the sitting president has been accused of sexual assault at least 16 times.

In the latest accusation against President Donald Trump by E. Jean Carroll, he defended himself by saying, “She’s not my type.” In other words, he would assault a woman if she is young and attractive.

He admitted he assaulted women in the “Access Hollywood” video, where he bragged about grabbing women by their private parts and getting away with it because he is a star. In addition, in 2016, Trump paid hush money to two women with whom he had affairs, which is a campaign finance violation.

As a victim of sexual assault, I am appalled that the president of the United States may be a rapist.

Sadly, parents and teachers now cite Trump as the way not to behave. His immoral and unethical behavior sets the poorest example for our nation’s youth and our nation’s image around the world.

Jane Toliver

Leawood

But he still ran

I read Sunday’s front-page story about the 2017 shooting of Dominique White by Topeka police officers. (“Judge allows 2 officers to be deposed in lawsuit over police shooting that killed Topeka man”) It said that White’s two oldest sons are angry. His stepfather said that police “gunned him down like an animal” and that the interaction didn’t warrant a death sentence.

I think the article was biased against the police and was an attempt to get an emotional response from readers. White’s mother said she thinks he had a “fight or flight” response, but it was probably more that he was a felon with a gun who didn’t want to go back to prison.

As the stepfather said, the police didn’t know White or his past, but the officers were responding to a shots-fired call, which means they were putting themselves in harm’s way.

I understand his family members being upset and angry over the loss of a loved one, and I feel for them. But what would have happened if White hadn’t resisted and run? He’d probably be in prison, but he’d be alive, and his family would be feeling a different kind of anguish.

David Brooks

Hume, Missouri

Teaching moment

As a lifelong reader whose childhood books came exclusively from the public library, I was saddened to learn that the Kansas City Public Library, along with at least 450 others, will no longer charge late fees on materials. In The Star’s story, Mayor-elect Quinton Lucas described those fees as “impediments to your opportunity to do things in life.” (June 30, 5A, “Kansas City Public Library forgives $250K in overdue fines”)

I would strongly agree if those fees were charged for access to the library. However, as a child, I quickly learned relatively easy lessons about responsibility when I had to pay my first overdue fees. In addition, what about the impediment to opportunity that results when those overdue books are not available to others?

Kelly Mayer

Overland Park

Time has come?

I am 77-year-old lifetime Democrat. I voted for the Obama-Biden ticket twice. I much admire and respect former Vice President Joe Biden. However, I listened to his speech last week explaining his record and positions on civil rights issues throughout his career, and I am reminded of the words on the “Old Guys Rule” cap that my children gave me: “The older I get, the better I was!”

Could it be, as Biden himself once said, time to pass the torch?

Jerry L. Daily

Kansas City

What we celebrate

Just seven years from today, our country will celebrate the 250th anniversary of its Declaration of Independence. What does this future observance mean to us today, and how should we prepare?

If we could ask this question to those who sacrificed to create our nation, I believe they might utter the same words whispered at the conclusion of “Saving Private Ryan”: “Earn this.”

Challenge accepted.

My efforts will center on helping my community of “Happy Rock” (Gladstone) have one of our nation’s grandest 250th celebrations, where people honor those who gave all by living as exemplary citizens — informed, brave, involved and willing to sacrifice as the early patriots did.

Can our nation’s fate as a democracy be improved and secured in time for the 250th? The answer is yes, if we consider that the War for Independence was declared, fought and won in the same length of time — seven years — but without the endless advantages we enjoy today: hot running water, air conditioning, instant communication, microwave ovens and so much more.

And if you see a tall, odd-looking man attired in Colonial-era clothing and a tricorne hat, it is probably yours truly, carrying the message: “Earn this.”

Jim Oldebeken

Gladstone

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