Letters to the Editor

Letters: Readers discuss Nordstrom Plaza parking, Peter Vermes and climate action

The Plaza’s due

Nordstrom is known for its extraordinary service. In that vein, the department store should add parking spaces, not take them away from Country Club Plaza patrons as it constructs its new store set to open in 2021. (Aug. 15, 16A, “Work starts on Plaza Nordstrom site — parking spaces gone”)

Nordstrom and Plaza developers have an opportunity to ease the already-stressed parking situation: Add a multilevel basement to the Nordstrom store to accommodate an underground garage.

- Sharon Boranyak, Topeka

Own it, Vermes

Given his assertion, “If there is one thing that Sporting Kansas City manager Peter Vermes doesn’t make, it’s excuses,” Kansas City Star reporter Shaun Goodwin has apparently never listened to Vermes’ interviews at halftime, postgame or most other times. (Sept. 14, 1B, “The season hangs in the balance now, but how did it come to this?”)

Vermes criticizes the officiating, claims we let in “soft goals” (for soccer non-afficionados, he means poor player performance), says we have too many injured players or suggests that we missed easy shots.

If there is one thing you won’t hear Peter Vermes do, it’s hold himself accountable for team performance. It’s always the fault of the officials, the players, Major League Soccer scheduling practices or just things not going Sporting’s way.

The root of the team’s problems in recent years, and this season especially, is Vermes’ lack of accountability and his view that other things need to change for the team to get back to its winning ways.

What Sporting needs is a coach who sees himself as a key part of the team-performance equation.

- David Spieker, Shawnee

Be the bulb

At the Metro KC Climate Action Summit this past weekend, a Johnson County Community College administrator referred to the “incandescent anger” of students over the existential threats from global warming.

One year ago, Greta Thunberg of Sweden ditched high school to protest on global warming, alone, in front of the Swedish parliament. A global youth movement has formed around her, and on Friday, a Global Climate Strike will be held with thousands of events, including one at 5 p.m. at Mill Creek Park on the Plaza.

An October 2018 United Nations report indicated global carbon dioxide emissions must decline 45% by 2030 to avoid catastrophic consequences. This strike is the leading edge of a powerful, undeniable mass movement, responding to the absolute necessity for action.

A bill in Congress, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, embraces a carbon fee and dividend system to reduce U.S. emissions 40% by 2030. U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver is a co-sponsor. Contact your members of Congress to support this bill. Learn more at citizensclimatelobby.org

In their “incandescent anger,” these young people are on the right side of history, and most of us need to be there with them.

- Dave Mitchell, Kansas City

In Trump’s shadow

The state of Kansas would do itself a favor to admit Kris Kobach is merely a willing supporter of President Donald Trump, even though, when hired by Trump in 2017 as vice chair of the short-lived Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, Kobach found no credible evidence of voter fraud. Now he is sending his hateful suggestions to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Nebraska. (Sept. 15, 1A, “Kobach sent Nebraska residents’ names to ICE”)

Unless Kansas is as blatantly racist as this man is, The Star shouldn’t give him publicity. Our current president is embarrassing enough.

- Ruth Kauffman, Overland Park

Their own fault

Richard Cohen states he cannot vote Republican because of President Donald Trump and bemoans the Democrats’ identity politics. (Sept. 18, 15A, “Why identity politics can be a societal danger”)

What do you think the entire platform of the Democratic Party is? Everything they do is about identity politics.

Come on — get real. Cohen and The Star are upset because Trump beat their party at its own game. Four more years is going to send you to heart-attack city.

The idea of the Democratic Party is a joke. Who is its leader? Name that person.

- Jerry B. Davis, Independence

OK, I’m out

Perhaps President Donald Trump’s recent announcement on Twitter of his candidacy for 2024 is a concession of the 2020 election.

- Corey Simmonds, Roeland Park