Letters to the Editor

Letters: Readers discuss ‘The Squad,’ proper honor for MLK and a tiny grammar nitpick

Life lessons

Son, be presidential.

Meet crises with scapegoating. Meet ethics with manipulation. Meet principles with throwing shade. Meet regulations with self-enrichment. Meet consequences with throwing anyone under the bus.

Honesty is for suckers, boy. Always focus instead on one thing: getting what you want. Raise “I know you are, but what am I?” to the pinnacle of rhetorical debate. Deflect. Obfuscate. Twist. Never admit you are wrong.

Oh, and lie. Big lies, little lies, lies when lives are on the line. Lying should be your default. Constant practice will make it second nature.

Remember, it is all about you. What is in your head is all that matters. Do not waste time on anything besides what you feel, what you want and what is the easiest, cheapest way to get it.

Identify people’s weaknesses and play on them relentlessly. They’re overwhelmed? Give them toxic but simple solutions to dark, partially unspoken fears.

Focus like a laser on the criterion in life: Can you, did you, get away with it?

That is the ideal I hold up for you to aspire to. That is the man I want you to become. Make me proud, son.

Be presidential.

- Tom Hall, Rea, Missouri

At the wheel

To those who say that most Democrats are moderate: A very large ship’s direction is determined by a very small rudder. The Democratic Party’s rudder is “The Squad” — U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan — and their supposedly small support group.

- Robert Hurd, Warrensburg

Don’t divide; unite

It baffles me that The Star gives so much coverage to the words of St. Mark’s Church senior pastor Vernon Howard (Nov. 7, 1A, “After voters restore Paseo, KC leaders look to honor MLK. ).

The Nov. 5 election was not “a shameful day in Kansas City,” as he proclaimed. It was a day that showed that Kansas Citians of all races care about our history and don’t want it wiped out — period.

Howard was also wrong in saying, “A predominantly white group with black supporters has led a stripping of Dr. King’s legacy.” Meetings I attended and TV news coverage included just as many blacks as whites wanting to preserve the name of The Paseo. If anyone portrayed this election as a racial issue, it was Howard.

As for “a stripping of Dr. King’s legacy”: In no way has Kansas City ignored his legacy, nor will we as we move forward.

Martin Luther King Jr. is honored with a national holiday in his name. Every year, Kansas Citians enthusiastically commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a month of events and celebrations, including a day of service in his honor. It’s a celebration that brings all races together, instead of stoking division, as Howard’s words have.

- Diana Spare, Kansas City

Greater honor

Kansas City should rename the J.C. Nichols Memorial Fountain as the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Fountain.

As the lead developer of the Country Club Plaza in the early 20th century, Nichols used restrictive covenants to ensure that African Americans could not occupy homes in the area. Why should we reward such a segregationist with his own fountain? What does that say about the ideals of Kansas Citians, especially when we pride ourselves on our spectacular array of man-made geysers? Kansas City is, after all, known as the “City of Fountains.”

Not only would honoring King this way remove the Nichols name associated with segregationist ideals, but it would symbolically and triumphantly conquer Nichols’ racist views with King’s sacred name.

What a simultaneously stunning affirmation of King’s legacy, a personalized Kansas City honor and a powerful rebuttal of racism it would be to rename this fountain after King. It would unequivocally show the world Kansas Citians’ true values.

- Zachary Jonas, Kansas City

Few, not only

On consecutive days, The Star provided examples of my pet peeve: the construction “one of the only.” It was in Nov. 5’s “Group protests at rally for MLK Boulevard” (1A) and Nov. 6’s “Voters restore The Paseo, drop King’s name,” (1A).

Also, among many other examples, it appeared in the Nov. 1 “Staffer: Inspectors of Planned Parenthood became ‘accusatory’” (3A) and the Oct. 10 “KSU not panicking, seeing positives in 3-2 start” (1B).

I have no credentials as a grammarian, but this illogical phrase suggests the writers are guilty of fuzzy thinking or lack due diligence in preparation.

Why not “one of a few” instead?

Am I missing something?

- Edward Richards, Marshall, Missouri