Letters to the Editor

Mother to daughter, serving workers, chaplains’ role

Mother to daughter

If I could take her suffering away.

Twenty-three years is still such a tender age.

If I could only take her sadness away.

Too much tragedy to know at such a young age.

Trying to explain 9/11. Now trying to explain why her 23-year-old school friend was killed in Afghanistan.

Too much grief for their generation. …

I love you.

Ann Mendez Overland Park
Serving workers

I felt the need to respond to a letter writer (6-29, Letters). He lamented the fact that workers at national chain restaurants he had visited saw their hours cut because of the implementation of the new health care law and blamed this on the law.

I want to question him to understand why he is not complaining about these large national chain restaurants (not even local or small restaurants) that treat their employees this way. Apparently, he agrees that the employees are just commodities of these businesses and that treating them as such rather than as human beings is just fine.

Perhaps he is concerned that these fine establishments are not making a profit while their greedy employees just want a chance for basic, decent health care.

Cathy Hess
Lenexa Chaplains’ role

Many thanks for the fine June 30 Star Magazine article, “Comfort for all,” which took some of the mystery out of palliative care. It was wonderful to read of the many fine programs in metro hospitals.

Palliative care is a fine example of what is right in medicine today, in spite of the many legitimate questions we all have concerning the state of this important aspect of our lives.

I was, however, surprised by an oversight in this article.

Palliative care is truly the care of the whole person and his or her family. Professional chaplains were not mentioned in this otherwise fine article, which is surprising.

Chaplains are always members of these teams, along with nurse practitioners, clinical social workers and board-certified physicians. Please note the personal questions that were wonderfully stated in the article — “Why me? How do I go on? How can I accept this reality I or my loved one is experiencing?”

Talk to the professionals in these palliative-care teams, and most often you will find that it is the chaplain who is the key facilitator of addressing these honest life questions.

Lawrence G. Ehren Overland Park Hubris of Obama

As the saying goes, “You can’t make this stuff up.”

President Barack Obama went to Africa on an exorbitant taxpayer-funded family junket and proceeds to give admonishing and hypocritical speeches to the locals (7-1, A10, “Obama touts ‘Africa rising’”).

He actually said, “Across Africa, the same institutions that should be the backbone of democracy can all too often be infected with the rot of corruption.”

Meanwhile, back in the United States, he should have been tending to business such as the reeking rot of his own Department of Justice, State Department, Internal Revenue Service, National Security Agency and General Services Administration.

While Obama ignores his own corruption scandals and attempts to distract attention away from them, polls show that the majority of Americans want investigations to continue.

With all that’s being exposed, Obama has established a new standard for hubris.

Crosby P. Engel Weatherby Lake Feeding needy kids

We were shocked by the bombing at the Boston Marathon. We want the people who were responsible for this punished, as well as others who want to do harm to us.

These people do not value human life as we do.

But do we value all human life?

Do you know that more than 10,000 children die each day in other countries from starvation? Are we to look the other way and say these children don’t count?

Do we say they are not flesh and blood as we are? Does God want us to not feed or help these people?

In America, a small number of children die of starvation. We have so much.

If we are hungry and can’t afford food, we have many food banks and churches. If everyone would give $5 or more each month, we could reduce the number of children dying and someday have a zero death rate.

The Bible lets us know that if we do God’s work, we must help these children.

I feel we will have to answer for why we have so much and did not help these children.

Ronald W. Deatherage Jefferson City Climate change

Hats off to The Star’s June 29 editorial, “Finally, Obama leads on climate change.”

I agree with The Star that the biggest change needed is for the federal government to authorize a carbon tax on fossil fuels.

There are many benefits of a revenue-neutral carbon tax: It protects the poor and middle class and it offers the House and Senate an opportunity to create a market-based solution to the climate-change crisis.

The alternative is an executive-controlled Environmental Protection Agency regulation.

This is something we should all be able to get together on. When 99 out of 100 climate scientists agree that climate change is happening and that we humans are the cause, all signs point in one direction.

Carbon has to be minimized. We have to lead the way.

Highlights from the president’s speech: The weather is getting more extreme, with 2012 the second-most extreme on record. The cost of weather disasters in 2012 on the American economy: $110 billion.

CO2 is 84 percent of the problem. Coal plants are the biggest offenders, followed by heavy-duty vehicles.

Climate change is happening, and we have to prepare for the effects.

Tony Schmidt Lawrence Fizzled fireworks

Talking heads not unexpectedly took the opportunity to blame President Barack Obama for cancellation of Independence Day fireworks shows at some military bases. In reality, recent budget cuts mean some bases just can’t justify the cost when at the same time many federal workers must absorb pay cuts while furloughed.

Because of the cuts we also see our solons endeavoring to pay Federal Emergency Management Agency costs for natural disasters by transferring funding from elsewhere in the budget.

The budget cuts are part of a bipartisan effort to reduce the national debt. Congress and Congress alone has the power to appropriate funds, and it is simply wrong to place the blame on Obama.

If the continuous effort to discredit Obama were expended constructively, we might be surprised at what could be accomplished in Congress and as a nation.

Robert R. Cook Manhattan, Kan. What’s for dinner?

I liked the June 29 article, “Slaughter plant permit OK’d,”

about the efforts to establish a horse-slaughtering plant in New Mexico. There perhaps could be one as close as Gallatin, in northwest Missouri.

I’d love to have a steed steak. It will be nice to compare it to lamb and squirrel and even cow.

If there are people unhappy with this, they don’t have to eat horse.

Bo Steed Kansas City Truman Med cheers

I recently had surgery at Truman Medical Center Lakewood and was very pleased with the quality of care that I received.

I had already known of orthopedic surgeon Thomas McCormack’s reputation for excellence. He is an outstanding physician and also takes the time to teach and answer all questions and concerns.

The surgery center is amazing and state of the art.

From the moment you check in, you are tracked by confidential number on a big screen in the waiting area so that your family will know where you are in your care process.

Every staff member from clerks to nursing understood his or her responsibility for safety and genuine human care.

There are too many competent staff for me to remember or name, but I am grateful for my excellent treatment and for being able to experience a hospital the way it should always be.

Thank you, Truman Medical Center Lakewood.

Rory C. Grounds Lee’s Summit