Brave older worker
Is “What year did you graduate?” a discriminatory question? That question is on every online application I have filled out the past three years.
Is “1972” the wrong answer? I’ve subsisted on part-time employment or unemployment for the past 10 years, especially in the last three after losing a good-paying job.
Now, after years of struggling to survive and keep a roof over my head, it is a reality that I may lose that roof. I have years of experience, am articulate and intelligent, but I cannot find a job that pays a living wage.
I’ve filled out more than 300 applications, all asking the question, “What year did you graduate?” Doesn’t that imply age? I have gotten little or no response, even though I have an excellent resume.
Ah, age discrimination. It is against the law.
So how is the year one graduated relevant?
I don’t want a pity party. I don’t want a handout. I want a decent job so I can get back on the trail to the pursuit of happiness.
America, home of the brave? I am capable. I am a breast cancer survivor. I am brave. Soon, I may be homeless.
If my husband and I have taught our black son anything, it’s that you get the respect you give to others.
He’s in his 30s and is a vice principal at your city’s Center High School. But he didn’t get there because we raised him to have a chip on his shoulder.
His father was born in 1953, in the middle of Jim Crow, but he resisted the temptation to tell our son that the world and the police were out to get him.
Our son was told to be cautious; racism exists. But you go a lot farther in this world if you push past what you’re told may hold you back by working hard, getting educated and above all applying manners in situations where they may not be reciprocated.
It’s clear Michael Brown would be alive if he had been taught respect rather than a fear of the police. With a “Sure, officer” and a walk to the curb, he, that cop and Ferguson could have gone about their business. But too many black children are taught “the man” and society are their enemy, so there’s no use in having anything but a negative attitude.
Until that changes the trouble in Ferguson will happen again and again.
Mike Brown’s death
Many people think nothing will change despite the deaths of Mike Brown, Trayvon Martin and Oscar Grant. People don’t know that changes have been made.
I understand that people will still come together and fight for what is right. These three young men have made history, like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and even Nelson Mandela.
They didn’t have to speak or have marches, but because of their deaths, people have risen up for justice. People have shown that their deaths have not been in vain.
Dr. King said, “If physical death is the price that I must pay to free my white brothers and sisters from a permanent death of the spirit, then nothing can be more redemptive.” What he didn’t know was that others’ deaths would follow until we speak up.
During this time, we have to step up and speak for things that we know to be justice.
In search of truth
Several decades ago, Congress passed a law that said there must be truth in advertising, and then the members of Congress forgot that this would also apply to them. That is to say, they fib a tad.
It is important to remember this whenever we read, hear or see any political statement. There are many ways to make the same comments, each a little more devious than that previous.
There will, of course, be a bias toward those we like, but these too are capable of the slanted phrase, the purpose being to confuse.
We are told that politics in Kansas is a successful experiment, but evidence would seem to be to the contrary. We have congressmen who do not know where they live and a governor who doesn’t remember how to count. It’s no wonder their words come out slanted.
We all know that the TV news is biased. Its purpose is to incite. But what about the written word?
Jeremiah 8:8 says, “How can you say, ‘We are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us’? But behold, the lying pen of the scribes has made it into a lie.”
Richard C. Lumpkin
Obama is wrong
In these days when we are faced with Muslim terrorists threatening to come into the U.S. and attack us from within, we are also faced with a president who has opened our borders to allow them to come in freely.
President Barack Obama has established a record of violation of U.S. laws. He has sold weapons illegally to Mexican drug gangs through Operation Fast and Furious. He has repeatedly granted illegal waivers in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.
He failed to protect our ambassador to Libya and allowed him to be killed. He helped bring down moderate Muslim governments in Egypt and Libya, and they were replaced by more radical Muslims.
Obama has drastically reduced our military strength and morale, increased our indebtedness, weakened our economy, promoted homosexuality and made us less able to resist enemy attack.
Our federal government, president, Congress and Supreme Court are in violation of our Constitution and are setting up our country to be attacked internally by terrorists. Our only hope is that our states rise up to protect us from these dangers by taking a stand against federal agencies acting in violation of the Constitution.
Belle Plaine, Kan.
Pointers for recruits
Here is a bit of advice to any young person considering joining the armed forces. First look at the possibility of completing a four-year bachelor’s degree.
Once you complete your degree in the major of your choice, consider enlisting in the officer-candidate program that all branches of the military offer. The pay is better, and the military will even pay for you to continue your education after completing the officer-training program.
Should college not be an option and you go in as an enlisted person, choose a field you find exciting. Do not let recruiters manipulate you by playing on your ego and trapping you in some horrible job by telling you how bright you are and how much better you could do in a field the military desperately needs bodies in but is of no interest to you.
I fell for these tactics and ended up in the Navy’s nuclear power program instead of photographers school. I regret it to this very day.
Recruiters are not your friends. They have quotas to meet and will use any means necessary to meet those goals. Do not let them use you as a pawn.
Violence on TV
For years — make that decades — this country has flaunted its murderous gun-toting history in westerns, war movies and cops-and-robbers movies and TV shows.
You can’t turn on a television or a video game without seeing guns blazing, with all the blood and guts that accompany them like so many condiments on a hamburger.
It’s great viewing on big screens. It must bring out our authentic inner selves.
Then, lo and behold, we throw up our arms and wonder why 6- and 10-year-olds are gunned down in the streets along with all other age groups. Hmmm.
I’m going out on a limb here and say this country’s moral-standards bar is set way too low.
Remember when a suspense thriller carried its story with a plot and left the rest to the imagination — without all the gore?
So now, here we are.
Kids getting blown away shouldn’t be news. It should be expected.
Kansas City, Kan.
Billy Butler ad
In response to Billy Butler’s full-page thank you in Thursday’s paper:
Kansas City will miss you, too, Billy. Thank you for being a part of our team and our city. You have shown yourself to be a world-class player. In Thursday’s paper and in other ways, you have shown yourself to be a world-class guy.