Letters to the Editor

Airport mall, priests’ role, wealth disparity

Picking right airport

I think to save a lot of problems, Kansas City should establish a mall at Wheeler Downtown Airport. This would bring the airport back downtown, and the city would have a single-terminal airport and the people of Kansas City would have their airport.

Then you can let the airlines decide which airport they will use.

I hope the Wheeler Airport does not become Bannister Mall.

Donnie Spencer


Changing priests’ role

Although I would rather see women in the clergy in the church I grew up in, the idea of married priests is OK. Some things must happen first.

Priests must be paid in a considerably different fashion, and much more than they are now. They must be able to afford to send their kids to school, pay their own rent or mortgage and be expected to live in a fashion most of us do already.

And individual priests will not be able to show up for emergencies when we need them. Just as we have had to change our expectations of doctors, we will have to change our expectations of priests, who once married would need time for their families, to do with theirs the things we do with ours.

To me, marriage and priesthood are mutually exclusive occupations, given the job descriptions. It also strikes me odd that marriage seems to be the answer for everything involving priests — as if marriage can solve scandals, lack of numbers, loneliness or any other thing you can think of.

Mary Bognich

Overland Park

Disparity of wealth

In 2004, Thomas Frank published “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” Ten years later, the verdict is in.

Not only has the sunflower of growth withered in the Sunflower State, but the crediting agencies have lowered Kansas’ rating. Now the state will pay higher interest for slower growth.

What’s the matter with Kansas is now what’s the matter with Missouri. Overriding Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of the low-tax bill, the Missouri Legislature opened the door to Kansas’ fate just as Missouri received a AAA rating.

That rating is going to sink.

In one area there has been growth. The portfolios of the super wealthy have soared.

Thanks to states including Kansas, and now Missouri, the top 1 percent already own more than 42 percent of all wealth. Meanwhile, the average worker’s comparative buying power has reverted to what it was in 1951.

Growth for the very, very few, reversal for the many. That’s what the creed of conservatism has become.

Frank K. Flinn

St. Louis

Mary Sanchez column

Like Mary Sanchez, I agree that more women need to be involved in local politics (6-9, A4, “Giving women a higher profile”). So I think the Women’s Foundation of Greater Kansas City is a good idea.

According to Sanchez, “The Women’s Foundation’s effort is a step toward building a larger presence within significant public policy issues.” She cites the example of Cecelia M. Carter, who will join the Employees Retirement System Board of Trustees.

When it comes to serving Kansas City, I hope Ms. Carter has better luck than Frances Semler had trying to serve the parks board in 2007. Semler, you may recall, was a pariah because she belonged to a local chapter of the Minutemen. (She also belonged to another “radical” organization, the Clay County Rose Society.)

In the eyes of the liberal media, it isn’t as important to get women involved in politics as it is the get the right women involved.

Ed O’Toole

Kansas City

Civil War history

The real reason for the Civil War is overlooked in high school history because of political correctness.

In the mid-1800s, states became distraught over the federal government imposing its regulations over the states’ rights to rule their own jurisdictions. That, by the way, is still an issue today with Obamacare, gun regulations and marijuana laws, just to cite a few examples.

While history books teach that the Civil War was fought over slavery, the real issue was states’ rights versus federal government rights and which should reign supreme in our still young country trying to figure out whether the federal government or individual states should have the supreme power.

The states are more representative of the people. The federal government binds together the republic, where our representatives make decisions for us.

The issue of slavery was wrong and always will be. It was the straw that broke the camel’s back and started the Civil War.

Mike Crosbie


Steve Rose column

Steve Rose, in his June 1 column, “Meddling state lawmakers cut county funds,” attempts to reduce an important decision — electing the chair of the Johnson County Commission — to an oversimplified budgeting issue.

Rose suggests that responding to the Legislature’s repeal of the mortgage registration fee should be the wedge issue by which the voters define the candidates for chairman. This unduly narrow framing of the election is a disservice to voters.

Johnson County faces serious questions. At risk are the vital services of libraries, infrastructure and parks that define the quality of life people enjoy. Now Sheriff Frank Denning is telling us that even public safety is underfunded.

In contrast to these services, the phase-in of the mortgage registration fee elimination will reduce county general fund revenues about $3 million each year over the next five years out of total general tax revenues of $286 million.

We can do better.

We think the campaign must be about the future of our community, not tired political rhetoric. The mortgage registration fee is but one of many potholes, created in Topeka, on the road forward for our community.

We applaud Ed Peterson, the one candidate for chairman who is raising these important issues.

David Shepard

Mission City Council

Becky Fast

Roeland Park

City Council

Lee Cross


Johnson County

Community College

Overland Park

KCP&L deforestation

It’s spring, and the busy beavers from the Kansas City Power & Light Co. are canvassing neighborhoods to identify trees they determine to be detriments to their service lines.

Recently Steve, a vegetation maintenance inspector, visited my house, spray painted orange dots on five trees on my property and left forms in my front door, noting that the trees in question need to be removed.

Three of these trees will not begin to be threats to KCP&L’s service for at least five years.

The forms went on to state that the trees in question will be cut down “free of charge,” however, I or my contractor would be responsible for actually cutting them up and removing them from my property.

Judging from this appraisal, KCP&L is determined to turn established neighborhoods like mine into Iowa cornfields. To this I say, no way.

I would hope that after reading this my fellow Kansas City residents will do as I have and inform KCP&L in writing that it does not have my permission to remove my trees and can pursue another solution.

How about burying the lines as in more exclusive neighborhoods?

Jim Skinner

Kansas City

Caring for families

My dad, John T. Cole, passed away recently at a care facility in Overland Park. I waited three weeks to receive some form of condolence.

Apparently, there is no policy concerning the deaths of residents. I made phone inquiries to other facilities and was told they send a card or flowers to the families of the deceased.

It did not matter if the person was a resident for a week or 10 years.

My father lived at the manor for nine years. His payments averaged $5,000 a month. That is a lot of money.

When my cat died, I received a card and hug from my veterinarian. My cat was honored more than my dad was.

Hopefully, this alerts the facility to care about its residents and families from beginning to end.

Lynn E. Ferguson

Overland Park