Going after unions
The Feb. 10 story on the front page of The Kansas City Star, “‘Paycheck protection’ bill aims at unions,” makes it clear that Republican lawmakers are at it again. They are determined to kill the voice of working people in Missouri.
They want to make it necessary for some workers to give annual written permission for union dues to be automatically deducted from their paychecks. This action, they think, will destroy the unions.
They admit they plan to do this to all workers, but for now they are going to try to divide and conquer. They are attacking only certain unions now and will go after the others later.
It does my heart good to know that the firefighters see through the scheme and are standing with the rest of the workers of Missouri. They understand that if they don’t stand with all the workers of Missouri now, they will stand alone later.
It’s hard to imagine the fear, hurt and sadness that now pervades the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in Kansas (2-11, A1, “LGBT protections revoked”).
Now these folks cannot expect employment protection in state jobs.
Gov. Sam Brownback, a self-proclaimed godly man, surely must believe that God doesn’t create second-class citizens. Or does he?
Kansas City, Kan.
Feel free to publish NASCAR racing information at any time because Daytona Speedweeks begins Saturday and the great American Race, the Daytona 500, is less than 10 days away.
This paper has always been lax in NASCAR reporting, especially considering we have a speedway here and two top-tier races.
Chopping off a head, now shooting arrows into a person. Lee Judge needs help. Or, does he reflect the management of The Star?
William Morton Sr.
Sarah Gish column
I was delighted with Sarah Gish’s “Vegan dining all day long” column Feb. 4.
February is American Heart Month, and her timing could not have been better.
Heart disease is the No. 1 killer in America, and it has been proved many times over that a plant-based diet helps prevent heart disease and is instrumental in reversing its ill-effects.
I’ve been vegan for several years and can attest that a plant-based diet is both delicious and nutritious.
Gish’s column gave lots of tasty options for those who are vegetarian or vegan and for those wanting to try this diet option.
The historical snowstorms in the Boston area prove God doesn't like deflated footballs.
Bigotry in Kansas
Just when a woman thinks the state in which she lives can sink no lower, she learns that Gov. Sam Brownback rescinded the 2007 executive order that protected lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender state workers (2-11, A1, “LGBT protections revoked”).
This governor has now aligned himself with other ignorant people who think homosexuality is a choice.
It was not enough that Brownback drove our state into financial jeopardy, requiring massive budget cuts affecting our schools, social services and repairs to bridges, roads and infrastructure through his reckless tax cuts.
It was not enough that he has managed to change the selection system for judges from one that was a national model to one that allows him in many cases to name his cronies to the judiciary.
It was not enough that he supports control of the female reproductive system.
Now he continues his march back to the Dark Ages by reinstating the ability to discriminate against state LGBT employees simply because of their sexual orientation.
I don’t know how Brownback sleeps at night.
Truly ethical government leaders make their decisions based on what is best for human beings. When they make decisions based on physical differences or religious beliefs, they discriminate.
Kansas’ cash woes
The evidence of Gov. Sam Brownback’s failure is the fact that there is a multimillion-dollar budget hole for the fiscal year ending June 30.
Brownback’s war against the progressive income tax is based on Arthur Laffer’s allegation that tax breaks for the ultra-wealthy will trickle down and fuel the economy by creating job growth.
Was it tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy or the trillions of federal deficit spending added to the national debt and spent on government contracts that fueled the economy by creating job growth?
Is it tax breaks for the ultra-wealthy or the record low interest rates for commercial development that are responsible for any minimal increase in the job growth in Kansas?
Brownback claims the sun is shining in Kansas. If Brownback’s tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy aren’t responsible for the drought of tax revenue in Kansas, then it must be the sun.
Ultimately, lowering progressive income taxes for the ultra-wealthy will result in increasing regressive sales taxes, fuel taxes, property taxes, cigarette taxes, liquor taxes and user fees.
Holly John Blythe
So let me get this straight. A bill being introduced by Kansas state Sen. Forrest Knox of Altoona would seek foster-care providers who are married, have no extramarital sex, don’t drink or smoke and regularly participate in church (2-11, A4, “New foster-care tier is proposed”).
These individuals would qualify for a higher tier of foster care and would be paid a higher amount and would receive state aid to educate their foster children.
Oh, yeah, I forgot, one parent must stay home or work out of the home — a “Leave-It-to-Beaver”-type home atmosphere.
What’s wrong with a Huxtable family atmosphere?
So are you saying that single parents or two working parents couldn’t raise a foster child? Are you saying that people like Mr. and Mrs. Ward Cleaver would never abuse a foster child?
Is the state going to daily monitor said Cleavers to make sure they are not having a glass of wine or firing up a doobie?
You state representatives have too much time on your hands if you dream up things like this.
Kansas City, Kan.
The problem with last year’s sales-tax proposal to fund Missouri highways wasn’t with the tax portion of the idea. It was with the sales part.
The price of gasoline had dropped in recent months. Yet Missouri legislators can’t think of a single plan B revenue proposal for maintaining our roads?
What better time to bring Missouri’s fuel tax into line with other states?
Oh, wait, I forgot that our legislature is focused on emulating Kansas.
That would make the obvious solution an income-tax cut.
Paul L. Schenk
Serving VA heroes
I want to apologize to actor Owen Wilson for disturbing him a few months ago while he was standing in line at SunLife Organics in Malibu, Calif.
I had never met a famous celebrity, much less found myself standing in line next to a famous actor like him. I apologize if my attempt to meet Wilson that day was an intrusion.
We don’t have very many celebrities walking down the streets of Kansas, unless of course you want to count Dorothy and Toto.
I work at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and every day when I go to work, I meet and take care of veterans of the U.S. military.
The veterans I take care of are never inconvenienced by saying hello to someone who might go up to them and say, “Thank you for your service.”
I’d choose to live in my world of wounded vets and hard-working Americans any day rather than in a world of famous celebrities.
The vets at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center are truly heroes who have served their country, and I feel honored to be their doctor — just an ordinary person who works at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center.