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Letters to the editor on guns, Obama, Norton, Newton, Ballinger, Kahrs, Dillmore

  • Published Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, at 12 a.m.

Letters to the Editor

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Mail: Letters to the Editor, The Wichita Eagle, 825 E. Douglas, Wichita, KS 67202

E-mail: letters@wichitaeagle.com

Fax: 316-269-6799

For more information, contact Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, pbrownlee@wichitaeagle.com.

Don’t believe NRA claims about guns

The headline “Gun industry booming under Obama” (Oct. 21 Business Sunday) prompted this question: Why?

Has our president severely restricted gun purchases, as predicted by the National Rifle Association? No. Has he convinced lawmakers that taking such actions is a high priority? No. Is he likely to have success with that in a second term? No.

So what motivates the NRA’s scare tactics? Money and power? Do you suppose that as long as they are able to keep us in fear, the NRA and gun industry will thrive?

Are you aware of this cycle? First, fear is generated, then we buy lots of guns, then we accidentally or intentionally shoot people with them – at times in major ways. Together, those fuel the cycle’s regeneration that enables gun sellers to go grinning all the way to the bank.

How can the cycle be broken? Could it help if we were more aware of the motives behind the NRA’s actions, then withdrew our support for it, bought fewer guns and had illegal ones destroyed?

AL VOPATA

Wichita

Deny the denial

I can’t shake the feeling that the current atmosphere in the United States is eerily similar to that atmosphere in 1930s England. It is an atmosphere, generally generated by our leader, of appeasement and denial. Denial that says those who want to kill us aren’t all that bad.

Please, let us learn from history. We must not only deny the denial, but we as a country must turn and go back to those underlying principles on which our country was founded and has prospered. If not, we will experience the unswerving result – the removal of the blessings our nation has been privileged to experience. Learn from history.

GLENN L. LYGRISSE

Wichita

Oil disconnect

Republicans have been crying that President Obama is choking the oil industry with regulations and preventing drilling in certain places – thereby keeping companies from producing as much oil as they can, which is keeping us more dependent on foreign oil. Then I read “World’s No. 1 producer of oil may soon be U.S.” (Oct. 24 Business Today). Then I hear there are more than a hundred areas in the Gulf of Mexico that have been approved for drilling, but the companies are not doing so. There seems to be a disconnect here.

Oil companies and others are trying to set up the president to look like the bad guy, when the real problem is their vow to do anything possible to defeat him – including making many situations worse for our country. Too many people are only listening to the political rhetoric and not checking out the facts.

I know people who make demeaning jokes about Obama in private, but only talk in public about what a terrible president he is. They are racially prejudiced, but deny it if asked. Let’s face it – that is a big reason many Americans want to get rid of him, but they are not saying so.

JIM LANEY

Wichita

Norton needed

When it comes time to vote for Sedgwick County commissioner, I hope that people remember Tim Norton’s history. When he was mayor of Haysville, a tornado devastated a large part of town. As is the case with most mayors of smaller towns, he was a part-time mayor and had a full-time job – as manager of a large department store in Wichita. After the tornado, he quit his manager job and worked full time as mayor to restore the city of Haysville. How many candidates do you know who would do what he did?

We need Tim Norton, and more public officials like him.

STEVE NIKKEL

Wichita

Newton qualified

Radio ads from the opposition have impugned Zoe Newton’s character, by implication, with no supporting facts. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I know Newton to be the personification of the American dream. She came here from Jamaica at age 17 with only $20. She waited tables, taught herself to type, became a secretary and eventually went to law school. Her experience as assistant attorney general in Illinois gave her many hours of preparation and court time involving collective-bargaining agreements and family law.

Newton is acutely aware of how important it is that the law be applied as written – that judges have an important role to play in preserving our fundamental rights to due process and the equal protection of the laws. One of her overriding concerns is that people appearing before the court be treated with respect.

Newton is uniquely qualified by knowledge, strong experience and outgoing personality. Vote for Zoe Newton for Sedgwick County District Court judge.

SHIRLEY KOEHN

Wichita

Ballinger fair

District Court Judge Richard Ballinger is an experienced and fair judge. He has a strong record as a lawyer and a prosecutor, and he has served us well as a judge for Sedgwick County.

Ordinary citizens have often told me how he has helped them through the process when they couldn’t afford an attorney, or was willing to answer their questions. Ballinger deserves to be re-elected because of his experience and common sense. Please support and vote for Richard Ballinger for District Court judge.

JEAN KURTIS SCHODORF

Wichita

Kahrs has honor

When it is time to vote for Kansas House representative for District 87, the clear choice is Mark Kahrs.

I served with Kahrs for several years on the former citizen participation organization for District 2 in east Wichita. He was always prepared, listened respectfully to citizens, asked thoughtful questions and carefully arrived at workable solutions for their problems and concerns. He is a man of true character and honor and is blessed with intelligence and a commitment to service.

Because of my years of real estate experience, I appreciate his pledge to fight to keep our property taxes lower and to help families retain more of their hard-earned money.

Kahrs is a small-business owner and understands the necessity of growing the economy and creating jobs for Kansans. Please vote for Mark Kahrs.

DIANE Z. PARK

Wichita

Dillmore moderate

State Rep. Nile Dillmore, D-Wichita, is a moderate. He has been in the House since 2001 and has worked for Wichitans and Kansans. He serves on the House committees on taxation, general government budget, and energy and utilities, and on the Joint Committee on Information Technology. These days, Kansas needs moderates. No one else is willing to stop members of the ultraconservative wing of the House and the governor, who are intent on setting up various “experiments” in social engineering.

I urge all voters in District 92 to vote for Dillmore. It is important to rally the forces and rein in the radical shift to one-party control of Kansas state government. Kansans are by nature middle of the road. We are middle of the country, and stay away from radical shifts in politics and fashion. Make your vote count by voting.

PAT O’CONNOR

Wichita

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