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Letters to the editor on city priorities, religious slap, ID invasion, tax increase, breast-feeding

  • Published Friday, Jan. 11, 2013, at 12 a.m.

Letters to the Editor

Include your full name, home address and phone number for verification purposes. All letters are edited for clarity and length; 200 words or fewer are best. Letters may be published in any format and become the property of The Eagle.

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.

Wichita’s priorities don’t include pools

It is very shameful that the city of Wichita always has money for economic development projects but can’t take care of simple neighborhood issues.

The Edgemoor Park swimming pool was down all summer because the city didn’t want to spend the money necessary to fix it. Projects such as economic development downtown seem to be more important than our city’s children enjoying an important part of their education and recreation for the summer.

I hope that we soon can elect new City Council members who have a better vision of city parks and swimming pools as a proper function of government to be funded by property taxes. I also hope that we can have a political discussion about the proper function of property-tax revenue.

JOHN STEVENS

Wichita

Religious slap

Though I do not want to strip Gov. Sam Brownback of his religious beliefs and practices, he should not try to force his beliefs upon others who do not believe in Christianity. Nor should he try to bring those beliefs into our state government (“Brownback’s life permeated by his strong personal faith,” Dec. 31 Eagle).

The First Amendment was purposely written to forbid our government from instituting a certain religion upon the people of our nation, and from people trying to force their religion upon others. Brownback needs to be reminded of this fact. Even our own state constitution says that no religion should be given preference over another.

Brownback is free to practice the religion of his choice. But when he signed that proclamation declaring a “Day of Restoration” and urged people to collectively repent of distancing ourselves from God, and when he promoted the event with ReignDown USA, a Christian organization, and prayed in the name of Jesus, he slapped the faces of everyone in the state who does not believe in Christianity.

If he had attended the event as a private citizen, there would have been no problem. But he used his office to promote the Christian religion only and ignored the rest of the citizens of our state who do not believe in Christianity.

FLOYCE WATTSON

Wichita

ID invasion

A federal judge ruled that a Texas school district has the right to transfer a student who refused to wear a radio frequency identification tag while on school grounds (Jan. 9 Eagle). Here again we see government in the form of the school district invading citizens’ right to privacy.

I believe a school should be more concerned with visitors’ whereabouts than a student’s location during the day.

The school district says that because the students are minors, they have less right to privacy. It also contends that the IDs are not to track students per se but to account for them. Given that the district is paid by the number of students counted in each class every morning, it defends the use of the IDs by explaining it will be better able to ascertain how many students are at school that day. If the district is paid by the number of students in class when roll is taken, hanging an ID on them won’t solve the problem of them not being in class on time. It will only serve as the first shovelful in what other government agencies will see as a way to further erode the right to privacy of American citizens countrywide.

TIMOTHY EWERTZ

Colwich

Didn’t raise taxes

Regarding “Roberts, Moran the same as Democrats” (Jan. 4 Letters to the Editor): The senators did not vote to raise taxes on “the most productive citizens.” Those taxes went up automatically on Jan. 1 due to the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts.

What the senators did vote for, however, was a deal to not raise taxes on those earning less than $400,000 annually. They did not want to “confiscate more earnings,” as the writer put it, on the middle class and poor Americans. They know that more take-home pay for these people will induce spending, and that is what will strengthen the economic health of this nation.

Whereas the vast majority of Kansas voters belong to the middle class, I would think that the senators would have no problem explaining their action, which I applaud.

JOSEPH MUELLER

Wichita

Consider facts

Regarding “Some experts take aim at ‘breast is best’ claims” (Jan. 8 Healthy Living): Based on my personal experience, I have to commend the amazing lactation consultants at our fine hospitals and their efforts to make breast-feeding best for mothers in Wichita.

Just a review of the available research contradicts much of the information in the article. In addition, there is strong evidence that breast-feeding reduces the risk of breast cancer for women, and infants exclusively breast-fed for four months are less likely to develop asthma.

The suggestion that women who breast-feed are condemned to a lower income fails to consider the fact that a can of powdered formula costs $25 or more. This is an ongoing cost and has a huge impact on a household budget.

Before we give our young mothers the impression that they should give up breast-feeding for formula, let’s consider all the facts.

BECKY KNAPP

Wichita

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