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Letters to the Editor on KanCare, boys ranch, abortion, Leonard Pitts, prayer for pope

  • Published Wednesday, March 27, 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.

Keep DD care out of KanCare

I am the parent of an adult child with developmental disabilities. As such, I have more than 30 years of experience navigating the multitude of requirements and health care providers to find those appropriate for my daughter and her needs. In many instances, I have found few care resources that are the right match for my daughter’s needs. When I have located those resources, I have done whatever I could to develop long-term working relationships with them.

Current plans to include intellectually and developmentally disabled care services in KanCare will not add any value to my daughter’s care or that of her peers. To the contrary, it will add layers of additional administration and substantial disruption to what has taken years to develop.



Fund boys ranch

State Rep. Jim Howell, R-Derby, was shocked that Sedgwick County might have to shut down the Judge Riddel Boys Ranch without additional state funding (“Fate of boys ranch in budget limbo,” March 23 Eagle).

I feel shocked every time the Legislature mandates some program and does not provide adequate funding. The state started funding the ranch, but as costs have gone up over the years, the increased costs have come from the Sedgwick County budget.

Sedgwick County has had to make budget cuts for the past two years and is looking at nearly $3 million in cuts this year. What do county commissioners cut this time? The boys ranch? The zoo, the largest tourist attraction in Sedgwick County? Or other programs such as for aging and mental health services or public safety?

I did not read about Howell suggesting he was willing to pay more property tax to avoid Sedgwick County budget cuts or keep the boys ranch adequately funded. Nor did he suggest cuts to the facilities that do not track their success rate, as the ranch does. Perhaps closing those facilities would provide adequate funding for the successful program at Lake Afton.



Don’t require lie

So our Republicans in Topeka now want to pass a law that requires doctors to lie to their patients by telling them that abortions increase the risk for breast cancer when it’s not true (“Lawmakers shouldn’t pass medically inaccurate bills,” March 20 WE Blog excerpts). Is this what conservatives call “smaller government” – requiring that doctors lie to their patients?

This is outrageous. I was taught that lying is wrong. I don’t lie, and I don’t expect to be lied to by doctors because some radical politicians legislate it to further their political agenda. Talk about taking away our rights. And Republicans accuse the president of being a communist and taking away our rights.

There should be a march on Topeka to protest this outrage, and people need to call their representatives and Gov. Sam Brownback. Politicians need to stay out of our bedrooms, our sex lives, our wombs and our doctors’ offices.



Follow advice?

In his commentary regarding gay marriage (March 25 Opinion), Leonard Pitts Jr. opined that social conservatives lack the ability to put themselves into someone else’s shoes – “imagine one’s way inside someone else’s life,” he wrote.

Judging from the content of his columns, I don’t think Pitts spends much time following his own advice. It would be interesting to read how many times he has changed his views through such empathy. I hope he does. It would be a short story.



Prayer for pope

The pope has something to say to me as a Jew. For that matter, I, as a rabbi, have something to say to him and to my Catholic neighbors as well.

As a spokesman for Judaism, each rabbi has a responsibility to carry on a continuing conversation with our neighbors of faith. We have a responsibility to be honest, self-critical and authentic in the way we present our faith and in the way we listen to the faith of others.

I’d like to offer a prayer on Pope Francis’ behalf and on behalf of all our Catholic neighbors:

Almighty God of all faiths and peoples, we ask Your blessings for Pope Francis. He has long been Your servant, representing the interests of the poor and downtrodden of Your people and seeking to promote peace in a country that was torn by oppression. Give him understanding and insight into people of all faiths and backgrounds, and help him to be a true advocate for peace.

Like Your servant King Solomon, bless him with a listening heart. May he emulate the qualities of the first St. Frances of Assisi, who loved all Your creatures, human and animal, and was a man of deep humility and caring.

May the pope promote not only tolerance but true understanding and cooperation between Jews and Catholics, and may he work together to repair the world so that it will truly become a kingdom of God and goodness. May his faith continue to inspire his humility and his humanity, so that he will be a true servant of God and of all human beings.



Letters deadline

Letters to the editor about the April 2 election must be received at The Eagle by 3 p.m. Thursday in order to be considered for publication.

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