Letters to the editor on state overtime, Kobach intimidation, arts funding, losing freedoms, gun control, diverse nation

06/21/2013 12:00 AM

06/20/2013 6:23 PM

State paying price for attitude

The Eagle reported on the amount of overtime needed because of the exodus of state employees (“Overtime part of the job for some state workers,” June 9 Eagle). Anyone with the tiniest grain of business sense knows the value of keeping skilled employees. Yet licensed electricians and plumbers and heating, ventilation and air conditioning technicians, as well as skilled building and grounds maintenance people, are taking home less pay than they did four years ago.

The state’s attitude is “take it or leave,” so they are leaving, and the state is beginning to pay the price for this lack of common sense.

JACK WAIT

Wichita

Real intimidation

Secretary of State Kris Kobach only needs one more K to have initials that are synonymous with the practice of intimidation of black and brown people (“Kobach protesters are not like KKK,” June 20 WE Blog excerpts). The only person trying to put a “sheet” of secrecy on his activities is Kobach.

An Eagle editorial failed to mention that Kobach filed, as a public record, that his limited liability company was at his home (“Kobach wrong again,” June 19 Eagle Editorial). So Sunflower Community Action members showed up at his official place of business.

Not only is Kobach wrong, but the editorial was wrong when it stated: “Kobach is right about one thing: A large protest last weekend in front of his home crossed the line. Though the protest may or may not have violated any laws – Kobach contends it did – it did seem aimed at intimidating him.”

The only person who, like the KKK, is trying to intimidate black and brown people from voting is Kobach. The only person who, like the KKK, is dividing families is Kobach. The only one who, like the KKK, is using demeaning language and championing the cause of racial profiling is Kris Kobach of Kansas.

REUBEN D. ECKELS

Wichita

Arts will do well

“Another blow to arts” (June 14 Eagle Editorial) admitted: “Because those who make art always find a way, the arts will survive Kansas elected leaders’ demonstrated low regard for their value.”

Kansas voters who may appreciate art but don’t feel the need to visit any art exhibit weekly, monthly or even annually agree that the minority who can’t imagine life without art tax dollars can do well on their own.

GARY SHAFFER

Wichita

Losing freedoms

Leonard Pitts’ commentary “We’re surrendering civil liberties” (June 17 Opinion) hit the nail on the head. Since Sept. 11, 2001, we Americans have had our freedoms diminished. In order to fly on an airline, we must submit to illegal search and seizure of contraband property such as toothpaste, hair gel and pocket knives. It’s all a show so that we feel safer, so we submit.

Now the National Security Agency is tracking calls, e-mails, etc. This is probably just the tip of the iceberg.

Our president, whom I have supported, and former President Bush, whom I did not support, both seem to think these erosions of our freedoms are not that serious, and that we are still free.

There are thousands of citizens in our country who hate our government and see conspiracy everywhere. I thought they were paranoid, but I am starting to see the erosions of our freedoms and our Bill of Rights as a slowly progressing clandestine conspiracy by unseen powers to subjugate all Americans. It’s either that, or we are like mindless lemmings, running off a cliff and destroying our own freedoms. We Americans need to stop being afraid and demand that these programs be stopped.

All wars end. The war on terror and the abuse of freedoms should come to a close at some point.

GLENN PARRENT

Wichita

Same argument

Leonard Pitts should listen to his own words (“We’re surrendering civil liberties,” June 17 Opinion). His argument against the chiseling away of the Fourth Amendment (“We are at war against terror, the thinking goes, so certain liberties must be sacrificed”) is the precise reasoning that Second Amendment proponents use in arguing against the chiseling away of their rights. Words that he refers to as “inane platitudes” (“Gun deaths challenge our faith,” April 1 Opinion) are the same words he uses in an effort to protect Fourth Amendment rights.

Pitts should listen to his own words: “We should know this, yet we fall for the same seductive con every time: We are afraid, but the state says it can make us safe. And all it will take is the surrender of a few small freedoms.”

ROGER NEUGENT

Haysville

Diverse nation

Regarding “Time to impeach” (June 19 Letters to the Editor): America was founded on Christian principles and governed on Christian principles? Yes, in an era when, as a nation, there might have been a grand total of 10 different types of religion.

Time to impeach? On what grounds? Might it be that the letter writer’s subscribed type of religion or ideas does not govern the laws of a free land?

America must have at least 150 different types of religion, with diverse cultures expanding rapidly. It’s too late to turn back now. Welcome to the global village. The idea is to try to accommodate everyone.

CLIFF BAKER

Newton

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