Letters to the editor on county fair, sperm-donor case, Alzheimer’s funding, comedians

07/27/2013 12:00 AM

07/26/2013 5:17 PM

Kids playing ball an unexpected treat

My daughter, granddaughter and I had a wonderful time July 20 at the Sedgwick County Fair in Cheney. The evening was made fresh by showers and a cool breeze. Everything we expected to see – the animals, the carnival and the people – was enjoyable, largely because of the friendly disposition of the people there. But the thing that was the most satisfying was the unexpected.

Late in the evening, after the organized ballgames were finished, the ball diamond was buzzing with children playing a makeshift game on their own. They had no bats or gloves but simply used a squishy ball and their hands. They were playing something like stickball in the street. They were free to ham it up and clown around without a script.

It’s been a long time since I’ve seen kids having so much fun playing ball by simply and naturally being themselves. It was so refreshing that I wanted to compliment their parents, but they didn’t belong to any of the adults I asked. So I will send my admiration to the town of Cheney or those near for having such a wholesome crop of kids. To an outsider, it looks like a great place to grow up.

MARSHALL McHENRY

Derby

Drop sperm case

“Sperm donor asks for judge’s ruling” (July 25 Local & State) reported on a man who donated sperm enabling a couple to have a girl born in 2009. The man and the couple signed a contract in which the donor was waived of his parental rights and responsibilities. The state of Kansas is arguing that the contract is invalid because they didn’t have a licensed physician to perform the artificial insemination.

To my way of thinking, that is a flimsy excuse. A mere technicality shouldn’t change the intent and spirit of the contract that was signed and is still agreed to by all parties who signed it.

The donor and couple are content with their lives. The judge should toss out this case. The courts are clogged with genuine cases that are contested.

Gov. Sam Brownback campaigned on the promise of creating the Office of the Repealer. Where is the repealer now? The man in question donated sperm and signed a contract waiving his rights and responsibilities, and the adoptive parents aren’t making any monetary claim regarding his role. End of story. The matter should be dropped promptly without the additional costs and burdens to taxpayers for a hearing that isn’t necessary.

JAMES A. MARPLES

Esbon

Decisive on funding

“Moran bets Republicans will take back Senate” (July 19 Eagle) said U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., has a reputation for indecisiveness. As the ranking member of the Senate’s Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies, Moran’s decisive leadership was instrumental in gaining the subcommittee’s approval to include $104 million for Alzheimer’s disease research and support in its fiscal year 2014 funding bill. The full Senate Appropriations Committee also voted to support this increased funding.

Later this year the full U.S. Senate and House of Representatives may have the opportunity to vote on this legislation. Please ask Kansas’ congressional leaders to support this crucial funding.

More than 53,000 Kansans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, and that number is poised to triple by 2050. An American is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease every 69 seconds today. By 2050, a diagnosis will occur every 33 seconds.

Caring for Alzheimer’s, the country’s most expensive disease, costs our nation $203 billion annually with projections to reach $1.2 trillion a year by 2050. Yet today, for every $27,000 that Medicare and Medicaid spend on caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s, the National Institutes of Health spends only $100 on Alzheimer’s research.

BARRICK WILSON

Wichita

Research comedians

These days, given what movies cost, I rarely rely on a review as a benchmark for what I might like, especially when it comes to comedy. If I’m familiar with a particular performer, fine. If not, it’s time to do some research. After all, we do have YouTube.

I’m sorry a letter writer was so offended by “Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain” (“Crude movie,” July 19 Letters to the Editor). But the simple truth is that some of us like to be shocked out of our comfort zones, and can laugh about it. I have only recently become familiar with Hart’s work; I know enough to say he isn’t for everyone. However, to call his use of certain words “useless, deplorable and shockingly numerous” made me think of what people used to say regarding Richard Pryor and, before him, Lenny Bruce. They are now considered icons in their medium.

I’m not easily offended, but I would never see a live or filmed performance by a comedy artist I wasn’t familiar with without taking the time to investigate. Beyond the “R” rating that Hart’s movie received and the clarification that it contained “sexual references” and “pervasive language,” I don’t know what else could have helped.

KERRY JONES BRANINE

Wichita

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