Letters to the editor on voting laws, Israeli settlements, economic freedom, abortion protests

08/16/2013 12:00 AM

08/15/2013 5:04 PM

Understand subtext of voting laws

Laws making it harder for people to vote are passing to cries of “Voter fraud!” – which doesn’t exist – or cries of “They’re making it harder to vote!” – which seems redundant. Everything else is harder. Why not voting?

But is something else going on beneath all this seemingly innocuous activity? Is there a subtext? As a member of the class that stands to benefit from the new laws, I think I can explain.

It’s the familiar makers-versus-takers framework. We, the upwardly mobile men and women who run most states, can cut the takers’ benefits and make them pay higher taxes, but there’s always the chance they’ll get hip and throw us out of office. So it would be helpful if they wouldn’t vote so much.

To that end, we plan to cleverly exploit the fact that certain segments of the population – the young, the poor – in addition to tending to vote Democratic, are inherently lazy. That’s why they’re takers. If we make voting harder, good people – makers and makers-to-be – are industrious and will vote anyway. Takers, being lazy, will find it too much work and suppress their own vote. It’s a win-win.

There’s nothing illegal, nothing immoral about it. It’s just a bet. If you want to win the bet, get yourself registered, no matter how difficult it is, and get out and vote.

And bring friends, because, after all, there are a lot more of you than there are of us.

MIKE DWYER

Wichita

Settlements divide

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is once again playing to the Zionists by permitting new settlements in the Palestinian territory. Look at a map of the settlements built on land taken from Palestinians within what supposedly is Palestinian land.

Israeli West Bank settlements separate Palestinian villages and farms, taking the best land and water for Israelis, even as negotiations are about to begin to create “a two-state solution” based on 1967 borders. The settlements resemble South Africa under apartheid, where hundreds of “white areas” divided areas ostensibly assigned to Africans.

Netanyahu needs to be clear to his right wing that a peace settlement that creates real autonomy for Palestinians is essential to Israel’s security – indeed, to its continued existence.

GRETCHEN EICK

Wichita

Mix of ideas

Regarding “Disconnected from economic reality” (Aug. 14 Letters to the Editor): In a world where economic freedom no longer exists in a bubble, when jobs can just as easily be done in China or India, what controls are in place to ensure that “free-market economics” doesn’t lower our standard of living to match that of Third World nations? The old logic of getting rid of unions is just a smoke screen to allow corporations to use their “free-market” thinking to take their jobs overseas.

Increasing the minimum wage could help. However, what truly is needed are tax laws, and penalties, making it prohibitively expensive to offshore jobs. Of course, this goes against free-market thinking, but just what other entity besides the federal government could enforce such policy?

Wouldn’t it be great if all corporations would just increase wages by 10 percent? Imagine how quickly the economy would respond. Big and small boats rise when the lake rises.

Most corporations today see the quickest way to increase profits is to lower their costs (cut jobs or outsource). With fewer jobs, our tax base decreases and the death spiral continues.

Our future as a nation is in jeopardy, as Charles Koch points out, but because more and more Americans don’t have jobs with livable wages. As our way of life slips away, Americans are losing hope. Everyone agrees that something is wrong. But the way to fix America is not by dogma but with a mix of ideas, just as America is a mix of people.

KIRT REEVES

Wichita

Let women be

It’s ironic that the anti-abortion protesters are requesting the Wichita City Council rezone the South Wind Women’s Center to prevent violence and disturbances in the neighborhood when their group and others like them have been (for many years) the catalyst for the violence and disturbances in that area (“Council rejects rezoning request for clinic,” Aug. 14 Local & State).

These protesters need to let women, their families and their doctors quietly and privately pursue their constitutional right to make choices about their own bodies. When that happens, no one will have to worry about violence in that area.

RAYNELL EWING

Wichita

Which is fake?

Regarding “A different kind of abortion protest” (Aug. 10 Local & State): Which is the “fake” clinic – the one that preserves life or the one that takes it? It would appear that the pro-abortion hypocrisy knows no bounds.

TIM WIESNER

Wichita

Abortion wrong

The picture of protesters’ signs saying “lies” and “fake clinic” was heart-wrenching (Aug. 10 Local & State). We shouldn’t even be having these conversations or protests. There should be no procedure that rips a baby out of the womb. It is not a right. It is a wrong on so many levels. No matter how that beautiful child ended up in the womb, to abort him or her is such a deep moral corruption and sin that infects our world. My heart sobs.

CHRISTINA BURDETTE

Wichita

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