Playing politics at our expense
Forty-six years ago, I took an oath to protect my country, believing that my country would take care of me if I fell in harm’s way. Little did I know that I may have been buying into a fairy tale.
Fast-forward to today: Agent Orange and wounds while in Vietnam have left me fighting cancer of the bladder, physically limited by angina after two heart surgeries, and trying to bury the horrors of war in dreams I never share, because if I did they would become real.
My country’s elected officials, on both sides, are playing idealistic politics at my and your expense. Shame on them. I am sickened, and my heart is heavy with the news I hear every day.
I buy groceries with a small Veterans Affairs pension. Could the remainder of my sustenance, Social Security, be “furloughed” if the shutdown continues much longer? Reassurances from my government are suspect, if indeed history is a teacher.
I am not echoing a pity party. I am sharing a disgust and an embarrassment that is heartfelt.
Please do not vote for any incumbent of either the U.S. Senate or the House of Representatives.
An Opinion Line contributor asked: “Where are the Christian terrorists?” The answer: They are alive and well.
For one thing, Christian terrorists are more sophisticated, tending to shun outrageous forms of violence. Oh, they have been guilty of murdering abortion physicians and intimidating and threatening clinic workers. But most Christian terrorists busy themselves trying to shame, intimidate, publicly denounce and otherwise terrorize women who might seek an abortion.
The most popular tactic is to legally hamper abortion physicians in their medical practice and impinge their good name. Christian terrorists also seek legal means to strip women of their personal rights and freedoms and provide entangling laws to make abortions impossible.
They equally attack those born gay or lesbian or bisexual, and anyone who would be their advocates.
Come and learn about issues that may affect you and your friends and neighbors at an AARP education summit. Sessions will include Wichita Vice Mayor Pete Meitzner talking about bringing Amtrak passenger rail service to Wichita; Stephene Moore, Region 7 director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, leading a session on understanding the Affordable Care Act; and Ernest Kutzley, AARP Kansas advocacy director, explaining how the chained consumer price index would affect your Social Security check. There will be questions and answers after each session.
The summit is Thursday at Wichita State University’s Hughes Metropolitan Complex, at 29th Street North and Oliver. Use the “N” entrance and go to Room 180. Registration begins at 8:15 a.m. and the program begins at 9 a.m. There will be exhibitors with educational and volunteer opportunities. Nurses will be on hand for blood-pressure checks. The summit will end at 12:30 p.m.
This event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. To reserve a seat, register at aarp.cvent.com/KSSouth-CentralSummit or call 877-926-8300.
GERALD and DIANNA SCHMITT