Letters to the editor on non-Christian policies, moderate majority, oily mess, nursing coalition, ethnicity of criminals, dyslexia

10/29/2013 12:00 AM

10/28/2013 5:30 PM

Policy consistent with beliefs?

The suicide rate in Kansas is increasing, Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter states the mentally ill are filling his jail because of lack of treatment, and Sedgwick County’s Comcare lost 53 percent of its state funding for serving these people (“Suicide rate climbs by 30 percent in Sedgwick County,” Oct. 20 Eagle). These increasing personal tragedies are the inevitable, predictable fallout from this cruel political reality.

Where is the money going? I know a wealthy man who received a reduction of $26,000 in state taxes this year. Those of us who call ourselves “Christians” – our governor, for instance – should take note. Is this consistent with our beliefs? Is this really “conservatism”?

ALFRED JAMES

Bel Aire

Voices of majority

Gov. Sam Brownback has behaved hypocritically since taking office, and his actions should make voters consider voting for a more moderate candidate.

Brownback defunded the Kansas Arts Commission, stating that he thought the arts should be privately funded, but he has no problem spending almost a million dollars of taxpayer money to fight abortion.

Brownback opposes gun control, while at the same time not properly funding facilities that treat the mentally ill.

Brownback opposes government intervention in our lives, unless of course that government intervention comes in the way of birth control. There he wants stringent regulations.

Brownback has decreased operating funding for public education, while continuing to spend money on his crusade against abortion and homosexuality.

These, among other reasons, are why Brownback has an extremely low approval rating as a governor. It’s time for moderates in Kansas to step up and vote for a reasonable candidate, not one who is so far to one side that he cannot hear the voices of a majority of Kansans.

SARAH JOHNSON

Derby

Oily mess

An oily fact: More than 3 million pounds of oily material was collected along Louisiana’s coastline in the first eight months of 2013 – up from nearly 120,000 pounds in the same period last year, according to the state Department of Natural Resources. This is a result of the oil spill off Louisiana’s coast in 2010.

JERRY HANEY

Wichita

Report ethnicity

I assume that descriptions of perpetrators of assaults, robberies and other crimes are reported in hopes that Eagle readers might assist in expediting their capture.

Why, then, do those descriptions very rarely mention the ethnicity of the person being sought? Wouldn’t it be sensible to narrow it down to a particular race when that information is available, thus eliminating all others? If witnesses catch enough of a view of a person to estimate weight, height, hair color, clothing, ball-cap insignias, etc., they obviously also notice the color of the person’s skin.

Does The Eagle fear that someone might take offense to this? It shouldn’t.

JIM AMICK

Wichita

Join our team

The Institute of Medicine has examined evidence about nursing and health care and recommended that “a more educated nursing workforce would be better equipped to meet the demands of an evolving health care system.” Nurses need to be supported in advancing their knowledge and education.

Kansas Action Coalition is a team of nurses in practice, educators, business leaders, Kansas AARP members and other stakeholders. The coalition wants to take the IOM recommendation a step further, to ensure that all nurses engage in purposeful lifelong learning to benefit nurses in their career paths. The coalition is working to provide nurses with timely information and more seamless opportunities to access both formal and informal education.

The coalition would like to invite nurses, business leaders and other interested individuals to join our team in supporting educational progression for nurses in Kansas. Learn more about the coalition at kansasactioncoalition.org or by contacting program manager Jon Teel at jteel@kumc.edu.

JON TEEL

BETTY SMITH-CAMPBELL

LINDA MOODY

Education team

Kansas Action Coalition

Wichita

Outmoded term

“Help for dyslexia” (Oct. 24 Letters to the Editor) bemoaned the lack of attention to the Fundamental Learning Center’s conference speakers, Sally Shaywitz and Bennett Shaywitz. It brought up several topics to address.

Dyslexia is an outmoded term – rather like the diagnosis of “consumption,” which covered everything from emphysema to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to lung cancer and more. Therefore, “dyslexia” has disappeared from most professional literature.

The Shaywitzes’ emphasis on phonological awareness (phonics) plays into the common acceptance of the term “dyslexia” to replace “learning disabled,” thought to carry less stigma, and to the popular notion that knowledge of phonics fixes everything.

The past 10 years of brain research indicates that the knowledge of phonics is one factor, but not even primary in accounting for student inability to read. International press is quite critical of the Shaywitzes’ work. For those who are helped by this focus, that’s wonderful. For those who aren’t, seek elsewhere.

CATHRYN A. HAY

Wichita

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