Letters to the editor on religious freedoms bill, Point of Rocks, Krauthammer, Forum production
01/31/2014 6:35 PM
01/31/2014 6:35 PM
Don’t allow Point to be erased
Regarding how the Point of Rocks landmark near Dodge City may soon be bulldozed to make way for the widening of a highway (Jan. 27 Eagle), I would like to make these comments:
Even though the Point has been diminished by earlier construction projects, it still has a historical significance, and the amount of the Point that is left should be saved.
We who hope to save Point of Rocks do not oppose the construction of a four-lane highway. We are suggesting to the Kansas Department of Transportation that for the one mile and a half in front of the Point, a 16-foot median be implemented instead of the 60-foot median.
KDOT insists upon using safety as an issue for the 60-foot median argument. But why is it that the same highway, U.S. 50, between Newton and Hutchinson – which carries more traffic and is known to be one of the most accident-prone stretches in the state – has an occasional three lanes and no median? And its future proposed improvements do not include four lanes and a 60-foot median.
True West Magazine ranked Dodge City No. 1 among the 2014 “top Western towns.” Why would anyone, especially the people of Dodge City, allow a landmark that is part of that Western history to be erased?
Attack on liberties
As a citizen, I find House Bill 2453 – “an act concerning religious freedoms with respect to marriage” – in conflict with any sense of separation of church and state as provided in Thomas Jefferson’s comments regarding the First Amendment. As an ordained Christian clergy, I find this bill an offense to the ideals of freedom of religion, all religions, in our great country.
To consider that because of religious belief or lack thereof, a citizen or government entity of our state could deny rights, benefits or employment to anyone should be appalling to those who truly value religious freedom. A true religious freedom bill would protect the rights of citizens from discrimination and harm, not serve as a tool of oppression or an instrument to deny rights. HB 2453 is an affront to those who truly believe in justice for all.
This bill, while touted to be clear and concise, is ambiguous by design and opens a dangerous door to discrimination and oppression of anyone who happens to disagree with another’s religious or nonreligious belief.
Our representatives are elected to serve all citizens of Kansas, not just the ones with whom they agree. The Legislature is not a religious agency free to exclude, discriminate against and turn away those who pay legislative salaries simply because lawmakers disagree with them.
The intent and agenda that lie at the root of this bill are quite obvious. Shame on the authors of HB 2453, and shame on those who would cloak this bill in the language of religious freedom while stomping on the very religious liberties they claim to support.
KENT H. LITTLE
College Hill United Methodist Church
Like he sees it
I would like to commend The Eagle for publishing commentaries by Charles Krauthammer. With his extensive education and experience, he can speak with authority. His writings and speech do not reflect any harshness or bitterness. He just tells it like he sees it.
What a breath of fresh air among today’s angry rhetoric. What a different world it would be if we all were respectful of others’ opinions and viewed them with an open mind. Kraut-hammer is not only a good journalist but an example of perseverance in having dealt with what life has dealt him.
Good going, Eagle. Let’s have more.
A group of seniors from the Derby Senior Center recently attended the Forum Theatre production of “Driving Miss Daisy.” The amazing cast left the audience absolutely breathless. Congratulations on a great production. We look forward to and will be watching future events.
SALLY J. WIEBE