For those who have been disrespected
It is ironic and exasperating that people who have been ignorant or dismissive of history have suddenly gained renewed interest in it now that their current favorite candidate has been exposed as a sexual predator.
Yes, predation has been happening for decades, centuries, millennia, but most women (or men to whom it happened) stayed silent, even as I and my peers did as younger adults. But now that Roy Moore has been subject to accusations, his people are howling, “but Bill Clinton!” Yes, he was the president; he was a cad; he was also impeached as a result of his peccadilloes. “But Al Franken!” Yes, and he did not deny it and has been contrite.
Let’s ignore JFK’s womanizing, Eisenhower’s probable mistress(es), FDR’s affairs, and multiple other presidents’ trysts, for brevity’s sake. But now that the history of unwanted sexual attention, long as it is, has finally perhaps crossed a critical point where its targets no longer will stay silent, why do we allow the current president to get a pass? Why do we tolerate his and Moore’s accusations that such a plethora of women are lying, when women for so long would not dare admit their victimization for the shame of it?
Never miss a local story.
Tina Bennett-Kastor, Wichita
Tax bill penalizes students
I am a Wichitan who made her dreams come true after eight years of hard work at Northwest High School and the University of Kansas. However, the Tax Cut and Jobs Act is putting those dreams in jeopardy.
In 2015, I received my acceptance letter from Johns Hopkins University’s Biomedical Engineering Ph.D. program. At Hopkins, I develop bone grafts for children with congenital defects, cancer patients, and trauma patients. This work is done almost exclusively by doctoral students, but H.R.1 117d will make graduate school inaccessible for many students, especially middle-class Kansans like me.
Additionally, I spend a lot of my time with undergraduate education. I teach laboratory courses, grade assignments, and hold office hours. Without the contribution of Ph.D. students, undergraduate class sizes and tuition would likely increase.
My work is possible because my $50,000 annual tuition is provided as a scholarship. H.R. 1 would cause this scholarship to be taxable as income, increasing my taxes from about 8 percent of my income to about 39 percent. The Senate is currently considering its version of the House bill. If it passes with 117d, thousands of doctoral students will not be able to afford our Ph.D.s, which will cripple research and undergraduate education.
Ashley Farris, Baltimore
The argument surrounding Tyson
The dialogue I’m hearing around the Tyson debate goes like this:
Pro-Tyson: “Tyson is going to provide 1,600 jobs.”
Con: “But we have a 3.4-percent unemployment rate and only 10,644 people looking for work. I presume they don’t all want to work in a chicken factory.”
Pro: “Yes, but 1,600 jobs.”
Con: “Tyson has paid millions in employment and labor-related fines. Do we want that kind of employer?
Pro: “1,600 jobs.”
Con: “Wichita has spent millions to beautify downtown and build Intrust Bank Arena so we can attract tourism and events like the NCAA Tournament. Would people return if their first thought is ‘What’s that smell?’ ”
Pro: “1,600 Jobs.”
Con: “What about the burden on small-town sewer and water systems, roads and schools?”
Pro: “1,600 jobs. Oh, and the workers and drivers will eat at local restaurants.”
Con: “What about the smell?”
Pro: “It won’t smell.”
What? Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of economics understands that jobs are but a small part of determining the success of an economy. What good are 1,600 jobs if the industry providing them destroys everything else that makes our city and surrounding countryside beautiful and good, destroying our economy in the process?
Angela Solomon, Clearwater
Processing plant would hurt infrastructure
Rural Sedgwick County is not equipped with the infrastructure to handle Tyson and 1,300 to 1,600 employees coming and going along with hundreds of semi tractor-trailers carrying up to 80,000 pounds. Are the county or townships prepared to carry the burden of this infrastructure and the associated cost for construction and repair?
I would like to know which bridges are rated for what weight capacity, as not only the plant but the 30- to 50-mile circle around the plant will have heavy truck traffic. Are the county or townships prepared to carry the burden of this infrastructure and the associated cost for construction and repair?
Jeff Zogleman, Clearwater
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