All justices, judges should be retained
After almost 40 years of teaching law in Kansas and reading the opinions of our judges, I believe that we have an outstanding Kansas Supreme Court and Kansas Court of Appeals, and all of the justices and judges should be retained.
Current campaign commercials ask Kansas voters to reject retention of Supreme Court justices because of their decisions in the Carr brothers case. In detailed opinions, the judges explained the difficult decisions they reached in that case, demonstrating the highest standards of their profession in a manner that deserves our respect.
In a total of 383 pages, they addressed 74 separate issues. They ruled in favor of the prosecution in the vast majority of those issues, and despite finding many trial errors, they upheld the verdict that the Carrs were guilty. The only change they ordered would have required separate jury deliberations before imposing a death sentence, so that evidence used against one of the brothers would not influence jury deliberations about the other.
The five justices and six judges on the Nov. 8 ballot represent years of experience and a range of valuable perspectives. Sudden replacement by a single governor would undermine the role of an independent judiciary.
Voting “yes” for the judges will help to secure fair and impartial justice for all Kansans.
Bill Rich, Topeka
‘No’ on retention
I had the pleasure of serving the citizens of Sedgwick County for almost 35 years as a deputy sheriff. I was honored to manage the county jail during some of my time with the Sheriff’s Office, and I recently retired after serving as the undersheriff to Sheriff Jeff Easter.
I am asking my fellow Kansans to vote “no” on retaining Kansas Supreme Court justices Carol Beier, Dan Biles, Lawton Nuss and Marla Luckert. It is appalling what they have done to the Carr brothers’ victims and their families.
In all my years in law enforcement, the crimes committed by Jonathan and Reginald Carr are among the worst I’ve seen. Now to see the pain in these families’ faces after being robbed of justice just infuriates me, as it should all Kansans.
Our Supreme Court is out of control. If you need a reason to vote this election, do it for the victims and their families. We have a real opportunity to stand with them by voting “no” on these justices.
Danny Bardezbain, Wichita
Don’t elect hate
A vote for Donald Trump is a personal endorsement of prejudice, misogyny, xenophobia and hate. He is not just a buffoon or someone who just “made some mistakes.” He is bad, and no argument about or against the opposing candidate will make up for that.
The candidates are not equivalent in their “badness.” Yes, I am affirmatively using the words “bad” and “hate.”
This isn’t about “politics” or a difference of opinion. This is about who we are as people walking this earth. This is about our humanity.
Finally, if you are Mexican, physically or mentally challenged, Muslim, female or lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (or otherwise targeted because of “difference”) and Trump is elected (or even if he isn’t), you will always find protection and sanctuary in my home. You will be safe here with my family. You are welcome here.
Amanda Meyers, Wichita
Can’t vote for her
Call me a one-issue voter if you want, but a Catholic cannot vote for a pro-abortion candidate, such as Hillary Clinton and others.
If a candidate supported killing innocent victims by terrorism, would you disqualify that candidate because of that one issue? Then why not abortion? The life of an innocent human being always comes to an end through violent means.
The fight for our religious liberty is also up for grabs. Judges at many levels will be chosen who could take away our First Amendment rights to exercise our religion in the public square. We have already seen bakers and photographers forced to take part in gay unions. Christian organizations, such as the Little Sisters of the Poor, are required to allow contraception coverage. A vote for Clinton would guarantee more of the same.
On top of that, the WikiLeaks e-mails of some Clinton campaign staff have shown attacks on Catholics and other Christians. The choice is clear. How can Christians in their right mind vote for these people?
Terry Brennan, Wichita
If you’ve seen Marcey Gregory, mayor of Goddard, being interviewed, you already know she is well spoken and well versed on issues that matter to constituents in our area. But she is much more than a polished performer uttering political rhetoric. She is heavily involved in the community where she lives and serves. She’s a leader not afraid to get her hands dirty.
Whether she’s serving shoulder to shoulder with fellow residents bringing aid to neighbors in the community who need a “hand up” or serving breakfast to Goddard Fall Festival attendees or hosting a meeting of city officials, she’s more than just a figurehead. Gregory is a living example of what we all want in our governmental leaders.
Because of her overarching passion for making Goddard and Sedgwick County and, ultimately, Kansas better places to live, Gregory is able to mobilize groups of people who might not otherwise meet together, accomplishing a greater good for the community where they live.
If you’re weary of the status quo, I urge you to join me on Nov. 8 in voting for Marcey Gregory as our 3rd District Sedgwick County commissioner.
Donna Estep, Wichita
In this current era of political divisiveness – when it is so easy to be skeptical of candidates’ true motivations – Tim Norton stands out as a person of unquestioned integrity, with a commitment to serve our community for all the right reasons.
Norton is an exemplary civic leader. He is available; he listens; he studies issues carefully; and he acts in principled ways to create a better community for all of us.
As a physician who helped establish the Project Access program in Sedgwick County, I saw those qualities firsthand as I watched Norton work. In the years since, my admiration and respect for Norton have grown even stronger.
The changes I will be voting for across candidates and parties this election are about reaffirming the central importance of integrity, civility, engagement and forward-looking vision in public office. Norton is an exceptional role model for those values. He is an informed and caring leader who should be re-elected to the Sedgwick County Commission.
His proven record of dedicated service to our community is a treasure we need to honor and keep.
Paul N. Uhlig, Wichita
I met Ben Poteete shortly after I joined the U.S. Army. I want to talk about his character, and his willingness to serve in the Kansas Senate.
From the beginning, Poteete was given great responsibility in our platoon and succeeded in those tasks under very austere circumstances. The culmination of our training and fighting together was when I witnessed his actions in a close ambush in Darzak, Afghanistan. When we came under intense enemy fire from only 25 yards away, Poteete returned fire from the turret, suppressing the enemy so that the rest of us in the platoon could effectively maneuver on the enemy. After the battle we discovered that almost every window, every door, and every antenna (military vehicles have many) had multiple bullet holes in them.
Poteete is a true Kansan. He is honest, hardworking, loyal and not afraid to make the hard decisions even when the outcome is personally unfavorable. He is not running for office for himself; he is running for you.
Joseph Wheeler, Lawrence
As we approach Election Day 2016, a clear choice is apparent in Senate District 25: Lynn Rogers.
I have known Rogers for many years, and I appreciate that as a parent, school board member or neighbor, he is always willing to listen. Whether we agree or disagree on an issue, he will listen and become as knowledgeable as possible on the issue. He communicates openly and will look at all points of view.
Vote for Lynn Rogers.
Linda Zehr, Wichita
I’ve always suspected The Eagle was being manipulated by Charles Koch and his minions at the American Legislative Exchange Council. The Eagle editorial board’s endorsement of Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, confirmed it.
Cass Young, Wichita
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