Think big on Century II
Speaking as a native Wichitan, let’s face it: Century II is OK, but it’s no masterpiece. Worse, it’s not functioning for our needs. I will always have sentimental memories of this building, but it’s time to move forward.
We have an opportunity to show the country the future of Wichita is youthful and bright, and its growing from the core out. Scrap the edifice and rebuild with something incredibly functional, aesthetically beautiful and no less than absolutely spectacular in ambition.
We should replace Century II with a building befitting a city that’s not only proud of its past, but proud of its future.
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Chris Pumpelly, Wichita
CWD cause and effect
The claim in a recent story that the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease is associated with deer and elk farms mixes up cause and effect. CWD was first found in a research facility at the University of Colorado 50 years ago. It was first detected in free-ranging deer in Colorado in the 1980s. Free-ranging animals have spread the disease uninhibited in Kansas, Nebraska and other states.
In contrast, movement of deer and elk between farms and other facilities is highly regulated, and the risk of disease spreading is minimal. Facilities that move deer across state lines must be CWD-certified, meaning they’ve tested all eligible animals for at least five years without a positive test. If a CWD animal is found, there are protocols in place to deal with it. Kansas has had one instance, 16 years ago, of a CWD-positive animal on a farm.
Because farms and other facilities test their deer and elk at much higher rates than the state tests hunter-harvested free-roaming deer and elk, they tend to find the disease first. But detection doesn’t mean they brought it in. It was likely brought to the area by the wildlife and spread onto the farm, not the other way around.
Jesse Seltmann, Denison
Homeless children have programs available
When one thinks about the homeless, the usual images that come to mind aren’t of children. Yet, there were 2,182 homeless children attending Wichita schools, according to a 2014 Eagle article.
These children suffer from many of the same medical conditions that housed children do, but tend to have higher rates of poor oral health, substance abuse and other conditions. They also can have significant difficulty obtaining healthcare in a system designed for housed children.
The McKinney-Vento program of the school district, Wichita Children’s Home and other organizations can assist these children. If you meet a child or family who may be homeless (even if “couch-surfing”), why not let them know about these organizations? Please do not forget about these precious and vulnerable children.
Aaron Olson, Wichita
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